local wolves â€” 1
hook is the word that describe how I feel about this month so far. Besides projects and presentations that are due right after Thanksgiving break, the world itself will no longer be the same. With the results from the election, I feel numb and confused. I’m sure we all felt uneasy as we read through our social media timelines, constant replays from the news and television screens. I felt like I had enough of seeing people in my life being in such sorrow. We are strong, vocal individuals who can overcome any obstacle, it may be difficult but it is manageable. This opened my eyes to find more creative ways to get our wolfie readers involved in what is going on in the world. It’s not just America but how the world is shaping for the future. This girl power issue releases every November and I am so thankful as an Asian American to be able to work with my amazing team to curate this month’s talents being featured in this issue. I am proud to share more inspiration for you. Don’t let the outcome of an election bring you down, you fight for what you believe in and for your dream career, anything is possible. Illustration by Leah Lu (Above) // Illustration by Laura Filas (Right).
Cathrine Khom founder / editor-in-chief insta / tweets / snap: @cathrinekhom
C l a ss i cs 07
f e at u r e s 30
christine mai nguyen
who run the world?
girls will be boys
ISSUE 43 // JENN IM local wolves 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 music curator sena cheung head stylist katie qian h/mua/grooming jessie yarborough publicity ashley bulayo social media caroline edwards, nicole tillotson front cover logo fiona yeung back cover logo isabel ramos cover photo randy tran design / illustration kelsey cordutsky, christine ennis, laura filas, lisa lok, leah lu, megan kate potter, lauren wright contributing writers sadie bell, kendall bolam, ashley bulayo, orion carloto, karina diez, meghan duncan, morgan eckel, chloe luthringshausen, hudson luthringshausen, emma matthews contributing photographers mila austin, pamela ayala, megan cencula, riley donahue, amanda harle, katy johnson, rachel kober, chris lampkins, lhoycel marie, penelope martinez, jenson metcalf, naohmi monroe, ashley yu
many thanks alli cherry @alli_cherry los angeles, ca
jenn im @imjennim los angeles, ca
ash @iamjustash atlanta, ga
ruth b @itsruthb alberta, Canada
autumn lavis @autumnlavis flagstaff, az
scarlett turner @scarleyrose southern california
brighton sharbino @brisharbino los angeles, ca
tkay maidza @tkaymaidza adelaide, aus
christine mai nguyen @chrissstttiiine los angeles, ca
emma kenney @emmarosekenney manhattan, ny
localwolves.com twitter | instagram | snapchat @localwolves read online issuu.com/localwolves
genneya walton @genneyawalton los angeles, ca
print shop magcloud.com/user/localwolvesmag
haley blais @hblaisauce vancouver, bc
talentâ€™s name illustrations megan kate potter @megankcreations
playlist + N O V E M B ER 2 0 1 6 +
coverage BY sena cheung
local wolves â€” 7
munchies + R O O S T C O FFEE & M AR K ET +
coverage by amanda harle
Everyone has their favorite go to coffee shop. I recently moved to Eastern Washington and I immediately went on a hunt to find the coffee shop. Roost Coffee & Market easily became one of my favorites. When you walk in, the baristas greet you with smiling faces and the aesthetic of the place is straight out from Pinterest. You can smell the freshly made sandwiches and pastries as well as the scent of coffee that fills the room. Each pastry is delicious and they even have vegetarian options which is perfect so anyone can go there and enjoy themselves with some tasty food and a nice cuppa!
Location: 125 SE Spring St #102, Pullman, WA 99163
local wolves â€” 9
Through a world in which it is so easy to get stuck into believing and following closely to beauty standards, we come to realize that we aren’t alone. At the age of 6, I thought my skin complexion was too dark because the cartoons I’d watch had almost every character with a soft and pale tone. At 8, I thought that my bushy eyebrows, the hair above my lip, and the fuzz on my cheeks were ugly because the girls I’d watch on T.V had a perfectly prim face with not a hair in sight. At 10, I refused to smile with my teeth because the gap in between my two fronts didn’t touch each other like the girls in my class. At 12, I didn’t wear shorts at 4-H camp in the middle of June where the sun shinned bright and the heat was almost unbearable because the bumps on my knees were very much apparent and didn’t appear on anyone else. At 15, I skipped out on dinner for a year straight because I wanted a thigh gap just like the models that I reblogged on Tumblr. At 17, I cried myself to sleep because when my first boyfriend cheated on me, I convinced myself it was because I wasn’t “pretty enough” for him. At 18, I began looking up tutorials on YouTube on how to contour my nose because I absolutely despised my profile— I even went to the extent of begging my mother for a nose job. At 19, I began doubting myself, believing that my writing and my art isn’t good enough and that no one would enjoy reading my words because “it’s been done before”. Today, at 20, I reinvented myself. I believe in myself. And without a doubt in the world, I love myself to no bounds. Insecurities are bound to creep up on us. I went my whole life believing that I’ll never be good enough. With many scenarios where I’ve completed filled my being with self-loath, I’ve learned that no matter how hard I try, how hard I cry, or how hard I try and change who I am, nothing will be perfect. You’ve all heard my story, I’ve told the tired tale quite a few times. So this 4th annual Girl Power issue, it’s about you all— my readers. I asked you all to submit your stories. From the time you’ve doubted yourself to the time you realized you’re the best damn thing to ever happen. And to those that haven’t yet reached that point, this is also for you. Read every word, experience every moment, and take in all the sorrows and revival that girls just like you have gone through. You aren’t alone. banner (above) by daniela daises
“Transparency to Visibility: I’ve always been the girl that loved and hated being alone. Being alone gave me the chance to reflect, but made feelings I’ve tried keeping buried rise to the top. To combat my fears of my own self, I then decided relationships would be the best form of an outlet. However, I continually would seek people that were broken themselves to then give me opportunity to be the glue that would bring them together. But, at the end I would always be left more broken than they began. Those invigorating and freeing feelings that I felt with them was something I greatly feared I could ever find on my own. I had become transparent and had not even realized it. After my most recent relationship ended, I finally had a breakthrough. I realized the air I had been breathing was toxic, and I had to seek an escape. I had time to be alone and truly work on finding everything I needed on my own, and I have never felt genuine happiness like this before. I indulged myself in writing instead of in people. I learned that on my own I am still strong, and have found the visibility I have always sought.” - Salani “To me there is two types of confidence. Fake and real. Earlier this summer I acquired fake confidence. My skin cleared up, I went blonde, and for the first time, boys took notice of me. This faux confidence was like an adrenaline rush, but instead of adrenaline pumping through my veins, it was the approval of others that kept me going. Eventually it wore off, and I crashed. And when I crashed, I crashed hard. With the stress of the school year, early mornings and such, I did not look as fresh as I did in the summer. One little flaw, one little thing wrong and I lost it. I was thrown back to ground zero, day one, when I would look in the school bathroom mirror under the harsh fluorescent lights so that I could hate everything I saw. I hid myself, I cried. I hated myself again. To make matters worse, I threw a boy in the mix. I became so consumed with how I looked in front of him, what he thought of me, that I hid from him in the halls, even skipped lunch so that I wouldn’t have to run in to him if I looked sh*tty, which to me, was every day. Soon, my insecurity wasn’t the only thing that came crawling back, it dragged my anxiety and depression with it. It took a complete crash and burn, a complete 360 back to where I started for me to see the need for a change. There were no set steps that I followed, no plan of action. It just took one thought, one idea, for me to start to alter my ways. I am enough. With this epiphany I started to slowly feel the difference. I would look in the mirror and take it all in, imperfect skin and all, and think, hey, I think I’m cute. My friend would get hit on instead of me, oh well, good for her, I’m still great! In other words, I learned to love myself. I realized that this self-love is all I really need.” - Katie / USA
ILLUSTRATION by LEAH LU “My weight wore me down. Before the fifth grade everyone thought it was cute that I was a little chubby. But kids in my grades started saying rude things at lunch and on the bus. By freshman year I hated looking in the mirror. No one in magazines, TV shows, or movies looked like me. All my friends were skinny and pretty. They all started dating but no boy liked me. One of my many crushes ended up telling me that if I lost “my stomach” he’d ask me to homecoming. I would cry when I looked in the mirror. I cried when I had to do the fitness test in gym in front of everyone. Going shopping was the worst. I couldn’t dress the way I wanted to because nothing fit me. Plus size clothing is also super expensive so I couldn’t buy as much as my family. People would make comments every once in a while not thinking what they said made me feel more gross than I already did. Sophomore year, I finally put my foot down and started eating healthy and walking more. Junior year I got a gym membership with my parents and I couldn’t be happier. I haven’t lost that much weight but I feel healthier and I know this is only the beginning of my journey.” - LaDasia / Connecticut, USA
local wolves — 11
Overcoming Self Doubt: 1) Everyone gets down on themselves. We all stare in the mirror and want to fix things at some points. You’re not alone. 2) High school drama truly doesn’t matter. I mean it. No, like seriously, once the final bell of high school rings. No one cares anymore. I thought the person I was in high school would follow me forever. I was super shy. I was awkward. I didn’t do well in school. I was never invited to parties. I didn’t have a passion for anything. I struggled with myself image. My “friends” gave up on me when during the hardest part of my life. I felt like a loser. I was lonely. I would say the upward climb to self-acceptance started my junior year of high school. Both my grandpas died within 12 days of each other and one was very sudden and he was one of the most influential men in my life. I’d never felt that sad. That drained. I didn’t think it could get worse. My whole life felt like it was spiraling downhill. Then something clicked when I went to visit my step grandma in Montana (where my grandpa lived) in 2015, the summer before college. Life is short. Just go out and enjoy it and stop worrying about the little things. That is what my grandfather always told me but I was too wrapped up in my own thoughts to listen to him. So I did that. I forgot about my fears and I parasailed that summer (something I would never do before) and I realized if I hadn’t taken that chance I would have missed out on such a cool opportunity. Then I realized I probably missed tons of opportunities in high school by over thinking everything.I stopped over thinking, worrying, and self-doubting. I began to just live life. I found a passion and a future career I can’t wait to learn about and pursue, I found friends by being myself, I began to wear what I wanted to wear and didn’t care about judgment anymore. Now I can truly say I am content with my life. Sure, I get sad sometimes. Sure, I over think still (I’m overthinking if I should actually submit this but what the hell will I lose if I do?). I’m not perfect. But I know myself worth now and I have accepted myself for who I am. Flaws and all. No one on this earth is exactly like me so I’m just going to live my most authentic life as me.” - Maddie / Nebraska, USA
run through your brain. I have to fight every day to remind myself how essential it is to be positive and happy during my lifetime. Every single one of us adds value to a room when we walk into it. We all get one chance to make the best of all situations and I am glad that I did not miss out on my opportunity.” - Peyton / Michigan, USA “My body felt like a burden to me, a way for people to get into my insecurities, a broken lock. I used to lay in bed, before my teen years, and cry about my “fat” body. Maybe I had obtained this thought because of my family degrading their bodies, maybe hearing it influenced my own eyes in the mirror. Throughout the years, I starved myself, I counted calories, and I worked out until I couldn’t breathe. But here I am, 16, almost fully confident in my skin. I no longer want to change my body into someone else’s. Maybe it was seeing the beauty in everyone else’s confidence that influenced my own eyes in the mirror.” Kelsi / Louisiana, USA
ILLUSTRATION by MEGAN KATE POTTER “It is rather funny to me how each person, although worlds different from one another, can be faced with eerily similar struggles throughout their lives. For as long back as I can remember, I have compared myself to others. This action killed my confidence and made me feel only subpar to those surrounding me. Oddly enough, I continued doing this to myself over and over again. Not a day went by where I did not look at someone and think about all the ways that I thought they were superior to me. I would beat myself up over thing that I could not change. I was so accustomed to doing this that I did not realize it was happening anymore and I just naturally walked around trying to blend in and fly below the radar. I cannot recall exactly when I made probably one of the most crucial realizations of my life, but I do know what it was and how it has affected me. I came to terms with who I was. I am unique and important. I have value. Allowing myself to be taken over by negative thoughts was just ruining me and losing pieces of my identity. It is beyond difficult to keep your head high and quiet all the pessimistic thoughts that
“I don’t think I can say I’ve overcame my insecurities 100%, but I have learned to accept them. So in a sense, I guess I have overcome them. Ever since middle school I’ve struggled with acne to this day. I’ve had guys point it out to me and that’s possibly the hardest thing to deal with. However, as I’ve gotten older I began to realize that I don’t need to please what any guy thinks is “beautiful”. They either like me the way I am or they can beat it. Another one of my insecurities is my nose, I absolutely hate it. And that’s reason why I haven’t completely overcome my insecurities. My brother makes fun of me for it. It’s annoying and hurtful, but I just have to brush it off and put up a wall that prevents those mean comments to get to my mind. Learning to block out any negativity has helped me so much in many things including my self-esteem. I have enough self-love now than I did when I was 13 or 14 to not need a guy to love me or let it (insecurities) destroy me mentally.” - Joanna / San Diego, CA “My insecurities told me that no one would love as I was and the world would never feel like home. I spent so many nights with my head in a toilet bowel, or burning my fingers from smoking right down to the filter or crying till 1 am. It took me a lot of time and surrounding myself with positivity (especially online) but I realized that the people I deserve will love me as I am in all of my glorious unapologetic self and the world could be what I made it. Put down my razor and used a needle to ink an arrow onto my skin and I’ve tried not to look back since.” - Catherine / UNITED KINGDOM
local wolves — 13
girl power + W O LFIE S U B M I S S I O N S / / P ART O N E +
It’s our fourth annual girl power issue! Our readers share their views on the topic of girl power in today’s society. ILLUSTRATION (LEFT) / LAURA FILAS
and fall, everyone comes to the rescue. Girl power is the finding your own inner power and sharing it with the world. – MELODY DEL RIO / SAN JOSE, CA
Girl power is so vitally important, especially in today’s society. With an array of different views on what feminism really is, it has become more of an argumentative topic than most of us would like to admit. I’ve seen women who claim to be all about female empowerment and “empowering and embracing women”, shoot down other women for being the slightest bit sexual or intimate. These women claim that feminism is all about embracing a woman’s true potential her intelligence and purity. In my opinion, girl power is about empowering all women, despite their differences. Whether a woman wants to embrace her sexuality, her knowledge, or both— we should encourage and respect them and their decisions, even if they differ from our own. Forget the stereotype that women can only be pretty and not bright; and forget the stereotype that women can only be smart and not sexual in any sort of way. Women can be both; they can be whatever they choose to be. Girls can be doctors, models, teachers, artists, athletes, mothers— it’s their prerogative. This includes women of all sizes and color— do not forget that. We should be standing up for one another and letting each other know that whatever we choose to pursue, it is obtainable and valid, despite predetermined gender roles created by society. Support these other women in whatever path they take, and lay the groundwork and be the example for the younger generations of girls to come who are told otherwise. – MAIA PATERNOSTRO / MORGANTOWN, WV
Girl power to me, means the power to show the strength that must be had in order to be a woman in this society. Accepting your femininity and taking pride in the automatic sisterhood that you are born into. The term “girl power” encompasses many things. It is synonymous with strength, ambition, unity, and excellence. In itself, the term holds a certain level of meaning and resilience. Since the beginning of time, women have been the oppressed gender, viewed as weak and submissive and so to have a term like “girl power”, to me it illustrates the fight women have put up to challenge all the stereotypes we have been labelled with. Strong, not weak. Dominant, not submissive. Smart, not dumb. Girl power is also the acknowledgment and encouragement of each other as women, the abandonment of being pitted against each other and giving credit to those women who continue to make strides in all fields in order to benefit us all as one entity. The phrase “girl power” to some, not only in the present day society but for centuries, could be considered an oxymoron but we are changing that notion. To think that we could have a female president after the complete exclusion of women and women’s rights in society and the political space in general shows how girl power can be more than just a term, but a physical force. We are claiming our space. We will no longer be silenced. We’re not where we want to be ultimately, but together, and by using our own forms of girl power, we can do anything. – IDIL HASSAN / LONDON, UK
As a millennial, I was lucky enough to be brought up in a time where being a badass girl was and is acceptable. During my childhood all I needed at the time to ensure myself that girls kickass too was: The Powerpuff Girls, my pink “girlpwr” softball bat, and my dad telling me that I was capable of playing sports at the same level with the boys. Now in 2016, I have the pleasure of having different outlets available to me to remind myself how important and alive girl power is. I am reminded each day— through television shows, social media, politics and the people around me that woman are beautiful people who contribute just as much as anyone else. I have learned that because of girl power there has been businesses launched and friendships made. Watching how girl power has become a huge part in society’s teachings has been a beautiful experience. Girl power lets us women around the world know that we are important, beautiful, intelligent human beings. It lets some of us know that we are not alone and we do have that power to accomplish anything we want. Girl power is knowing that being smart, creative, and adventurous is sexy and not frowned upon. Girl power not only boosts women but also everyone else. It is a good vibe that can be spread from one person to another with no negative effects. Girl power is like being in a race and having everyone— including the people you are racing with— cheer you on and if you trip
For the power I see every day in girls running to kick the ball as if it is their only chance to, yet are called too “masculine” when they roar at the feeling of it going in the net. For the power I see in girls who fear— not the dark or heights, rather themselves, and continuing living life courageously anyway. For the power of us girls of color, we who walk through crowds of skin tones we once imagined having but now bask in the beauty of sun kissed cheeks and the pride of whom we truly are. For the power my mother has, a strong girl if not the strongest one of all, one who traverses through hardships of not only life but of raising three kids from the ground up and doing it pretty damn well. For the girls who are quiet and have thoughts louder than the busiest high school cafeteria, or those who seem boisterous but hold worries deep within them. For the girls who are not called girls by the close-minded but are most definitely women, and the girls who are perhaps as much a boy as they are girl, for it makes them a girl no less. Power to all of the above and all those in between; for as a girl, we deal with struggles that many others do not understand. While it is frustrating to fight for what we deserve we do it nonetheless, despite knowing that the battle has not yet been won. I suppose in considering that, we can gain courage, for it has only just begun. – ALEXA AREVALO / ONTARIO, CANADA
local wolves — 15
So, who am I to you? Am I the color of my skin? That makes me a foreigner That paints me oppressed That brands me inferior? Am I the hair that springs from my head? Dark and curly Unruly and untamable, unwanted, unprofessional, unpopular; unapologetic! Am I the gender I was assigned? The damsel in distress, awaiting her knight The disrespected backbone of mankind The forgotten hero behind every man They eye-candy to be seen and not heard The girl you ask to take “no offence”, but I’m “smarter than you though”, “stronger than you expected”, All-in-all “pretty good”, For a girl. NO! I am bold. I am beautiful. I am powerful. And I will not extinguish my flame, Because you afraid of getting burned. – MAY OUMA / TOKYO, JAPAN
Girl power begins with the people you surround yourself with. You grow when the people around you are driven, talented, intelligent and empowering individuals. Growing up I was always different, I’m black, I’m Muslim, I wear the hijab those are three things that leave the option of ‘girl power’ as the only one, the only thing that can help you overcome the stereotypes that all of those things place on you is using them to make you, your peers and the world a better place and that is exactly what I have tried to do. When people see my hijab their first thought isn’t ‘girl power’ and that is something that I have known from a young age and that is why I use my hijab to show my power. I don’t let my hijab or my last name deter me from taking chances. I don’t let it discourage me from looking for opportunities. I use it to be my driving force, if not for me but for my younger sisters who see me as their hero, if not for me but for the young girls in different countries that are fighting day in and day out to have the opportunities that I take for granted, if not for me for my mother who has worked hard for me and my siblings to have everything that we have ever wanted. Girl power also stems from the people that you surround yourself with. When your friends and family are supporting you along with your dreams and aspirations that is where you feel the power that you can do whatever you put your mind to. You are a product of your environment and when your environment is strong, powerful women who no matter what the circumstances always push through and try their hardest day in and day out, girl power is your best friend. – ELHAM MOHAMUD / MINNESOTA, USA (PHOTO ABOVE)
To the girls: Please know you're a wildfire. Some people might think you're too much— too big, too blinding. Too scary. But don’t listen, because you’re good-scary. You're huge and powerful and cool as hell. Please don't dull yourself for anyone. Don’t shut yourself down even the tiniest bit. You have the power to consume and heighten and destroy and create. Immense power. You’ll probably regret your direction sometimes. There’s scarred earth behind all of us. Know that it’s okay to get tired, or mess up, or say the wrong thing. You’re messy, you’re all over the place—you’re still good. Here’s what I want to say to you (no pity, just perfect sincerity): I want to see you make it. It would be a shame for you not to make it. You’re going to make it. Maybe heaviness hits you the same way it hits me sometimes— in bed, alone, when late night tips into early morning— doubt in full force. You’re so, so tired of hearing why you don’t matter, and defending your worth, and trying to make things better but they’re not getting better. Doubt starts to sound like your own voice. Don’t listen. In the morning, wake up slow. Know you have a space in the world— a good, solid space that only you can occupy. You deserve to be here as much as anyone else. I'm rooting for you. Keep burning stuff up and shining in people’s eyes and laying ground for new life. – MACKENZIE FORD / VANCOUVER, WA (PHOTO BELOW)
I think girl power in today’s society places a really big emphasis on supporting other girls instead of tearing them down. It can be so easy to get caught up in competition and feel like you have to be better than the person next to you, but when we start working together we accomplish and create so much more. It allows us all to thrive in a much healthier and happier environment where we are all excited to see each other grow. – ANDREA HOFFMAN / FULLERTON, CA (PHOTO ABOVE) Stand tall and keep you head high, For you are beautiful. Don't listen to his words and ignore their laughs, For you are strong. You are a woman. You are as delicate as a flower, yet as mighty as the men who walked this earth before you. – TIANNA THORPE / COLUMBIA, MO (PHOTO ABOVE)
– SOPHIA MOZZALI / MILAN, ITALY
– KENZIE GOLEY / TULSA, OK
local wolves — 17
â€“ CATARINA RIBERIO / BRAZIL
What I think about when I think about girl power. What do I think about, when I hear the term ‘girl power’. At first, my mind goes to buttons and patches with a ‘millennial pink’ hue, depicting a catchy phrase about how we ‘don’t need no man’, treating the term ‘feminism’ as a trendy catch phrase rather than a movement. But what does girl power really mean to me? Girl power means acknowledging the struggles and experiences female identifying individuals of every race and orientation, and fighting against injustices towards any of them. Girl power means acknowledging every part of your female experience— the tragic bits, the sad bits, the parts that the world isn’t ready to talk about, and isn’t ready to hear. Mental health, body image, all facets of the reality of being a woman. Girl power is allowing yourself to feel deeply, whatever those feelings may be, and understanding that your feelings are valid. Girl power means my best friends who study hard in the evenings, work after class, and explore the world on the weekends. Girl power means my mother’s tenacity; her hard work at her 9 to 5 and supporting two kids on her own. Girl power means my sister's bravery, humor, and selflessness. Girl power means looking at these women and letting them inspire me to be the best woman I can be, and in turn, inspiring them. Girl power means lifting the women in your life up when they are around and when they’re not. Girl power means shattering glass ceilings because of the women who came before you and for the women that will come after you. Girl power means understanding that competing in male dominated industries will make women competitive, and rising above it and refusing to tear your sisters down. Girl power means constructive criticism and not petty insults. Girl power means recognizing and vocalizing that you deserve to get compensation, EQUAL compensation, for your time, effort, and talents. Girl power means getting up and continuing to hustle after hearing a whole lot of no’s. Girl power means being inclusive. It means that every woman deserves support that comes from a wholesome place— whether that support is love or unadulterated honesty. Girl power means looking in the mirror and recognizing the power you hold inside you. – CAITLYN KRONE / LOS ANGELES, CA (PHOTO BELOW)
To me, Frida is a timeless symbol of empowerment, selflove, and girl power in the Latinx community. – LENY SANTANA / TAMPA BAY, FL (ILLUSTRATION ABOVE) I feel like girl power has unexpectedly become the underlying tone for our generation. This newfound sense of boldness and unapologetic self-love that spreads into everything we do. There’s activism everywhere we go and our voices are finally being heard. Girls from different backgrounds, sexualities, identities are coming together to share their thoughts. There’s no longer a need to apologize for our words. We’re not tripping over our words because we’re running wild. The box that has kept us in line has been destroyed. Our free laughs and fire in our eyes are what drive us into a greater future. Older generations know of girl power and how important it is to us, and it’s been building up for decades to reach this point. A point of unmarked greatness and the unknown. It’s exciting to see my girl friends support one another and defend each other. There’s a feeling of community and respect. We know what we go through but we also know that we go through different things. We’re willing to learn from one another and touch on subjects like privilege and classism and it’s inspiring. As someone who will go off to college next fall, it feels like a whole new world of self-discovery is waiting for me. Girl power has allowed my friends to feel more confident. It no longer feels like our words will come back as ghosts from the past, chained and tied. We can be loud and bold and brave. It’s never been better and it will only be greater for generations to come. – VANESA VARGAS / GEORGIA, USA
local wolves — 19
dear future america + W O LFIE S U B M I S S I O N S / / P ART T W O +
This month, our readers express their desires, especially thinking about, celebrating and focusing on how we as individuals want our world to be shared is a form of power. ILLUSTRATION (BELOW) / LEAH LU As the world's population grows, one constant sustains itself— the desire of each individual to change something. Some of us want to change a great deal, others are focused on one facet of their life. I've always been passionate about the concept of change in itself. I believe that to progress as a society, as a planet, we must continue to consistently adapt and advance to more balanced ways of life. One side of the world lives in excess while the other barely subsists. Two extremes are seen in many ways, and this leads to unbelievable detriment of our wellbeing and the wellbeing of our planet. The paradigm shift toward balanced living is necessary, and our generation will be the one to bring it about. Today's youth has access to an endless amount of information, and, despite common assumptions, will use this in tandem with their individual pursuits to raise the collective consciousness. We've harnessed the power of social media, and this in itself has led to greater overall awareness. We will continue to have our voices heard, through this avenue and many others. I trust in the power of my generation; when a group of people come together with the same general intent, the power they have is truly limitless. I trust in genuine human endeavors. I trust in all that strives to bring about advancement and change. I look forward to seeing the small, seemingly insignificant steps I take with others every day begin to add up. I know they will enact tangible and visible change. – TIFFANY AMBER / FLORIDA, USA
Can you remember when you were the little girl with huge expectations? When you believed life to be one endless stream of enchantment and discovery? You were once the girl that believed in the unbelievable. You believed in everything from fairies to ghosts and from dragons to mermaids yet, most importantly, you believed in yourself. You believed in the glowing ambition that fueled your far-flung hopes and impossible dreams and you truly believed that you could change the world. And perhaps you may not believe in the same things you once did but you must know, deep down, that you still believe in that little girl. Although your eyes might not shine quite as bright, it is your unrelenting soul that has remained unchanged. Remained unchanged in the face of the paralyzing immensity that is our universe. In reality, however, our universe is as ever-changing as your own impossible soul. Your thoughts and hopes and dreams and desires need not fight the cold reality of life but rather learn to feed off the ever-present energy that life provides. In recognizing the power of the world around us we learn to recognize the power within us. And these two powers are as intertwined as the very fabric of our being. Through this connection our souls learn not to succumb to the pressures of the masses but instead to listen to the quiet thread of truth that validates each of our own unique desires. And these desires, YOUR desires cannot be invalidated, no more than the ocean itself can be quieted. And so I plead, believe in the fairies and the dragons of this world. Believe in the ghosts and the nymphs and the mermaids. But most importantly, believe in yourself. Believe because that little girl… that little girl is you. – AVERY WARKENTIN / MONTREAL, QC
You possess all the power in the world that has ever been able to harness; your ability to transform the thoughts bouncing off of your head into ink that trickles down onto your paper. It’s all here, in your mind. You may think your power is limited but it is as endless as the arrangement of stars in the galaxy, it’s just waiting for you to reach out and grasp it, stand on the edge of the world, and tip the poles in whichever direction you please. No one else will ever perceive reality in the way you will, so you owe the world your unique perspective, yet, at the same time nothing at all. This world has turned its back on you, cast you aside, and shunned you. But you never lost your compassion; your spark is still there in need of the smallest rekindling. The ideas in your head have laid imprisoned and they are waiting for an escape. They know that they have a purpose to manifest in the world, but do you? Your words and your voice make an unstoppable duo; capable of both harming and healing, changing and creating, innovating and inventing. But every day you ask yourself, “Who am I to change the world?” Who would you be if you didn’t try to? – QIARA COLEMAN / ONTARIO, CANADA As a girl, I have been faced with reasons why I can’t. I am in a box, a bubble, that sets my limits for me. I have a preset ceiling that I have no control over… or so I believed. Ever since this country became existent, women have not been treated as equal to their male counterparts. Women didn’t gain suffrage until 1920. That’s almost 150 years after we became a nation. The slow moving, feminist movement has been taking way too long to gain momentum. Part of that is because of how taboo that word is. Feminism. For some reason, there is a premeditated assumption that anyone who is daring enough to consider himself or herself a feminist is hateful and intolerable. In reality, all feminists’ want is equality no matter your gender. I think that is why girl power is such an important phrase to me. Girl power allows women to work together and celebrate their strengths. It destroys the ceiling we, as girls have. It is a way we can work together to remind ourselves that we are not limited to anything because of our gender. We are boundless in what we can accomplish. There is pride in being a #girl. There is pride in #girlpower. America, as a nation we have not done our part in supporting women. We must unite to put the “I can’t because I am female", to an end. We cannot and will not stop until we are equal. – ELLIE LEHTO / SARTELL, MN
I have learned that my words are the most powerful thing in the world. To be outspoken, to know the weight of every single one of my thoughts has helped me become more confident in the person I am. It is way too easy to get lost in a sea of people and forget just how much you matter, how much a single string of thoughts can impact the world around you. Don't let yourself take the easy way out. You can do so much more. You are the future, capable of shifting cultures and systems. You have to use all the gifts and talents you've been given, because they are yours for a reason. Forget about all the negative things that have been said to you over and over your entire life, they have only served to bring you down. It took me too long to realize my value is higher than the world will let me believe, that art comes in so many different forms and it’s worth more than we know. Don't lose it, don't let the spark inside of you be put out. Nurture it, make it brighter, do not let the world around you ignore it. Spend time reflecting on your strengths, and acknowledge you have so many more than you have given yourself credit for. Remember you are more capable than is imaginable. You have endless potential inside of you, never-ending galaxies of possibilities waiting to burst out and fill the world with color. Create. Love. Don't hold back. Never let yourself hold back again. – DANI BUCARO / FLORIDA, USA
– MARINA SUNG MARQUEZ / BRAZIL
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pinpoint + B U D A P E S T , H U N GAR Y + COVERAGE BY MARQUEL PLAVAN
How many things can actually live up to their hype? Your first kiss, first year of college, getting your driver's licenseâ€” sure, it all feels great when it happens, but it's never quite as good as you made it out to be. Chances are, your thirteen-year-old first kiss came with braces, your first year of college drained you of all the money you made at your summer job, and your insurance skyrocketed after you rear ended someone three weeks after getting your license. Nothing's ever as perfect as your imagination can make it, right?
"FOR ME, B U D A P E S T, H U N GAR Y LI V E D U P T O IT S H Y P E . AFTER Y EAR S O F L O O K I N G F O R W AR D T O O N E D A Y S EEI N G T H E M AGI C AL LA N D T H AT W E S A N D ER S O N A N D GE O RGE E Z RA S P O K E S O H IG H LY O F , I W A S FI N ALLY A B LE T O LI V E O UT M Y LITTLE FA N TA S Y T H I S P A S T M O N T H ." I was fortunate enough to be able to study abroad in Rome, Italy this semester and over fall break my friends and I decided to take a little trip through Eastern Europe. We arrived in Budapest following a sleepless night in the Milan airport, and after dropping our bags off at our adorable Airbnb, we went full tourist and saw as much as we could. Through the churches, synagogues, pubs, and goulash soup, we truly felt the soul of Budapest. One of the most impactful moments followed our uphill trek to the top of Fisherman's Bastion, which provided an exceptional view of the sunset over a foggy Budapest. The leaves were changing, the lights were glowing, and the ambiance was perfect. Surrounded by the chill of the fall evening air and the people I love most in the worldâ€” that moment lived up to its hype.
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Sure, retro is in— and it always will be. But most of the time, the early 2000’s are left out of this sartorial retrospection. These weird post-90’s-grunge transition years aren’t getting the credit they deserve. Outfits like the ones Lindsay Lohan and her crew wore in the 2003 classic Freaky Friday are clearly iconic. Black, red, pink and army green everything with a hint of punk details: beat-up shoes, layered shirts and lots of midriff. Don’t be afraid to make a risky choice like super low-waisted bottoms when high-waisted pants don’t seem to be leaving anytime soon. Switch things up. Wear pink and red together. Style textured fabrics over each other. But most of all, think: What Would Lindsay Wear? COVERAGE BY MEGHAN DUNCAN PHOTOGRAPHY BY RILEY DONAHUE BANNER BY LAURA FILAS
LOOK 1 thrifted baseball tee zara oversized denim jacket thrifted cargo pants converse high tops thrifted hurley belt
LOOK 2 thrifted turtleneck sweater thrifted plaid flairs thrifted mary-jane shoes
LOOK 3 thrifted long sleeve tee thrifted dress thrifted clog heels
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WRITTEN BY Morgan Eckel PHOTOGRAPHY BY Anna Maria Lopez
At only 17 years old, Emma Kenney has already stunned the world as her role as ‘Debbie’ on ShowTime’s hit television series, Shameless. But, acting aside, she’s easily one of the most down to earth, humble, and hardworking young women in Hollywood. Over the past 5 years, we have seen a huge progression of her character developing from just a kid to a teenager approaching adulthood. “It’s really interesting to grow up on TV— people will come up to me on the street and say they remember how small I was at 10, and I’ve never met them before in my life! It’s such a blessing as cliché as it sounds to be able to relate, influence and touch so many people through your work.” However, Debbie and Kenney are entirely different. “Debbie and I are honestly very different. I play Debbie as an Aquarius and I’m a Virgo, she’s an air sign while I’m an Earth sign. We both have such different lifestyles but I think all souls in general have the same camouflage of emotions, especially the fluster of growing up.”
“Looking back on the show is like looking at a family photo album.” Over the course of Shameless, she has worked with some of the best actors and actresses in the business such as Joan Cusack and William H. Macy, and has definitely picked up some inspiration along the way. “Bill and Joan are truly the kindest, most down to earth people; such class acts. I look up to them in that way and how they can connect to their characters so well. Commitment is so important in acting, they truly commit to their work and go with their gut in scenes!”
Not only has she starred in Shameless, she was the voice of Marigold in the animated film, Epic. “It was different doing an animation film and trying to evoke emotion through your voice. I’m very animated in my face more so than my voice. I’ve always been super expressive in my eyes.” When I asked Kenney if it was still hard to believe she was living out what most would call a “dream”, she replied with, “100%!” and “I don’t watch my work at all, so sometimes if I’m watching a show of my own that I like, I’ll stop for a second and am like “Oh wait... I’m on TV too like them... what?” There’s a happy medium in being grateful and aware of all your blessings in life and priding yourself on them and being overly aware.” Acting aside, Kenney is a huge activist, animal lover, and tree hugger. “I want to use any success and attention I get in a positive way. I’m passionate about making a long term difference in the world.” But, what can we expect to see from her in the next couple of years? She’s finishing up her last year of high school and looking at film schools for college. “I’d love to study abroad, to get more involved with animal rights and maybe go to Costa Rica and help to preserve the rainforest.” When it comes to acting, she’s exploring different projects. “I so genuinely want to play a role so far from Debbie and from myself. I’m writing scripts and am going to put that to the grindstone soon. I’d love to film somewhere other than LA.” For those in the same boat as Kenney, her words on how to make those distant dreams into a reality: “Stand up for yourself. It’s totally okay to make noise to fight for what you deserve if you’re passionate and polite about it. Stay focused and on the right path. It’s good to trust people, but be careful who you trust. Spread positivity! It all comes around. Read, write, watch films! Keep your eye on your goals.”
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WRITTEN by Kendall Bolam Photography by Naohmi Monroe
Genneya Walton, a spunky teen starring in the Netflix Original Series, Project Mc2 has been making a name for herself in the entertainment industry. She plays Bryden Bandweth, a tech-savvy teen with a knack for science who works with a government organization to protect the world. Spending her childhood in Temecula, California, Walton grew up in a family-friendly city that helped her come out of her shell. She began her artistic career dancing, which she describes as her “comfort zone”. When asked how she began dancing Walton replied, “I started dancing when I was six years old. It introduced me to acting when I was 14, where I auditioned for a role that called for dancers that could act as well. It ultimately showed me a whole other interest of mine that I don’t think I would have ever explored otherwise. Dancing has definitely helped me become the person I am today. I used to be extremely shy, and it helped me come out of my shell— both personality and style wise. Dance has given me many opportunities and introduced me to acting which has shown me a path that I want to follow.”
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Dance opened up a wide door for Walton, allowing her to explore different artistic outlets. Her involvement with Project Mc2 has been met by a shower of positivity. “The most rewarding thing by far is seeing the response from parents and children. So many young girls and boys have been vocal about their new found appreciation for S.T.E.A.M. and their aspirations relating to it. The fact that we have inspired kids and teens to use their brains and work towards their goals means so much to us.” According to Walton, being able to see the optimistic results of Project Mc2 has been the most rewarding part of the process.
“My greatest challenge is certainly doubt and the occasional lack of confidence. It has the ability to hold me back, but when I don’t let it get to me, I do great things.”
Being a young actress just breaking into showbiz, Walton admits there are some challenges she’s faced. “I tend to doubt myself often, but I am very sure about wanting to act as long as I can, and I am proud of myself for believing in my abilities and working towards my goals. My greatest challenge is certainly doubt and the occasional lack of confidence. It has the ability to hold me back, but when I don’t let it get to me, I do great things.” Walton has faced her challenges courageously, pursuing it all despite her struggles. She lives out her own advice by fighting for her passions and following her dreams. When asked to leave wisdom for those seeking artistic advice she says, “Don’t let anyone tell you what you can and cannot do. You are fully capable of doing what your heart desires. Do not give up on your dreams because you never know how close you are to achieving them. It will be hard and you might doubt yourself, but don’t let it stop you.” Genneya Walton’s name is one to remember. But don’t worry, her positivity, encouraging spirit, and contagious smile are hard to miss!
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written by Sadie Bell Photography by ASHLEY YU
Actress Brighton Sharbino made many trips to the nurse’s office in elementary school, but not because she was actually sick. Sharbino simply liked to see if she could convince an audience of a role she was taking on, even if that was just faking the likes of a stomachache or a cold. It was her personal improvisational challenge, per se. Sharbino said, “I’d have to stay in character. If I broke a smile for one second, it let on that I wasn’t sick, and I could be sent back to the classroom. It wasn’t only because I wanted to go home. I really enjoyed this ‘acting opportunity.’” Soon thereafter, following a number of trips to the nurse and enrollment in acting classes, Sharbino found wonder in bringing life to a scene and making a character her own, a hobby that has turned into a full-time career for the fourteen-year-old— and it is a career that she wholeheartedly believes in and is dedicatedly working towards. “If I don’t believe in myself, who will? It has to start with me,” she said. “In this business, you do face a lot of rejection, so you have to continue to have faith in yourself. No matter if I’m on set or auditioning for the next role, I have to believe in myself and my future.”
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Sharbino has embodied this impassioned self-determination since the dawn of her career, which in part with her natural, keen talent, has led to a number of roles on television series, and more recently, in various films. She is most famously known for her moving portrayal of Lizzie Samuels on The Walking Dead, as well as a number of other striking roles in NCIS, True Detective, and more. “Each experience teaches me something new about myself,” she said, whether that be learning to “to stay grounded and make others feel important, no matter how big you get,” based on her experience working with Pauley Perrette as young Abby Sciuto on NCIS, or discovering confidence in herself after booking the role of Woody Harrelson’s daughter Macie on True Detective at age ten.
“Once you book the job, you adapt into the character and act and feel like a different person. I always relate in some way and empathize my characters, so I can find an understanding of them and how they feel.” “I feel I’ve grown as an actress with each role. I learn from the other actors, the director, and the set experience. It’s an exciting career,” she said. She said, “Creating characters and scenarios in my head and getting to put my emotions
into a scene is exciting for me,” thoroughly relishing each and every nuance, habit, personality trait, and detailed backstory her character may have. “Once you book the job, you adapt into the character and act and feel like a different person. I always relate in some way and empathize my characters, so I can find an understanding of them and how they feel,” — a profound and sincere technique that shows in the burgeoning body of her work. While Sharbino is undeniably bound for a fulfilling career in Hollywood, she said the little moments like her memory of reading her first feature in her local, hometown newspaper and the feeling that comes with telling her grandparents about the latest role she has landed are what remind her of her faith in herself and passion for what she does. “Moments like those encourage me to keep acting,” she said. Even if most fourteen-year-olds don’t tend to be found behind rolling cameras, on panels at Comic Con, or walking the red carpet, Sharbino said acting is what she loves, just like any other kid her age might take to different activity; it is like her own wild, immersive extracurricular. But this extracurricular activity of hers is set to last long after the school bell rings because though Sharbino has already taken on a variety of impressive roles, judging by her passion, willingness, and immense theatrical talent, the rising star has a galaxy full of series and films ahead of her.
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WRITTEN by Meghan Duncan Photography by Naohmi Monroe
ASH exudes positivity and success. The actress/singer has her long list of accomplishments— and she’s proud of them. Too often women are made to feel that they can’t talk about their accomplishments without sounding self-assuming or greed driven. But this couldn’t be further from the truth. Women need to take pride in their work and talk about this feeling openly, which thereby also gives them the energy to recognize the incredible strength of the women around them. ASH explains when asked how she hopes to feel looking back on her career, “10 to 15 years from now, I will be proud. Any person who takes any chance to chase a calling is brave. I’m constantly amazed, as an independent artist, to have my EP, Please Like Me, chart in the top 50 on the R&B iTunes charts on the first few days of its release. I’m amazed at how every single day someone is tweeting, reposting or sharing lyrics to songs I’ve written. I have no label, no big name, no huge endorsement, but what I’m doing is touching some folks here and there— growing every day. I couldn’t be more humbled, proud, inspired and thankful for my life.” Half of the journey as an artist is retrospection. To limit a person on this ability to look back at what they’ve done in both gratitude and critique is to limit growth. Luckily, ASH refuses to adhere to any of these limitations. ASH also stars in the new BET show, Chasing Destiny. The docu-series follows a girl group’s journey to making it big and ASH had nothing but effusive praise for the experience:
opportunity to connect with and learn from other women. Girl power oozed throughout the taping. All of us have diverse stories and it takes girl power to leave divisive things at the door and to use each difference toward the
incorporate those into prior knowledge, too— “I graduated from an all girl’s private college, Spelman College, so I’ve already had the amazing experience of connecting with amazing women and creating girl power, but Chasing Destiny was amazing because it was the merging of a learning experience with different women who all shared the passion of singing. It was dope. Great vibes.” For the most part, ASH is so full of positivity it’s easy to assume she’s carefree of bad days. But like everyone, those uninspired rough patches hit and she explains one of her favorite tricks: “I meditate regularly. Meditating has helped me to stop being so anxious or forcing inspiration and to be present in every moment. I feel inspiration when it’s there and value that space and those moments. When it’s time to be still though, I’m still. My goal is to kind of stay in a space of contentment, whether I have tons of ideas or when it’s time to just be.” This is the kind of attitude she takes into creating her own music. The acceptance and peace she brings to the process is evident, and she also feels that this brand of creativity may not be getting the full respect it deserves within pop music. She explained, “I do believe pop music gets a bad reputation for being ‘too flat’ or ‘generic’. I believe it does because pop is derived from popular which is ‘mainstream’ and many musical purists and alternative heads can sometimes write it off. I think all of us have had our share of skepticism with pop music. However, I think we underestimate each other in the world. Because of the access to so much music, the average music listener today can hear stuff outside of radio play and it’s bending genre lines. Pop music, R&B and all genres can bend and be so many things today that it may not have been categorized as not too long ago.” Above all, talking to ASH leaves the impression that she understands balance. She is aware of what she has learned and the things yet to come— equally grateful for both. Ultimately, she is best described as empowered: “I’ve learned to be unafraid, graceful, a constant student, humble, committed to my art, to never be afraid to use my voice for change in the world and to make jammin’ music.”
betterment of the experience.”
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WRITTEN BY SADIE BELL PHOTOGRAPHY BY KRISTINE MORGAN
Content creator and singer-songwriter HALEY BLAIS once bought herself a Bob Dylan record because a boy she liked listened to him— but that’s besides the fact now— because it wasn’t until Blais’ heart broke when their relationship failed to bloom that Dylan’s songwriting really meant something to her, and has ever since. “I think it was the first time I really ever used music as a way to heal, to cope,” said Blais. “Eventually, I stopped caring about the boy, but never about Bob.” The Vancouver-viaKelowna, Canada based artist has been working on her craft as a singer since her childhood and has been seeking solace in songwriting since she picked up a ukulele in her teens. With the recent release of her Late Bloomer EP, the singer is both moving towards finding peace in what she creates and developing a discography meant to do for others what Dylan did for her.
Her pristine sound draws from the classical vocal training of her youth, which she distanced herself from in order to pursue the music that most felt right. “I think it was clear I couldn’t be confined to the constructs of classical music,” she said. “It was very liberating to abandon this craft that I had pursued for over ten years and pick up a ukulele to sing songs written by me, as opposed to a German man in 1782.” As a folk-influenced singer-songwriter, Blais’ lyrics are just as impressive as her voice, often feeling resonant of the wistful feeling that comes with a gentle gust of wind. Blais writes with a sentimental cleverness with lyrics on her latest EP like, “’Cause I’m a late bloomer / you’ll never see me in the spring / I hesitate to my pruner / ‘cause I’m scared of ever blossoming.” Blais said, “LATE BLOOMER IS PROBABLY MY
She said, “For me, it’s always been about evoking emotion in others, so when I’m making music, I’m always paying attention to how it makes me feel; whether this could be that song someone first heals or copes to, like I did with Bob Dylan, for example. I find a purpose in that.” Blais’ music is simple, yet rich; it sounds sweet, though lingers of hurt. It is as if her voice feels like that first embrace of warmth after coming inside from spending a day outdoors in the brisk autumn air.
MOST PERSONAL WRITING. IT’S A MUSICAL SNAPSHOT OF MY LIFE; IT 100% DEPICTS WHO I AM AS AN ARTIST AND A PERSON AT THIS POINT IN MY LIFE.” The EP, which explores themes like death, youth, and identity, are a departure from Blais’ typical writing approach, as she often seeks stories that are not hers for inspiration.
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“The songs [on the EP] came very easily. “Good Feeling” and “Mine” were written in the saddest month of my life, maybe even on the same day, so emotions were high and, therefore, the musical inspiration was higher. The title track, “Late Bloomer”, I wrote in the month of my 22nd birthday in the shower, and I probably wasted so much water,” she said. These personal songs, in part, came to Blais due to the personal growth she has experienced since leaving home to relocate in Vancouver. She said, “Since coming to Vancouver in 2015, my musical direction has become much more clear in terms of the kind of music I want to create [and] the kind of artist I want to be, but I think that has more to do with just growing and maturing as an individual.” And it was time for Blais to make this move as she said, “I was always dreaming of bigger and better things; a big fish in a small pond, you could say.”
Now that Blais has room to swim and new material available, it is time that her bigger and better dreams become a reality, and with her growing audience from her charismatic YouTube presence of covers and lifestyle videos, no pool is big enough for her. In this moment, though, Blais welcomes the prospect that her music could touch even just one person. She said, “I hope [my fans] relate to it. I hope they can cry and laugh or dance and sing or drive to it. I think the highest honor would be for my music to be on someone’s road trip playlist, honestly. I hope it’s there for them when that boy or girl doesn’t like them.” And if her sincere songs have spoken to someone, she knows that as a songwriter she has found her purpose.
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WRITTEN BY Emma Matthews Photography BY Haylee Finn
Gigs are therapeutic. They’re a way of escaping the outside world and, for many of us, a chance to leave our problems behind for a few hours, while we dance, sing and form lifelong friendships. That said, for women in particular they do pose their own issues. Many of us have been patronized at shows by male attendees or, even worse, been touched inappropriately. Autumn Lavis, Outreach Coordinator of Safer Scene, is trying to raise awareness of this and help make the music industry a securer, more accepting community.
Thanks to Lavis and many other girls bravery, Jake was dropped from his label, Pure Noise Records, and stopped touring. It also bought to light many of the issues that plague the music industry and encouraged people across the country to discuss what things can be done to make sure incidents like this don’t happen again. For Lavis, one of the most important and critical steps is bands recognizing their gigs aren’t exempt from this behavior and how they portray themselves on and off stage impacts the atmosphere of them.
“Safer Scene are an advocacy group whose content is primarily published via blog. We work to promote diversity and inclusion,” she explains. “We do this by raising awareness about discrimination and assault in the music scene via interviews and editorial articles. We also feature and promote lesser known artists, particularly women/ POC/ LBGT+ because lack of representation of these groups is a prevalent problem within music.”
“Musicians should make sure that the art that they’re producing isn’t sending a bad message. Like, not having t-shirts designs, flyers, or songs that degrade women or other marginalized groups of people, that sort of thing,” she informs. “You’d think that this would be common sense but you’d be surprised. Whether you like it or not, bands influence their audience and the people around you, they need to set a good example!”
The 22-year-old first got involved with the organization after breaking out of a toxic relationship with Jake Mcelfresh, also known as singer-songwriter of Front Porch Step, two years ago. “I found out about him using his platform as a musician to manipulate and engage in inappropriate behavior with underage girls. These brave young girls started coming forward with their stories and no one believed them,” Lavis sighs. “After I got a restraining order against him, I finally opened up about the abuse I endured and gave everyone proof of his actions in hopes that it would put a stop the victim blaming. I wanted to protect everyone from him and make sure that no one would have to go through what I had experienced.”
One band that are doing exactly that is Modern Baseball. The Philadelphia four-piece have implemented a hotline at shows to make them safer. If fans feel uncomfortable at shows they can text a number. “It’s routed to their tour manager and then brought to the attention of venue security,” explains Lavis. “That’s f*cking awesome and huge step in the right direction. I really think that more bands should take this approach and be proactive!” As for the rest of us, if you see something at a show, don’t be afraid to say something. It’s little steps like these that help the scene become safer, one gig at a time. See you in the pit.
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story by chloe luthringshausen // photography by randy tran // hair/makeup by victor mendoza // styling by katie qian // lettering by LISA LOK
Looking back on her first YouTube video, fashion icon and creator Jenn Im feels a sense of nostalgia, missing the innocence that YouTube used to hold, before it became populated by thousands of creative vloggers, dedicated subscribers, and Internet sensations. Flash-forward six years later and Im has accumulated almost 2 million YouTube subscribers since that first video in 2010. With her true passion for beauty and fashion, her creative mindset, and her lovable personality, Jenn Im is part of the team of Internet stars that has transformed YouTube from that small, innocent space it used to be into the digital empire it is today. From creative makeup tutorials to inspiring outfit look books, Im’s love for fashion and beauty shines through her videos. What started as a fun way to share her personal style and beauty tips soon became a full-time career for Im. “Growing up, I’ve always had a major connection with fashion. It was my favorite way to express myself, but I never considered pursuing it as a career,” explains Im. “I grew up in a Korean household and my parents have always managed my expectations by letting me know how rare and difficult it is to make a hobby into a full blown stable career. They were being realistic and it made an impact on my choices for school.” Graduating from UC Davis with a Communications major, Im admits at first it was hard juggling schoolwork with YouTube, but she always made time to pursue her dreams and continue making videos. “I was a transfer student at UC Davis, so making friends was difficult because everyone had already found their circle,” admits Im. “I was pretty lonely at school, but creating videos on YouTube became my outlet for creativity and connection.” The type of creative connection Im describes is what makes YouTube so special, for it not only helps creators and viewers become inspired by digital content, but also feel connected to like-minded people around the world. Im’s fun-loving and genuine personality comes through her content, making subscribers feel more like her friend than a viewer through a computer screen. “I’ve always loved documenting and sharing my life on digital platforms, so it was natural for me to want to share my style on the Internet,” says Im. “I chose YouTube because at the time the blogging world was already saturated. However, YouTube’s beauty community was intimate so it felt right to upload there.”
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Im wants her viewers to feel a personal connection when watching her videos, which is why she has transformed her channel from fashion and beauty tutorials into a complete video diary of her life. Her diverse content, from lifestyle vlogs to fashion hauls to fun challenges, has kept her from becoming monotonous to her viewers while also helping her surprise her audience with new sides of her personality and passions. “I find inspiration everywhere, from films to people watching. Nothing is limited,” says Im. “I just make sure that when I’m inspired, I’m jotting down what is peaking my interest. It’s all about capturing your inspiration and seeing how you can apply it to yourself.” Im’s knack for staying genuine on the Internet and creating unique content has led her to accumulate almost 2 million subscribers on YouTube, proving that she is a powerful voice to be heard. When asked what is the key to staying consistent and continuing to grow, Im says it is important to pace yourself. “Creativity comes in waves, so don’t beat yourself up if you can’t think of a brilliant idea,” says Im. “That ‘aha’ moment comes when you least expect it, so don’t give up and keep pressing on.” Im not only gives inspiring advice to her viewers, but also sets an example by following it herself. In 2011, she made a New Year’s resolution to upload a video every week, and since then she hasn’t broken that promise. “When you’re on a roll, it becomes difficult to break,” says Im. Her dedication and consistency also has her on a roll when it comes to building a prominent social media presence. With a million followers on Instagram, Im tries to connect with her followers on a daily basis, posting pictures on her everyday outfits, events, and beauty inspiration. Although social media can become a toxic community of negative comments, Im believes that the positives always outweigh the negatives. “It’s part of the human condition to want to be able to connect and relate to other people, and social media has made it easier than ever to do just that,” explains Im. “Being able to share stories, passions, projects and hardships with a click of a button is something to be in awe of.” Social media does have its positives: making connections, spreading creativity, forming communities to share similar interests. However, with the growth of digital careers, Im admits she has noticed the toll social media takes on people’s mindsets. “Social media can become toxic when users become consumed with numbers and compare themselves to other people. It’s easy to get wrapped up in that mindset because most people only post the highlights of their life,” explains Im. “It can make others feel like they’re not doing enough or not living life to the fullest, but comparing is a losing game. You only end up hurting yourself, so it’s crucial to understand that these platforms are a place where the majority of people only share the greatest hits.”
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“Creativity comes in waves, so don’t beat yourself up if you can’t think of a brilliant idea.”
Im’s desire to avoid becoming sucked into a mindset where numbers define who you are is what makes her so relatable to her subscribers. She is real and honest, no matter what digital platform she is posting on. However, Im is quick to admit that the term “role model” makes her feel a little uneasy, for she does not want people to think she is always a leading example. “I’m far from perfect, but that’s okay. No one is. I’m just figuring stuff out as I go and kind of winging it,” says Im. “My contribution to women empowerment is to help them feel good in their own skin because that’s where confidence roots from.” Admitting she is not perfect and accepting her flaws is what makes Im a strong female voice for girls all over the world. When asked how she defines girl power, Im answers that it means “being comfortable and happy with who you are because that’s when you’re in a good mental state.” Im found her inner girl power by staying positive, helping others, and never judging. She hopes girls all over the world can find their inner girl power by continuing to “observe the world and do what makes you happy.” Style icon, digital creator, and female empower, Im has proven that with consistency, creativity, and connection, it is possible to accomplish anything you set your mind to, including turning a hobby into a full-time career. Im admits that being able to be her own boss has been by far the most rewarding experience. “It’s overwhelming at times, but being able to work on my own time makes it all worth it,” says Im. So what’s next for this style icon? “I want to continue creating premium content for my channel and perhaps a few surprises up in my sleeves.” Stay tuned… because anyone who has watched one of Im’s innovative videos knows what she is capable of. Those few surprises are about to blow you away.
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AMERICAN APPAREL TANK TOP
STYLISTâ€™S OWN JEANS
JACKET + skirt
FOR LOVE & LEMONS TOP
VFILES SPORT PLUS
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LAZY OAF DRESS
KELSEY RANDALL CHOKER
ARE YOU AM I shoes
“My contribution to women empowerment is to help them feel good in their own skin because that’s where confidence roots from.” local wolves — 61
written by karina diez Photography by ashley yu
In 2013, Ruth Berhe, or more popularly known as Ruth B, began posting 6-second videos of herself singing on Vine. Having created the account as a creative outlet and nothing more, Ruth was stunned when the world responded with absolute positivity and love for her, what was then completed, verse to her song, “Lost Boy”. “It’s a song about realizing that loneliness isn’t always bad because you can find something better,” said Ruth. The revines and likes were coming in by the thousand, and from there Ruth’s journey to recording artist began. Ruth finished “Lost Boy” and slowly but surely released the full version of the song to her fans. When it comes to writing the lyrics to her songs, she channels her own personal story but sometimes also the stories of others. “I always say there’s a song in every experience,” said Ruth. It didn’t take long for Ruth to be offered a record deal by the prestigious Columbia Records. “That was a really exciting moment,” said Ruth. “It was really awesome to be able to sign with a label that has so many artists that I look up to.” For Ruth, that was day will always stand out in memory as an exceptionally great day. Ruth recently toured with rising star, Alessia Cara. “I love Alessia and I love her music,” said Ruth. “We’ve been getting along really well and I’m happy to be on tour with my music and a musician I really support.” But even with the excitement of being on tour, Ruth still finds it challenging to adapt to her new lifestyle. “The biggest adjustment has just been being away from home and fast lifestyle... always being on the go,” said Ruth. “That’s kind of been the biggest culture shock for me.” But, getting on stage makes it all worthwhile for Ruth because she gets to share her music with people from all walks of life. “It’s a big adrenaline rush and half the time I don’t even remember being on stage when I get off,” said Ruth. It’s really lovely and I love being able to take my songs and put them in front of people [and watch] real time reactions.”
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“IT’S REALLY LOVELY AND I love being able to take my songs and put them in front of people [and watch] real time reactions.”
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WRITTEN BY KARINA DIEZ PHOTOGRAPHY BY DANIELLE ERNST
When SCARLETT TURNER was merely seven years old when her father bought her first video camera. She would spend hours in her room recording herself dancing and singing along to whatever song she was currently digging. “I recently watched a home video DVD compilation with my grandparents, which they titled ‘The Noisy Tears’” said Turner. “It’s pretty accurate and totally cringe-worthy.” When she got a little older, she began teaching herself how to edit her videos on basic software. “I would definitely say I was on this path from a young age, but my passion for film has definitely evolved,” said Turner. She truly realized she had an adoration for filmmaking when she began creating content for her YouTube channel, ScarlettHeartsMakeup.
“ I W A N T T O U S E M Y O W N EX P ERIE N C E T O H EL P O T H ER S A N D C REATE . ” Sharing her life with her followers on YouTube made Turner an extremely open person. “I try to be as honest as I can about who I am and what I’m going through,” said Turner.
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Turner’s knack for filmmaking and storytelling led to her exploration in the world of set design. “[It combined] my love of style, crafting, and organization [which] makes production designing the perfect career for me. I love to explore characters through what they surround themselves with,” said Turner. “I’ve always felt a really deep attachment to objects and I think the environment I’m in really influences how I feel. With production design, I get to translate that onto the screen.” A dream of Turner’s is to work with her absolute favorite director, Wes Anderson. “His movies were what first got me interested in production design because the worlds he creates in his films are so unique and beautiful,” said Turner. “If only I could puck his brain. There are so many questions I would ask him.”
Turner is currently working on directing her first short film with a fifteen-person crew. “Usually, my films are pretty off the cuff, with only me working in them so the amount of preparation has really overwhelmed,” said Turner. “I’m so lucky because I am collaborating with a bunch of my friends and it makes me so happy to know that they are willing to help me and work with me to create something really cool that we can all be proud of.” As for Turner’s fans who have supported her as a filmmaker over the years: “I cannot express how grateful I am to them for giving me the opportunity to share my voice and my art,” said Turner. “The love they give me truly astounds me and I love the community we have created.”
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WRITTEN by Meghan Duncan PHOTOGRAPHy by naohmi monroe
Get familiar with Tkay Maidza now, because she is taking over American indie-pop from the Gold Coast. The Australian native has a glittering (and quickly growing) list of accolades attached to her after featuring on projects with Troye Sivan and Martin Solveig, a collab with Killer Mike on an original track, and a BET nomination for Best New International Act in the U.S.— all leading up to her own upcoming debut album. Tkay certainly displays many facets of girl power— drive, authenticity, and resilience to name a few— and her rapidly moving but solid career stands as proof of this. From a young age, Maidza was moved to answer an inner calling of creativity. She remembered, “When I was fifteen, I heard “Power” by Kanye West and I was just blown away by everything in that song— particularly what he was saying. It inspired me to try and say something in my own words, so I discovered an instrumental version of that song on YouTube and used that as a basis to write my own top line over with my own chorus. I had so much fun and I ended up making my own homemade music video (it was really bad, haha) but it was really the beginning of experimenting in music for me.” Nothing can stop the production of art aside from complacency. Maidza understands that dreams and thoughts and goals can only become reality by constant work, regardless of a good or bad product. Commitment to consistent work is where the magic happens. Maidza believes this is even more important than sitting down with a list of specific goals: “I prefer to just continuously work on music all the time until I produce a sound or a song that I like. Sometimes the perfect melody happens when you’re not expecting it. I don’t think you can really plan a great song. I think great music is born out of cool unexpected moments that inspire you!”
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Equally important to Maidza’s production process is an understanding of the music that came before her. She spoke about the importance of having some amount of solid knowledge of genres and past influencers to bring to the table: “Even if your goal is to create new and original material, it’s important. No matter how experimental music gets I feel like you can always trace it back to a past influencer in one way or another.” Not only does this give context to new creation, but it also brings inspiration in the same wave. When asked which of these influencers in her life she would die to work with, she answered, “That would definitely be Outkast! Stankonia is still one of my favorite albums of all time, it was actually one of the first albums I ever bought and it really had an impact on me growing up.” Don’t be afraid of influence. There is probably nothing so scary to an artist than being fated to produced contrived material, but that should never prevent the development that comes from finding significance in other people’s art. Maidza has mastered this concept by being sure of her own voice as an artist: “I always listen to other music when I’m writing for myself, but I’m more so inspired by other artists to help build on my own sound. I think you always need to stay true to yourself and your own sound. Any influence from other music should only build on or complement your existing vibe!” Taking the time to understand yourself and your inborn perspective as an artist leads to a self-appreciation that can only produce positivity in the world around you— something Maidza is remarkably brilliant at.
“ S om e t i m e s t h e p e r f e c t m e lody h a pp e ns wh e n yo u ’ r e not e x p e c t i n g i t.”
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coverage by Naohmi Monroe
Meet Christine Mai Nguyen, most know her through her charming vlogs, reviews, and tours on YouTube, where she always presents her environment and thoughts so truthfully, natural, and sweet. She is a creative documentarian of homes, avid connoisseur of skincare and beauty lines, and full-time endorser of a functional and chic wardrobe. Predominantly though, she’s a gal that’s deeply interested in the back stories of friends, makers, and creators in her local neighborhoods and knows how to effortlessly keep it casual.
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Nguyen’s fondness for film and storytelling took bloom when she first started to document conversations with friends ten years ago. It’s an idea that has transpired into her series titled ‘A Brief Conversation’, which is now her longest ongoing project. In these videos, Nguyen and a guest share an honest conversation about life decisions, adulthood, and personal growth. While these topics require vulnerability and openness, Nguyen is able to create genuine dialogues with humor and ease. The initiative to acknowledge and document others and their stories also manifests through her newer series of home and apartment tours. Here we get a glimpse into the lives of many Angelenos and their curated, self-expressed spaces. Nguyen confesses this series is motivated by a love for snooping— and let’s face it, that’s why we love them too— but she also notes that these tours serve as documentations of a moment in time. She says, “Things change so quickly for everyone... People move, couples split up, dogs chew up old couches; things are constantly changing and I want my friends to remember how things were.” The desire to connect, examine, and document is so rich in Nguyen’s content and has recently become more so in her personal life. Recently she took a brave leap and quit her day job to pursue more challenging and creative passions, and essentially live more fully. Nguyen explains, “A friend passed away a couple months ago and that really shook me up. Up to that point, I was more interested in making and saving money rather than going out and doing things that add value to my life.”
Understandably so, this happens to the lot of us. We set out to battle our debts, save for dream homes, and in result scoot our ambitions to the side. It’s all about balancing the two through time. As Nguyen advises “save money while you can and let loose when you’re ready.” Currently, Nguyen is venturing into interests such as analog photography and the technical aspects of YouTube. An exploration of new mediums and styles allows her to evolve with social media and keep her content thriving. You can expect documentations of these new hobbies in future YouTube videos, along with more insightful conversations, home tours, skincare and beauty reviews. In asking Nguyen why she keeps beauty in the mix, she humorously admits, “In short, my hair is rapidly going grey. I’m not into dying it cause I think every white hair is earned so I figured now is my chance to take care of my face— young face/old hair is a rad combo IMO.” As we continue to watch Nguyen grow, we should remember the motto that started it all “save a life— adopt a plant, #plantparenthood” which featured in her personal home tour two years ago. Like the plants thriving throughout her evolving space, Nguyen’s original and thoughtful content creates a refreshing energy in the room and gives our feed a breath of fresh air.
I want my friends to remember how things were.
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written by morgan eckel Photography by naohmi monroe
Growing up in the outer suburbs of Long Beach, Alli Cherry attributes her creativity to her home and her hobbies as a child. “I see my personal artistic journey really starting at home and through extracurricular activities such as dance, art classes, music classes, etc. My mom spent a few years in interior design school when I was younger, so our home was one that encouraged creativity in unique ways. I think through my mom’s interior design and overall creative talent. I was taught how creativity doesn’t just exist in traditional avenues like painting or music, but can evident in your daily life and in everyday items. She encouraged self-expression and personal style, which was a fantastic advantage. My grandpa is also an inventor and painter, so the creative juices definitely run throughout the family and had a huge impact on me.” Starting her channel back in the summer of 2014 because of a “major creative rut”, we have seen unique and quality content come from Alli’s channel. “I wasn’t working in a field I loved and I felt like I was losing my creative spark. The truth is, you can’t lose something like creativity, but you can dim it. It has everything to do with how you see and interact with the world. It’s a muscle that needs to constantly be exercised. I decided to start a YouTube channel (even though the idea totally freaked me out!) and I always uploaded once a week— no matter how many people were watching. I knew if I just uploaded when I felt like it, it would never end up happening. The weekly deadline pushed me; it pushed me to plan ahead and to make something even when I didn’t feel like it and eventually got me out of the rut I was in.”
Flash forward two years, and she’s about to hit 20,000 subscribers on her channel. “I think I’m able to continuously make unique content because I make videos about what legitimately interests me. The beauty of a lifestyle channel is that there is so much that can be shared and explored. Each video is like a creative problem I get to solve.” Something that we prominently see on Alli’s channel is her ethical and moral values, including her decision to embrace a lifestyle of living with a capsule wardrobe and to end any purchases at a fast fashion retailer. After watching The True Cost, a documentary exposing the unethical and unsafe practices of the fast fashion industry, the decision and choice to make a change was very clear. “It really stuck with me. Many of these companies don’t know who makes their clothes and what conditions they work in. I’ve always been a thrift store shopper, but would still shop at Forever 21 and Zara for fun. Now I can no longer justify buying an item from a fast fashion retailer knowing that a child getting paid 15 cents an hour could have made it in an unsafe factory. Apart from wanting to stay away from the fast fashion industry, I find it so fun to buy vintage. I love that my clothing has character and a story. One of my favorite vintage pieces is my green army jacket. I bought it from an amazing vendor at the Long Beach Antique Market who alters jackets and hand embroiders flowers on them, making each piece unique. I get compliments every time I wear it.”
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“The truth is, you can’t lose something like creativity, but you can dim it. It has everything to do with how you see and interact with the world. It’s a muscle that needs to constantly be exercised.” As for shopping ethically, the best way to do it is to shop second hand. “Fast fashion is fueled by money. When I buy a piece from a thrift or consignment shop, I’m not supporting or fueling the unethical practices of the original company. Waste is another huge component of the antifast fashion movement; the fashion industry is the second largest polluter in the world, oil being the first. When I buy something second hand I’m giving it a new life, keeping it out of a landfill, and not producing any additional waste. All that being said, the internet is your best friend, and I encourage you to do your research about the brands you love. Are they transparent in their practices? Is everyone in their supply chain treated with dignity and paid a fair wage? There are many ethical brands out there making beautiful products.”
When it comes to a capsule wardrobe and how to attain one, here is Alli’s tips and tricks: 1. Have a small wardrobe of pieces of clothing that you love and that can be mixed and matched easily. 2. I wear those clothes for 3 months (a season) and don’t buy anything during that time 3. A few weeks before the next season assess your wardrobe, donate or sell items that don’t serve me anymore, and shop for a few new pieces for the next season either from my packed away out of season clothing or a thrift or consignment store. 4. Repeat! “This method has been revolutionary to me. I used to shop and had 3 closets worth of clothing I didn’t wear, which is nuts! Having a capsule wardrobe has also helped me refine my personal style, be happy with the clothing that I have, and not always fixate on the next thing I want to buy. I also save a ton of money and time!”
When she’s not busy filming or finding her next flea market gem, she’s probably brainstorming ideas for her Etsy shop co-operated with her husband or renovating her 1974 Dodge Travco, A.K.A The Cherry Travco. Rad and Random Co., is the Etsy shop Alli and her husband, Nick, started as a collaborative side project. “We both work in artistic fields: he’s an animator and I’m a graphic designer — but other than that we are basically opposites in everything. I feel like that makes us a great team because we both bring such different talents to the table. The illustrations in the shop (thus far) are all Nick’s while I’ve started to add some vintage accessories when I can. Our newest product is a recycled tote bag with a bear illustration, we donate 10% of those tote bag proceeds to the Yosemite Conservancy Fund. I’m excited to create more products in the future and see our little shop change and grow as we do.” As for the renovation, it has been filled with ups and downs. “From leaky roofs, to knifes in walls (we literally found a knife in the wall while demoing!). But we’re mostly excited about it and see it as a future home. Not to mention, I know more about fuel pumps and 12 volt converters than I ever thought I would! The renovation has taken longer than we expected (we bought it in January 2015) and it’s definitely a work in progress, but I’m so glad we’re doing it. It’ll all be worth it once I can fully deck out the interior and we can start traveling in it together.”
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Dolores Haze Shoes
Toy Syndrome Jeans
Rubberband Stretch Jeans TANK TOP
who run the world?
SOPHIA WILSON Girl Power T-Shir + Feminist Hoops
Dolores Haze Jacket
Rubberband Stretch Jeans
Carleen Shorts + earrings
bomber + EARRINGS
Dolores Haze JEANS
Rubberband Stretch Jeans TOP
I Waited For You shoes
girls will be boys PHOTOGRAPHy
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The camera pans onto the woman unbuttoning her shirt. The bathroom is foggy, she is outside, her civic idles in the worst moment—a kid smears chalk on her driveway while she sleeps in too late, imagine that, there is an unstraightened spot on the back of her head, the queso has dried on the side of her lip. This woman is your sister, is your unattainable high school crush— when her voice softens to a child—even the skin on her elbows is cracked. She often wonders what exactly is “wife material.” She is the alchemy to a bombass Bloody Mary with a celery stick gone rancid. She too wears her scars, only hers are heightened by misplaced conceptions.
bloody mary by riley gable
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unfiltered wires + W IT H TIA LIU +
FULL NAME: Tia Liu AGE: 19 CITY, STATE: Los Angeles, CA OCCUPATION: Student at UCLA, Fashion & Lifestyle Photographer WOLFIE GOODS: + Camera(s) + Music + Phone + Positive Vibes + New Friends
TELL US ABOUT THE STORY OR RELATIONSHIP YOU HAVE BEHIND ONE OF YOUR ARTWORK The shoot that I did with Bekah was an interesting one. We talked via Instagram DM, as I expressed interest to shoot with her and her intriguing platinum hair. But 30 minutes before we meet, she tells me that she dyed her hair blue. It was quite a shock to me, but at the same time it was an interesting turn of events. We went to the same locations we were planning on going to, and shoot for a bit, and actually had a really fun time getting to know each other and talk about Instagram and the people we've met through the app. The more interesting part of this shoot is that I actually had a really hard time editing these photos, since it was shot indoors and at night, so the incandescent lighting was weird. It took me a couple of tries to get the color balance right. But when I finally did, I was able to embrace the blue hair and really make it a valuable part of making the colors work. This was definitely a shoot where I made a new friend and also learned more about my editing style and how it can adapt. IS THERE A ROUTINE YOU FOLLOW IN ATTEMPTING TO CONVERT YOUR IDEAS INTO CREATED CONTENT? A lot of my photo ideas revolve around the location. While I’m at home, and when I’m in a car, I use my photographer's eye to imagine new concepts, poses, or ideas. When I have the opportunity to choose a location, I hover around different places on Google maps to find new and interesting spots. The location determines the mood and the outfits for the shoot, and I proceed from there. WHAT CHALLENGES DO YOU FIND YOURSELF FACED WITH AS A CONTENT CREATOR? HOW DO YOU ENSURE THAT THESE CHALLENGES DON’T CONSTRAIN YOUR CREATIVITY?
shoot with other creatives. The best way around this is to constantly be thinking about new concepts, and using my limited free time to go and shoot. I am constantly busy, and on the run, but that's fine because I'd rather be busy than sitting at home, wishing that I could be shooting. BESIDES SUCCESS OR FULFILLMENT, WHAT OTHER EMOTIONS CAN YOU IDENTIFY FEELING AFTER HAVING FINISHED A PROJECT? After I finish editing a photo set from a shoot, I feel accomplished and even more inspired to continue to shoot. It drives me to explore different styles of editing and photo styles. After I finish editing, I often go over my photos and see which shots I particularly liked so I can replicate those in future shoots. ARE THERE ANY TOOLS IN YOUR CREATIVE ARSENAL THAT YOU CANNOT LIVE WITHOUT? My camera. I had to go a few weeks without my camera because it was being checked and repaired due to a recall error, and I had such a difficult time trying to withhold the urge to go out and create. There are still so many photographers and creatives out there who I want to meet and get to know, but very little free time. WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO YOUTHFUL, ASPIRING NEWCOMERS TO YOUR INDUSTRY? Honestly, all I can say is to practice, practice, practice. Unlike some people on Instagram who can gain 10,000 followers in 2 weeks, I have slowly been on the climb, gaining a larger audience to share my work with. I've been on Instagram since it was a fetus application. I've watched myself and many other grow along with the app itself. It's not about the numbers; it's about the positivity from friends and constructive criticism that help you improve with selfconfidence as a person and in your art. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE APP/WEBSITE/OUTLET THAT MAKES YOU FEEL THE MOST OF YOUR “UNFILTERED WIRES” POTENTIAL? Instagram and Flickr. Lately, Instagram content is all roughly the same, and there isn't much of a difference of creativity and style amongst the people I follow. If I want to get really inspired and do something different, I look to Flickr. I used to do conceptual photography in the beginning, and that was definitely an outlet to gain inspiration for my work.
QUESTIONS BY MEGHAN DUNCAN ILLUSTRATION BY LAURA FILAS
I'm a student at a highly competitive university. This means that since summer is over, I have to study hard and get good grades, while at the same time finding the time to
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