Cathy, Cecelia, Frankie, Julie, Kate and Kate w/ Cruisin for A Bruisin!

STYLE LIKE U spends some time inside Jenny Shimizu’s closet.

“[The first time I saw myself as a model was when] my friends woke me up at four in the morning and took me to Times Square. I saw the Banana Republic billboard that I shot with Bruce Weber. There was just a picture of my face, and underneath, it said ‘American Beauty.’ It still makes me have the chills. Never in my life did I think that I was beautiful.”

Jenny Shimizu

STYLE LIKE U, Style Musings of the 21st Century.

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More from the archives! A fashion editorial from New York Magazine featuring Jenny wearing Calvin Klein.


From the Archives: New York Magazine, special issue, “Where to Find It” – an insiders guide to New York City from April 1994.

And the caption reads: “The first time I saw Popeye, I said to my parents, ‘I’m getting a tattoo,'” reports motorcycle mechanic turned ubiquitous model Jenny Shimizu. Now she’s covered with them ; on her biceps, for instance, there’s a naked lady riding a monkey wrench. Shimizu, 22, recommends Kaleidoscope Tattoos (365 Canal St.; 274-8006). Not far from a porno shop, Kaleidoscope sits in an enormous, spotless loft. Sure, tattooing is illegal in the city, but the law’s rarely enforced, and Kaleidoscope’s needles are wrapped and sterilized. On the walls are hundreds of snapshots of the obligatory panthers and dragons, but also Winnie the Pooh and Piglet (hugging). The average tattoo costs $200; Shimizu says it’s worth it. “They’re better than lovers,” she says. “They don’t talk back.”

Two things. One, Jenny’s tattoo is actually a girl dressed in cut off shorts, a button-down shirt and wearing work boots. And, two, who knew that 20 years ago, tattooing was illegal?

First Look: Jenny Shimizu Online .com (Homepage) by 30Seven Design

The OFFICIAL Jenny Shimizu WEBSITE has LAUNCHED! Complete with Jenny’s STORY, 5 REELS, 100+ IMAGES, never before seen WORDS (press), official place to buy MERCH and ways to CONTACT her!

WWW.JENNYSHIMIZUONLINE.COM has finally ARRIVED!

Pro Wedding Photographer for a Day?

L: Jenny & her 54 ford f-1, M: Trailer Park, R: Married Couple

Q: Jenny, what’s the story behind these pictures?

JS: I drove to palm springs (in my 54 ford f-1) to go visit my gf’s parents who lived in that trailer park. we brought old cameras to take pictures way out in the joshua tree national park. we ended up spending all our money and didn’t have enough to buy gas to get us home. her dad, who was kind of an old, goodhearted, spaz (me in my later years) suggested we take pictures of his friend’s wedding that day, we could make 50 dollars and that would afford us to get home, with a little spare money for food. we ended going to goodwill purchasing some used white button up shirts, so we’d look professional and then for a day we became wedding photographers. we ended up getting home and these are a few of the pictures we took as professionals.

Cruisin for a Bruisin

Q: What makes you a motorcycle enthusiast?

Jenny: “i was born with the obsession for anything with a motor. i would pop open the hood of my dad’s volkswagen and pretend i was working on it when i was around 6 years old. all my cousins had yamaha or husquavarna enduros and they would take me on rides. i was too small to ride myself and i would feel like i was in heaven. i would fall asleep alot while holding onto them, cruising the trails up in northern california. once i was 10 my dad got forced into giving me and my sister 2 minibikes that my uncle made him take. that started the obsession with having my own bike and instantaneously started my rebel attitude. i often got pulled over by cops for riding my minibike on the public roads heading to the local circle k for candy. i also started taking my minibike apart because i wanted it to go faster. been along time since those days, 8 bikes later and many fractured and broken bones, i still ride. i can’t stop.”

Jenny and her Yamaha. Age 11. Summer of '78