You might see her pretty face everywhere you turn, but chances are you don’t know too much about the life and times of Abbey Lee Kershaw. For instance: she’s a dedicated artist, is obsessed with JD Salingers The Catcher in the Rye and is a self-proclaimed masochist.
The Sunday Telegraph in Australia profiled the 23-year-old Melbourne native, and although I consider myself to be the President of the model’s fan club, I actually learned quite a bit! Abbey Lee, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways… And don’t forget to click through for her latest editorial, shot by Hedi Slimane for the April issue of Vogue Russia, where the nipple rings and tattoos she so fondly discusses are on full display.
She might look sweet, but she’s every bit the bad girl. I think people would be surprised by my dark nature and the fact I have quite an addictive personality. When I started getting tattoos, I couldnt stop. I also have piercings all over.
She likes pleasure spiked with pain. Its like wasabi. I love it because the hit is hot and intense, then it goes away, which is similar to getting a tattoo. Anyone who says it doesn’t hurt is lyingit canes, but then it goes away. I find that fascinating.
She has quite the imaginationas a kid she’d create alternate worlds in her mind and pretend to live in them. “In the bath, Id pretend to be a mermaid and lock the door so no one could come in and see my tail. I think thats why Im so good at what I do I find it very easy to pretend to be part of a world Im not actually in.
That ability to pretend is why she’s so good at modelingeven though she initially had no passion for it. As soon as I stepped in front of the camera, I knew what I was supposed to do. I never feel shame or anxiety; Ive always known how to deal with whatevers asked of me.
She’d be barefoot 100% of the time if she could. Its one of the things I miss most about home. I hardly ever wear shoes when Im in Australia. I love that freedom.
She has lofty ambitions. I have much more to give than a pretty face. Its great for me now, dont get me wrong. The surprise element keeps it exciting; its taught me how to adapt in all sorts of strange situations. But I wont do this forever; I have other things in mind. Ill always be involved in some form of creative expression, be it art, music or dance. One day, Ill have a lot more tattoos and probably some odd hair colours, too.
…including becoming a rock star. When she’s not working, she plays percussion in her boyfriend’s band, Our Mountain. I sing a bit and gig with them when I can. I love music Nick Cave and Leonard Cohen are favorites. One day, Id like to venture into that area a little more.
She’s kind of a homebody. Her favorite activity? Lying in a warm bath with a glass of good red wine. Spending quiet time at home is preciousand rare.
Finally, she has feelingsjust like us! A little too often, Im treated as nothing more than a coat hanger. Its sometimes forgotten that models are people with hearts and souls. That can be tough to deal with.
Photos: Hedi Slimane for Vogue Russia