We had the good fortune of connecting with Elisabeth Collazos and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Elisabeth, how do you think about risk?
Since I tend to be on the shy or reserved side (at times), others would not naturally think of me as a risk-taker. However, I found risk-taking to be exciting and an amazing experience. It’s also a great challenge that you can give to yourself. I am originally from Louisiana and moving out here was a big risk, going to school in Los Angeles, and adapting to the culture was also considered a risk. Obviously, contributing to magazines as well as starting my own was an enormous risk. However, I have learned so much and have met so many amazing people along the way that I’m truly grateful for all the hesitation I have gone through.
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.
Well, Gemma Magazine features artists. This includes fashion, fashion designers, actors, authors, and musicians. I have always been attracted to artists and could scout for days…lol. However, I research their background and I also include a Q and A section. There are times where I reach out or sometimes, the artist will reach out on their own. I feel that what sets Gemma Magazine apart from other publications is that we feature so many different types of creatives. Attending events (pre-covid) was always super exciting and having the opportunity to talk to artists and creatives in person. Therefore, the goal is to inspire the audience is hopefully accomplished. I am very proud of the number of artists we have covered and I genuinely love listening to their story. Before starting Gemma Magazine, I contributed to various online sites and publications. This was an excellent education. I had always wanted to start my own publication, which was not easy at all! However, it excited me and the risk factor really motivated me. I never imagined the amount of work involved. Yet I still continue to love the work. Some of the lessons that I have learned along the way have been patience, learning to listen more carefully to my interviewee’s and to treat each story like it is my first. I want the world to know that Gemma Magazine is about supporting the arts and featuring artists. The arts are being dropped from so many schools (pre-Covid even). I truly believe artists are inspiring and artistic endeavors can change one’s perception of our culture. We (as a brand) want to show that you can follow your dream if you have the perseverance.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Well, we would have to start off at the Urth Caffe for a Spanish Latte and pastry (truly addicted). Also, we would go to the one in West Hollywood as there is amazing shopping on Melrose — which we would do after. I adore this area of town and could spend all day here. You will not find boutiques on Melrose anywhere else. After so much shopping, we would head over to Venice Beach to take in an entirely different vibe. Also, it has that beachy feel. We would probably eat dinner at a cool sushi restaurant on Abbott Kinney or even head over to Downtown Culver City and go to Akasha for drinks and dinner. Akasha has super fresh food as well as delicious wines. The following day, we would start at LACMA where there is so much to see and learn. The grounds are just beautiful. We would also enjoy a picnic lunch. Dinner would be low-key at Paquito Mas for a taste of Mexican fare. Then we would see a play at the Wadsworth Theatre. Our third day would be started at the Plays Vista Farmer’s Market (which is similar to a boutique now) with coffee and scones along with low-key shopping and possibly a tour of LMU as well as a last-minute drive through Plays Del Rey, which is such a beautiful area…yet not overrun with people.
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?
Well, overall I’m fairly introverted and enjoy working alone and at times, collaborating. Of course, I immensely enjoy speaking with the people whom I interview and attending events. However, when Covid hit in March, it became crucial to reach out more. I really missed the events and interaction. Then I started seeing Alina Freedman’s Facebook posts regarding zoom meetings, virtual meetings, her lives and much more. Watching Alina deal with the pandemic (in terms of her work ethic) was inspiring. Before I knew it I was doing interviews via Instagram Live as well as contributing to “She’s Raising the Bar” (Blog Talk Radio) as a fashion expert. Alina kept dealing with each and every challenge in a creative way. She genuinely motivated me.