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mad sounds

DECEMBER 2016

a publication for the young and daring

cherry bomb ISSUE NO. 19


mad sounds a publication for the young and daring

Giselle Melendres Editor-in-Chief, Creative Director, & Designer madsoundsmagazine@gmail.com Staff Writers Brindy Francis, Emily Zheng, Justin Tilton Staff Photographers Sheridan Dyches, Willow Greene, Aidan Doyle, Riley Donahue, Chalisa Singh, Kate Opre A Special Thanks To.... Kailee Mckenzie, John Novotny, Franklin Mendez, Kate Opre, Callum Hutchinson, Taylor Schroeder, Ava Alexandra, & Anthony Hudson

ON THE COVER Photography by John Novotny Featuring Kailee Mckenzie


stay rad, stay mad @madsoundsmag www.madsoundsmagazine.com @madsoundsmag


contents


introduction 009 a letter from the editor editorials 010 cherry bomb by TAYLOR SCHROEDER 026 sucker punch by CALLUM HUTCHINSON 032 don’t call & don’t write by AIDAN DOYLE written 044 seeking inspiration by BRINDY FRANCIS 048 when creativity is nowhere to be found by JUSTIN TILTON 052 is art dead? creativity in the modern world by EMILY ZHENG features 056 Kailee Mckenzie: YouTuber & Creator 074 Makeout America & Franklin Mendez 086 Kate Opre: Photographer & Creative photography by JOHN NOVOTNY featuring KAILEE MCKENZIE

098 Ava Alexandra: Featured Face


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cherry bomb KAILEE MCKENZIE JOHN NOVOTNY December is finally here...which means it's time for a new issue of Mad Sounds!! For this month's issue, I debated between a few different themes, and I couldn't stop thinking of the phrase, "Cherry Bomb". Most people associate the idea of Cherry Bomb with a level of promiscuity (or the more popularly known song, 'Cherry Bomb' by Joan Jett & The Runaways). Often a name for a "young girl who is lots of trouble" (according to this random definition I found on songfacts. com): I wanted to use this expression in a similar style--a symbol for our drive to be badass and daring, specifically within art and creativity. Creativity comes in many forms, and sometimes it's noisy, unique, and rebellious. Sometimes creativity is a risk to be daring and unapologetically yourself--and that's what I hope

our readers will take from this issue of Mad Sounds. For this issue I've picked out some creatives that I believe truly reflect this theme of 'young and daring'. We were so honored to work with Kailee Mckenzie for our cover, and we did an incredible shoot with her in Chelsea, Manhattan, this month, where she styled herself with clothes straight out of her closet. We also worked with some amazing talents, Franklin Mendez: founder of Makeout America, Ava Alexandra: model for Scout San Francisco, and Kate Opre, film photographer & creator. I can't wait for you all to read this issue and meet the incredible creatives who dare to be different. Enjoy our December issue, and I'll talk to you all very soon!!

Giselle Melendres Founding Editor-in-Chief & Creative Director

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cherry bomb

featuring ZOE ELYSE MARYN WORHACZ photography by TAYLOR SCHROEDER styling by TOPKNOT GOODS CAMP COLLECTION SOLSTICE INTIMATES NOIROHIO VINTAGE


featuring ZOE ELYSE (@zoebelleelyse) photography by TAYLOR SCHROEDER styling by TOPKNOT GOODS & NOIROHIO VINTAGE


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featuring ZOE ELYSE (@zoebelleelyse) photography by TAYLOR SCHROEDER styling by TOPKNOT GOODS

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featuring MARYN WORHACZ (@marynworhacz) photography by TAYLOR SCHROEDER styling by SOLSTICE INTIMATES

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featuring MARYN WORHACZ (@marynworhacz) photography by TAYLOR SCHROEDER styling by TOPKNOT GOODS


featuring ZOE ELYSE (@zoebelleelyse) photography by TAYLOR SCHROEDER styling by TOPKNOT GOODS

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featuring MARYN WORHACZ (@marynworhacz) photography by TAYLOR SCHROEDER styling by TOPKNOT GOODS


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featuring MARYN WORHACZ (@marynworhacz) photography by TAYLOR SCHROEDER styling by TOPKNOT GOODS


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sucker punch featuring JULIA D’ANDREA photography by CALLUM HUTCHINSON

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don’t call & don’t write photography by AIDAN DOYLE

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seeking inspiration written by BRINDY FRANCIS photography by KATE OPRE

Inspiration is a key ingredient to your big bowl of life. Many people struggle with not having the motivation to make it everyday. Some people describe it is a big black hole; being stuck in a hole with no sense of direction or motive to even look for direction. For some us, it isn’t as difficult, but we still have days of debating whether or not doing this math assignment is worth it anymore or if wearing pajamas to work tomorrow is a good idea. We all have inspiration block here and there, but each of us have our own sense of creativity we always have room to share, so it’s best to get motivated and spread your own individuality. You never know when you’re actually the one behind the next guy’s inspiration. Something I do when I’m crammed with finals to study for and start to wonder if it’s all even worth it, I decide to watch an independent film. Believe it or not, seeing art at its finest will inspire to maybe make it through the night. Breaks are always the best option. Reading books, flipping through magazines, or watching a few episodes of Friends can be a real stress relief. Sometimes unplugging from reality will get you even more willing to carry

can be a real stress relief. Sometimes unplugging from reality will get you even more willing to carry on and give this world all you’ve got. In addition to breaks, the discovery of yourself is essential to being and feeling inspired while walking through life. Changing perspectives a little and spending time for yourself can make an important impact on originality. Cleaning your room and blasting some mistake of a band you loved in seventh grade can help clear the brain. Have a picnic alone at the park near you. Make sure to wake up early and catch the sunrise before school. Cook some pasta and try to touch your toes while you wait for the water to boil. Taking time for yourself can help you notice and appreciate the smaller things that you wouldn’t notice if you were stressing so hard about your presentation on Tuesday. You’d be surprised how much more you’ll accomplish by living life and enjoying every step rather than being so focused on deadlines and boyfriend debates.

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It’s very unusual to find someone who doesn’t love some form of music. When I begin to have writers block, I listen to some old classics. I listen to the lyrics as if it is poetry to pull inspiration from. I pull certain words and make a scene for myself. For example, in the song Dream A Little Dream of Me by the Mamas & The Papas, some words in the first verse are stars, kisses, singing, dream, blue. I then decide to browse the internet and old magazines or picture books to cut out images I feel relate to the theme, which would be: night, sleep, lullaby. This can be used for all sorts of things: art projects, poetry, designs, music of your own, etc. A small tip to staying inspired and keeping that creative process rolling is to stay as organized as possible. Living messy and spontaneous can be sensational, but I promise it’ll be so much easier to get that painting done in a vacuumed room with all your art supplies in the correct spot. Finding inspiration can be exceptionally difficult at times, but going out of your way to notice the smaller things such as the dandelions growing from the cracks in the sidewalk or the way that girl cuffs her jeans could make a possible make your day a whole lot easier. If you learn anything today, learn this: find inspiration in everyone and everything. Be moved by the smaller waves. Be inspired and inspire others. Taking advantage of your every breath puts inspiration in full perspective.

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when creativity is nowhere to be found written by JUSTIN TILTON photography by KATE OPRE I like to think of myself as the creative type. I get inspired. I get ideas. I get working. Every once in awhile I end up with a creation I’m proud of. Then there’s the not so good days where I run into a brick wall. I get distracted. I get frustrated. I consider literally running into a brick wall. At that moment, any creativity I have ever possessed seems to vanish and I convince myself I may as well become an accountant for the rest of my life. Considering there’s a 99% chance that will occur at least once during the course of working on a project, it’s essential to know how to combat that and battle the frustration mentally. Scattered thoughts. That’s the main culprit behind my lack of creativity. My mind is constantly wandering. Focusing on one thing at a time is about as foreign to me as having money in my bank account. Over the years, I’ve found isolation and organization are my best friends when it comes to dealing with that. It may seem weird, but I’ve found my creativity excels the most when there’s some sort of structure or process behind what I’m doing. I can’t simply start creating on command, I need to think it through first. It’s only then, when I

have a foundation, that I’m able to build off of, that I allow my creativity to flourish. Lack of inspiration. That’s the leading cause of my frustration. Every once in a while my brain seems to just dry up, leaving me with no idea what to do next. I’ve found going on walks and listening to music to be a great way to combat that. I know that whatever I’m doing, staying seated will never help. I’ll inevitably fall asleep due to frustration and mental exhaustion. It’s alright to allow yourself a break to rejuvenate and get the mind flowing again. Put your earphones in and lose yourself. Getting outside yourself is the best way to get in touch with yourself. Sometimes the inspiration just never comes. You can try whatever, but you’re not going to produce one thing you’re proud of that day. Sleep on it. Or go hang out with friends. Or really anything. Just get your mind off of your own frustration. Every once in awhile the ideas in your head and the inspiration you had just never come to be. It’s easy to beat yourself up and think that those whom you admire never felt the way you do at that mo-

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ment. You’re wrong. The most badass creatives have experienced the same feelings you are at that moment. I guarantee it. There’s never a reason to doubt yourself. If you think about every little accomplishment you’ve ever made and how far that’s taken you, a little lack of creativity at the moment is nothing in comparison. Creating something you’re proud of is a process. If it was easy, everyone would be doing it. The process is the point of creativity though, it’s never ending and will manifest itself in ways you never imagined. Sometimes you’ll be proud, and sometimes you’ll hate yourself. The important thing is to keep trusting yourself and pushing yourself creatively. It will pay off. Just remember, your creativity is ultimately a product of who you are and your imagination. Don’t waste that attempting to mimic something you don’t feel. Your work is for yourself and a manifestation of who you are. Create what you feel, it’s for you.

photography by KATE OPRE


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is art dead? creativity in the modern world written by EMILY ZHENG photography by KATE OPRE

Marina Abramovic, the glamorous, passionate, world-renowned performance artist, sits for 736 and a half hours silent, immobile as museum spectators are invited to take turns sitting opposite to her. Some call her craft foolish, others praise her for her dedication. One regard of her remains unchallenged: she is a limitless woman. Abramovic represents performance art’s breakthrough into mainstream culture. She’s the essence of how our perception of art is changing, and her presence in the artistic sphere left me questioning how creativity is present in modern society, outside of the world of MOMA and committed art-museum enthusiasts. Our classification of art has extended past traditional mediums, and we should embrace that. I have fallen in love with many forms of storytelling: the attention-to-detail of painting, the painstaking consideration that goes into filmmaking, the emotional power of photography.

I recently watched a walkthrough of the video game The Beginner’s Guide, a meta, unorthodox narrative that questions how someone can get to know a creative through his or her work. The game is reflective, almost strangely intimate -- it pushes the standards of video games, and it left me contemplating the message for hours. The Beginner’s Guide, with its immersive plot and thoughtful writing, is a work of art. The game challenges our connection with the artist, inspiring critics to share their personal insight rather than focus solely on the gameplay. It is the epitome of modern day storytelling, merging technology with basic humanity. Sometimes, I question whether our capacity to enjoy art has diminished, but then I’m in a crowded theater watching a movie. I’m reading poetry online. I’m waiting hours to get into an art exhibit.

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Art is unruly, sometimes ugly, philosophical, crazy, giddy. Immeasurable. It is a form of expression that has no boundaries. Jandy Nelson, author of poignant young adult fiction, writes her novels in a pitch-black room with earplugs and a sound machine blasting. I’m writing this in an over-sized robe and t-shirt, music playing through my earphones. Although our creative processes differ, the end destination is the same, crafting stories and capturing emotions through words. Creativity in the modern world is watching slam poetry on YouTube. It’s writers collaborating online and painters giving lessons though video chat. It’s digital magazines and visual novels and video games. Art isn’t dead. It’s simply thriving in hidden ways -- still passion-filled and present, but evolving. All you have to do is look under the surface, and you will find group chats of writers. You will find collaborative, independent films and creative collectives. You will find what art still is: a means to express unfiltered, pure emotion. To tell stories and to inspire others. To connect, to feel, to love.

photography by KATE OPRE


mad sounds features

kailee mckenzie interview by GISELLE MELENDRES featuring KAILEE MCKENZIE photography by JOHN NOVOTNY

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featuring KAILEE MCKENZIE photography by JOHN NOVOTNY styling by KAILEE MCKENZIE


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Meet Kailee Mckenzie: the cover star of our December issue and New York based fashion icon + YouTube creative. After moving to New York, starting school as a full-time student at F.I.T., and continuing to create content on both her YouTube Channel and website, kaileemckenzie.co, Kailee's inspired over 300,000 subscribers with her unique sense of style, and devotion to the fashion industry. This month, we had the opportunity to talk to Kailee about life in New York, where she finds her inspiration, and much more! Read the interview to learn more about Kailee, her journey on YouTube, and her best advice for creatives wanting to pursue a career in fashion.

HI KAILEE, THANKS FOR SITTING DOWN WITH US HERE AT MAD SOUNDS TODAY. TO START OFF, CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT A TYPICAL DAY IN THE LIFE OF KAILEE MCKENZIE? I’m a student, so I actually spend a large portion of my time doing school work! I’m currently studying fashion business at FIT with a specialization in product development. I use the rest of my time to work- whether it’s interning or assisting, or working on my website or YouTube channel. YOU STARTED OFF ON YOUTUBE BACK IN 2009 AND HAVE BEEN A FASHION/LIFESTYLE VLOGGER EVER SINCE; HOW DID YOU ORIGINALLY START MAKING YOUTUBE VIDEOS? WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO START? I just picked up a camera one day! I don’t really even remember starting...somehow it turned into a career. YOU USE YOUR YOUTUBE CHANNEL AS A PLATFORM FOR SHOWCASING YOUR PERSONAL STYLE; WHEN DID YOUR LOVE FOR FASHION FIRST BEGIN TO DEVELOP? I’ve always loved clothes. I remember sketching outfits on paper towels out of boredom when I was younger. Around age 16, I realized that I wanted to make a career out of fashion. I started to understand that there’s a huge difference be-

tween a love for clothes and an actual job in the fashion industry. I started researching and eventually ended up applying to FIT and moving to NYC. WHAT HAS BEEN ONE OF THE MOST EXCITING MOMENTS IN YOUR YOUTUBE CAREER THUS FAR? I’m not sure. Obviously working with brands is cool. I still get a little weirded out when people recognize me! Not because I think they’re weird, just because I often forget that strangers actually see my stuff. WHERE DO YOU FIND INSPIRATION FOR YOUR YOUTUBE VIDEOS? I just make what I like! IN WHAT WAYS HAS YOUTUBE CHANGED OR IMPACTED YOUR LIFE THUS FAR? I have no idea what my life would be like if I never started YouTube. There’s no way I’d be able to live and study in NYC. I’d probably still live at home. If I didn’t want to have a career in fashion, I’d want to do something with social work or sex education.

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“I’ve always loved clothes. I remember sketching outfits on paper towels out of boredom when I was younger. [...] I started to understand that there’s a huge difference between a love for clothes and an actual job in the fashion industry.”

photography by JOHN NOVOTNY featuring KAILEE MCKENZIE


YOU RECENTLY LAUNCHED YOUR WEBSITE, KAILEEMCKENZIE.CO. CAN YOU TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT YOUR SITE? It’s finally something that I feel a bit proud of! I’ve never been content with any of my content, but I really enjoy working on my website. It’s a fun project and creative outlet. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE TOPIC ON KAILEEMCKENZIE.CO TO CREATE CONTENT FOR? (FASHION, LIFE, MUSIC, ETC.)? I can’t pick! I really love adding new images to my Inspire page. It’s a constant mood board. WHAT TYPES OF CAREER IN FASHION DO YOU HOPE TO EXPLORE AFTER SCHOOL? I’d love to work in product development for a major brand, but I’d also really love to do my own thing. We’ll see! NOW TIME FOR SOME RANDOM QUESTIONS. WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE AND LEAST FAVORITE FASHION TRENDS THIS WINTER? I love puffer coats- but not the classic ones. I’m on the hunt for an (affordable) massive, long, dropsleeve puffer. Least favorite? Probably fishnets. But I don’t hate them! Just see them a little too often.

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featuring KAILEE MCKENZIE photography by JOHN NOVOTNY styling by KAILEE MCKENZIE


photography by JOHN NOVOTNY featuring KAILEE MCKENZIE

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WHAT ARE YOUR TOP 3 ESSENTIALS IN YOUR BAG? Metro Card, Chapstick + Film Camera! IF YOU COULD ONLY SHOP AT ONE STORE FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE, WHERE WOULD YOU SHOP? IF I could always afford it- Dover Street Market. WHO WOULD YOU MOST LIKE TO POWER BRUNCH WITH? My old dance teacher! DO YOU HAVE ANY PARTICULAR STYLE ICONS? Nope! I take a lot of inspiration from the 60s, 70s and 90s. My favorite designers/labels at the moment are JW Anderson, Beaufille, Marni and Balenciaga. WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVORITE SPOTS IN NEW YORK? Central Park, Midnight Express Diner, Mikey Likes It Ice Cream, Baohaus, The Met, New York Public Library at 42nd St IT’S NEARLY THE END OF THE YEAR AND WE’RE GETTING READY FOR 2017; WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR PERSONAL NEW YEARS RESOLUTIONS OR GOALS FOR THE NEXT YEAR? I want to travel out of the country and finish my degree! LASTLY, WHAT IS YOUR BIGGEST ADVICE FOR THOSE WANTING TO START A CREATIVE PROJECT LIKE A YOUTUBE CHANNEL OR WEBSITE LIKE YOUR OWN?

KEEP UP WITH KAILEE: Instagram: @kaileemckenzie Twitter: @kaileemckenzie kaileemckenzie.co

Just do it already! Even if it sucks.

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photography by JOHN NOVOTNY featuring KAILEE MCKENZIE styling by KAILEE MCKENZIE


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featuring KAILEE MCKENZIE photography by JOHN NOVOTNY styling by KAILEE MCKENZIE


photography by JOHN NOVOTNY featuring KAILEE MCKENZIE styling by KAILEE MCKENZIE


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makeout america interview by GISELLE MELENDRES featuring FRANKLIN MENDEZ photography by FRANKLIN MENDEZ


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Meet Franklin Mendez, the founder, designer, and creative mind behind Makeout America: a company for daring youths and society dropouts. Conceptualized entirely by Franklin, he’s created a unique brand of clothing inspired by art, skate brands, and his passion for creating. Read our interview with Franklin to learn more about his journey with Makeout America, and check out the new collections online at makeoutamerica.com

HI FRANKLIN, THANKS FOR SITTING DOWN WITH US HERE AT MAD SOUNDS TODAY. TO START OFF, CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT A DAY IN THE LIFE OF FRANKLIN MENDEZ? Thanks for having me. A good day in the life for me starts with a 15 minute meditation session, going skating with my girlfriend as she runs, getting a good breakfast aka a deli sandwich or a bagel with avocado & veggies, calling my mom, getting some art done, and then spending the rest of my day reading making art with my roommates, getting a good nap in, & drinking some wine at night. YOU RECENTLY MADE THE MOVE TO NEW YORK, HOW HAS THAT BEEN? WHAT DO YOU LIKE MOST ABOUT LIVING IN NYC? Well when I first got here it was just to get away from LA for a month and lock myself up in my Airbnb to get my new photobook done. But as the days went on I found myself being a lot more productive, happy, and overall just feeling like myself again so I impulsively decided the day that my airbnb was done to move here. The city moves fast and I find it impossible to get comfortable or bored here, unlike LA. Riding the subway alone and making eye contact with random strangers is nice.

YOU’RE THE FOUNDER AND DESIGNER OF MAKEOUT AMERICA, A CLOTHING COMPANY FOR YOUTHS & SOCIETY DROPOUTS. WHAT MADE YOU ORIGINALLY DECIDE TO START MAKE OUT AMERICA? Ever since the 8th grade I’ve had dreams of running my own company to inspire other kids and be able to make a career out of making art. I found myself at a crossroads after being kicked out of the first collective I was apart of in August 2015 and decided it was time to run my own company. I never liked having a boss or somebody telling me what to do and with Makeout I can do whatever I want. I want it to become a beacon of inspiration where kids can look and go “wow I can do whatever I want as long as I set my mind to it and try my hardest. “ WHAT KIND OF PRODUCTS DID YOU FIRST START SELLING? The first official Makeout release was my first ever photo zine. It was only 30 pages and very cluttered but it allowed me to show a personal side of me. My first clothing release was april 20th and I released a couple t-shirts & some hats. Since then I’ve dropped 3 different lines ranging from jackets, hoodies, and other clothing items. Next for me is my photobook, then in 2017 I plan on releasing at least one collection a month.

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“I like the way they look comfortable in whatever I wear. As long as I feel comfortable in what I’m wearing I don’t really care what it is I’m wearing.”


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HOW DO YOU COME UP WITH NEW IDEAS AND DESIGNS FOR MAKEOUT AMERICA? WHERE DO YOU FIND YOUR INSPIRATION? My biggest rule is never force art or inspiration. Inspiration is a very fleeting thing for me so once I do find it I usually just draw some things that explain how I feel and find a way to make it into a shirt. If I have an idea I can’t draw I reach out to one of my friends who’s better at that kind of thing. My biggest inspirations have always been skate brands. I worked in a skate shop when I was 16 for 2 years and found myself being attracted to simple designs that demanded attention and the way the companies ran themselves. DO YOU HAVE ANY ICONS WHO INFLUENCE YOUR PERSONAL STYLE? Dylan Rieder, Jimi Hendrix, Jason Dill. I don’t really dress like any of these people but I like the way they look comfortable in whatever I wear. As long as I feel comfortable in what I’m wearing I don’t really care what it is I’m wearing. YOU’VE JUST RELEASED YOUR NEWEST COLLECTION FOR MAKEOUT AMERICA: THE ALL-STAR DIRT SQUAD CAPSULE COLLECTION. WHAT INSPIRED THIS COLLECTION IN PARTICULAR, AND WHAT WAS THE PROCESS LIKE IN CONCEPTUALIZING IT? I was inspired by the huf dirtbag crew theme, I loved the idea that kids could make themselves part of a fake crew. I love the way lips look and I thought it would be cool to make a pair of lips into a human by giving them eyes. The cigarette thing is pretty self explanatory, I just always need a cigarette.

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KEEP UP WITH FRANKLIN: Instagram: @franklinmakeout/ @makeoutamerica Twitter: @franklinmakeout/ @makeoutamerica makeoutamerica.com

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WHERE WOULD YOU MOST LIKE TO LIVE IN YOUR 20s? YOUR 30s?

YOU’RE ALSO COMING OUT WITH A PHOTOBOOK SOON! CAN YOU TELL US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT THAT PROJECT? My photobook/magazine/whatever you want to call it is just a collection of writings or poems from my sketchbook/journals & photos from the year. My subjects in the photos make me who i am today. They are the reason I feel the way I feel so I pair the writings with the people who make me feel that way. It’s kind of just me throwing up my feelings and photos onto a page and calling it art.

I’m really enjoying New York right now but I’d love to live in Tokyo at some point. I can never stay in one place for too long so by my 30’s I’d probably have lived in about 10 different cities. When I'm 30 I'd like to maybe start a family and raise kids somewhere like Seattle or LA. WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT LESSON YOU HAVE LEARNED IN LIFE, THUS FAR? Trust yourself. Never give up on your dreams even if they seem impossible. Oh and don’t listen to what other people say or think about you, the only perception of you that matters is yourself.

WHERE DO YOU SEE MAKEOUT AMERICA HEADED IN THE FUTURE? 5 years from now I see Makeout America with 3 stores, LA, Miami, & New York. I see myself with more employees and giving jobs to all my homies who don’t quite fit in with society. I want this to be a full fledged company that runs itself where I can give opportunities to kids just like me.

WHERE DO YOU SEE YOURSELF IN FIVE YEARS? Makeout America will be a company that runs itself by that point. I’ll probably be living in LA with my dog. I like the simple life. I’d also like to give back to my neighborhood in dominican republic. I’d like to bring money to the hood and give kids motivation and inspiration to do better for themselves.

ALRIGHT NOW TIME FOR SOME RANDOM QUESTIONS. COFFEE OR TEA? Ginger tea, coffee’s good too but I already have bad anxiety and coffee just makes it worse. DIGITAL OR FILM?

WHAT IS YOUR BIGGEST ADVICE FOR THOSE WANTING TO START A BRAND OR PROJECT LIKE YOUR OWN?

I like the film look more, but shooting on digital gives me more freedom to experiment during my shoots. It is fun to shoot on film and not know what you’re gonna get though, it’s a nice surprise every time you get a roll of film back.

Stay consistent, Do what feels right, if you like it then that’s all that matters. Don’t sell yourself short. If you don’t value and respect yourself nobody else will. Follow your heart. Sounds corny but in your heart you know what’s really important to you and that’s all that matters.

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featuring FRANKLIN MENDEZ photography by FRANKLIN MENDEZ


mad sounds features

k8 opre interview by GISELLE MELENDRES featuring KATE OPRE photography by KATE OPRE

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Meet Kate Opre, a 19 year old photographer taking cool-girl creativity to the next level. Starting on Instagram with the photography account: @urbanpolaroid, Kate found her love for taking photos, and developed an affection for film and potrait photography. Now, she's creating powerful photo series that have been seen on Sticks and Stone Mothership and more. We sat down with Kate to talk about her photography, where she finds inspiration, and her biggest advice for aspiring photographers. Read on to learn more about Kate Opre: the girl behind the glass.

HI KATE, THANKS FOR SITTING DOWN WITH US HERE AT MAD SOUNDS TODAY. TO START OFF, CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT A DAY IN THE LIFE OF KATE OPRE? I’m currently taking a gap year from university and trying to figure out what I would like to do in the current future that will make me the happiest, most creative and intellectual version of myself. So the average day for me is kind of a toss up. I probably spend about half my time working @ a local bakery and cafe as a barista. I spend probably 10% daydreaming. Another 30% applying to schools for transfer and looking into programs like AmeriCorps and WOOfing. The remainder of my time, I live like a cat- meaning I love my bedroom, books and my laptop! TELL US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT @URBANPOLAROID, HOW DID YOUR ACCOUNT AND USERNAME COME TO BE? I’ve been on IG for a while now. In 2011, my best friend Maria and I had a joint account where we would post our ‘photography.’ We would collab with fellow instagrammers and join in on the then flickr scene of instagram. This is how I met Giselle, the editor-and-chief of this mag :) Since then, we’ve become good friends, spending time in California and Washington together! I’m really not sure how I came up with the username, I know that I loved the store Urban Outfitters and really

wanted a polaroid camera so I guess it was a clever little amalgamation of the two. HOW DID YOU FIRST DISCOVER YOUR LOVE FOR PHOTOGRAPHY? In middle school, I took a film photography class and learned how to shoot film and develop the photos! Since then, I have definitely forgotten how to develop film photographs myself haha, but I will never forget how to take them. WHERE DO YOU FIND INSPIRATION FOR YOUR PHOTOS? Confessedly, I am a ‘tumblr-girl’ so the photography and art I see on my dashboard is definitely a huge source of inspiration. I use tumblr as a form of pinterest because I like the layout more, so my tumblr is a cohesive endless scroll of inspiration, from photography, to literature and poetry, to film and music. I am also inspired by all things vintage, my favorite photographers (Petra Collins and my <3 Juergen Teller) and fashion.

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WHAT DO YOU HOPE TO EVOKE THROUGH YOUR PHOTOGRAPHY?

WHAT HAS BEEN ONE OF YOUR FAVORITE SHOOTS THAT YOU’VE DONE THUS FAR?

I really love shooting portraits, because I think human expression is one of the most beautiful and expressive things out there. Thus, capturing the wide array of emotion is what I would love to do. I think that capturing pain, sadness and desperation through photography is just as important as capturing beauty, happiness and sexiness. In my future photography, I would like to concentrate more on this.

I think my favorite more legitimate shoots was over the summer with my friend Tatum, the shoot is called ‘These Days’ and we found an old apartment and spent like three hours just taking pictures, eating ice cream and laughing. But I love spontaneous shoots the best, I loved walking around Venice with close friends and just stopping when I see that picture perfect scene and pulling out my camera. I loved exploring Portland with my friend Caitlin and taking artful disposable pics of cute little dogs, lattes and houses. The best is when I see something that I think is so beautiful AND I just so happen to have a camera!

WHEN PLANNING A SHOOT, HOW DO YOU COME UP WITH CONCEPTS OR CREATIVE DIRECTION FOR YOUR PHOTOS? I am by no means a professional photographer haha! However, I still take shooting very seriously. Usually I start with a ‘vibe’ for lack of a better word that I would like to embody. Then depending on the model, we will either pick out clothes and makeup or just find a location and shoot. I like the model to be natural in the environment. Usually we have fun with it, we will walk around and take pics. All my shoots are pretty much spontaneous in the best way! IF YOU COULD PLAN YOUR DREAM SHOOT, WHAT WOULD IT CONSIST OF? ...Omg, I don’t even know where to start! Well, I would love to shoot for a fashion line, like something for Gucci (legit only ever in dreams zzz) or Unif. I would love freedom with location, like maybe I could shoot artful nudes on the dreary Welsh coast or skirt around New York city snapping pictures with a muse. I would love to create my own set, with a lot of color and unique props. But of course, this is waaaayyy out of reach. For now ;)

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YOU WERE RECENTLY FEATURED ON STICKS AND STONE MOTHERSHIP, WHAT WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE LIKE WORKING WITH SUCH A BIG MAGAZINE? Sticks and Stones was honestly a dream come true. Ever since I discovered the platform I was sooo in love with it. I did two separate shoots with my gorgeous friend Tatum and after development and editing I was like: “shit, I really like these.” I randomly submitted the photos to Sticks and Stones and within a day the creator, Ainsley told me she loved all my work and she wanted to feature me. Long story short, I died and went to heaven.


featuring KATE OPRE photography by KATE OPRE


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TIME FOR SOME RANDOM QUESTIONS: WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE INSTAGRAM ACCOUNT? Right now, @emmercury. I love her magazine ‘The Messy Heads’ and her message. DIGITAL OR FILM? FILM. And only film. CAKE OR PIE? Cake. WHO IS YOUR ULTIMATE STYLE ICON? Jane Birkin <3

FAVORITE FILM? Moonrise Kingdom or Blue is the Warmest Color. The former makes me :) the latter makes me ;( IF YOU COULD MOVE TO ANY ONE CITY, WHERE WOULD IT BE? New York. ONE SONG YOU WILL NEVER GET TIRED OF? Alter Ego-Tame Impala

KEEP UP WITH KATE: Instagram: @urbanpolaroid cargocollective.com/ kateanderson

LASTLY, IF YOU COULD GIVE ONE PIECE OF ADVICE TO AN ASPIRING PHOTOGRAPHER, WHAT WOULD YOU SAY? Take pictures of whatever the hell you’d like. Have fun with it.

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mad sounds features

ava alexandra interview by GISELLE MELENDRES featuring AVA ALEXANDRA photography by ANTHONY HUDSON

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NO. 19 — CHERRY BOMB

If you're wondering who the next Magdalena Frackowiak might be, look no further than up and coming face, Ava Alexandra: a model and creative based in the Bay Area, currently signed with Scout Models San Francisco. Today, we had the opportunity to talk to Ava about her modeling, and some of her favorite parts about her journey in the modeling industry. Read on to learn about Ava's personal inspirations, and her advice for aspiring models.

HI AVA, THANKS FOR SITTING DOWN WITH US HERE AT MAD SOUNDS TODAY. TO START OFF, CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT A DAY IN THE LIFE OF AVA? Hi! A day in my life Monday through Friday typically consists of going to school, running, and doing my homework. On weekends I like to hang out with friends or work! TELL US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT YOUR MODELING STORY; WHEN DID YOU FIRST DISCOVER YOU WERE INTERESTED IN MODELING? In middle school I was really into taking pictures and photography. Through that I met a ton of ‘instagrammers’ and we took pictures of each other all the time. Through instagram, scouts from various agencies contacted me and it sparked my interest. I never signed or truly pursued any of those offers because they were agencies in markets that were not near where I lived and I knew nothing about the industry. My mom encouraged me to find an agency that was closer to home, and from that I found Scout Models in San Francisco.

YOU’RE CURRENTLY SIGNED WITH SCOUT MODEL & TALENT AGENCY IN SAN FRANCISCO. WHAT WAS THE PROCESS LIKE OF GETTING SCOUTED AND SIGNED, AND HOW HAS IT BEEN WORKING AS A MODEL SO FAR? After talking to scouts from other agencies they suggested I contact Scout myself. They asked me to send in pictures and after I did that they asked me to meet in person. I was offered a contract the day I met them and basically signed with them on the spot. They are awesome and I love my agent. Modeling so far has been really fun and something I really enjoy doing. WHAT ARE THE BIGGEST CHALLENGES YOU HAVE EXPERIENCED IN THE MODELING INDUSTRY? By far my hardest challenge is balancing school, sports, and modeling. I am a full time high school student that also does two sports so it is definitely hard to manage my time between those three things. The modeling industry doesn’t just work on the weekends, it’s a full time job like any other so it’s hard to have to turn down work 5 days of the week, but school comes first.

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photography by ANTHONY HUDSON featuring AVA ALEXANDRA


WHAT ARE SOME OF THE BEST PARTS ABOUT MODELING?

WHO ARE SOME OF YOUR PERSONAL INSPIRATIONS OR ICONS?

Getting your work back! Sometimes I don’t see pictures from shoots I do, so whenever I do get my work back I get super excited.

Adriana Lima because she has had an inspiring career, Alexa Chung because I admire her style, and Elle Fanning because she comes off as sweet and well spoken.

WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVORITE SHOOTS YOU HAVE DONE THUS FAR? I am really attracted to natural or outdoor shoots. I’ve worked with a lot of awesome photographers such as Tony Hudson (@t_huddy), Joe Charles (@ joecharlesphoto), and Vik Soos (@viksoos) who I’ve done shoots of the sort with! Nearly all shoots are super exciting! SO FAR, WHAT TYPE OF MODELING ARE YOU MOST INTERESTED IN? As of now, I am more inclined to do commercial work. I want to do work in LA hopefully soon which is more of a commercial market. I am just a bit over five foot eight which is just an inch or two too short for more of runway work. I used to be really mesmerized by the high fashion world, still somewhat am! Maybe if I grow an inch or so my thoughts will change.

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TIME FOR SOME RANDOM QUESTIONS: IF YOU COULD POWER BRUNCH WITH ANY ONE PERSON, WHO WOULD IT BE AND WHY? Matthew Gray Gubler. I feel like he would have intriguing conversation topics. WHAT IS ONE OF YOUR STAPLE ITEMS FOR THE WINTER TIME? A good pair a black jeans, always. ARE THERE ANY PARTICULAR BEAUTY PRODUCTS OR SECRETS THAT YOU SWEAR BY? Don’t Look At Me face mask by Lush is my holy grail.


photography by ANTHONY HUDSON featuring AVA ALEXANDRA


NO. 19 â&#x20AC;&#x201D; CHERRY BOMB

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photography by ANTHONY HUDSON featuring AVA ALEXANDRA

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KEEP UP WITH AVA: Instagram: @avaalexandraw scouttm.com

COFFEE OR TEA? Coffee! FAVORITE FILM? I’m not big on movies, I get too wrapped up into TV shows. A show I’m obsessed with right now is Shameless. STYLE ICON? Constantly changes, but I like a lot of what Amanda Steele has been wearing lately. FAVORITE INSTAGRAM ACCOUNT? My suggested users are always @charlottedalessio or @meredithmickelson because I am constantly stalking their pages. ONE SONG YOU WILL NEVER GET TIRED OF? Jungle by Drake. LASTLY, WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO SOMEONE HOPING TO BREAK INTO THE MODELING INDUSTRY? Get a friend or parent to take digitals of you and send them out to agencies! I’d say that’s the most efficient way in this day and age.

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NO. 19 — CHERRY BOMB

STAY TUNED there’s more mad sounds on the way! madsoundsmagazine.com DO YOU WANT TO BE FEATURED? email madsoundsmagazine@gmail.com with a cover letter & link to your online portfolio not all submissions will be featured for publication

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mad sounds

Profile for Mad Sounds

Mad Sounds Issue 19 - Kailee Mckenzie  

December 2016 / Issue 19 of Mad Sounds Magazine Featuring (Cover) Kailee Mckenzie, Ava Alexandra, Franklin Mendez, and Kate Opre

Mad Sounds Issue 19 - Kailee Mckenzie  

December 2016 / Issue 19 of Mad Sounds Magazine Featuring (Cover) Kailee Mckenzie, Ava Alexandra, Franklin Mendez, and Kate Opre