local wolves â€” 1
onestly, I never thought that I would be living my life with a career in the creative field. When I was in middle school, I imagined the “picture perfect life” like I’m sure that many of us all do with a landing a job right after college, a dream house, rolling around town in a brand new car and endless shopping sprees. As I went to high school, my wishlist started to change for experiences such as traveling to new places, meeting new people and continue to inspire others. I rise up to challenge myself to go the extra mile when I worked on huge projects in college and continue to push the boundaries with the type of content to release next for Local Wolves. I know that going above and beyond can be quite stressful but it can also be very rewarding. To my middle school self, it’s never too late to speak up for what you are passionate about especially at a young age. With this issue, we are embarking on a new chapter this summer. My team and I have more surprises coming your way, wolfies!
founder / editor-in-chief twitter & instagram: @cathrinekhom
Lettering by Leah Lu Illustration by Laura Filas
the orange peel
social good in costa rica
kara vorabutr coin
young & in love
ISSUE 49 / COIN local wolves magazine is an monthly online and print based publication delving into the most creative minds from the world of entertainment, arts and culture. the magazine is driven by a passion for the best coverage and photography to create an adaptive aesthetic. SAY HELLO / LETâ€™S CHAT general firstname.lastname@example.org press email@example.com get involved firstname.lastname@example.org
wolfie team founder / editor-in-chief cathrine khom copy editor sophia khom community coordinator erin mcdowell marketing coordinator elizabeth eidanizadeh music curator sena cheung hair / makeup jessie yarborough stylist katie qian social media nicole tillotson web design jesus acosta front cover logo fiona yeung back cover logo isabel ramos cover photo pamela ayala design / illustration kelsey cordutsky, christine ennis, laura filas, izzy lamb, lisa lok, leah lu, bethany roesler contributing writers sadie bell, kendall bolam, ashley bulayo, olivia clark, meghan duncan, morgan eckel, maria elena, madisen kuhn, natasa kvesic, hanna la salvia, michelle ledesma, tayllor lemphers, leah lu, chloe luthringshausen, tâ€™keya marquez, mackenzie rafferty, jasmine rodriguez, celeste scott, lauren speight contributing photographers pamela ayala, megan cencula, emily dubin, danielle ernst, amanda harle, taylor krause, chris lampkins, penelope martinez, naohmi monroe, emellia nguyen, bran santos, myrah sarwar, sarah ratner, lhoycel marie teope, ashley yu
many thanks aaron huff @lastnamehuff midwest, usa
matt maeson @mattmaeson virginia beach, va
alivia latimer @alivialatimer portland, or
sarah hawkinson @sarahmhawkinson california, usa
coin @coin nashville, tn
shaed @shaedband washington, d.c.
jasmine thompson @jasminethompson london, uk
trace @listentotrace los angeles, ca
joyce manor @joycemanorofficial torrance, ca
kara vorabutr @tabularasta los angeles, ca madelyn deutch @maddiedeutch los angeles, ca
website / localwolves.com twitter & instagram / @localwolves read online issuu.com/localwolves print shop magcloud.com/user/localwolvesmag
DESIGN BY LISA LOK
playlist + JUNE 2017 +
PLAYLIST BY (ABOVE) SENA CHEUNG ILLUSTRATION BY (RIGHT) LEAH LU
local wolves â€” 9
munchies + VIGILANTE COFFEE +
Vigilante Coffee has been my go-to-spot for over a year now. I started coming, using the café as my spot to edit my photography work but slowly grew to love the coffee and the people so much that I made my way onto the Vigilante team. I now work as their Social Media Manager but still enjoy hanging out at the shop without it feeling like work. The vibe is chill and great to meet friends to hang out and chat with or to post up for hours and catch up on work. The coffee is great, that’s a given. You can normally find me drinking a mocha, hot or iced, or a latte. I might be bias though, but everything on the menu is good. From our acai bowls to our large selection of pastries, there are endless great options. It’s just outside of D.C. and a hidden gem, for sure. I would highly recommend putting this café on your “must see” east coast coffee shop list.
coverage by Erin Krespan Location 4327 Gallatin Street Hyattsville, MD 20781
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pinpoint + w ashington , d . c . + COVERAGE BY SARA MATHEW
There’s something about the D.C. area that never fails to amaze me. It’s an incredibly inspiring place to be in, even if only for a few moments. People are hustling and bustling, trying to get something done — whatever that may be. The people in D.C. are extremely determined and once they set their minds to a certain goal, they are sure to complete it. You look one way and see the White House and look the other, and see the Capitol building. Everyone has a goal in this city. Whether it be to end global warming, or just make it to class on time. Maybe that’s the reason I love the Washington D.C. area so much. Or, maybe, it’s because every time I visit the city, I always find a new favorite spot. For example, this last time I went, my brother and I were wandering around when we stumbled upon a small garden hidden between some museums. It was so unexpected, but so beautiful. The lighting was perfect, so, of course, I had to snap a few pictures. Out of all the times I have been to D.C., I had never once come across this little oasis. For those moments we were sitting there, we were able to escape the hustle and bustle of the city and just enjoy the presence of each other. Maybe that’s why I love the city so much. Perhaps it’s because of the amount of history the city holds. Everywhere you turn, there’s some sort of story to go along with it. And it’s not just the memorials and museums that hold the history. Just walking around the city you can tell that it’s a city with many stories to tell. The city definitely makes you think about what is and, definitely, what was. But, when you’re there, you’re able to create your own story, one that will be embedded in the city — forever. Maybe that’s why I love D.C. so much. It’s a storybook with an endless amount of blank pages, just waiting to be filled.
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+ BY H A N N A L A S A LV I A +
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+ BY MADISEN KUHN + BANNER + ILLUSTRATIONS BY LAURA SUPNIK
This month, I want to get a little more personal with you. I’m rising to the challenge of being vulnerable in a world that regularly equates being closed off and harsh with strength. You must be secretive, cold, sometimes even cruel, to be perceived as powerful and tough. And it makes sense that we come to this conclusion. If you don’t let anyone in, you don’t open yourself up to the opportunity of getting hurt. But that gets lonely. And bleak. Life/nature/the universe is so vibrant; shouldn’t we follow its example? Shouldn’t we let our hair down, our wings out, paint the space around us with bright colors, fearlessly and unapologetically? I think so. I have been a deeply sensitive person since I was little. I grew up with this being the worst type of insult. “Oh, Maddie, you’re so sensitive,” my mom would say with a negative air floating around her words as they leaped off her tongue and landed on my shoulders, weighing me down with the reminder that I must react less, feel less, be less. This sensitivity turned into anxiety somewhere along the way. I didn’t know I had an anxiety disorder until I was seventeen. Up until that point, I thought it was normal to have to take Pepto Bismol before every single one of my soccer games in middle school; thought it was just motion sickness when I would pray the rosary in the car on the way down to the beach because I was terrified I would throw up; thought I was dying when I felt suddenly lightheaded and dizzy home alone, positive I was going to pass out. I went to the doctor, and she told me gently that I was experiencing anxiety attacks. I was so sure she was mistaken, that there was something really wrong with me because I’d checked WebMD’s Symptom Checker and it said I had Lyme Disease or something screwed up with my heart. I had no reason to be anxious, and she just didn’t know what she was talking about.
I ended up withdrawing from my public high school at the end of tenth grade due to depression (another messy space that maybe we’ll rummage through another time) and strains at home. Finishing high school online seemed like the only option—I would’ve failed several of my classes had I stayed, and that felt like the end of the world to me. It was a temporary solution, but online high school only made my depression and anxiety worse. I became very used to being alone. I found it harder to connect with my friends. We started spending less time together, and although I tried so hard to keep everything the same, it just wasn’t. My comfort zone began to shrink down, down, down until at eighteen I would have panic attacks riding in the passenger seat of my dad’s car on the way to the gas station a mile away. It’s like I forgot how to live, to thrive, to see the world as something beautiful. Instead, all I saw were opportunities to feel afraid. I just wanted to stay home, to feel safe and comfortable. I tried out college right after high school. I came home after a week of panic attacks, meltdowns, and calling my parents crying every day. I couldn’t make it to class or the dining hall; I was living off easy mac in my cold, white, cinderblock dorm room. I went back a year later, lived off campus with girls I’d met through the internet (Tumblr friends for life), and tried again. I was technically an online student but took some classes on campus to try to work on expanding my comfort zone. I only skipped one class my first semester. The next semester was a bit more challenging, I skipped more classes than I would’ve liked, but thankfully my professor was understanding. I made a few friends in my art appreciation class, but that was mostly due to them initiating. I was so focused on just getting through the hour and a half lecture without running out of the door and taking the next bus home. It’s incredibly difficult to fully embrace life and live in the moment when fear is dictating your every thought, mood, and decision.
In late February, a few life lessons later, I moved across the country to live with my boyfriend in California. The hardest part was buying the plane ticket. I left behind my family, a nannying job that I loved and that was comfortable and familiar, and my Blue Ridge Mountains. I traded them for hazy San Gabriel Mountains. I cannot accurately convey in words how terrified I was of that flight. It wasn’t the fear of crashing on an unknown island and personally doing a live reenactment of Lost (although the thought of that didn’t help), but the fear of not being able to escape. Once I boarded that plane, I was stuck there for 6 hours with no out. My whole life, I’ve been looking for escape routes. Escape routes out of high school, out of college, out of actually living. But up in the air, with a little help from Ativan, my boyfriend’s loving presence, and my dog sound asleep on my lap, I felt comfortable. Empowered. Free. I had done it. I had taken that first leap into the abyss of the unknown, and all that was left was a freefall.
Mental illness is a tricky thing. On the one hand, it’s not something you welcomed with open arms. It’s not something you chose. It’s a sucky luck of the draw, a product of genes and environment. But on the other hand, it is possible to fight back; to find tools and coping skills and support to rise above the pain and thrive despite the unfair obstacles. You can decide to get out of bed, even if it’s accompanied by tears and screaming. You can choose to challenge the lies that pop in your head and tell yourself I am good enough. I am capable. People do love me. And don’t get me wrong, I’m in not saying it’s an easy choice. The mental illness is there, it is real, and you cannot just “decide to be happy,” and have it go away. My therapists have always told me, “depression and anxiety won’t just go away, but you will learn to thrive despite them.” In my journey, I have found that making those incredibly difficult decisions to face my fears or to try to combat unhealthy habits do make a difference. The more I make myself walk to get coffee when all I want to do is hide inside of my bedroom, blinds shut, Netflix on, the more I discover that I am more in control than I let myself think. Because each time I lock the front door and fast-walk down the sidewalk, fidget cube in hand, each time I feel uncertain that I will make it there, and each time I do. I order a half-caf non-fat iced café mocha, no whip. I walk back home smiling and finding myself wanting to stay outside in the
sunshine instead of rushing home because I did it. I was afraid, but I took the first step, and the rest followed. The hardest part is always buying the plane ticket, getting out of bed, the first step on the sidewalk. It gets easier once you get past TSA, open the blinds, feel the energy of the earth around you that wants to see you succeed. It’s been almost three months since that flight to California, and I can confidently say I am in a better place than I was before it. I don’t feel confined to my home. I look for escape routes but don’t let myself take them. I try. I try. I try. But I’m still not what I would consider being mentally healthy. I still haven’t been going to therapy consistently. I still haven’t reached out and tried to make friends because I’m terrified of meeting up with someone and having to explain to them that I am having an anxiety attack because being in a public place + with someone new who might be inconvenienced by my panic = anxiety through the roof. I still let emotion cloud my vision and pick fights with my boyfriend that could’ve totally been avoided. I think a year ago I would’ve classified this as weak—because I had not reached my goal of mental health perfection, or what I considered “normal.” And I believe that is a mistake—to think that strength may only look like its perfect description— fearless, unemotional, guarded; or to view myself as not “normal” because my brain operates differently than others. But I see young people breaking down these stigmas every day, and I’m proud to be a part of a generation that is so open and outspoken and adamant about learning, growing, and speaking up. We are changing the way people view mental illness, among so many other important things. We are steadfast in our desire to help others, to be compassionate, to listen. We are trying. So much of my growth has been sustained by others sharing their stories, lending out a soothing whisper of understanding, and just being open to people who are different than them.
There is strength even in your weakest moments. Strength is having fear, but not letting it dictate your decisions. It’s warmth. It’s allowing yourself to depend on people. Strength to me is hyperventilating while walking my dogs. It’s holding my boyfriend’s hand while he tells me that he’ll catch me if my (incredibly unrealistic) fear comes true and I do pass out right there on the crosswalk. It’s reading books like You Are A Badass by Jen Sincero, The Happiness Hypothesis by Jonathan Haidt, and The Untethered Soul by Michael Singer. It’s doing yoga. It’s meditating. It’s getting eight hours of sleep. It’s trying, even if I may fail every other time. Strength is trying. Take care, Madisen
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+ BY CELESTE SCOTT +
It was a warm, lazy night during the summer of 2016. I laid in my bed after a long day at my rigorous summer job, wasting a couple of hours scrolling through Twitter. And that’s when I saw it. A video of a black man bleeding out in his car. His girlfriend beside him, holding the camera. Her daughter, crouched down somewhere in the back seat. A police officer outside the car, shakily holding a gun, through the rolled down window.
To tweet BLACKLIVESMATTER until my fingers went numb. To post a photo on Instagram of this slain victim with one of the many hashtags I’d seen floating around the Internet. I wanted to speak words of truth and justice, but the twisting and churning of my insides was making me more and more exhausted by the second. So, I did nothing.
The officer screamed, “I told him not to reach for it!” The man bled out. His girlfriend’s voice tremored, “Please don’t tell me he’s dead…” Still the officer screamed, “Keep your hands where I can see them!” Still, the man bled out. I stopped the video. Put my phone down. Suddenly there was tension in my stomach. A twisting sensation in my intestines that felt almost like crippling anxiety. But no. That wasn’t it. This feeling was more raw. More intense. I went to Facebook. The worst decision. There I found people arguing their way through the death of this man. And suddenly he wasn’t a man anymore. He was a controversial issue. An incident. A hot topic of debate. He was a dark face attached to a series of hashtags.
#SayHisName #PhilandoCastille #BlackLivesMatter As I scrolled through my feed that feeling came up again—my insides twisted in the most unpleasant way. I was enraged, but also immediately fatigued. I wanted to cry but the tears wouldn’t come. I wanted to scream but my throat felt sore before I could even open my mouth. What I was feeling in that moment were symptoms of anger. It was strange for me to feel this way. As someone, who is more often than not quite even-tempered I found myself feeling uncomfortable in this queasy anger. I wanted to do something immediately. To shut down every ignorant Facebook post with wordy paragraphs full of statistics I didn’t yet know.
I logged out of Facebook and let the arguments run on into the night. I went to sleep in the comfort of my own safe bed. Warm and cozy, all the while my stomach still twisting and churning. Anger, I’ve observed has a funny way of manifesting itself. It can bring about intense, passion-driven action or passive, crippling silence. However, the passion-driven action we’re used to seeing is never quite active enough. With today’s technology we tend to use social media as an outlet for much of our anger—and understandably so. It’s easier to type in all-caps about an issue you’re extremely far removed from in box that asks “What’s on your mind?” Real life conversations are a lot more complex. They’re messy and uncomfortable. So we spew out all of our emotions on our digital platforms of choice, being careful not to go over the character limitations. And though we may occasionally tussle with resistance from opposing voices, it is in these online spaces that we find solace for our anger. Whether we’re seeking support from communities in solidarity with our beliefs, or that inkling of pride we feel after speaking up for something we believe in strongly, there is a level of satisfaction reached through internet activism that stunts one’s growth. It tricks us into thinking that our long-winded Facebook posts, and wittily-worded Twitter threads are enough. When in reality these online engagements with social problems, rarely ever reach beyond the screens of our devices.
The other side of the coin is not much better—the passive, crippling silence. Unfortunately, this is how I chose to respond to the death of Philando Castille. Silence is often a sign of privilege. Many of us watched that video of Philando Castille’s death and got in our cars the next day without fear of the same thing happening to us. Maybe because of the neighborhood you live in. Or the color of your skin. Or the car you drive. Whatever the case may be, many of us have the privilege to be silent when it comes to such matters of injustice—because our life circumstances do not make us directly susceptible to similar instances. However, many of us are silent also because of fear. Fear that if we speak we will be judged. That we won’t be eloquent or convincing enough. That our vulnerability will be met with the harsh words of those who oppose our values. And so we too, shrink into our comfortable space of passiveness.
Instead of using social media as a bull-horn, or retreating to a passive place of silence, we must lace up our real-life boot straps and do the dirty work of activism. For the sake of those hurting in this world, we must get up and show up. The stomach-twisting anger we feel in response to injustice should drive us not towards the comfort of silence, or even the satisfaction and solace of our Internet feeds. Rather, our anger should lead us to the streets. Where we lift our hands and our voices in protest. Our anger should lead us to our pockets. Refusing to support businesses and institutions with unjust values. Our anger should lead us to create. To write, sing, rap, paint, photograph and design as a means of creating visibility for the injustices that make us so mad.
We can argue online about injustice all day or we can sleep in the comfort of our homes all night. But without the tangible work of our hands, our anger will be but a lost cause. When our stomachs churn at the sight of injustice, that is our calling to rise up. ILLUSTRATIONS BY LEAH LU
The problem with these two responses to anger is that they are far too self-centered. Though the internet activist may have good intentions, at the end of the day, they can turn off their cellular devices without having had any tangible engagement with the issues at hand. And though the passive by-stander may see themselves as lessening the chaotic number of voices present on the internet, their fear of vulnerability inhibits them from speaking up for those who are truly vulnerable. At the end of the day, the hurting will still hurt. That is, unless we find other ways to direct our anger productively.
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Summer looks its best in saturated primary colors under a beachy haze. Romeo and Juliet directed and reimagined by Baz Luhrmann is the quintessential summer palette. I think of an early-twenties Leonardo Dicaprio in the blazing sun and salty night air under glowing red lights and feel the undeniable, pulsating youth of summertime. Yellows and reds have been perfectly balanced alongside bright blues at the base of every color theory—proving that what’s not broken doesn’t need fixing. Try your hand at primary colors. Even wear all three together. Drench yourself in these basic colors for summer, because what’s simple shouldn’t have to be boring. COVERAGE BY MEGHAN DUNCAN PHOTOGRAPHY BY DANIELLE ERNST BANNER BY LAURA FILAS
LOOK 1 thrifted tank top thrifted yellow levi’s shorts converse chuck taylor all stars
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LOOK 2 thrifted checkered flag t shirt thrifted tropical skirt converse chuck taylor all stars
LOOK 3 thrifted girl skateboards t shirt thrifted checkered belt thrifted dickies scrubs
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rise up + WOLFIE SUBMISSIONS +
In a day and age where the future is so uncertain, it is vital for young people to remain strong, engaged, and ready to rise above challenges and injustice. Share with us your designs, photography, artwork or written words inspired by how you rise up against all odds and harness your power to create positive change. CURATED BY ERIN MCDOWELL / ILLUSTRATION (LEFT) BY LAURA FILAS Rising Through Reading - I have always found solace in books, losing myself in the plots and going on adventures with the characters will always bring a smile to my lips. Reading has always been a hobby for me, but it wasn’t until recently when I discovered that it could be used as a way to rise up. Books are like little resource guides that allow a person to dig into hundreds of topics about history, culture and social issues. Reading is a great way to become educated on problems and will ultimately help spark conversation and allow for positive change. – JAMILA COOPER / OAKLAND, CA Creativity was a present, wrapped in coral textured paper and tied with a bow, delivered to a keen three year young girl. I embraced it with sleepless nights and acrylic paint, and have ever since held it close to my heart. But as the petite child with a fringe turned into a teenager constantly put under pressure by society, her outlook on her surroundings changed. I began to realize that I am part of a society that feeds off of my downfalls. But that shouldn’t stop me from chasing after what truly makes me happy. I need to face problems with a headstrong mindset, because I want to put my mark on this planet, and succumbing to society won’t let me do so. – SUMONA SARIN / NEW DELHI, INDIA Look around. If all you can be sure of is what you can see, this is everything. We are all we have. What good is there in being coldhearted? I do not mean it lightly. The one who keeps another warm is greater than the one who looks away. Why then do we always turn our faces? My hands ache with the good I could have done but did not do. All we have is this moment, these souls, this city. Why chose hate? We are strongest when we are at peace. What harm could kindness do to us? I want to walk into a place and bring love and not be ashamed of it. – SARAH BETHANY NILSEN / PORTUGAL Our country is in the hands of a ticking time-bomb, a man whose words quiver when questioned, and change like the seasons. Each day I see another group targeted, and attacked, based on religion, race, and sexuality. During such critical times, I find it important to speak up for those who can not. I remind myself that I, as one of seven billion people who inhabit planet earth stand in the same position of some of the most notorious activists In history. It takes only one person to start a movement that could change lives. – SELINA GONZALEZ / PHILADELPHIA, PA
I remember being small, thinking that my brown skin was dirt. Taunted by my peers, even family members, by how dark my skin was. Hiding from my parents’ thick accents my culture’s food, traditions, and scrubbing. I remember trying to scrub my skin white every night— begging to wash away my Filipino-ness. Yet now, I take my demons and turn them into motivations. I learned that Filipinos, my people are a people of resistance. And so, I resist. I rise. I fight. Against discrimination Against racism Against colonial mentality. I speak up because my brown skin is Filipino and Beautiful. – CHRISTIAN PANEDA / ANN ARBOR, MI Forwards Amidst our celeb infused nest Lie the people I like best Who worry not for likes or words But constantly strive to move forwards Creativity at its best Every time we go to rest Concerned more with the heart Than with the plays on our art Taking notes from Nina Simone Fingers crossed we’re not alone “An artist’s duty,” she once declared “Is to reflect the times,” a sentiment I’ve always share I vote we take it further though And through our art and actions show Those paying attention they are not alone With a compassionate spirit and loving tone – MICHELLE YOUNG / LOS ANGELES, CA
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In an increasingly divisive political climate, my desire to fight for equality, tolerance, and love has been brought to new heights. A close friend and I created the Defend Planned Parenthood March in an effort to inform and educate the people of our community about women's healthcare. It was a resounding success, with over 3,000 people marching and sharing their voices, and political figures like the mayor of our town attending. My community’s love and support has reinvigorated me, and despite these tough times, I am confident that if young women support one another and raise their voices together, we can make real change. – ELENA SCOTT / SAN DIEGO, CA (PHOTOS BELOW)
We overcome injustices through our art, through our words, through our actions, and we don’t let people discourage us from doing so no matter what. Positive change comes from recognizing that everyone has different opinions and perspectives, but that being open-minded can lead you to work with people who see the world differently and create something incredible. I did a sunrise shoot with a friend who has very different standpoints than me on world issues. Despite our differing perspectives, we still created something beautiful and impactful that has touched members of the community. In the future, I hope to make a global impact by working with people who have different worldviews than I do. – CAMILLE RUIZ / ORLANDO, FL (PHOTO ABOVE)
– ALEXANDRA DOMINIQUE RIVAS / TIJUANA, MEXICO
– MARINA SUNG MARQUES / São Paulo, BRAZIL
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– JESSIKA TAYLOR JARVIS / CHARLESTON, SC
– ALBERTO ENRIQUE VILLA / SACRAMENTO, CA
I am always inspired and full of creative energy. Which I think sometimes is a problem because I have no where else to release it. I'm not good in writing or drawing, so I take photos of people my age. I don't have a certain style or one theme, I just style them according to what I think best suits them and their personality. I love experimenting and being resourceful with what I have. – SAM SOMERA / ANTIPOLO CITY, PHILIPPINES (PHOTO BELOW)
I use my artwork to bring peace to those who look at it. Soft colors, lines, and a dreamy atmosphere help clear the mind of the world’s stress. One of the most crucial issues to me is the environment. We must remember the earth is a gift and was created for us, and we must remember it constantly provides even when we take from it. We are all humans on the earth and my art helps to remind people of the fragile generosity of our planet. – ISAAC DIAZ / OKLAHOMA CITY, OK (ARTWORK ABOVE)
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social good in costa rica COVERAGE BY Alivia Latimer
Tamarindo, Costa Rica — this is where I spent the past week, experiencing a different culture, eating way too much rice, swimming under waterfalls, and learning about the environment. I had never thought about the idea of incorporating travel and volunteer work, and it wasn’t until Have Fun Do Good told me about their upcoming Costa Rica trip that I really thought about the concept.
I personally was so honored to be able to capture the kids’ genuine, unconventional happiness. They reminded me to truly enjoy the simplicities of life, and the good company of others. If you ever get the chance to hang out with kids, take it. We have a lot to learn from them.
For me, travel is a way to experience life at it’s fullest potential, to take risks, make memories, and leave with no regrets; and volunteer work is something that makes my heart full, and inspires me beyond belief. So the fact that I was being offered an opportunity to do both of those things at once and take photos along the way? Clearly it was a no brainer! We started off the trip by visiting the Leather Back Trust marine biology station, located on a beautiful beach in Guanacaste. The Leather Back Trust is a non-profit conservation organization that works to protect leatherback turtles and other sea turtles alike from extinction. Here we learned about how damaging plastic is to the ocean’s eco-system, and how making simple changes to our daily lives and use of plastic can collectively make a global impact. Our pal Christian walked us through a beach clean-up, which included finding an alarming amount of plastic, then taking it back to the station to organize and collect data for their research team. Overall, this was an incredibly enlightening experience. We all walked away feeling very empowered by the Leather Back Trusts’ efforts to keep our ocean and it’s inhabitants safe. I personally have been trying to say no to unnecessary plastic use in my day to day, and I encourage you guys to try it too! I’ll think you’ll be surprised by how many times we use plastic without realizing it. Flash forward to day three, we were able to spend time working with the Creciendo Juntos foundation and hang out with some children at a local school. What really stood out to me about this specific day was the fact that we were able to interact with the children for multiple hours— playing games and taking photos—all without being able to communicate via spoken word. The Spanish/English language barrier somehow didn’t seem to matter, and the smiles upon everyone’s faces truly said it all.
After two full days of doing good, we decided to have some fun (hence the name, Have Fun, Do Good). We trekked to waterfalls, explored the town of Tamarindo (which by the way, has fantastic vegan cuisine), and did a little surfing to round out the trip. Ok, I didn’t surf, cause water like, isn’t my thing. But I did take photos of everyone else surfing so, it’s the thought that counts, right?! Overall, being in Tamarindo, Costa Rica with the HFDG crew was such an uplifting and inspiring experience. The fact that we are able to use our talents and skill sets to serve others is truly such a blessing, and I definitely have been inspired to implement more social good and activism into my life! In conclusion, I really want to encourage you all to think about ways that you can do some good in your own communities and incorporate the talents you’ve been given to do so! Collectively, we all have such a massive voice and I believe that together, we can truly be a light in this world.
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jasmine thompson Written by lauren speight Photography by emily dubin
Powerhouse singer-songwriter, JASMINE THOMPSON has become a budding sensation over the last few years, and for good reason. She has soared from computers screens to the international stage, working with artists like Meghan Trainor and releasing content that has amassed hits by the millions. The London-based artist has been featured on Felix Jaehn’s “Ain’t Nobody (Loves Me Better)” and Robin Schulz’s “Sun Goes Down”, which have each racked up hundreds of millions of streams online as well as gold and platinum certifications worldwide. Her dynamic vocals and soulful flair transcend the boundaries of genre with ease, and it comes as no surprise when her roots stem from the diverse city life of London.
“ I t h i n k t ha t gr owing up in lo n do n h e l p e d me e xpe r ie nce a lot o f dif fe r e n t t hings . it’s a m ulticult u ral p l ac e, w hich m e a ns tha t the r e is so m u c h m us ic a nd hybr ids of dif f er-
Thompson explains. “I think my music reflects the city I grew up in. My song “Wonderland” is actually based on how it feels to grow up in such a big city.” Thompson was practically predisposed to dabble in the music industry as a result of her interest as a child and the support from her parents in her endeavors. In fact, it was her mother that emboldened and supported her decision to begin posting covers on YouTube. “I was really into the idea of YouTube because I spent so much time watching other people’s vlogs and covers and I was excited about how friendly the community seemed.” Though Thompson continues to grow into her skin as a musician and young adult, she still reflects on her early years and develops music based on times of significant divide and heartache. She recalls, “When I was around 6 my family split, and my dad battled with alcoholism for a while. I tend to base my lyrics on how that has affected my family and what comes along with a split family.” Thompson’s ability to channel the rawness of those feelings and her willingness to share them with the world are just a few facets of her character that have contributed greatly to her achievements.
e n t c u l t u r e s a nd influe nce s ,”
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According to Thompson, writing truthfully about emotions and experiences is the key to writing a compelling song: “I normally write about my emotions or stories that have happened to me that have had an impact on the way I feel. I love finding melodies that represent an emotion and then building a song off that.” As of late, Thompson has put her heart and soul into her new EP titled Wonderland, and she’s ready for the world to hear it. “I feel so proud of this collection of music, and I just want my followers to hear it because then they might know more about the way I’ve been feeling over the past year or so,” she says. “They will see into the mind of someone who is growing up, and hopefully they can relate to my experiences and what I have to say. I really want to express how important I think it is to stay youthful and passionate throughout life”. The EP features eight tracks, all of which come together to chronicle what it’s like losing friends, the uncertainty of youth, and the process of mending a broken heart; things that likely hit close to home for all of us. As Thompson’s career flourishes, she has made it a priority to interact with her
fans daily and perform the best live shows she possibly can. Performing on stage to a crowd of eager listeners is something that has added joy and enthusiasm to Thompson’s experience as an artist. On stage, she feels nothing but passion for her art: “I have a rush of love. I always have flashbacks to the past few years, and I just feel so happy to see the faces in the audience. Being able to sing makes me feel passionate and happy about life”. Calling Jasmine Thompson’s adolescent years unconventional would be an understatement, but her experience thus far in the industry has been nothing short of notable. “I have been very lucky and haven’t had a rough time so far,” she says with confidence. “I guess I will always try to challenge myself though, to make my art as great as it can be and to continue to learn more about music and extend my knowledge”. Thompson’s vibrance and passion for music is not only impressive, but her success serves as a beacon of optimism for aspiring artists, and to those people she says, “Never be afraid to try and fail, and to really explore what it means to be you”.
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shaed Written by kendall bolam Photography by sarah ratner
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“We make colorful music” is a phrase that Washington D.C. based band SHAED has lived by since their formation in 2016. By writing songs that are fresh and original, SHAED has succeeded in making a name for themselves in an incredibly short amount of time. They recently finished a tour with Bishop Briggs and Manatee Commune, the band is generating a strong fan base and gaining devotees across the nation. Their new EP Just Wanna See is a record full of dreamy pop melodies and brassy vocals. Having toured with bands like Marian Hill and Verite, SHAED is excited to hit the road again and to continue promoting their music. “‘Just Wanna See’ is our baby,” says Chelsea. “We spent many hours in our basement writing and recording our first body of work as SHAED. It was incredible traveling around the country with Marian Hill and Verite, performing these songs for new faces in beautiful venues. We’re so excited to do it all over again!” Like other successful bands, SHAED has a unique creative process that helps them turn ideas into songs. When asked how they create their distinctive sound, Max replied, “We’re an abnormally close group. We spend 99% of our lives together so we’re very comfortable around each other. Sometimes we’ll set a microphone up in the middle of the room and dance around it taking turns singing melodies until something sticks. The snare sound in “Just Wanna See” was sampled from a Snapchat of
Chelsea laughing while we were sitting in our basement together. We collectively have a very similar taste in music, so we all gravitated towards the sounds that you hear on the EP.” One characteristic of a great band is its ability to create something brilliant from minimal resources. Since the beginning of their tour, SHAED’s access to instruments and technology has been limited to what they can fit in the back of their Honda. Despite this scarcity, they still find ways to create beautiful art and wouldn’t trade the experience for anything. “Before this year we hadn’t really been anywhere,” says Chelsea. “Tour allowed us to see this beautiful country. We met amazing fans, ate incredible food, and spent our off days exploring. Let’s just say I found the best enchilada in Arizona!” An endless amount of traveling has led to endless amounts of creativity for SHAED. Having spent time in places like Death Valley and the Outer Banks, the band was inspired to write and create even more catchy tunes. When asked what their greatest success has been, Chelsea answered jokingly, “That we haven’t killed each other yet!” With the success of their first EP and a very promising future, our hope is that SHAED will continue to face each new experience with the same light-hearted and optimistic spirit. A spirit that will be a driving force for their music and a fuel for their creativity.
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matt maeson WRITTEN BY Mackenzie Rafferty PHOTOGRAPHY BY Andy DeLuca
“Love people more than they love you.” This is the ever so poignant motto behind the up and coming musician MATT MAESON. This motto is highly reflective of the story behind Maeson and his music, which has recently garnered some welldeserved praise. Within a month of the release of his single “Cringe,” last year, it reached #12 on Spotify’s US Viral Chart and #17 on Spotify’s Global Viral Chart. Following the success of his single, his EP has been very well received since being released late this March. Matt’s childhood and introduction to music was far from what we’d all probably consider “normal.” He noted, rather honestly, how his unique childhood experiences are mostly the reasons why he writes music in the first place. Growing up, he toured alongside his parents and their prison ministry. On the road, he and his parents toured hundreds of maximum security prisons to play music for some of the country’s most dangerous prisoners. At the time, he noted, “nothing really felt unique… looking back, I count myself fortunate to have gone through some of those things.” These experiences birthed songs that not only pushed the trajectory of his career, but also helped others along the way.
Music has always been a driving force in Maeson’s life, having sung and played the drums for most of his life. At 14, he picked up guitar and wrote his first song just a year later. Appreciating his humble beginnings, he noted how confident he is that the first song was most likely trash compared to where he’s at now. Recently, however, Maeson has added piano to his musical repertoire. Maeson attributed a lot of his creative expression to his childhood experiences. Writing music, for Maeson, was a way of coping with a lot of emotions he had inside, “all of my songs are kind of a catharsis for me.” His single “Cringe” was inspired by a culmination of people – when writing the song he was trying to figure out who really cared about him in his life. He wrote this song in a state of anger and desperation, which allowed for him to truly let go of these aforementioned toxic people. “I guess it really just came out of feeling condemned.” Now, when performing this song Maeson noted how he reaches a sense of peace and clarity, despite its very raw and aggressive tone. “Cringe” is a single off of his recently released EP titled, Who Killed Matt Maeson?
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When asked, Maeson discussed that the name of the title is drawn from his personal evolution from a teenager to an adult. “When I turned 18, life really started beating me down… I tried to compensate with drugs and parties and just generally being a dumbass.” Fortunately, he made it through this tumultuous period. Through the turmoil, he noted, he lost a version of himself that he doesn’t think he’ll ever get back, thus, the proverbial death of Matt Maeson. On the topic of inspiration, Maeson noted how important his faith has been throughout his life and music endeavors. His faith is extremely important to him, as he spoke about his selfproclaimed “unconventional relationship” with God. A majority of his songs reflect his unorthodox relationship with faith and God, and the struggles that have resulted. Maeson’s inspirations for music is undoubtedly unique, and so too is his sound. Raw and troubled, his sound stands apart from a lot of other artists in the industry. His emotional and story-telling lyrics partnered with his soulful voice create this distinctive style that helped push his success. “When I write something personal, it’s easy to give it all I’ve got and luckily God gave me a cool voice to do it with.” This style is reminiscent of various artists whom he’s found a lot of inspiration in. Johnny Cash, Jeff Buckley, and Andy Hull were three
of Maesons’ favorite artists while growing up. Highly intrigued by their ability to tell stories through lyrics, Maeson referred to them as “prolific storytellers.” His childhood admiration for these artists followed into his adult life. Maeson noted how he always wanted to write songs like theirs, “songs that make you feel emotion.” Music is Maeson’s lifeline and emotional release– “it’s the only thing that ever made real sense to me.” Throughout his life, music was something he constantly could depend on and control in his life. Additionally, music offered him an escape and catharsis. Without music, he noted, he’s not sure who he’d even be in life. Maeson’s music is an honest reflection of his life and experiences. Raw and exposed, his music reflects the troubles and tribulations that he’s met throughout his journey in life. Music, for Maeson was a means of coping with his emotions. Beyond its personal cathartic capacity, his music has reached audiences around the world. Audiences have connected to his authentic and candid lyrics partnered with his soulful sound. Maeson will be joining Jaymes Young on his Feel Something tour this summer. What’s beautiful about music is that it can be so personal and individual to an artist, yet offer comfort and emotional support for audiences far and wide.
" lo v e p e o p l e mo re t han t he y lo v e y o u."
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kara vorabutr WRITTEN BY LEAH LU PHOTOGRAPHY BY JESSICA EU
KARA VORABUTR’S photography is nostalgic of the 1970s in Southern California, displaying subdued and grainy visions of blithe, carefree youth. It’s representative of the lens she sees the world through: as a 21-year old, her maturation as an artist has paralleled the evolvement of the technology at hand. This straddling of time-sensitive mediums has played a notable role in shaping the work Kara is drawn to produce – suffice it to say, she’s an artist of all trades, donning the deserved title of photographer, writer and florist, to name a few.
prints – that whole process was such a mystery to me. Then one day it was just, click the button and then immediately see the pictures,” Kara explained. “Photo albums stopped being made – less care put into the photographs, a million of the same pictures posed to be made perfect. It was boring.” This digital uprising drew Kara to focus on cultivating the craft of training her hands. It veered her towards more manual mediums: painting, shooting 35mm, and creating still life installations that are more than just two dimensional pixels of light.
Kara captures the grittily romantic essence of being young in Los Angeles, not just through her work but in the person she is. She masterfully maneuvers the art scene in the city she calls a diverse melting pot, a feat that can often render itself intimidating. “I relate to a lot of different people because I stick my toes in every DIY-related pond,” she said. “Here, there is always some kind of opening or new show to go to and it is so important to show up and support whoever in whatever way I can. This support system comes back tenfold.” Kara runs The Residue Journal, an open collective of photographers and skateboarders that throw group gallery shows. Every Sunday, she sets up shop with local grown flowers at Junior High Gallery in Hollywood. She aims for her work to be accessible for different types of people, even those who may have been initially uninvolved. “It motivates me thinking about how much this city really needs a solid and authentic DIY art scene. My favorite part is that there is such a good foundation to it already and a lot of room for it to grow and bloom,” Kara said.
For Kara, expression isn’t limited to merely visual creation but serves as an upheaval of emotions and extension of her being.
Tinkering with light, color, and feelings – “the whole rainbow of emotions,” as she puts it – Kara’s photography hints to a reminiscence of the way things were. Growing up during the rise of digital technology has, in a way, caused her to feel cheated of the experience of non-instantaneous gratification, the kind that pushes the artist to greater precision and care. “A huge part of my life my parents had photographed me growing up in their 35mm cameras. I remember the half dreadful and partial excitement of having to wait hours Sunday to see those
“ i d o n’t t h in k i was ever mea n t to ju st st ay creat in g in o n e medi u m . i lo n g to try th e t h in gs i h av e n’ t, co n sist en tly.” She defines being an artist as understanding the possibilities of you can make out of anything and harnessing the power to give life and worth to whatever that may be. Thus lead to Kara’s recent release of a collection of poems titled Lovers or Strangers, the zine publication of what began as scribbles in notebooks or derivatives of texts never sent. “They’re a bit lost in poetic structure and are like raw feelings of how I felt over the course of a year,” she said. “They are what feelings I could translate at the time into words and how clever I thought I would probably had been if I had said them out loud.” Seeing everyday life as something special makes it close to impossible for Kara to lose inspiration. It’s what moves her to consistently churn out true, quality art. What’s to come next? “I have a lot of things constantly in the works… two things that I’m excited about are a zine full of photographs and still lives I’ve created with them in relations to my favorite tool – my hands, and a solo show coming in the fall right at Junior High,” Kara said. “I’m optimistic about the future.”
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let them eat cake versailles, france
a good lover los angeles, ca
where afternoon smells like lavender biarritz, france
afternoon swim sebastian, spain
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It’s safe to say that since we last caught up with Chase Lawrence, frontman of Nashville-based indie pop band COIN, not only years have passed; the group has revolutionized itself. The 2017 release of their second album, How Will You Know If You Never Try, certainly seems to be the catalyst for new things for the band, including their first national headline tour which is underway, not to mention being acclaimed by big names, TIME and Amazon, in “21 Musicians We Want to Hear From in 2017” and as “Breakthrough Artist of the Year,” respectively. It’s safe to say that despite their resurgence in the spotlight, they have remained grounded. “Truthfully, I am just learning of this Amazon feature,” divulged Lawrence, “and my dad told me about the TIME blurb.” His mentality is to not focus too much on the press or outside opinions, a mindset shaped by wisdom from a friend who has had brushes with fame. “[They] once told me that if you believe the good, you have to also believe the bad.” Though he is demonstrating discretion in regards to the press, Lawrence made it clear that he is also incredibly thankful. “I am more than grateful that anyone believes in us.” And the aforementioned first national headline tour? It has been defying the band’s expectations. “This tour has been what I have dreamed about since day one,” Lawrence shared. “These are the shows I used to play out in my head, lying in my university dorm. At times, the whole experience feels less than real; but then, we are pulled back in to find out that our expectations have been exceeded yet again. It’s a mind bending process, but we couldn’t be more thrilled.” While the release of HWYKIYNT certainly sparked significant external shifts for COIN, the rumblings of change for the group began long before the album’s release: during its creation.
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For starters, their songwriting process took a “metaphorical pendulum swing,” as Lawrence dubbed it. “For [our first album] COIN , the writing process was only an internal band effort,” explained Lawrence. “Rather, on HWYKIYNT, Joseph, our guitarist, and I spent three months in Los Angeles co-writing with outside writers.” From there, they brought the songs they wrote back to their hometown of Nashville and developed them with the full band. This allowed for songs to either flourish with the band’s sound, or be weeded out quickly. “When spun through our COIN lens, some of these too sugary LA pop songs became more uniquely us, while some just died in the process.” Lawrence noted another significant aspect in their approach to their newest album. “Writing for HWYKIYNT, there was always this distinct vision of what we wanted to do,” Lawrence explained. “We were writing for an album, with a clear sonic and literary message.” After writing hundreds of songs, they whittled the batch down to 20, then 15, then 14, then
12. This creative process, noted Lawrence, varied from their method for their first album. “For COIN , it was more of a collection of songs we’d written to date; we weren’t exactly writing for a purpose. In some ways, we consider HWYKIYNT to be our debut album, rendering our first to be a long EP.” Lawrence added, laughing, “an extended, extended play.” It’s apparent that their sophomore album was wrought with intention. Lawrence has explained the overall theme of their album, explaining it as their “attempt to embrace the inevitable.” Lawrence admitted that, “Yeah, death creeps in closer every day, but we shouldn’t fear it. Rather, it should motivate us. Do new things, live underwater, be what you wanna be: just try.” These are thoughts that cross the minds of many, but are rarely discussed; mortality and death tend not to be the most talked about topics for young people. So what caused the band to go that direction? Lawrence can trace it back to a single catalytic event in a coffee shop about a year ago.
“Given its pop sensibility, we (I) were (was) incredibly nervous about the release of our new single “Talk Too Much.” It was a destination changing, seemingly earth shattering choice for us. Not that we weren’t excited about it, but at this time, I would lose hours of sleep wondering if people would laugh at us. All at once, I so fluidly assuaged my concerns saying aloud, ‘How will you know if you never try?’” For Lawrence, the phrase was sobering; for the rest of the band, not so much. “Disaffected, my band mates continued on with breakfast. I said it again, in hopes someone else would get the strange power…” he half-jokes. “This question would go on to be the very lens we saw the entirety of the album through: exploring new genres, emotional quirks, and spending hours on noises until they were perfect.” Not only was their message an intentional one, but it was crafted with careful protection from outside influences. While Lawrence admits that it would be a lie to say that they weren’t influenced in some aspects, he also states
that he is “also not gonna lie about how hard we tried to shut out the outside world, during the creative process.” And tried hard, they did: the group went to extreme lengths, including renting a cabin in the mountains with no internet or cell service to finish writing the album. So how did they choose to craft HWYKIYNT? “Lyrically, this album is very direct,” shared Lawrence. “Much about it is very experiential, rooted in our own tragedy. These are our stories. Sonically, we had this implied carefree-ness. ‘If it feels good, it is good,’ I would outwardly express to anyone showing concern.” An eclectic combination of sobering themes and a que sera, sera attitude has led to the creation of an album that is distinctly COIN. The band’s sound is not the only aspect of their album to convey a recognizable message and sound; the cover art is saturated with symbolism by way of inanimate objects and bold colors. A tombstone, birthday candles and a single flower decorate HWYKIYNT. Lawrence explained the thought process behind the still-life-type imagery.
“While developing the art direction for this album, we focused a lot on the impression you leave behind anywhere you go,” shared Lawrence. “In each single cover, you can see the remnants of what once was. And your ultimate impression... your life. The album art depicts my thought process, when presented with an opportunity. We shouldn’t fear death; rather, we should let it motivate us. Consider the greatness and the misfortune. Then, consider regret.” Through the selected items, we glimpse life, aging and death, and all that comes with it. The predominant color, red, also played into the album’s aesthetic and message. “Red is such a versatile tone,” Lawrence said. “The way I see our album cover frequently changes based on my mood. Angry, rambunctious, elated, disappointed.” Just like the life we live, this single color is loaded with varying emotions, and varying meanings. As he and his bandmates have reflected on the transience of life, both in sober and liberating ways, Lawrence says that he thinks living well in this life equates to “leaving an impression of yourself here,” whether that’s through “lineage, legacy or graffiti.” He encourages, “Leave your mark, and be happy while you do it.” If he could sum up one concise message to listeners of their album, Lawrence gave this mantra: “Missed opportunity: no! Try: yes!” COIN’s lyrics simplify the existential, addressing the big questions in life in direct ways, framing them in a less daunting manner. So, where does Lawrence foresee the band going from here? With their signature lightheartedness, he repeats, “new music, new music, new music.” Using their token carefree-ness while delving intentionally in meaningful themes, COIN has crafted an album as daring as its title. And it leaves us both comforted and disrupted, contemplating what we long to attempt in this life, and the things that hold us back.
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trace WRITTEN & PHOTOGRAPHY BY Naohmi Monroe
You know that feeling when you listen to a song for the first time and it just hits home? It’s that moment when an artist sings the words right out of your head and the melodies effortlessly tug at your heartstrings. It feels like fate— so you immediately like, share, and put it on repeat for 24 hours. There is such fulfillment in discovering an artist who just gets you. We get that way with mellow electronic pop artist TRACE. Since her debut track “Heavy Shoulders”, released 2016 under the EP Low, we have been humming along and feeling our woes. TRACE will lull you into song with minimal beats and hit you with heavy lyrics that leave you thinking damn, me too. In TRACE’s latest single “Oh My My”, she immediately avows to her eminent heaviness in the opening lyrics “Believe it or not, I’m going to get worse than this.”
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“ w r i t e ev e r y t h i n g . s h a r e y our i nsi des w i th p eop l e y o u t ru s t. a n d of t e n . a n d t rul y, ex p ress i t, how ever y o u s ee f i t — w h e t h e r i t ’s pa i nti ng, c ooki ng, goi ng o n a ru n. f u e l t h e s a dn e ss through somethi ng t hat yo u k n ow f or s u r e, gi ves you l i f e.”
TRACE transforms weighty emotions into soothing electronic melodies through a genuine regime of being “very communicative, transparent and honest.” This attitude of complete openness in the songwriting process allows TRACE to “understand the things that keep [her] up at night.” She shares, “A combination of others and myself simply inspire me to make them. And when someone tells me they relate to something I’ve written, I feel like I re-remember why I do what I do— and that alone is the root of all things that inspire me to continue.” While TRACE is our romanticized sad girl, she encourages all to “Write everything. Share your insides with people you trust. And often. And truly, express it, however you see fit— whether it’s painting, cooking, going on a run. Fuel the sadness through something that you know for sure, gives you life.” Emotions deserve to be processed, felt, and acknowledged wholly. And while your feelings may be heavy and your head and heart can slip away from the light, remember that when it comes to
love— whether it be self love, intimate love, or objective love— “you need it and you should give it. And it’s one of the most fragile and strongest things on earth.” Emotional experience is what makes us human and nurturing such is fruitful to who we are and what we create. In the coming year, TRACE plans to release new music and tour in the summer/fall season. You’ll be glad “creating and writing music is definitely a lifer pursuit” for her and she’s filled with excitement for what’s to come. So, if you haven’t listened to her latest single “Oh My My” yet, find it on Spotify, clear your mind and envision this: “It’s golden hour, you definitely have a coat on because it’s perfectly cold (and you’re with someone you want to love or you’re by yourself), and you’re on a walk. Your legs are tired but not as tired as your mind. You have no idea where you’re going but you keep walking, surrounded by strangers walking by and ahead of you. AKA ideally you’re in Paris in November…”. Press play and dive into TRACE’s energizing heartfelt truths.
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joyce manor Written by Sadie Bell Photography by Myrah Sarwar
For many of us, when we were in high school, there was that one, special band that we returned to – the one who played that song with those lyrics that somehow encapsulated the entirety of your existence, and all that you were feeling. It is during this time that many of us fall head first into an inexplicable, passionate relationship with music, and for those of us lucky enough, we are able to hold onto this dearly for the rest of our lives. “I think that when most people are at that age, fifteen to twenty, that’s when most people are typically most invested in music and tend to really love music the most in their life,” said Barry Johnson, vocalist/guitarist of the pop punk band JOYCE MANOR. “For me, that never really changed I’ve just always been obsessed with music and I love it. I never wanted to be one of those people where it’s like your music lightens up or gets more adult as you get older. I’ve always tried to resist that and make music that’s still intense in one way or another.”
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“ t ha t’s g rea t to have a jo b w here a bunch o f p e o pl e sh ow u p and t hey’ re like, ‘ w e w ant t o see you b ei n g jo yful and full o f life.’ ”
With Joyce Manor’s devotion to their unadulterated sound, that impassioned love for music that many of us come by in our youth has never ceased to escape them. Instead of leaving this feeling behind them, the California pop punk perfectionists are embracing it and recognizing the fervent clutch their sounds have on the youth. Though essentially late to pop punk, having come onto the scene in the late 2000s, Joyce Manor has released four immense full-length albums including last year’s triumphant release Cody. With Johnson’s anxious, groaning voice and the band’s wildly upbeat, enthused sound and vulnerable lyrics, it would be a challenge not to find yourself dancing about your bedroom and subsequently screaming into your pillow or furiously writing in your diary to the band’s epically emotional sound. Though the band is certainly nuanced with distinctive short songs, a crisp rhythm, and inventive emo lyrics sometimes inspired by verses Johnson wrote as a teen, Joyce Manor is a product of seasoned songwriters raised by a generation of MySpace emo bands; and because of that, they attempt to carry the same influence on their listeners as the bands they listened to did to them, which they do so immaculately. Johnson said, “I think it’s one of those things where, especially if you’re a kid from the suburbs, you feel like when you connect with a band, you feel that nobody else in your town or your high school besides you and your friends really gets this or connects with this, until you meet people from other neighboring towns that feel the same way. It’s an exciting thing to be in that room with other people who loves these songs as much as you do. I remember being that age and going to see bands. Your whole life you’re in school or work with these people who don’t really get what you’re into and then when you’re all of a sudden around a lot of people who get it, it’s exciting, it’s exhilarating, it’s intoxicating. It’s
part of it. It’s part of what makes it fun and worthwhile for us.” Of this sound that is intermittent with feeling and danceability that so fiercely touches their audience, Johnson said, “If it’s not anthemic or exciting, it’s not Joyce Manor. That’s all part of it.” This mood is resonant of the exhilaration of the band’s humble beginnings of playing out of basements, a mood laced with sweaty bodies shouting back lyrics and dancing fearlessly that they still attempt to capture in their live shows today. Johnson said, “In the early days, we had a friend who had a house where they did shows and we would go there and party all of the time. A lot of the bands that were playing we very serious bands, though, like a lot of noise bands and artier bands, and I thought, ‘We have this house and everyone is partying, but the party doesn’t get fun until after the bands play. When these bands play, you’ve got to be quiet and respectful,’ which is cool and everything, but I was like, ‘Let’s just make a fucking pop punk band, a rowdy, fucking pop punk band!’” So, Johnson took some of the acoustic songs he had written, added bass, drums, “just made it rowdy,” and Joyce Manor was born, shortly thereafter filling up their friend’s house with an audience and going off to write and record a number of infectious albums and EPs. “That’s how we started and we’ve been doing it since.”Though the band’s pop punk register and riotous sound speak to their fans, their lyrics do just the same as they often explore the destructiveness of volatile relationships, mental health, and the vulnerability of personal experience. Johnson said that while it can be difficult for him to get into the right mindset to write the songs that he does, he finds catharsis in doing so, often learns about himself after the fact, and instinctively creates something more honest and special for the listener. “You want it to connect with people. You want it to connect to yourself,” he said.
Johnson said despite releasing their first record at 24 when he was “starting to become the person you are going to be throughout adulthood” without experiencing the transformation of a high school band growing into their personhood over the years, they still intend to keep their dream of what music should be – the youthful vibrancy of it – alive. “I think especially this type of music and music in general is such a young person thing, whereas in other artistic mediums, they do their best work later in life, but music such a huge youth obsessed thing. I don’t think anybody wants to get old and die, so I think older people can agree that you kind of get rewarded for still being young and dumb and fun. While I definitely have grown up in certain ways [over the years], I think it’s great that we’re still encouraged to party all the time and people want to see us having fun. That’s great
to have a job where a bunch of people show up and they’re like, ‘We want to see you being joyful and full of life.’ I think it keeps you young,” said Johnson. “I’m always trying to stay inspire and keep writing good songs, and I have a few right now that I’m super, super excited for people to hear that probably won’t be on a record for another year or so, but we have another record in the bag,” said Johnson. “I still want the twentieth Joyce Manor record to be incredible, and if they all have some good songs on them, then that’s great.” For many kids, Joyce Manor is that band that they fall in love with without restraint – the one that understands them when no one else does – and with the band’s drive and equally as impassioned feeling towards music, it seems this devotion of their fans won’t fade anytime soon, and they may remain youth’s fan favorite for generations to come.
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â€œi think that when most people are at that age, fifteen to twenty, thatâ€™s when most people are typically most invested in music and tend to really love music the most in their life.â€?
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sarah hawkinson PHOTOGRAPHY & STYLING BY AIDAN DOYLE / WRITTEN BY OLIVIA CLARKE / WARDROBE BY SHOP OLD GOLD
With fiery red hair and a passion for horror, 27-year-old SARAH HAWKINSON created her YouTube channel six years ago, making primarily fashion and makeup related videos. But around four years ago, she began talking about mental health. Now in 2017, Hawkinson is at the forefront of YouTubers that use their platform for mental health awareness and education. A recent college graduate with a Bachelor's in Psychology, on Hawkinson’s channel you’ll find advice videos about anxiety and her series the “Psychology of” which consist of topics ranging from her passion of horror to dreams and conspiracy theories. When describing her content, Hawkinson says she does “a little bit of everything now.” She created her channel early in the YouTube sphere when beauty gurus were beginning to take over. “I started because there was a growing beauty community, but only a few others talking about fashion,” explains Hawkinson. “I thought to myself, ‘Hey, I have a voice. I may just be a girl in her room, but maybe people will listen.’ And everything blossomed from there.” Now with three channels, Hawkinson is “so proud that my channel and viewers have been able to grow with me.”
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She still makes fashion related videos, but “came to realize my true passion was discussing mental health issues and helping others gain confidence through not wearing makeup myself and sharing my own insecurities over the years.” Growing up with the support of her mom, Hawkinson realized that not everyone who is struggling with their mental health has someone to talk to about it.
“i made i t m y l i fe m i s s i o n t o b e that p erso n fo r th o s e w h o d on’ t have so m e o n e l i ke th a t.” Hawkinson began incorporating more mental health related videos as she progressed in her psychology education. “[The videos] started off as more advice videos, like something an older sister might share,” explains Hawkinson. “Then they evolved to include more education about mental health.” Some of her most popular videos are her “Psychology of” series. “I wanted to help educate my viewers what the brain is up to during dreams, horror movies, etc.,” she says about the origin of these videos. “Mostly for fun and because it’s super interesting, but also after watching so many misinformed videos about similar content created just for shock value. I like to keep it authentic and simply educate; not disturb or perturb my viewers!” Another key aspect of Hawkinson’s channel is her balance of makeup tutorials and makeup-free videos. “Yes, makeup is fun and it can do awesome things, but I like to remind my viewers that they are always beautiful whether they have makeup on or not,” Hawkinson says. “Some of my favorite comments I’ve gotten were others telling me how I’ve given them confidence to go in public without makeup on!” She keeps that balance by uploading makeup-free Monday videos as well as fun tutorials like her “Instagram Baddie” and “All Orange” looks. Talking about mental health can be a difficult and sensitive topic, but Hawkinson knows it is a vital discussion. “Sometimes even negative press is good press and although shows like
13 Reasons Why has gotten a lot of backlash from the mental health community, I believe it’s helped open the discussion of mental health issues and brought it to mainstream media,” she says. “I also think YouTubers sharing their mental health stories is great as well. There are definite skeptics out there questioning if stories are more for views than to help people, but regardless, it’s still bringing the discussion to the general public and that can’t hurt.” Hawkinson is beloved by her viewers for her authenticity and openness, so there is no questioning her YouTube M.O. Aside from her passion for mental health, Hawkinson’s love of horror spurred its own channel called “PossessedByHorror”. Since childhood, Hawkinson was always a fan of the genre, reading elementary school classics like Goosebumps and Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark. When she read her first Stephen King book at age thirteen, “it was all downhill from there,” she laughs. Soon she branched into horror cinema and now reviews movies and trailers online. “I created the channel because my fascination turned obsession and I just simply needed an outlet to talk about it since no one in my life enjoyed horror as much as I did.” For those looking to get into horror literature, Hawkinson recommends the following: The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon by Stephen King and Scream Queens by Edo Van Belkom. For short stories, Night Shift or Everything’s Eventual by King as well. When trying to find a connection between her interests in horror, psychology and mental health, Hawkinson recognizes that there definitely is one, but she is unsure of her personal one. “My mom likes to make that connection for me, claiming that my obsession with horror is helping my intense fear of death in some way, but I don’t believe it!” Looking forward in her career, Hawkinson says her dream job would be a high school counselor or teacher. She still intends to do YouTube for a long time, but wants to “see where my education and life will take me.” Whatever path she follows, it’s certain that Sarah Hawkinson will continue to carry her passion for mental health awareness and the psychology of the human mind with her wherever she goes.
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“i a ls o wa nt to h elp t o red u ce t h e stig ma o f dis cus s ing m e ntal illn esses t h ro u gh my video s. i' m only one pe r so n , bu t if i co u ld d o o n e th in g with m y pla tfor m, i h o p e t h at sticks t h e mo st.”
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earrings: misha gill dress: delfi collection jacket: emma mulholland
madelyn deutch Written by kendall bolam / Photography by lenne chai STYLING BY Jillian Cainghug / Hair & Makeup BY Aaron Barry VIDEOGRAPHY BY deeyaz
MADELYN DEUTCH’s new film The Year of Spectacular Men is an ode to millennials. It is an authentic tribute to anyone forging their own path in today’s society. “It started as art imitating life,” says Deutch, and that’s precisely what it is: An artistic representation of an experience many of us know far too well. Having taken on the role of writer, composer, and lead actress, Deutch now has the fulfilling task of bringing her character from a simple concept to a masterful creation. When describing the film, Deutch joked that despite its whimsical title, the story is inspired by a less-than-ideal time in her life. Set to premiere at the Los Angeles Film Festival this summer, the movie chronicles the post-graduate life of Izzy Klein and her relationships with various men. “It’s about a recent college grad who has just been dumped by her long-term boyfriend, and is convinced by her much more together younger sister to move back home to Los Angeles,” says Deutch. “The film follows Izzy over the course of the year as she semi-fails at dating five super different/complicated guys and semi-tries to figure out her millennial existence.” Deutch explains the challenge of writing a character and then playing that character on screen. “I assumed I’d just understand Izzy through and through, I mean I wrote her. I should just know her right? Wrong! For me, the part of my brain that
writes isn’t the same part that plays characters — so I had to double back in the 11th hour, and prep as if a stranger wrote the script.” Izzy Klein is an intricate character— one Deutch hopes many women can identify with. “I hope anybody who sees it (but girls especially) walks away feeling more seen. Izzy is, of course, a very specific character. While I know not every woman will relate to her specific choices and privilege and neuroses, I hope they can at least enjoy seeing those flaws and eff ups and jagged edges of femininity shown on screen.” The feminine experience is as enigmatic as it is beautiful, and Deutch’s refreshing performance in The Year of Spectacular Men proves that. For Deutch, the film is as much a family affair as it is a personal triumph. Deutch enlisted the help of her mother, acclaimed actress Lea Thompson, to direct the film while recruiting her younger sister Zoey Deutch to play her onscreen sis. When asked what it’s like to have family members on set, Deutch answered enthusiastically. “It’s a total joy. My mom is such a gifted director and my sister is obviously incredible at her job, so I loved hitting the ball back and forth with her. Me and Zoey would laugh so hard during a take, our mom would be screaming from video village, threatening our lives if we didn’t cut it out.”
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“ i c an’ t st a nd the t ho ugh t o f w a tc h i ng mo ments p a s s m e by — a n ima ge, a c o nver s a ti o n, w h a tever — w i t h ou t rec o rding it so meh o w. i t c o ul d b e a j o ur na l entr y, a son g, a fea tur e film; but mo ments h a ve to b e c a p tur e d .”
Growing up in such an artistic family, Deutch found her calling early in life. We asked if being an artist was somethingshe always wanted. She answered, “Always. I’m three generations deep in the entertainment industry on both sides of my family so... I wasn’t exactly going to become a computer scientist. (Also I can barely multiply).” Having talent in so many different areas, it’s often difficult to choose which path to follow. Filmmaking is where Deutch felt she could apply all of her passions. “I’m an incredibly restless human being,” says Deutch. “Involving myself with different mediums is a result of my impatience and the need to be constantly asking big questions. As a kid I only intended to be a musician, but when I felt I needed to expand my world I tried my hand at acting, and when I didn’t like waiting for auditions I began to write. I guess it sounds really pragmatic, but the magic is, filmmaking is the place where those three come together.” What inspires Deutch to create? The answer’s simple: People. “I just think people are the greatest. The bus driver, the movie
star, the doorman, doesn’t matter. Also, anxiety. I can’t stand the thought of watching moments pass me by — an image, a conversation, whatever — without recording it somehow. It could be a journal entry, a song, a feature film; but moments have to be captured.” She uses her restless nature to her advantage, her uneasy spirit as a way to produce art that is meaningful and insightful. “Everything is grist for the mill,” is a wise saying that her grandmother often communicates to her. It is an expression which means everything is useful, and it’s a phrase that has changed the way Deutch looks at art. Her advice to young artists? Work hard. It’s a simple statement that’s much easier said than done, but is so rewarding when executed. Deutch is an artistic chameleon. She creates inspiring content within so many different mediums, it’s a wonder we can keep up! With the premiere of The Year of Spectacular Men and many other projects underway, we can confidently expect a spectacular year for Madelyn Deutch.
earrings: misha gill vintage jacket : aralda
earrings: misha gill vintage jacket : aralda
jacket: Lorod earrings: Mmsha gill top: assembly skirt: emma mulholland
jacket: lorod earrings: misha gill vintage top: aralda
earrings: misha gill dress: delfi collection jacket: emma mulholland
earrings: misha gill vintage jacket : aralda
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young & in love MODELS Elizabeth Ryan Dominic Amundson PhotograpHY Aaron Huff Art Direction Sami Caswell JT Eichman HAIR & MAKEUP Whitney Vermeer Kristine Styling Trevor Small
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INTERVIEW WITH CELESTE SCOTT BANNER + ILLUSTRATIONS BY IZZY LAMB
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