Interview By Luke Munnell
You know that popular Fight Club line "You're not your job?" We might never say it to Mr. Durden's mashed-up mug, but most of the time-sadly-he's wrong. Most of us spend more time engaging in work than any other single act in life, and as much as we'd prefer not to become the accountants, sales reps, or whatever it is each of us do for a living, our professions inevitably take their hold. Such is especially the case with models and dancers, where walking that line between pretending to love hoards of ogling guys, while knowing how to keep them at bay, all but demands a split personality. We see it all the time in their smiling faces and nagging emails, on-camera etiquette and off-camera indiscretion, and all those awkward introductions when their faces light up only after seeing the title of the magazine on our business cards. But that's not the case with Gabby Jeanne. Unapologetic yet undeniably magnetic, her candor and intriguing demeanor spring from genuine confidence and warmth-a product of having nothing to hide, and everything to share. She's herself at all times, take it or leave it. She's not changing for anyone, and only asks as much in return for her company. She's possibly the most down-to-earth, straightforward model you'll ever be too intimidated to ask for an autograph. And she just might love you for that, too.
Finally! Your Import Tuner cover feature. Excited?
Yeah! Just glad there's no video camera for this one.
Why is that?
I don't know! They just make me . . . nervous! I don't mind cameras, but video is a whole different story.
But you had a quick interview with us when we shot you for the 2010 calendar, right?
Yeah, and people made so much fun of me for it! They were all, "Is she stoned or what?" But that's just the way I am. I was feeling pretty chill that day. I used to want to be an actress, but modeling definitely helped clear that up.
We're doing this interview at Hooters. Why is that?
Cause I work there, and it's a cool place. And they have fried pickles!
And beer. [gulp] You also go-go dance, so between those two jobs and modeling, is it safe to say you're a people person?
Now I am, but I used to be an ugly dork in school.
Shut up . . .
It's true! I never really wanted to be a model. I always had a dream to shoot for Playboy, because my girlfriends and I used to sneak a peek at my dad's issues when we were little and think about how pretty all the girls looked . . . but it never 'clicked' that you have to work your way up to something like that.
So what made you get into modeling?
Myspace. A photographer saw some regular pics on my page and asked me to shoot with him, so I figured, 'Why not?' and posted those up, got more shoots, and just kept networking. I did a lot of stuff with gaming sites like IGN.com and UGO.com, and one of the guys I shot with was close with Skate Mafia, which turned into a run of decks with two of my photos on them-which was awesome-and it just went on from there.
Your looks definitely didn't hurt either, I suspect. You're originally from Cali?
Yep. West Covina, born and raised. I had a lot of friends who were into cars growing up, so that's how I got into the scene. Lowrider Girls was the first magazine I shot for, then I started going to the shows, did a little bit for Super Street, and here I am.
Got any weird creeper stories?
To be honest, no. People are really cool, I think because I'm straight up with them. I put myself out there and make my personality known. I don't put on a fake persona like some girls. I put my problems out there just like anyone else. And if I'm working a show and someone wants an autograph or a picture, I'll do it and I'll have fun. I won't walk away or get all bitchy. I love my supporters!
As a model, go-go dancer and Hooters extraordinaire, do you find it impossible to live a "regular" life? Do you party all the time and have a rockstar schedule?
Actually, I really don't party that much. I don't drink a lot, I don't do drugs, and I love having personal time to just chill. It can be a party lifestyle but I guess that part of it just doesn't interest me.
"Impossible" question number two: Is it impossible for a guy to walk up to you and say something to gain your interest, or have you heard it all before?
As long as they're cool and being real with me, it could work. But I usually go for the shy guy. I don't like cocky guys who seem like they're after every other girl, or guys who have been with a ton of girls. When I'm talking to a guy and he gets all nervous, I think it's the cutest thing!
What qualities should a guy have before even thinking about talking to you?
Confidence, ambition, good sense of humor; that kind of stuff. I like a guy who knows what he wants and works at getting it. Don't front, don't act like you're loaded when you're not. Just be real, and have a plan for life. Appearance really makes no difference to me, either. A lot of girls want that tall/dark/cute guy, but that really doesn't matter to me. Well . . . he does have to be cute! [laughter]
What's a good way for a guy to totally blow it?
If he tells me, "Oh, you're the most beautiful girl in the world," or something like that. I hate it. Don't talk to me like I'm God's gift to the world. Don't kiss my ass. I'm a regular person with issues and imperfections like everyone else. Don't build me up and I won't let you down.
So what are your plans with modeling? Are you going to stick around for a bit?
I'll be around for a while. There's a lot more I want to do with it, and I know I won't be doing it forever, so I want to do as much as I can in the next few years. I want to stay natural and see how far I can take it-nothing fake for me. I still want that Playboy feature. If I get it, that might be a good place to stop.
What are you eyeing up for the long run?
When I do stop modeling I'll go back to school and get into counseling or psychology. That was always my plan, but modeling just came up and I went with it. I had a tough time when I was younger-confidence issues, emotional problems, things like that-and modeling has really helped me break out of that shell. Now that I'm older and have gotten past all that I want to help younger people find ways to overcome their obstacles and be who they want to be. That or veterinary medicine, because I love animals. Or criminal psychology. I have a fascination with serial killers.
Kids, fuzzy kittens, and serial killers all in the same answer. I'd take a second to tell you you're awesome if I didn't already know you hate that.
Smart boy! [laughter]
Ethnicity: Honduran, German, Irish, Italian, French
Birthday: November 17th
Hometown: West Covina, CA
Thank you list:
Luke, for choosing me to be on the cover of Import Tuner magazine; Gabby and Al for doing a wonderful job with my hair and makeup; Christian for being a great photographer; my dad for all the support; and most of all, my fans and my haters: You're who keep me going!