Recently I attended my very first music festival, and it was fucking awesome. Life is Beautiful is a three day event and happens in Downtown Las Vegas, spanning a few square city blocks. It had four live stages and featured some of the largest, most intricate art that I’ve ever seen.
Being a Vegas local really has it’s perks, and it was pretty easy even as a group of four to use our negotiating skills to get in on the second night, which also happened to be perfect timing to celebrate Paul Vagina‘s Birthday. It was about 7:00 PM when we got inside so we immediately went to grab waters and popped some molly to get the vibes flowing! Right away it was clear that this was going to be a super trippy night.
After walking around for a while looking at the light shows and giant murals, we settled down by a stage to watch Foster The People and smoke a joint. For a while I thought that I wasn’t going to feel anything from the molly, but then we entered what would be my favorite art installation of the night and I started rolling. Hard. The long hallway of lights was synced up to the sounds that were paying and it created a fantastic vibe that I couldn’t help lingering in.
We finally reached the end of the dope light alley and found a soft patch of grass to relax on for a while and listened to Florence and The Machine playing nearby. We sat and chilled for a bit then did a final walk-around and decided to head for the exits so that we didn’t get too caught up in the huge crowd of people trying to leave. I’ve never seen so many people walking aimlessly through the streets downtown before, and trying to get a Lyft home was an adventure in and of itself! All things included it was an amazing experience. Life really is beautiful.
After living in Las Vegas for a couple years, I can’t help but feel incredibly grateful for the sense of confidence and freedom that this city has brought out in me.
There are only a few public places so far in the world where I can walk around wearing literally anything I want for an impromptu photoshoot without feeling an ounce of negative judgment from passersby, and they’re all in Vegas. So after my planned shoot got rescheduled Friday afternoon, Paul Vagina and I decided to head downtown to Fremont street to see if we could make some magic. (and we sure did!) If you have my Snapchat, then you know.
It didn’t take us long to choose a spot after we got downtown, we just parked in a garage on the empty top floor and started there. It usually takes about me 5-10 minutes to get in my groove and feel fully comfortable in front of the camera and the difference that confidence makes is always funnily apparent in the photos. All of a sudden a switch gets flipped on inside and I’m ready to go!
After getting a few great shots on the roof we decided to take a few videos in the elevator on the way down. The idea was to film the elevator doors opening to reveal me standing there in my lingerie. We got one good shot and went for a second try, when the unanticipated happened (duh) and the elevator started to move with me inside, frantically trying to wrap my long sweater around myself before the doors opened again. I had just pulled my sweater closed when the doors opened to not one, but six security guards. They all shuffle into the elevator and then one of them turns and waves into the security camera on the ceiling, while clearly having a conversation with whoever was watching it through his earpiece. At that point I’m in the corner trying not to burst into nervous laughter on what feels like the longest elevator ride in history.
Not sure where to go next, we go walking up and down the Fremont Street Experience looking for the next place to stop. We end up at Corduroy just before sunset, a bar with a semi-secret photo room in the back that we had wanted to check out. It was actually instant magic. The lighting, the loud vibes music and the privacy made for a super hot shoot. I’m really glad we went in there and the staff was super cool acting as if they didn’t even know what we were doing. We ordered a couple shots and moved onto the next destination.
Our last stop for the night is famous amongst local photogs and models. Binion’s has some super cool neon on top of their garage that I thought would make for perfect mood lighting. I changed up my panties and shoes to match the vibe and even though it was pretty dark by then, it ended up being the cherry on top of an already amazing night. Check for the final shots on my Instagram and make sure to give them a like.