Trae Lee, a freelance model based in San Diego, California, enjoys the freedom of not being tied down to one agency. ” I was signed and I work with a few places to book work but I’m not contracted through an agency currently by choice. It allows a little more freedom, though I’ll be moving to NYC soon and I’m hoping to maybe find someone there to help me book more runway.”
I’ve always wanted to do something creative. I started as a dancer but injured myself pretty bad when I was younger. Around that same time a girl I went to school with who did model introduced me to a designer she worked with and he had me walk for him and I enjoyed it so much I made that my new focus.
I have a lot of passions: life, people, art, modeling… You have to find a passion in anything you attempt and try or it won’t be enjoyable, even in a job most would consider boring you can find passion you just have to look. I guess my passion is finding passion to make life more enjoyable.
You’re a stunning model and I’m sure you have things you can brag about:
Haha this [question], I don’t like to brag but um… I’m happy, truly happy and at ease, that’s an accomplishment I’m proud of that I feel a lot of people can’t say. I feel like a lot of people I know are searching for happiness or things to make them happy or put them at ease and I’ve discovered my ease and happiness in life. Other than those cool things I’ve done in reference to my modeling. I’ve been published on Vogue sites for Italy and the USA. I’ve worked with and walked for big names in hair including: Wella, Bumble and Bumble, Unite and others and I’ve walked for Betsey Johnson and Naeem Khan along with a good amount of Project Runway Alumni.
Who inspired you?
My grandfather who passed when I was young used me as a test subject often in his photography when testing new film and lights and things. As I grew and found more of his work it continued to inspire me. So many other people and things inspire me though I don’t think I could list them all.
What should our readers know that makes you, you?
Things to know… hmm… I’m not nearly as serious as I appear to be in most of my work. Off camera I’m the biggest goofball. I wouldn’t be surprised if a few photographers I work with often have files full of my crazy and fun behavior. I can’t not move or laugh and I’m sure most people don’t expect that. I’ve actually been told I’m much nicer and much more fun in person than I appear in my photos, which I’m hoping is a good thing. I love to travel and hope to do more one day.
When I was younger I traveled in a commune through a portion of the US living without electricity or running water. It was one of the most freeing and enlightening experiences I’ve ever had. I plan to go back and visit again one day because I miss home and the family but I gotta try to do this first! I also have driven cross country a few times, but still need to leave the country and I’m currently working on it.
One last thing, I’m a foody. I love food, cooking it, looking at it, taking pictures of it, but most importantly, EATING IT. I love food. To this day one of my favorite jobs was filming ‘Poutine on the Ritz’ for the Epic Meal Time guys for their new TV show where I got to walk down the runway in a dress made of food. Of course we had amazing catering that day as well so I got to eat the whole time. Living in San Diego I have access to great food and moving to NYC… I’ve been dreaming of bagels, I really have, though I have also been indulging in all the Mexican food I can get my hands on because nothing compares to a good California burrito.