Jan 27, 2012


Jhesika Thompson Menes

I saw a beautiful child grow into this beautiful woman. Jhesika is just as beautiful inside as she is on the outside.  She grew up and went to school in our small town.  It makes one feel proud to know that people from our town go out into the world and do so many wonderful things.
Here is her story in her own words.

     I remember always mimicking what i saw on Fashion File & 'designing' my own outfits as a kid. I had an affinity for fashion, & as I grew older, more & more people told me I should model. Being the daughter of a 6'5" man & having a fashionable sense of adventure, I took their encouragement into consideration, but never actually went after it. I moved to Dallas Texas for Graphic Design school & unbeknownst to me my boyfriend at the time submitted me for a modeling contest- I won out of something like 1200 entries- so I counted myself lucky & figured I better give it a whirl.
My first big job was for JC Penney. While in TX I also modeled for Foley's, Lens Crafters, Park Cities People magazine, deBoulle, Calvin Klein, Neiman Marcus, Fashion Dallas magazine, Levi's jeans, & Diffa.
      I left college & moved to New York City after signing with Women Model Management, who at the time represented some of fashion's top models, like: Kate Moss, Naomi Campbell, Chandra North, & Devon Aioki. There I began to do more runway & made a name for myself in the small circle of working American models. In New York, there are so many foreign girls that competition is at an all time high. I found myself working jobs with some of the most beautiful, forever bronzed, thin, exotic & waify women I've ever laid eyes on. For someone with little confidence it is a very hard world to become a part of. I've never really lacked for self confidence, but I admit it was hard to find myself as a normal budding young woman while surrounded by this almost surreal fantasy world. I was very critical of myself. I worked hard to maintain my tiny frame, sat up countless nights homesick & scared wondering if I was wasting time playing a mannequin when I could be doing something that involved using my brain, something that would last me longer than a good 10 or so years if I was lucky. But I eventually grew to love the industry, I craved the hectic schedule, I adored the traveling. In the end it was all worth it. And it has thankfully lasted over 13 years.
In New York & abroad, I've modeled for Seventeen magazine, Zac Posen, Momo Falana, Clairol, Rebecca Minkoff, Saks Fifth Avenue, Akris Punto, Valentino, Donna Karan, Macy's, Italian Amica, Elle magazine, Glamour magazine, Vanity Fair, Etro, Spanx, Nair, Max Factor, Ralph Lauren, Chanel, so forth & so on.
      Now, while I continue to model, I am also Director of New Faces at a local modeling agency in New Orleans. I coach aspiring models in runway walk, industry terminology & skills training. I also went back to school, as I finally discovered my true passion. After getting my culinary degree, I've worked with amazing Chefs & continue to write for a food column. I'm now preparing for a move to Germany in which I will model, cook, & eat my way through Europe. From little quirky girl from South Carolina to model turned Chef... idiosyncratic - yes, but it sure has made for an exciting life!

Thank you Jhesika for sharing your life and so many beautiful photographs with us.
I am sure we all will be seeing more from this young lady for years to come.
She not only is  beautiful but can cook too!
Enjoy your new ventures Jhesika!

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