Kermit Hayes Photography
Monday, July 15, 2013 | 5:07 p.m.
While Robin Leach takes his traditional summer vacation under the Tuscan sun — and along the Amalfi Coast, as well, this year — in Italy, many of our Strip personalities have stepped forward in his absence to pen their own words of wisdom. We continue today with stars of “Peepshow” at Planet Hollywood: Cheaza, Coco Austin, Josh Strickland and Zoeth Cardenales. The adult spectacular opened in April 2009 and ends Sept. 1.
Some of you may know me as “Peep Diva” from the extraordinarily sexy show “Peepshow” at Planet Hollywood. I’ve lived in this entertainment playground called Las Vegas for 10 years and have networked and familiarized myself with numerous photographers. Today, I’d like to introduce one of my good friends and a new addition to the Las Vegas family, Kermit Hayes of Kermit Hayes Photography.
Hayes’ New Orleans roots are apparent if one looks closely. Rhythmic energies are captured and held in precise visual balance with elegance, light, color and palpable spirituality. Hayes’ award-winning images embody a force and a vibrancy distinctive to his eye and his origins.
After three years of assisting fashion photographer Ken Merfeld, Hayes opened his own studio in Los Angeles’ Garment District. This led to numerous projects with fashion designers, manufacturers, importers, buyers and sales representatives. It was at this point that Hayes learned the depth that was possible in photography.
“Great photography should take one’s breath away no matter what the subject,” Hayes said.
Years later, Hayes took a position at Ferderbar Studios, a highly regarded, full-service photography studio in Milwaukee. Commercially, Hayes was able to produce award-winning print and video work while also pursuing experimental projects with no limits or questions.
At Ferderbar, Hayes learned the business side of photography, studio management, lighting equipment, techniques and client development. During his career there, Hayes also won numerous Addy Awards, which led to his work being hung in the New York Museum of Photography.
In the mid-1990s, Hayes moved to Chicago, where he quickly found himself successfully running his own studio. Clients from Los Angeles joined his growing list of Chicago clientele. Hayes produced print campaigns for brands such as Harley Davidson, Lands’ End, Sears, Coca-Cola, Miller Brewing, Polaroid, Pantene and countless others.
In 2004, Hayes moved to New York, where he found himself inspired by his new surroundings; as they say, if you can make it there, you can make it anywhere.
After spending time in the city that never sleeps, Hayes found himself packing up and moving on to Sin City. Recently, Hayes opened a state-of-the-art, 2,560-square-foot, fully equipped photography studio. With extreme focus and drive, Hayes’ talents began to thrive in the heart of Las Vegas.
“As a photographer, I have a subject and leave space for magic. I open the door for spontaneity and never close my eyes to other possibilities,” Hayes said. “The images I create are part of me and reflect my concepts of life, beauty and vision itself. I photograph to give the world images that inspire, excite and move people. That is what brings me joy and fuels my passion as an artist.”
I would like to extend an invitation to all of you to experience the talents of Kermit Hayes. Don’t forget to tell him the Peep Diva sent you!
Check out our other guest columns today from Cheaza’s “Peepshow” castmates, Coco Austin, Josh Strickland and Zoeth Cardenales, and on Tuesday from chef Mary Sue Milliken, “First Lady of Magic” Melinda Saxe and producer Andy Walmsley.
Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.
Follow Robin Leach on Twitter at Twitter.com/Robin_Leach.
Follow Vegas DeLuxe on Twitter at Twitter.com/vegasdeluxe.
Follow VDLX Editor Don Chareunsy on Twitter at Twitter.com/VDLXEditorDon.
Catering to the young and modern crowd, Planet Hollywood is a one-stop shop for entertainment with its massive shopping mall, slew of restaurants, spacious casino and clubs.
The ambiance of the casino is retro-chic meets high-tech with black granite floors throughout and colorful LED lights throughout the space. The theme carries into the 100,000 square-foot casino with 250 flat screens topping off slot machines. The casino is also home to 87 tables, a sports book and a poker room.
There's also the Miracle Mile Shops, one Vegas' largest malls, with 140 stores including BCBG Max Azaria, bebe, Urban Outfitters and The Discovery Channel Store.
Following an afternoon of shopping, guests can satisfy their appetites at one of the gourmet restaurants in Planet Hollywood, like the non-traditional approach to steakhouses at Strip House or check out the exotic Far East motif at KOI restaurant and lounge. And if guests are still looking for more, they can spend the after hours at Privé, Triq or Krave nightclubs.
Perhaps one of the resorts biggest attractions came in March with the addition of "Peepshow." The naughty twist on the story of Little Bo Peep is modern-day spin on the run-of-the-mill Vegas topless review. The "Peepshow" stage has seen visiting celebs like Scary Spice Mel B, "Dancing with the Stars" Kelly Monaco and Playboy's Holly Madison.