On How They Got Here
"...one day one of my professors sent out an email saying Red Hook Labs was looking for interns. So I looked up Red Hook Labs on Google Maps, and was just seeing this industrial-looking spot that had the appearance of some sort of garage. I'm thinking, 'What could possibly be here?' But turns out they work with some of the most sought out photographers in the industry."
"It actually took years and years for people to accept my work. I couldn't get any photographers or teams that wanted to shoot with me because they were scared of what I wanted to do. Around 7 to 8 years ago, there was only a handful of people doing this style of work."
"Well first I got into skateboarding because that’s what you do when you're bored and in the suburbs. I was teaching myself how to skateboard off of YouTube videos and then I met a good group of friends who I started skating with. We all got really into skate montages and skate videos - Spike Jones and things like that - and I started to realize that you could make really good skate videos for pretty cheap. So I fell into that, and then one thing led to another, and now I'm here."
"I was this bright-eyed young girl who wanted to get into the industry so badly, and I do really feel that my internships on campus and my involvement with our school magazine Clutch, helped me get that first internship at Seventeen Magazine. I was like "I'm not going to let anything hold me back. Just because there are kids that are doing three, four internships in New York during the school year, I can still get an internship during the summer if I work my ass off."
"I was always running around as an intern. Giving models robes, hauling clothing racks in and out of studios, cleaning everything. I just remember everyone was so beautiful and I’d be running up to clients sweating in my chucks, like 'Hey did you ask for this?'"
"Where to start? I think it all began in Florence when I first met Luca Guarini and Luigi Vitali; we were students and flatmates at that time. Then after about a year, I went to Barcelona to study graphic design and Luca and Luigi went to Madrid. We decide to start DUST magazine to follow our passion for photography; we started it without any expectations. I still remember we built the first issue via skype and then we met in Poland to finish and print it."
"I was 25 years old doing an internship with 18-year-olds.... I was appreciative that I probably had my head on a bit more than my 18-year-old self."
"It took me a couple of years but I realized that I way preferred other people's photographs to my own, and that's not me being humble. That's just factual."
"Yeah, I always knew I wanted to be a writer. It was one of those situations where it was like, I'm good at this, and I'm also not good at anything else."
"I think when you start your career, especially at a brand, you have 2 choices. The 1st you can start at a smaller company and have a lot of responsibility but not as much visibility. Or you can start at a bigger company and have greater visibility to important people but less responsibility."
"I accidentally got here, but I’m happy that I did. I was never interested in fashion; I don’t care about what I wear or what designers make my clothes."
"I was totally blindsided; I went into the meeting thinking that I was getting fired or something. And she was like, 'Oh no! I'm leaving. And do you want my job?' And I was like, 'Okay!'"
"I decided to move to Lebanon because I'm Lebanese and I thought if I was going to work or get myself anywhere then, I thought it should be in the country that I'm from. There's so much work that needs to be done here, so I figured that I should come back."
"Well I got my first camera at 14; at first I was shooting around here in Split, Croatia, where I grew up. When I started shooting, I immediately knew that it was something that I wanted to get into deeply. I entered the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp. I studied photography there where I lived for five years, that's how I learned about magazines and books and fashion, things like that."
"It all just comes down to working really hard which sounds really simple, but I would always try to go the extra mile. It's definitely not a 9 to 5 job, with regular hours or regular tasks, so you have to learn how to be super flexible."
"I was in my last semester of university, and I was under quite a lot of academic pressure. I was in that kind of weird mentality where you're like, 'I can't go out and have fun because I need to be studying,' but I couldn’t study all the time, and I was going crazy sitting in the library, so I just started doing these drawings. Turns out I was much more creative than I allowed myself to be."
"I knew I was interested in fashion, but I had little knowledge about the industry and the kinds of jobs that existed. It was very black and white to me. I actually wanted to be a buyer. I feel like when you first go into the industry, you think, 'I want to be a buyer, a merchandiser, in sales, or a designer.'"
"...trying out different areas of the field helped me understand what I liked and what I didn't like. By the time I got to Eyesight—my last internship—I had a strong idea of what I wanted to do."
"I worked with J. W. Anderson in my year out between BA and MA. My friend Mel was a pattern cutter there and got me on board. It was a great insight into how a small label starts out and runs itself, which gave me some of the knowledge that I needed to start my own label."
"They hired me and I didn't know anything about Glossier. I came in on my first day and was like 'What's going on with all these G label things.' They're like 'Oh, so we're launching products.' And I was like 'Oh, okay. That's new.'
We've grown a lot."
"I came back for Christmas to my hometown in Poland, and then I decided to try Paris, as it seemed to be the best choice to work in the fashion industry, and still not too far from home! It was so spontaneous because I just took a bus with my makeup kit. I didn't know anybody, and I didn't know the language."
"I worked in the fashion industry in general at first after art school trying out styling and then PR before going into makeup as I’ve always loved beauty but didn’t really see it as a job option when I was younger."
"The skills learned in production are invaluable for assisting creative people, especially because it’s all about organization and structure which teaches you how to be a good assistant. It’s also important to know how to treat people on set, and especially how to deal with people who can be a bit difficult."
"It's weird because I had a lot of experience before I interned at CR. I was being paid to assist people on sets, so I was already working professionally in the industry. I was just here because I loved the magazine so much and believed in what the magazine stood for and I admired Carine. I think that showed a lot."
"I ended up getting an internship at Vogue Netherlands for production, so something completely different. That's producing fashion shoots and helping the fashion producer with everything. After two months the assistant of the editor in chief left, so I got to fill in her position. Then last year the position of Digital Editor was available, so I grabbed that opportunity, and I just moved up in the company. I got really lucky."
"That experience was invaluable, funnily enough, because I realized that I didn’t want to be a stylist, which I think is something that you can only learn from experiencing it."
"After I assisted stylists on a freelance basis while gradually, more and more I started to do my own thing – test shoots and small, independent magazines. One of my biggest projects is the magazine Off Black that I work on with my friends which is now on it’s 5th print issue and stocked globally."
"At first, I wanted to become a fashion designer because I didn't know what else you could do in the fashion industry. Then I learned that I was more interested in images and that I didn’t want to work in a design studio, so I decided to pursue a career in styling."