A PnV Exclusive Interview & Photo Feature
By Tom Peaks @MrPeaksNValleys
Ripp Baker is one of the first models to catch my eye when I started covering models at PnV. He has that sexy Scandinavian look that I can never resist….blonde, blue-eyed and fit. A modern day Norseman living in Minnesota. And forget global warming, with his gorgeous glow, Ripp can melt all 10,000 lakes in the state of Minnesota ! One thing about Ripp, who has been modeling for about 5 years, he’s simply a sweet guy. I’ve chatted with him many times over the years, he’s earnest, humble, gracious, playful and any other small town mid-western qualities that you can utter.
Ripp is a personal trainer, who perhaps one day might go into physical therapy. And speaking of physical, Ripp was a defensive end in football, and participated in wrestling, so he’s been known to take down both quarterbacks and his wrestling opponents.
In modeling, he’s often identified with popular romance novels where he has graced the covers of many books and engaged with fans at book show events. He’s also posed with many accomplished photographers over the years. More recently, in January, 2018, Ripp posed for NYC-based photographer Rick Day, known for his outstanding work in shooting male models.
Below, you can get to know Ripp in our exclusive PnV/Fashionably Male interview, while checking out the stunning images of Ripp photographed by Day:
What is your height, weight, age, eye/hair color? Hometown? Describe your personality.
I’m 6’2″ tall and weigh anywhere from 200-210 pounds. I turn 26 on February 15; my hair is a dirty blonde and my eyes are a bluish to sometimes greenish color. I’m from a town so small that it only had a graduating class of about 130 people. I currently live just outside of Minneapolis in the cold state of Minnesota. I would say that I am an outgoing, fun-loving, passionate person who loves to learn and do new things as well as travel (but who doesn’t love travel).
So Ripp, tell us about how you got into modeling.
I started modeling freshman year of college. It was nothing serious, but a fun hobby to get to meet new people as well as to try something different that not many people could say they had done. It slowly evolved from there, and I dedicated more and more time to it, though studying and my job always remained my top priority. As I was achieving my bachelors in Exercise Science I got a bit more into modeling when I had lighter class loads and my schedule permitted. I really enjoyed modeling because I had always been an athlete leading me to live a healthy active lifestyle, which was greatly influenced by my dad, and I wouldn’t change a thing. With being in great shape as an athlete many people would say that I should try modeling, but being a small town guy focusing on an education it sometimes didn’t seem like a realistic goal, but I’m happy I pursued it.
Tell us about this exciting shoot with Rick Day that we’re looking at in this feature. What makes working with Day so special?
First off, Rick Day is a great guy and photographer and I was blessed to do this shoot. I felt comfortable and sexy, all the time. He did a great job of making sure I felt good, while pushing the envelope a bit. Every shoot in its own way is special, but what set this apart from some others was, as I said, how good and confident he made me feel while we were shooting. That’s important for a natural feel and producing the best results with the images.
Who are some other photographer with whom you have worked?
I have worked with many photographers, but I would say my first shot that I got a great value from was with Joem Bawaya in Chicago. We captured some beautiful images and created a bond between us. After that I have shot with many other photographers all over, and became great friends with them — from Osvaldo Rivera in Puerto Rico where we had a blast and also got some great images, to selfies taken by myself! (haha). Shooting with Golden Czermak, who has outstanding talent to match his wonderful personality, was very special as well as shooting with a local photographer, Regina Wamba, for numerous book covers. It was also a treat to shoot in Los Angeles with Scott Hoover, where we had some amazing photos.
Much of your modeling has been in the genre of romance book covers. How did you get into this type of modeling? What books are you most proud?
I got into book covers thanks to one of my best friends who also models, Tommy David, in which he suggested reaching out to the local photographer we both share and know from the previous question; Regina Wamba. It kind of just blew up from there! That’s the crazy thing about social media these days. With some self-promotion, help from friends, and the internet, you never know where your images could go and who could see them. I have been truly lucky to have been seen by the wonderful authors I have worked with and become such good friends with. Some of my favorite covers are “High Sided” by LP Dover ( I’m photographed next to my personal motorcycle), “Combust” by Tessa Teevan, “Selfish” by Shantel Tessier, and a few other from author MJ Carnal and other amazing ones; I feel bad to leave anyone out, but I love them all…as well as some covers unreleased yet! shhh!
Tell us about some of your favorite career highlights from modeling.
This is a tough question, as I could go on and on! I love any opportunity to travel and befriend new people, so every experience is fun and different. But some that really stand out are a music video I was a part of last year for Randi Cooley Wilson and Wrecked Productions- a music video was created by an up and coming artist with a beautiful voice in which I so happily got chosen to act out the main character, it was an amazing experience that I’m so glad I didn’t miss out on. As well as an author event with the wonderful MJ Fields in which we stayed at this most spectacular mansion in Tampa Florida, getting to meet new people and just be ourselves and have so much fun. I have great memories of taking the risk of going to Puerto Rico and meeting a now long-time friend and photographer- – I got to site see and try many different traditional foods that I’d never been exposed; it was a great experiences with a great friend.
Ripp, tell us about your love of fitness and your degree in Exercise Science.
My love of fitness stems from being in sports (wrestling and football) my entire life. I was enthusiastically encouraged by my best friend (my dad) who did the same sports when he was younger. We also lifted together as soon as I wanted to get started when I was in 8th grade and wanted to be the best athlete I could be. My dad said fitness would be the best way to do so, and I never looked back. I earned a bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science so I could further understand how the body works and how to fine tune some exercises as well as my own diet (when I want too hahaha).
What are 2 or 3 exercises that you find to personally be the most rewarding? What part of your appearance do you receive the most compliments?
Hmmm, I love hate to train legs! I lacked in this area when I was younger, so it has always been a goal of mine to improve in this area. However, I absolutely love leg day now as it increases my heart rate the most and makes me feel the most productive. I do this lunge exercise with dumbbells above my head…it also enhances stabilization, and is such a killer with 55 pound dumbbells for 14-16 reps (7-8 per leg) as well as calves. I’ve come so far with them, so it’s great to see the progress. As for compliments,
I’d say my lips or eyes unfortunately neither of which I can really affect, so I supposed I just got lucky in that regard!
What are some non-modeling jobs that you have done in your life?
I currently am an operations supervisor helping run the operations side of my company, conducting interviews and hiring / screening applicants, I love this because I get to work with others, in a team, and I’m a natural born leader who takes great pride in my work and always gets it done! It’s the perfect position for me.
What would people be surprised to learn about Ripp Baker?
I do my best to not judge anyone and believe I can learn something or be friends with most anyone as long as given the chance and opportunity.
What is it like to live in frigid Minnesota? Have you ever considered moving to LA, New York or Miami?
Minnesota is a gorgeous state, even though I complain about the tundra winters, it’s not THATTTTT bad! The summers are amazing, just not long enough! Overall, I love it here, but I’m also ready to get out of here! Yes, I’d consider moving if the opportunity presented itself, I would oblige. Though I do want to stay in my current job a while longer and gain experience, living life does trump that!
You can find model Ripp Baker on social media at:
You can find photographer Rick Day at: