Hi Daisy, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking.
Risk taking makes me think about discomfort. A discomfort that is both familiar and new. I also think about how discomfort is only temporary and we move out of that discomfort into a version of ourselves we couldn’t see before deciding on going through with a risky decision. I have found that every time I take a risk, whether it be in my personal life or for my career, I am better for it even if it I don’t get the outcome I hoped for. Most recently, myself and the other organizers of the Los Angeles Zine Fest decided to cancel our yearly festival which was supposed to occur on May 31st, at Helms Bakery. Instead, we decided to move forward with digital event programming in lieu of the festival to keep our community safe during COVID-19. This was all foreign to us and what we considered to be a risky move! We weren’t sure if people would be into it or virtually attend what we were planning but we showed up, we learned the ins and outs of zoom webinars vs zoom meetings. We had to do walk-throughs with workshop/panel/reading participants to ensure they were familiar with the technology. We also decided to hire ASL interpreters for the majority of our events to increase accessibility. Again, territory we knew nothing about. This presented more work than we could have ever imagined. All in all, we feel pretty good about choosing to provide programming for our zine community during the pandemic. We were able to celebrate zines and zine culture for the entire month of May! This “risk” taught us that we have the ability to be more accessible long term as well as through out the year as opposed to having zine programming once a year. What we thought were limitations were actually tools to helps us mobilize and reach a greater audience. For my photography, every time I’m scared to try something new I give myself space to feel the discomfort of the unknown and so called “risky” move, but then I go for it. I’m always happy I gave it a go. And yes, taking risks is scary and unfamiliar and uncomfortable but we only have one life to live so why not go all in every chance you can get? YOLO.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
My photography journey hasn’t been an easy one. Mostly because it’s been riddled with self-doubt and trying to do photography while working a full time job to sustain myself. I’ve been shooting for 10 years but only started feeling comfortable calling myself a photographer in the last 3 years. Hello, crippling self-doubt, amiright?!?! I eventually got over it because I kept at it and surrounded myself with people who provided unwavering support, even when I felt shitty about my work. What I love about my film photography is that I am dedicated to documenting my artist communities through a personal lens. I make the decision to commit to photographing underrepresented people in the zine, artists and music scenes. I love capturing landscapes and I believe the way I capture them can fill you with an ethereal nostalgia you won’t soon forget.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I would take my friend on a little picnic at Barnsdall Park. It’s a very cute overlook in the middle of the city. For some sweaty dancing fun, we would head over to The Short Stop in Echo Park and end the night taking snazzy photobooth pictures. On a different evening we would head over to Crawford’s for some fried chicken, mac n’ cheese and beer. If she wanted a spa day, we would also head to Wi-Spa for soaking and body scrubs to end the week on a relaxing note.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I would like to shout out my fellow organizers of the Los Angeles Zine Fest. I love you Bianca, Rhea, and Roxy. We always make the fest happen. We push ourselves in ways we never think are possible. I am so grateful and happy to learn and grow alongside you all.