Instagram | @maddypettigrew
Photographer | Jody Rael, Las Vegas, NV
Instagram | @jodyrael
Web | jodyraelphotography.com
What Makes Me, Me
As a child, I always dreamt of growing up. All of a sudden I opened my eyes and my childhood had passed. I miss my childhood, but I like to think that missing the fun times is what makes me so fun-loving. I always want to create the happiest moments and memories so that I can look back on them later and think, “Wow life has been fun, what else can I do with it?”. I like to live in a free spirited way, living life to the fullest and embracing whatever it may bring my way. As a result, passion is very important to me. I love finding things I am passionate about because I can use them to express my inner thoughts. For example, writing and journaling is something I love because there are so many beautiful words that I can use to describe my experiences. One monumental experience during my childhood was moving every two or three years. I moved all across the country and sometimes out of it. I went from New York, to Hawaii, to Canada, to Florida, and then finally to Vegas. Moving around a lot gave me a sense of maturity and gave me people skills I wouldn’t have without moving. I had to make new friends every time, but I wasn’t upset about it. I was so happy to meet new people and perhaps grow myself. I still hold true to that, being I love meeting new people and try to grow as a person with them. Moving also showed me how to love travelling and seeing new places, which I think helped in forming my creative and free roaming mind.
As well as being fun loving, I like to think of myself as driven and creative. When I was younger, I struggled a lot to find something I loved doing. I was a dancer, I did gymnastics, I was a swimmer, I did martial arts, and I played tennis. I danced for the majority of my life and I loved it, but I quit to attempt to make my school’s dance team. I didn’t make it and I realized dance wasn’t something I could see myself doing for the rest of my life. I soon quit martial arts after I earned my black belt because it wasn’t my passion. I still play tennis a little bit, but I started doing theatre as well.I don’t think live theatre is my passion either, but when I found modeling, I absolutely loved it. For the first time I could see myself doing something for the rest of my life. I was most proud of myself for not giving up and sticking to something I wasn’t passionate about. In times of difficulty or struggle, my mind goes to work to think outside the box and get to a solution. “Never give up” and “you can do anything you’d set your mind to” were things I was repeatedly told as a child. These phrases made me feel determined to always try my hardest and never admit defeat. I try to put this attitude to good use and make the best of all things in my life, including modeling. I make my shoots as big and as amazing as I possibly can.