Arizona Model Christa Sandstrom finding much success

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Christa Sandstrom backstage at Talking Stick Resort Release 2015 photo shoot, photographer Brooke West (Source: Christopher Cashak) Christa Sandstrom backstage at Talking Stick Resort Release 2015 photo shoot, photographer Brooke West (Source: Christopher Cashak)
Christa Sandstrom backstage at Tucson Fashion Week 2014, photographer Jacki Sterna (Source: Christopher Cashak) Christa Sandstrom backstage at Tucson Fashion Week 2014, photographer Jacki Sterna (Source: Christopher Cashak)
Christa Sandstrom beauty photo shoot with photographer David Apeji of Pixyst (Source: Christopher Cashak) Christa Sandstrom beauty photo shoot with photographer David Apeji of Pixyst (Source: Christopher Cashak)
Christa Sandstrom fashion photo shoot with photographer Christos Sewell (Source: Christopher Cashak) Christa Sandstrom fashion photo shoot with photographer Christos Sewell (Source: Christopher Cashak)

by Christopher Cashak, Special to azfamily.com

SCOTTSDALE, AZ -- Christa Sandstrom was recently selected to star in Talking Stick Resort's 2015 Release Pool Party campaign. 

A high-profile position like that typically goes to talent from Los Angeles and New York, however the Valley model won the job. 

The shoot included water guns, dancing and an occasional kiss to the camera. Sandstrom can be seen sporting a bikini on billboards in Phoenix, posters at the resort and online advertisements around the country.

Since first flipping through her mother's fashion magazines at age 4, Sandstrom dreamed of modeling around the world. Being a girl from a small town in Arizona did not stop her. She pursued model training early in life by taking classes at night while her mother patiently waited in the car.

Sandstrom was always taller than the other girls her age, which was sometimes awkward. However, Sandstrom used her height to get noticed in the modeling industry.

At age 12 Sandstrom traveled to New York City for the first time and started meeting with agents. She was eventually signed. During her first 9 days of modeling she walked in two fashion weeks.

From her roots in Arizona, Sandstrom started traveling the world -- France, Canada and eventually Milan where she modeled for Michael Kors. While in Italy, her natural beauty was recognized by Glamour Magazine. The magazine featured her in a fashion editorial shot by a top photographer and stylists with experience at Vogue. Oscar de la Renta, Ted Baker London,

7 for all Mankind, Banana Republic, Vera Wang, Kevan Hall among many other A-list designers utilized Sandstrom's talent. Maxim Magazine selected her as a feature model during the magazine's Arizona Super Bowl party in January.

Sandstrom was also among the first models to walk at Arizona's largest fashion event, Phoenix Fashion Week. She's grown up with the Arizona fashion community.

Sandstrom vividly recalls one challenging shoot while modeling in the Arizona outdoors. The photographer called for Sandstrom to hike up a mountain in Sedona for the December cover of a magazine. The 5 foot 11 inch tall blonde, in fashion boots and a Santa suit received a lot of attention from the other hikers while making her way up the trail.

On photo shoots, Sandstrom believes in collaborating with the entire team from the photographer to hair stylists and makeup artists. She likes to get them excited about working with her and uses that energy while posing for the camera. Sandstrom aims to see the pictures elevate everyone's career, not just her own.

Photographers comment on Sandstrom's ability to model a wide range of looks. She's known for being able to transition between vintage, swim wear, high-fashion and glamour styles with ease.

When not on set modeling the latest fashions, Sandstrom can be found wearing comfortable gray sweats. She shows her personal style by selecting from a collection of over 150 colorful pairs of shoes.

Like many women, Sandstrom struggles with pressure to look a certain way.

She advocates for "normalizing" the model standard. However, obstacles like this never stopped Sandstrom from pursuing her dreams. Her motto is to, "never give up."

The Talking Stick Resort campaign turned Sandstrom into a rising local celebrity. One Saturday night word made it around the resort that the model on the Release posters was at a restaurant in Old Town Scottsdale. A large group commandeered the resort's shuttle (which also has her image on it) and instructed the driver to take them to meet Sandstrom at the restaurant.

Sandstrom is determined to be the first "Super model" level talent from Arizona using her dynamic look to pursue ambitions ranging from Marciano to Victoria's Secret to Alexander McQueen. She sees herself ultimately landing the cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue.

Sandstrom is an Arizona success story that shows modeling talent is not exclusive to New York and L.A. This tall girl from a small town in Arizona is making a name for herself in the global fashion industry.

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