Southern California is well known for attracting the best and the brightest of the artistic community and if they attract the right people, growth follows.

The value of knowing what you want out of life when you are young and pursing what you love is one of the strongest life lessons to learn.

Early is definitely better.

Thomas Carlyle, 1795 – 1881, was a Scottish philosopher, satirical writer, essayist, historian and teacher. article, wikipedia photo article, wikipedia photo

Mr. Carlyle was considered one of the most important social commentators of his time.

A respected historian, his 1837 book The French Revolution: A History, was the inspiration for Dickens‘ 1859 novel A Tale of Two Cities, and remains popular today.

He was once quoted as saying, “Nothing builds self-esteem and self-confidence like accomplishment.”

The beautiful young curvaceous model Erica Schenk seems to have been taught this lesson and is effective at applying it. The word about her success is spreading in the modeling community. article, photo article, photo

Represented by Wilhelmina, the 18-year-old princess was the first curvaceous model to appear on the cover of Women’s Running. She’s also been in Seventeen, as well as a variety of catalogs and ad campaigns.

Erica didn’t think her cover debut would sweep the Internet but senses her appearing on the cover can be an inspiration for others. It’s reported that one fan on her Twitter wrote that she nearly cried tears of joy when she saw a curvy woman gracing the front of the new magazine.

The energetic smiles, “The California native expected to appear in one of the magazine’s inside features about how athletic brands are expanding their products to produce clothes for all sizes. But after impressing the editors, she landed the big cover moment, shot in Brooklyn, New York’s Prospect Park.”

On her Instagram Erica shares that curves can kill, she’s a travel addict, puppy lover and Body Love Ambassador. article, photo article, photo

She knows her stuff.

One of her favorite photographers is Enrique Vega, a New York based photographer from Mexico whose portfolio focuses on fashion and beauty.

“One important key to success is self-confidence. An important key to self-confidence is preparation.”… Arthur Ashe

His work has been featured in American and international publications of magazines like Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, Marie Claire, Elle, Glamour, Cosmopolitan, Vanidades, Seventeen, Allure & L’Officiel among others.

Our confident star has expressed that she was a normal kid going through a really awkward phase. She was the self-described nerdy kid with glasses, braces, and a really bad haircut.

It was obvious that she had blossomed. article, photo article, photo

Landing a modeling contract at 16 does a lot for one’s confidence.

She’s a Southern California girl from a great community that would do wonders for anyone’s confidence and positive outlook on life.

You’ve been to Malibu, true? article, wikipedia photo article, wikipedia photo

Sure you have. You’ve walked on the Malibu beach. This writer has. It’s beautiful, majestic and spiritual.

Her favorite workouts are barefoot running on the beach, swimming, or sand volleyball. article, wikipedia photo article, wikipedia photo

Erica loves to run the canyon as well, so why don’t we visit Malibu. Maybe some of that positive energy and powerful confidence will rub off on us.

Malibu is an affluent beach city in Los Angeles County, California. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 12,645.

Malibu consists of a 21 mile strip of prime Pacific coastline. The community is famous for its warm, sandy beaches, and for being the home of many Hollywood movie stars and others associated with the entertainment industry.

Most Malibu residents live within a few hundred yards of Pacific Coast Highway (State Route 1), which traverses the city, with some residents living up to a mile away from the beach up narrow canyons, and many more residents of the unincorporated canyon areas identifying Malibu as their hometown. article, wikipedia photo article, wikipedia photo

One of the world’s most loved travel magazines, drives us there, top down. “Malibu enjoys near-mythical status thanks to its large celebrity population, and the incredible beauty of its coastal mountains, pristine coves, wide sweeps of golden sand and epic waves.

Despite its wealth and star quotient, the best way to appreciate Malibu is through its natural assets, so grab your sunscreen and a towel and head to the beach. Westward Beach, Zuma and El Matador are especially nice and teem with tight bods on summer weekends.”

Okay, we’re convinced.

That’s the village that Erica loves to visit.

Since she is a trend setter having been featured on a major running magazine, let’s now visit where she goes hiking.

Malibu Creek is a year-round stream in western Los Angeles County, California.

Malibu Canyon is a chief pass through the mountains, and Malibu Canyon Road is a major north-south route connecting the coast to the inland valley.

Now back to this confidence thing.

The challenge for so many of us when we are young is that we really don’t know what we love or what we want to do and can fall into the trap of having life and others, often with selfish motives, make those decisions for us.

At some point isn’t it our responsibility to make a strong effort to find out what our pathway in life should be and pursue it?

“A great figure or physique is nice, but it’s self-confidence that makes someone really sexy.”… Vivica A. Fox

Though always subject to change as the journey unfolds, Erica seems to be on a pathway as magical as those Malibu Canyons.

The future looks bright for Erica from many angles. She plans on attending Pepperdine University.

In terms of the future for shapely models, that appears bright as well. In her interview with the industry site Erica mused, “We’ve come so far in the last few years. I feel like there haven’t been any personal struggles for me, but I think if you took my career and put it back five years, it would be a much different story. The struggles of the women before me haven’t been in vain because so many women have come out from being depressed about their bodies. There are a lot of women who have now accepted who they are and aren’t out there unhealthily trying to lose weight.” article, photo article, photo

There is much we can learn from the young.

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