Favored locations for photo shoots are “any place we shouldn’t be,” says Jack. These include: construction sites, an abandoned house, the canyons late at night, up a rickety ladder in stilettos onto a neighbor’s roof, and cemeteries (they were kicked out of Hollywood Forever and forced by management to delete that session’s photos).
Having recognized his son’s talent — or perhaps having taken pity — Walker’s dad is now their chauffeur. On this day, they alight from his Prius at the home of a family acquaintance with a backyard pool. The girls strike standard-issue supermodel poses, cribbed straight from the pages of Vogue: elbows out, back hunched, neck thrust forward like a swan, and pout.
In between shots, they chatter in that hyperanimated, exclusive way teenagers have with one another. Back and forth it goes, a silly, schizophrenic afternoon. Laugh. Pout. Laugh. Pout.
“Go like this,” Walker instructs new friend Naomi Larbi, putting his hand to his forehead as if he were going to faint. He and Naomi met on Facebook after she fell in love with his photographs. She is 14, leggy enough to pass for 18. Naomi has a contract with Ford Models, but she likes the blog so much, she offered to model for Acrylic Nails for free.
“Like this?” she asks.
“Yes. Got it.” Walker clicks away.
The photos are so sophisticated that it’s easy to forget the creators are kids. But they still have sleepovers, and Walker still asks for his mother’s permission before giving interviews.
As with all fantasies, reality inevitably intrudes. “At school we have to wear uniforms,” Syd laments.
“We can’t wear eyeliner,” offered Zara, whose eyes were raccooned with it.
“Nothing too eccentric,” says Nora, whose blue lipstick made her look ethereal, chic and mildly hypothermic. “We tone it down. This is too avant-garde.”