Human Coat Hanger Turned Philosopher
And so for the third time within the past year, I got to return back to the land of my people. The land in which everyone walks with an actual purpose, amongst the population whereas it is socially acceptable to wear all black, and where you won't be asked the question, "Are you in mourning or something?"
The Southern California girl who naively once mocked her East Coast friends for their big coats, beanies and excessive scarf coverage with statements much like, "Oh please, its not THAT cold!" Got her karma with being in New York while it was considered to be the coldest weekend on record in the past 50 years (-20/-30 with cruel, cruel winds). And for those who have never experienced a true Southern California "winter" before... Well, I can say that I have not truly experienced one either, winter in California is an absolute myth. Don't believe me? Go into any suburbanite mall with the intent of trying to find a coat of any kind, in the month of January. Your attempts will be futile at best, for the stores will have already began stocking for the Spring season. In January, mind you, what is considered to be the coldest of months in most other places.
In Los Angeles, the main means of transportation are clearly by car, we unconsciously zoom past thousands of faces each day that we shall never see again. In New York it is the same sort of ordeal but just with far more unwanted human interaction. Down below the city is the ultimate game of how to avoid as much human interaction as possible while having as much personal space as sardines, everyone is looking else where to avoid eye contact, and if you do make the accidental eye contact LOOK AWAY IMMEDIATELY! Pretend that it never happened. Do you have any idea how difficult it is for someone that is 5"5 to be crammed in such small quarters where a majority of the population is taller than you? You try and not make any sort of eye contact. As I said, it is the ultimate game. Or if you just so happen to get on when it is one of those rare times of day where you can actually sit down and have some false sense of personal space, at each stop try and guess where the new passengers will sit, for it will always be as far away from the nearest person as possible, it is much like a dance or sorts. On one of my nightly commutes, I was seated next to an artist who was sketching our fellow commuters on her iPhone, in quite the talented fashion, that was until someone blocked her view she decided to draw penises. I love New York. As soon as her eyeline was once again cleared, back to sketching the commuters and as I was departing I left her with this "You are very talented!" She blushed, not knowing that anyone was watching her and said "Thank you!" And that was the end of that interaction.
I could go on forever about the fellow subway commuters, for I find them to be completely and utterly fascinating. People you are forced to be in close quarters with for a brief moment of your life and then to never see again. I find that strangely beautiful. I often wonder about their lives, where they are go, who they are meeting, what makes them happy, who they love and who loves them. There was one instance that truly just made me smile, I was seated next to this older gentlemen and he was texting and I briefly read over his shoulder, "A jazz song just came on my iPod. It made me think of the night we met. I love you!" He was smiling as he was typing and I could only image the look on the recipients end. Its the little things.
Commencing the 17 shows in 7 days monologue... Starting out each day with beloved coffee in hand, I would actually leave with enough time in order to scout of a coffee shop before I went into work (and hey, you barista buddies, you would be so proud to know that I have now officially graduated from the world of hot chocolates and mochas into the full spectrum of adulthood with espresso shots and cortados, how proud? As I am currently writing this one handed with a latte.)
When people ordinarily think of the word "model," they have the connotation that they are mindless, pretty faced, human coat hangers with a lower level of intelligence, that their faces got them to where they are now, and I have NEVER found any part of that sentiment to be true in the slightest. These gorgeous specimen of human are not only extraordinarily talented in what they do, but are people too and it pains me when I hear people make these false statements with zero personal experience. But that morning I was speaking with quite the surprising specimen, he starts off the conversation much like the homeless man in "Pretty Woman" with "What's your dream?" And so I told him mine and he told me his, how he got into modeling for the mere purpose of traveling, which I shall admit is also my main incentive for photography, how he just moved to New York from Brazil and how he is living his dream. For a very brief, five minute conversation he tended to enjoy jumping around to different tangents of thought. From how, through his travels and personal experience how to he no longer believes any news platforms for how it is all lies and if there is any truth it is purely an over exaggeration, I told him that I no longer watch the news for all it does for me, instead of informing me instead depresses me to the upmost degree. He found that to be relatable. As I said, in a very brief span in a five minute conversation, the topics of conversation were all over the place. But I suppose my favorite of his random sentiments was thus, and it may hang with an air of cheesiness but hey, I am a girl and I live that nonsense! The conversation was coming to an end for I had to get back to shooting and he had to get back to his makeup chair but it ended on this note "Do everything you can with love! Everything imaginable. If you are not happy with where you are, only you have the power to change that! If you are not in love with what you are doing anymore, change it! I did! I came out here and even thought it has only been a few months my life has forever changed. Just remember how true the power of love is!" I then rolled down my left sleeve to show him my tattoo (and for those of you who do not know, I have the word "Love" in my Mothers script on my left wrist, to serve as a constant reminder to spread love wherever I go, for that is what she did and she was by far the greatest person I have ever known. For it is an ever present reminder to give love even those to whom you may not necessarily believe to deserve it, but in all actuality everyone in one sense or another deserves to be love and to love in return. And even though, I may have moments whereas I may not truly believe it myself I tend to always come back to that philosophy. For what can I say? I guess love just so happens to be apart of my anatomy now so why not be it in every aspect of my being?) and as I show him he says, "I knew it! I knew you had this hidden secret about you! You stand here in your all black, looking like a small intimidating (I always tend to laugh (which doesn't necessarily help my case) when people call me "intimidating" for I find it to be so completely false) little creature that is about to take over the world and yet, you wear your heart on your sleeve in a very physical sense! You are just full of surprises, aren't you?" And that was that.
If there is one thing about me, it is that I genuinely love speaking with people. I have a tendency to go into coffee shops and talk with the strangers around me, or just about to anyone for that matter. And even months down the line, as I am currently re-editing this in August this conversation I had still strikes a chord within me. It was just one of those lovely human interactions I just can't seem to happily escape. I did not have to go back to look at my neurotic mess of a notebook to remember certain conversation points, it was all still there, replaying in my cranium as if it were yesterday. For it is so rare to find and talk about love without talking about being in love, for they are two entirely different trains of thought, both entirely lovely, but so entirely different. And I genuinely do try and project love into everything that I do, for if I don't then what is the real point of doing it? And I couldn't even begin to express how blessed I feel to be able to do what I love most, by picking up a camera and taking photos of people that make them feel most beautiful. I love what I do. I am so lucky.
Okay, I am finished with being a cliche little shit. Commencing with the visuals!
And so, in the true Brenna Weeks fashion of being the ultimate procrastinator extraordinar, as the next fashion week is quickly coming upon us and I somehow have yet to publish this I am going to now. In August. Somehow it is August now. I wrote all this back in February... Oh well, atleast now you can now officially call this "So last season!"
Check back in February to see the next installation of "So last season" with the Fall/Winter collection!