“But Did You Learn Something?” The Green Screen Project Featuring Ayanda
We spend an afternoon with Columbus rapper Zac Fresh, (IG: ZacFresh) who tells us what it means to have creative control and his smash hit “No Luck”
Thank you Zac Fresh !
Co-creative partners; Andrew Evans and Ayanda Mkhize
Cinematography: Nana Yeboah (IG@ny.nsa)
Edits: Andrew Evans (IG:@groundeight8)
The Green Screen Project is an two part project aimed to highlight the creative culture within young adults living in Columbus, OH
Editing and Mastering: Andrew Evans
Film director: Ayanda Mkhize
A young Virginia Beach native who has created her own brand from her own art pieces
her merch is available here:
I’ve always loved taking photos, traveling and storytelling. I decided why not find a place to paint the stories of these pictures with sound bites of people who live in those places. The Bay Area is my hometown and has shaped me into the woman I am today and it’s because of the wisdom gained throughout the city.
This is a double entendre of a nickname that was handed to me from my high school friends because of my small stature. Originally it was Yay-High then they shortened it to Ye. “Yay” is also a nickname for the Bay Area. You can hear it numerous raps or “slaps” as people say they are from “the yay area”. To further pay homage to the hyphy movement-which is one I’m very proud to say was old enough to enjoy.
“Will this only be Bay Area Based?”
No, I travel around a lot so I will add on to other pictures of different cities and conversations.
“What is the purpose of all this?”
Just enjoy some pics and hopefully take home the message that people are so full of great verbal gems!
This stands for Ye From The Bay Phoenix Season, the story of the Phoenix Rising Through The Ashes
📸: @kingMeekz__ (instagram)
📸: Egypttphotography (Instagram)
Models: @Know_payne , @romenmind
Thank you for helping me spend my birthday this year celebrating women who look just like me!
Music by :DJ N$TY
FREE EVENT. FREE FOOD. MERCH. ART . MELANIN
934 Gallery , 934 Cleveland ave, Columbus OH 43201
Music by @lovedragon5000
ion id=”attachment_950″ align=”alignnone” width=”750″] Official Flyers ![/caption]<
I sit down with Co-Creator of BROTAKU Creations Vic Young and discuss the role of black people within the art of anime. My second guest, Chiime is a community organizer who uses his agriculture engineering degree from The Ohio State University to help make change for communities that resemble his own. Topics include : Cleveland, Bone Thugz, Gentrification and so much more!
Also available on my
The Crochet Queen taking the world by storm!
Selassie’s roots begin in West Africa Ghana , The Bronx and finally Columbus. She started her amazing work from admiring a friend and thought to herself why not try it out and teach yourself! I chose to write about her because she truly is an inspiration and carries herself with such grace and confidence. She’s very proud of her brand and she should be because it’s amazing quality,(hand made) and beautiful pieces!
Thank you Selassie
📸: FaridaFree IG
Part 1Part 2
For not only taking time out of your day to visit my blog but to support me as well. This project is bigger than self profit. It’s about uplifting others and physical proof that contribution to society can be a manifestation of anything.
Some of my vision
There are not a lot of many people in the world like Tai, so I knew that when I met her in the hallway for the second time that It was fate that I interviewed her. It was because the same week I bumped into her for the second time, my Phoenix Project idea came to mind. She’s one of a kind and carries the spirit of a young Maya Angelou. She’s so authentic and transparent in her journey. She’s one of those people that words are almost so simple to capture her essence!
Thank you Tai and I know only great things will happen for you !
The Barbershop, a place where men are not only allowed to be opinionated but where more opinions are formed. The method behind this was , I have men in my life who are very influential to me as peers and as a woman who travels quite a lot I meet a whole lot o different types of men. So my biggest issue was how would I get them in the same room? So what’s one place they all have to me meet ? The Barbershop. The Barbershop series aims to place into perspective ideals that many men share and may not have thought to have or feel. So please enjoy
Hey Guys hopefully I’m not interrupting your cuts, I have a few questions are you all down?
Everyone nods head in agreement
So let’s just get started, “who are you?”
The Superhero : “ I’ll go first, I am a rare one simple as that. Family oriented, and a person that believes he can save the world. So, yeah pretty much I look at myself like I’m somebody who was put here [on earth] to make life easier for those around me. I believe I am able to do that with my heart wisdom and insight forreal‘ ”
Me: So a superhero?
“yeah” he chuckles
The Feminist: “I’ll go next, I am a self proclaimed feminist, philosopher, psychologist and spiritual guru”
The Romantic: “I’d say to describe myself in one word , and it would be kindhearted. I just like the feeling of love and unity. It’s a good feeling, and I like the genuine vibes”
The Hopeless Romantic: “Two words; Hopeless romantic and authentic”
The Diamond In The Rough: “I would describe myself as being a dude that’s not easy to deal with….I am loving, sensitive, caring, and loyal. I would say i’m not perfect but I am worth it”
The Genuine Guy: “Honestly, I’m just me, a genuine and kind guy. People often say nice guys finish last but it’s not true if you are genuinely that way”
The Good Guy: “a good guy”
The Modern Man: “modern man”
The Philosopher: “philosopher”
So now that we know who you are let’s get into it , what are things men do that they really shouldn’t?
Hopeless Romantic: ” I don’t find it smart to ask men questions about women when they are not women. I don’t know why people do that.Women are women, they know how girls think.”
The Romantic nods his head in agreement.
The Romantic : “I don’t like when guys act like they don’t have emotion towards stuff or acts hard [tough] for no reason ”
The Superhero: “I agree, we always have to kind of pretend or be something we are not.”
Can you expand on that?
He looks down, sighs then places two of his forefingers on his chin in deep thought
The Superhero: “…how society depicts or suggests how men should deal with tragedy and any type of loss. Like it puts a lot of pressure on us because we have to be strong and never show emotions, so it can be hard to keep it inside. After a while we can’t hold it together no more and we explode. So, I guess I’m kind of torn about that really cause it can be a blessing and a curse.
The Genuine guy nods his head and raises his hand, I nod my head to let him answer.
The Genuine guy: “Dudes out here drowning in sorrows because they don’t want to look like they’re not masculine or they’re being expressive and being told they aren’t manly. We’re not less emotional. We’re closet emotional or the way we deal with our emotions are different. It’s a stereotype that’s perpetrated by men and women.”
The Superhero shoots a grin at the genuine guy and interjects.
The Superhero: “we as men, feel like someone is watching so we [act] depending how big the crowd, how big the crowd iswill determine how good the show is, you feel me”
He chuckles then continues
The Superhero: “…like it’s all one big ego contest of who has the bigger ego honestly and I just don’t be on it [support it] I have always been me and did what I wanted to. So, basically I hate how inconsiderate we [men] can be and how easily influenced we are”
Do you all think how men are raised have any influence over this?
The Superhero: “we [men] don’t understand how we are viewed as role models and how we treat woman impacts the youth and as far as I know, how women view themselves andhow they let man treat them.It continues as a cycle will continue until things are addressed. Just plain and simple some men haven’t had their father show them the importance or ‘the ropes’ ”
The hopeless romantic: “How your parents show you affection or lack of is a big determiner of how you work in relationships.”
Could you expand more on that?
The Modern Man shifts his position looks around and raises his hand: “ So as a male more particularly African American males, we don’t get exposed to that often”
“That” as in Love?
The Modern Man: “Yes, We get love from a parents but that it, we as male have to figure what is exactly LOVE is and how to achieve LOVE. Now it takes trial and error, but if we are exposed to it then we can learn from it and appreciate it”
Any other grievances with men?
The Feminist: “I’ve had a few girl best friends and I learned from them about people (men) who‘ve tried to get at them over time, and a problem a lot of guys have is we like to test the boundaries.”
The Hopeless Romantic: “A lot of women are comfortable around me (as well) and share their experiences and the rate of rape and sexualassualt is f—- outrageous . we need to cut that out ASAP”
So because we ended on love what about it? How do men show they are interested? obstacles?
The Genuine Guy: “I don’t get hung up on a rejection. As many women as I successfully go on dates with there’s probably twice as many that aren’t interested but I don’t get in a slump about it. I just move on. I think that handling rejection well is one of the most important things anyone can learn about dating. Man or woman. There’s going to be people, that aren’t looking to date you for a variety of reasons, ranging from just not being interested, to not looking to be in a relationship for emotional healing, or having a significant other already.”
So how do yall feel about women shooting shots? I’ve always been under the impression that men approach you because they like you and if they don’t then you should fall back?
The Genuine Guy chuckles and grins : “that’s true for some of us. Some men that like you will just come to you. I will, and I know a lot that will but there are men that are shy. There are men that get nervous and flustered the same way there are women that do. Also, I do get where you’re coming from. It is hard to be forward because of the possibility of rejection and women have been coached not to be by society, which makes it even harder for y’all because the last thing y’all want to thought of as is abrasive, aggressive, and overbearing but I think you’d be surprised how many men would actually appreciate women who are forward. I think women should shoot their shots as much as they want. A lot of women try to hint that they like you and it usually doesn’t work because the body language of a woman that is interested in you may be close to identical to the body language of a woman who is extremely close friends with you. You may think you’re obvious but you’re probably not. forward women are very attractive to me. If a woman came up to me and said I’m interested in you and said take my number, I would very likely take that number and contact her. So, all in all, ladies shoot your shots.”
The Romantic: “Yeah I feel anybody should. Especially if you have nothing to lose”
The Diamond in the Rough: ‘It takes two to tango. We make the initial move but sometimes there isn’t anything there, just like women we have certain standards and desire certain things out of a romantic relationship and i’m not going to settle just for the sake of finding someone. I feel like God has something HUGE planned for me, and i’m going to need the right partner. A lot of women may not be built for the life i’m leading.”
The Hopeless Romantic: I’m not saying i’ll stay quiet but you gotta have patience with stuff , but I think if ladies shot their shot there’d definitely be more relationships. That whole men speak up is a social construct.”
The Modern Man: “I’m down for women shooting shots that shows she determined and knows what she wants and ain’t afraid to do it”
The Feminist:” First I’m a firm believer in DMs not being the best place to start. I think women shoot their shot all the time but guys are blind to it most the time, (he laughs) Also I feel like women rely on guys to use their intuition as if we have any and guys can be so forward it’s creepy.”
Okay, so now the woman has sot her shot, are you attracted or nah? What makes a woman attractive to you?
The Hopeless Romantic: “Me , personally, looks matter but they’re not everything . I used to be a looks are everything type of guy, but college gave me a different perspective to how relationships work and what to value in them. I’m a quick learner so I‘ve changed a lot [adapted] and so has my view on things.”
The Diamond in the rough: “I envision a woman that is doing her thing like i’m doing mine, not only supports my grind but understands my grind. She understands me (he reflects) I’m a different type of person. (he pauses) Most importantly I want someone that’s for me and they’ll get the same in return and that’s the type of woman I envision in my life. I also, like for my woman to smell good and to be soft.
Like a flower?
“Yes” He nods his head while grinning
The Modern Man: “I love a woman who had set plans and goals in her life. I don’t categorize [judge] having a child at a certain age or married. Anyone can do that, but when I hear a woman saying she has plans such as; wanting to get her degree, working at a steady job, owning her own home, Thats growth and that’s potential”
The Superhero: “Someone who values the little things. I would like us to be able to talk about anything, [she] has been through some adversity , loves family, good vibes, we connect , click and is my best friend. “
So what does love mean to you all or to men?
The feminist: “Communication”
Do you think communication makes the relationship “better” ?
The Feminist: “So much better! In the bedroom, emotionally, financially, health wise, and psychologically”
The Modern Man: “Hmm, love is something that more mental than there is physical. To love someone you have to truly mean and cherish it. I think as a society we use the word LOVE to much. Anyone can say they LOVE something or someone but it’s takes a handful of people to actually mean it. The meaning of love is being for that person no more what the circumstances are you have to be fully committed to LOVE, you can’t half a— it or find shortcuts. You have to go through heartbreak, cheator get cheated on, get curved. All of those in order to reach LOVE”
The Philosopher: “We have a chemical release when we are excited and that’s addictive. For instance, I’ve always been attracted to you because I only see a beautiful woman who’s extremely intelligent, but on the other hand you may have some unliked traits that I have not discovered because I haven’t had the opportunity to experience you on that level. Even if I did, I would still have that impression for probably about 6 months because I would still be in under the impression that you’re a beautiful and intelligent woman. It’s fundamentally true but everything on the outside doesn’t always suggest that the inside is the same, and that’s what takes time. So the infatuation phase is simply the outer appearance of love. The Devil does wear Prada “ he chuckles
Thank you, are there any other ways men show or communicate their interest?
The Good Guy: “If a guy is looking for a girlfriend he takes his time and really tries to get to know her. He does this by constantly hanging out with her. Sometimes, if a guy just asks you out on a date off ripp (first chance meeting) he might just be looking for sex, but if a guy is constant and persistent…he sees you as something more”
Do you believe Soulmates exist or nah?
“Damn u really getting deep with it haha um” (muffled voice)
The Modern Man, he pauses then answers: “…. yeah, I do as corny it is, you gotta think we were put on this earth for a reason I don’t know what it is but finding a companion is ideal in our society, you gotta think we are all different but finding that one individual who likes everything about u is something magical, but to answer your question yes I do believe in soulmates”
How many of you are in a relationship?
The Feminist, The Romantic and The Good Guy raise their hand
So can you all tell me about how you meet your partner? Your “meet cute”
The Feminist: “So I work at the Nike outlet in Livermore, I don’t know if you know where that is. But she started working there too. Originally things were just going to be platonic between us but one thing led to another and we kissed in my car and eventually started dating. We have been official since Christmas but we’ve been talking since around September. So when we first became really close friends we would fall asleep on the phone together because she would be telling me about problems she had with her ex and a guy at work she was low key talking to. I was basically her late night phone therapist. Then our conversations became more and intimate in a way and we caught feels the more we spent time together.”
The Romantic: “I met her at a McDonald’s parking lot in Sacramento. I saw her and pulled down my window and said “wassup” then convo started and one thing led to another (he smiles) She was looking good and I was like why not. For valentines day, not too sure yet I might have a nice candle dinner at my gf’s house. Nothing too big though just something small and special”
The Good Guy: “She is just caring and also giving and I do the same for her we joke around like we married because we literally fell into taking care of each other and it felt normal. So I was looking for people to go to a spring break trip with me and she was one of the people that was interested. She ended up not going because none of her friends wanted to go. Then we feel out of touch. However this last Christmas we came back in contact.”
Awkward transition, however since you all are black males I have to ask? Do Black men cheat? Also what is cheating?
“Oh lord, you and these elaborate survey questions” (unnamed voice shouts from Barber chair)
The Modern Man: “Cheating to me is simply you as a individual seeking physical attention that your current companion isn’t giving or lack of”
The Superhero: “men are predictable we never do nothing out of the ordinary and if we do, it’s a clear indication something is going on which let’s woman intuition or spider senses kick in and go investigating”
Alright I’ll take note of that
The Hopeless Romantic: “But black men, I aint no snitch though…we wholesome kings as far as i’m concerned “
What about marriage? This is open to the whole forum. Do men even talk about marriage?
The Diamond In The Rough raises his hand : “My best friend is married but soon to be divorced we discuss marriage all the time, but we also discuss these h— too” (the room laughs)
The Philosopher: “I don’t see me getting married anytime soon honestly. At this age unless a person have their stuff together and is meticulous about his or her daily routines, then it’s not happening and damn sure won’t work. Stable foundation before finding and funding a relationship. You can’t expect a seed to grow without a stable foundation. If you start resourcing it without that stable foundation, then more than likely it will not last or reach its full potential to where it will be of great value or any value”
The Modern Man: “I would like to be married but I’m fine with it not happening at the same time. I believe the title “marriage” is more for business. I know plenty of people who been together for years even decades and not gotten married and they told me the same thing. ‘Marriage is just a title, marriage is just paperwork that leads to divorce’ “
The Romantic: “Yeah I do want to get married one day. Hopefully in my 30s when I’m more stable and successful”
Who would you marry if you could get married right now?
The Genuine Guy: I would marry Lupita Nyong’o. NO CONTEST! She’s beautiful! She’s an amazingly talented actress! She’s extremely smart and she lives life to the fullest and. She’s also has a really interesting cadence when she talks!
The Hopeless Romantic: “Oprah”
The Feminist: “Alicia Keys no doubt, I can’t speak on what she’s like personally but I go for woman who are as close to Alicia as possible haha she’s the base model for my desires in a weird way hahaha…And she made not wearing makeup and accepting your own beauty more popular”
The Modern Man: “Maybe Rihanna”
Okay, come on now it’s Rihanna
He laughs, The Modern Man : “ok then yes Rihanna”
Thank you all , this concludes the interview lets do this again!
The Superhero: “Thank you and damn that was a long interview so what you gonna do with all this…?”
“First, they have “The Mexican” with Brad Pitt, now they have “The Last Samurai” with Tom Cruise. Well, I’ve written a film, maybe they’ll produce my film. The Last Immigrant on Earth, starring Tom Hanks. How about that?”
So here we go, the scene is post apocalyptic United States. Food is scarce and another human being may or may not be within another three-thousand miles. You however are not native to this land, you’re an immigrant. Then screen cuts to black and white arial font appears on the screen in bold lettering it writes “The Last Immigrant on Earth”. So how do they depict you? Are you villainous or are you the heart-throb? Are you riddle with dirt or are you clean-shaven? Are you played by a minority or casted as Zac Efron? Or are you shown to accuracy. What even is the accurate story of an immigrant? Do we all live in Shitholes and huts riddle with HIV and AIDS or are we dreamers, farmers, teachers, professors, doctors, entertainers. Better yet we are people.
The Paul Mooney quote was used to emphasize the fascination with immigrant suffering. Remember that time it seemed like slave movies where becoming an instant road to an Oscar nomination? The sensitization of the drama of misplaced souls trying to make something out of nothing. We wait in line, buy our ticket , sit in our seats and watch American-born actors like Zac Efron portray an hispanic immigrant for two hours and feel wholesome because we related to the take home message that humanity is key, then we drop our ticket stubs on the ground to be swept up by the immigrant from the same country who Zac Efron poorly depicted. You see, narratives matter just as much as representation. Throughout years of my adolescence being called a “an African Booty Scratcher” and being accused of having a zoo in my backyard, hearing the words “shit hole” country is nothing new.
Appropriating our struggle for an Oscar is not new and neither is calling us Shitholes while depriving us of our natural resources and influencing corrupt powers to remain in power to allow us to never move ahead. It’s like playing a game of Simon says, except Simon never says, Simon only takes. Takes our diamonds, copper, rubber, and land. I remember driving in Durban with my South African cousins and my older cousin pointing at an open field of grass and he said to me “hey you see that land over there?” I responded “yes” he whispers”it’s own by some dude in London, and we don’t who he is.”
Is it only a shithole to the media but then behind doors it is the fountain of gems to collect from until it runs dry? What is the immigrant story? It is that of misrepresentation which leads to neglect which is take advantage of by other countries for self profit. Take in account with what is going on in my home country of South Africa. Capetown is preparing for Day Zero, projected to be April 12th and that is when its fresh water source is expected to run out. Capetown, is expected to be first major city to run out of water. How does that happen? The other major question is why isn’t it breaking news? Why isn’t it on repeat and T-shirts like “shithole” hole countries? Perhaps, because it fits too much with the immigrants narrative or we never like the story once it’s told from the immigrants mouth.”
So, I’m obsessed with eyebrows! It started when I was about 15 years old. I started threading my eyebrows at Kiki’s Brows in San Ramon (she’s amazing by the way) and I would get my lovely furry twins updated almost every week after school. However, moving almost halfway around the country finding an eyebrow lady has been a bit challenging and with today’s modern looks eyebrows are a must to any beat face.
So, I want to highlight an individual who has been slaying the game! Cuz shout outs!
Mimi , she makes it look so effortless on her snapchats however here is just one quick shot of her brows.
Following a tutorial look and be amazed to my following eyebrow challenged friends.
What’s the vibe of the week? Family, Fashion, and Lifestyle. Who embodies that nobody other than the up in coming Cali Lifestyle Blogger Naledi Modise. SHE’S DOPE and She’s Fam. Hey cuz. Before I go in her amazing blog why she’s giving an interesting spin on the vega lifestyle I have to explain the type of person I am. So quick disclaimer. I am NOT the type of person to tell you that you’re dope just because I like you, I’ll tell you to do better because I like you. So, when I say she’s dope , she’s dope. So who is she? She’s Bay Area raised, Los Angeles living.
Here’s Naledi , Ledi Lifestyle
What makes her stand out? Right? What makes her the spotlight of the week? Its her intricate spin on veganism? We’ve all scrolled past memes, and savage tweets poking fun on vegans being less than pleasant people but Naledi’s blog and social media posts makes it sound like the elite lifestyle. With her vegan tacos and poppin’ smoothies she’s created a craze of hip veganism. With the presentation of her food and her catch caption, her work mirrors that of lifestyle predecessors but with a modern twist. She’s the younger and much more melanated Martha Stewart of Millennials.
Her website is fairly easy to manage through. Very eye-catching and fun to navigate through, which would be expected of someone who has a gift in highlighting details. She is a college student so her recipes are cost effective to represent that college students can eat healthy on a budget as well. Check out her latest smoothie recipe blog post. The bomb dot com.
Want an insight to this future lifestyle mogul creative mind here’s an interview I shared with the Young Queen :
So Like, Follow, and Subscribe !
If you’re sleeping on her now be prepared to wake up later.
“Our parents have so many repressed memories that they aren’t allowed to talk about, so when we tell them we’re going to counseling they don’t understand that.”
I took this picture because I fell in love with the decor of the wall. Why did I pair this quote with this specific picture because of the theme of ‘Kitchen Talk’ , meaning don’t discuss this particular matter with anyone outside of the kitchen. Whatever happens in the house stays in the house. So the conversation about parental values and generational trauma from cultural ideas of not oversharing conflicting with modern times push for more discussions on mental health.
What is the vibe for the week ; interpersonal relationships, family , friends and growth.
What even is friendship?
As I continue to grow on this planet known as earth, I’ve learned that the greatest lessons come from the greatest a pains. It’s like when we were young mini humans the hot stove method. If you remember the first time you placed your hand on a hot stove the pain reminded you that would be the last time you would ever do that. Apply that to life, failed friendships aren’t failures but lessons. In life, sometimes we outgrow each other , and that isn’t a bad thing. Someone once told me if you can look back at your Facebook status from high school and can completely agree then you haven’t grown at all. What inspired this post, this past weekend I found myself spending a lot of time surrounded by great food, great conversation and friends. Listening to how our brunches would include conversations ranging from Men, relationships, amp is gossip to generational dramatic trauma. These are conversations that I at 15, would not even think to discuss. I at 19, would not even discuss , because of being part of a sub group of friends that differed from the ones I was spending time with today. What defines our friends? Our values , our self esteem, our interests, and our cultures. Whatever brings you around those folks one take home message should be spend time with people who genuinely love you. People who do not wish you ill or are strong enough to not take self frustrations out on you. My belief is that there’s no bad people , but people in bad situations and how they chose to channel it; by projecting it onto others.
As I look through my texts, my favorite thing about my friends is the support that they give me and the advice they bless me with.
Choose people who choose you.
A Thread of positive texts
“IF I SEE YOU AND I DON’T SPEAK….I’m over contemplating whether or not you’ll say hi back to me, how I should say hi, do I look too eager, do you look interested in my presence , do you even remember me ? Am I crushing on you super hard? Am I just a jerk? Possibilities are endless
I’m 100% a city girl but my hometown isn’t a big city. I’m from the Bay Area more specifically I grew up in San Leandro. Everyone knows everyone. During middle school days you’d walk down the hallway or meet up after school at the railings after departing from the hang out you would hug each other. If I saw someone from school on the weekend you’d hug and greet even if you didn’t care for them that much.
So why am I 22 years old and I’m not practicing the same behaviors that was expected of me at the age of 12? Well because rejection sucks. In recent years I found that sometimes folks won’t reciprocate your hi. So am I wrong for stopping ? Am I wrong for practicing self preservation in the form of social cues. It’s something that i’ve practiced my time at college but makes me feel like a jerk every time.
So yes, I saw you but I didn’t say hi because I thought you would swerve me
Is it childish? maybe . Does it feel good? No. Is the fear of being ignored that grand that I should ignore someone’s presence even if I enjoyed a great conversation with them last time? No. However pride exists.
No one likes to feel desperate or “thirsty” but saying “Hi” then keeping it pushing does not mean you’re screaming for attention, you’re just acknowledging their presence because theyre a human and humanity matters.
However, if they make you feel bad, then be prideful and don’t waste your energy on folks who aren’t interested in your presence. They’re not bad people , just not the people for you.
so take home message, say “Hi” to your own discretion.
What am I in the mood for ? Dope photography, from my dope friend Courtney Gilbert. Courtney is one of the first friends I made when I moved to Columbus, Ohio. Upon first meeting she was funny, warm and welcoming. Her style rivaled GQ fashion covers. Her spirit is one that words are not enough to capture what is better said on the other side of a lens. An urban realness that resonates that speaks through her art. It also mirrors the Columbus spirit. The short north murals, the cut spot style restaurants , the creativity within simplicity. That is why her photo being placed into the heart of Columbus- downtown at the metropolitan library was the perfect aesthetic. Once you walk up the decorated school house stairs of the library you approach a hall way then make a right youre in another mosaic hallways with hanging sculptures that rejuvenates the spirit. Then there is her photo Faygo Glow. Faygo Glow, a play on the name of the drink Fanta and the glow effect of the photo. The photograph depicts a melanin full hand with acrylics grasping a complimenting Fanta soda can. The subject behind the can, shot in shallow focus captures another essence of street realness. How quickly everything moves when youre having effortless fun. Those nights that are so great it almost feels like a blur. Which reminded me, personally of my own childhood pranks. Friends and I gurowing up, in San Leandro would plan to have one person pay for a movie ticket at Bayfair, then head straight to the back of the theater, opening a back door and let in the rest of us. A certain childlike street realness. Courtney Gilberts Fayglow is on I believe will resonate with the masses and is worthy of its acclaim.
Please take the time to check out Courtney Gilberts work at the Columbus Metropolitan Library from January 11th to February 9th, located on the second floor of the library and for purchase within the library store.
Picture below: Courtney Gilbert photographed in front of Faygo Glow
“Privilege shouldn’t be based on cruelty”
I am a person that enjoys taking solo adventures and this past weekend I explored the Columbus Metropolitan Library. I was memorized by the wall designs, high ceilings, sculptures and lighting. What resonated with me was the sheer beauty of it all. Beauty, is a trait than can be and has been utilized as a form of privilege. When you’re beautiful, you can cut ahead lines , garner likability and other benefits amongst masses. However what is the cost? What if you don’t fit the mold of beauty according to society? Should they be crucified ? Banished? Should you be modified ? Should we change the standard? Should we allow one group to be treated better on the backs of others struggles? Should privilege be based on cruelty? What about beauty in the form of objects?
So what am I listening to right now? Not because this is one of my dopest friends but this was a really dope podcast. My good friend of mine Alan or WordplayAD’s fire podcast. The Best Behavior
The Best Behavior features host WordplayAD (Alan) and a rotating co-host. This week the first co-host was Scott Free. Both Wordplay AD and Scott Free proved great advice from different generational viewpoints. Both provide laid back vibes which makes their conversation and side banter to be very authentic. Throughout the podcast they often inform listeners about their freestyle method of discussion and freedom of critiques. Scott Free represents the generation that he describes grew up with hip hop mc’s such as Mc Lyte and Queen Latifah. He goes into further detail as he argues his point in the Nicki versus Cardi B debate that has been plaguing social media.Scott free’s cancer story is one that should be heard by the masses for his bravery, honesty and reflection of a second chance at life. The podcast also includes a segment in which Wordplay AD and a Co-host will share their most trash moment of that week. This week Wordplay AD chose to include a political story which showed that this podcast aims to address numerous issues in hip hop culture while continuing to educate the masses. If I were to describe this podcast in a sentence I would simply say; Give the goodfellas a chance.
Link : https://m.soundcloud.com/adplayswithwords/the-best-behavior-podcast-episode-1-co-hosted-by-scott-free
“Yes, being nice and doing things for your friends and family still makes you selfish because it’s your friends and your family , selflessness is being nice to everyone that doesn’t benefit you”
I took this picture and paired it with this quote because I instantly thought of, “give someone a helping hand.” Life is already hard, let’s not make it harder for those who may not have a support system. Help everybody !
“Ain’t no hopefully… put a stamp on it. Even when I don’t have the credentials, I still put a claim on it cause it’s gon’ happen because I’m never out the game just on a new level. I don’t play with my affirmations”
I chose this picture and paired it with this quote because of this Uber driver I was fortunate enough to meet gave me , what I believe is the spirit of texas , or the south. She asked me what I wanted to do for a profession and I answered “…hopefully I can do it” and she gave me the strangest look. She said “hopefully? No , NO ain’t no hopefully.” That type of stern love with affirmations made me feel warm inside. That’s exactly the way I would describe Dallas, Texas- It makes you feel warm inside.
“I don’t come second, I come first. I’m not putting up with anything less than that.”
I chose this photo I took of a Jellyfish mid swim because of its natural gaze. The beauty of aquatic animals and that even in cartoon representations Jellyfish seem to be aware of the beauty and virtually protect themselves from outside intruders with cruel intentions. A trait I wish most humans contained. The quote above, by one of my closests friends highlights the importance of finding oneself.
“Ye, have you ever dated a guy with big ego? He’s going to expect you to stroke his ego all the time, Can you even do that?”
I chose this picture for this caption because of the position the otter is laying in. With its head held high and in a stoic frame made me think of royalty. There a humans who act as if they should be treated like royalty-which we should treat all people fairly and equally however how much attention is too much attention?
“So where did your parents meet?”
“My mom says they met at a party”
“Oh so you were a ‘it happened at a party baby’ ”
I chose this photo simply because it’s love captured on film
“Don’t ever let anyone feel like you’re with them because no one else wants you because NO. YOU’RE POPPIN’ LET THEM KNOW THEY’RE LUCKY TO HAVE YOU AROUND AND THERE’S OTHER PEOPLE WAITING TO TALK TO YOU”
I chose this photo because this is one of my favorite malls because of how beautiful it is. People visiting San Francisco from all around the world just to see this mall.
“In 2018 we hope Ayanda finds someone”
“Nah. Push that back to like 2020, you gon’ find someone and he gon’ distract you, nah. don’t y’all want her to finish school first? Matter of fact all of y’all push it back none of y’all need that”
Berkeley is home to many activist and smart UC Berkeley graduates. So you know focus on school
“So you not out here trying to be the next Harriet Tubman?”
This painting stuck out to me as the history of Oakland which is activism and innovation. So why Harriet Tubman? A phone call between me and a friend in which the friend said to me “aren’t you trying to be the next Harriet Tubman?” Aren’t we all trying to find justice and continue to create legacies for the generations coming in after us?
“You live in a generation where people are never satisfied, you can be their dream girl but because everything is a swipe away, there’s a feeling of something better is always out there,they give up the chase and end up settling. Just fall back and learn through trial and error…So yeah just build a friendship first and whoever is serious about you will show it, yes some shady people can be patient and show you what you want for a really long time just to get what they want, but yeah feel it out and you’ll get better at knowing each time”
The placement of the food with the table decor reminds me of finding excitement within normativity. The richer the meal the more nourished the discussion.
“why would you want to live somewhere you’re not what wanted? I don’t understand.”
Flying to a new destination many thoughts rush through your mind; “will I make it here?” “will I’ll be successful?” “will I be wanted?”
“Yes, Being nice and doing things for your friends and family still makes you selfish because it’s your friends and your family , selflessness is being nice to everyone that doesn’t benefit you”
Do you ever sit in a public place and wonder what everybody in the building lives are like? Is this a good day for them? what are they going through? what is their story?
“I know the fear you are talking about ,and it’s not easy so I won’t tell you it’s easy but don’t count yourself out before you even try. The better feeling is going through it all and deciding for yourself that you don’t want it.
Started with my mentor Miss E whose teaching style and personality had such an impact on who I am today. Her representation and belief in all of her students is one that I am grateful for. This photo was chosen for no other reason but inspiration on numerous layers. Thanks Miss E!