Tell us about your recent trips, and the purpose behind them. You just got back home from Miami, Chicago, and St. Louis, right?
Yeah, well, honestly, Miami was just a trip to get away, explore, and kind of just enjoy the city. Especially because it was super cold in Canada. I just wanted to get away from everything and explore. And while I was enjoying myself and I was taking in the beauty in the city and taking in the possible shots I could get, like I do with all of my trips. But instead of getting them all when I thought of them, I kind of just soaked everything in and decided I wanted to shoot in specific places, and saved up all my shots for the last day.
In terms of Chicago, I went down there with a purpose, just because I know there’s so much to do downtown and stuff. But what made Chicago different form all my trips is that I wanted to be more simple with the shots. I usually incorporate more Photoshop and and creative editing. But for these shots I wanted it to be based more on the fashion. But when I was there, I was kind of bored looking at the shots because it didn’t really feel like it was enough. So going down there made me realize I don’t just want to do simple fashion shots, I want to continue to grow more with street fashion and Photoshop manipulation.
When I got to St. Louis, I got to spend a lot of time with family and kind of escape from everything, including my photography, modelling, and artist stuff. I kind of just took a mental break from it for a couple weeks. I had to ask myself a lot of questions like, “do I want to continue with this and is it going to go anywhere?” I kept trying to think of something new that I would do. I looked through my profile and thought, I’ve already built such a great profile and I got so far, I almost hit 5k in one year. I’ve built and created so many new skills that I never even knew about before. So my final decision being there was to continue what I’m doing, but with a new approach, without all the stress, having learned from my mistakes.
Who would you say is your number one fashion inspiration, in terms of the way you dress?
Honestly, I don’t really have one, but one person that I really like their style and the way they dress and put outfits together is Giaro Giarratana on Instagram. I like his style because I like to be clean with my outfits and super simple. I don’t like to be extra because when I do try to combine too much into my outfits I feel too heavy like, I’m carrying too much on me. I feel like I’m more comfortable just doing all black, or black and white, I even like earth tone colours. His outfits are just super simple but still well put together. That’s how I try to be with my style. Clean and well put.
What made you decide to do what you’re doing, become an influencer?
Every time I saw nice photos on instagram I always thought “I wanna do this” and I’ve always had a huge imagination and I just think I’m a super creative person and I’m able to think of things on the spot, and considering all these skills that I have, I thought “why not?” I was inspired by a couple of people to go in the direction that I went in and I thought if these people can do it why can’t I? I have so much to offer. I feel like I wanna inspire people, and I wanna create things that make people feel good and for them to see my photos and think “this is so lit”, “this is so different”, or “how did he even think of this?” you know?
What are three things you feel like anyone entering the industry needs to know?
Number one thing is that nothing is gonna come easy. It’s gonna be the hardest thing ever and you just gotta push through it and think about why you started and your intention. Why are you doing this? If your goal is “okay I wanna be famous” at least have the drive to do it, you know? Next, patience. You gotta have the patience to edit, the patience to create, because when you’re working on a photo your brain is kind of filing through so many ideas before you complete your final piece. You put so many things together, you erase and add and erase and add until your piece finally comes together. Patience is also with growing. Your following, your numbers, and your engagement, basically. Unless you get blessed by a huge page reposting you and you wake up with like 500, 000 followers… like its unrealistic. If you’re really trying to get somewhere, and like have a million followers, thousands of likes, you need to post real quality content, you need to be different. Which brings me to my third point. You need to be different, have different ideas do different things, and make people go, “wow I never seen anything like this before, or never felt like this going through Instagram.” Like you are the composer, you know? Like what are you creating to make people feel a certain way. So number one, nothings gonna come easy, two, you gotta be patient, number three you gotta be different from everyone in the game, because if you’re not paving your own path, you’re just gonna be like everyone else on Instagram. You can be inspired by something but you gotta think of it in a whole different way. All these people are blowing up because they gave their different thoughts their different personalities and kind of embedded that in their work. People love seeing weird things. The internet is weird, you know. Like that yodelling kid that blew up. Who goes to Walmart and yodels? It’s weird. We love weird things.
What’s one thing you would do differently, with everything you know now, if you were just now entering the industry?
I wouldn’t do anything different, honestly. I worked really hard to be authentic with my work, and I researched the game so much, like I know it so well. And when you know the game you know the right moves, you know? And so I wouldn’t do anything different because I feel like I made the right moves and took the right steps. I worked really hard on understanding the psychology of people and how they react to things online, why do they skip over a story or a post, why do they hold it down to screenshot it? I learned everything. I would just go in with more patience. Because when I went in I thought it would be a lot easier but it wasn’t easy at all. I went through so may bumps. And when you go through that much it makes you so much stronger, and when you finally taste victory, it tastes so good.
What do you want your legacy to be, or like how do you wanna be remembered?
I wanna evolve into a monster in this industry. I wanna evolve from an influencer to a business man in this industry. I wanna keep evolving until I’m super up there. I wanna keep climbing the ladder until I get there. I wanna be known as the guy that worked so hard to get there and I want people to see me and be like, “I rate him”.
What kind of influence has Toronto had on your work?
Toronto had a huge influence, to be honest. I incorporate who I am, and my culture within my work. So, in my pieces I’ve incorporated the CN Tower, the city, just because it represents me and it represents where I grew up, you know? It’s my home town. So I incorporate it in my work as much as I can because it’s a huge part of who I am.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received and would like to pass on to everyone reading this?
Your happiness. Your mental health. What you think about. What you let enter your mind. You really need to be careful and cherish those things. And if you’re going through something you really need to fight until those clouds are gone. If you wanna be happy, You have to learn to be happy. Don’t direct your happiness on what you’re working on. Like if you’re trying to grow on Instagram, I get it, but you can’t correlate your Instagram to your happiness. Like if you lose a bunch of followers in one day its gonna devastate you. But you really can’t let it have that control on you. You need to find a balance. You need to accept it. You cannot be depressed because it not in your hands. Gaining followers is not in your hands. Yeah you’re creating content to get followers and yeah you’re doing what you need to do but you can’t let it bring you down. If you lose thirty followers in one day, you’ll gain them back another. You can’t make Instagram your whole life. Your happiness and your mental health comes before everything, and you’ll succeed a lot more once you come to terms with that.