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DEAR CREATIVES circa October 2020

By Desiree Jones

If 2020 hasn’t shown you anything yet, about this world, about this nation, and about your life then here’s a wake up call. 

This year, we have experienced (and currently are experiencing) the effects of a pandemic, racial injustice, global warming, financial hardship and political/social unrest. I don’t think I’ve ever seen so much chaos all at once. 

That being said, in spite of all the chaos, you are still here. You are present in this world.

I’ve come to realize that in times of chaos and pain, it’s creativity and innovation that begin to bleed out. Art bleeds. 

And even while bleeding that Art, time waits for no one and there will always be some trials, that we have to get through. 

In every stage of our life there is an obstacle. In every stage of our life there is opposition. In every stage there is a problem that you have to solve to get to the next stage of your life. As a country there has always been setbacks that we had to overcome. I don’t just mean for people of color, I mean innovation. We have lights. We have planes. We went to space. In spite of failing thousands of times.

No matter how much chaos or opposition comes your way, another day will come, and another. Time will still continue. 

So I have 2 questions: 

 1. will you get stuck in the chaos or will you continue create in spite of? 

2. If you do decide to create, will you continue while bleeding? 

Time waits for no one, so the choice is yours.

Photo by Desiree Jones

https://www.instagram.com/gopromojones/

http://voyageatl.com/interview/meet-promo-jones-buckhead/

The Art of The Protest

Circa August 2020

In America, the concept of protesting in the name of any political view, has always presented a risk of violence, rioting, looting etc. If you have ever participated in a peaceful protest or asked a participant why they are involved in that capacity, they would respond with a sense of belief in a movement. The concept of racism has always been a global issue and not just limited to one demographic in society. Recently the death of an unarmed black man named George Floyd on May 25th 2020 by a police officer in Minneapolis Minnesota, has sparked a massive movement of peaceful protesting across the world and it as all happening during a global pandemic.

Recently I was able to connect with Virginia beach native Artist and Photographer Tyler Wigglesworth aka Tylerjoriginals in reference to the images he posted on his Instagram page at the time. He was able to travel to various cities in The United States, capturing the multiple aspects of the peaceful protests in the wake of police reform and social justice. He has only showcased his talent for fashion/editorial Photography up until recently and the real life images were a beautiful contrast in what is expected from his usual work. With his Canon 5d Mark III in hand, this 24 year-old has traversed the east coast and encapsulated the movement in a total of 10 cities including Richmond(VA), Hampton Roads, Washington D.C., and New York City . The following images were taken by Tyler while he was in the midst of the protests and connecting with Humanity and you will get to read his thoughts on the images unfiltered. Exactly how art should be presented.

The Robert E Lee statue in Richmond Virginia marked with graffiti by the citizens. On lookers of all ages and races taking in this historic time. Image By Tyler Wigglesworth

Before you took this image did you know the History of the Robert E Lee Statue and why did you feel compelled to take this Image?

"Yes I did know the history of the statue and how it impacted the City prior to the protests. It is was considered a tourist attraction and to see the community take that and use it as symbol of the movement and it becomes nationally recognized, was something I had to see. It was reason enough."

What would you want a person to perceive from the image?

"To see the impact of the Revolution, to see that they were part of history that would be in textbooks that the next generation will see. I think of those books and how they depicted the Civil Rights movement and I wanted to connect that line of generational knowledge of what people experienced during these moments."

Peaceful protests standing on the Norfolk Confederate Monument located in Norfolk,VA erected in 1907 and was removed in June 2020. Image by Tyler Wigglesworth.

Being a Norfolk State Graduate, how did you perceive the Norfolk Confederate Monument while you were in college compared to now?

"I actually graduated this year(2020) in the thick of the protesting. In my college years, I always questioned why the statue was being glorified but in light of everything, I now see the need to take action. We questioned these symbols before and to see the eye-opening switch in perception now, makes me happy to be able to capture the change."

Protestors in City Hall of Manhattan NYC. A diverse crowd that reflects the scope of the issue being more than a race issue. Images by Tyler Wigglesworth

Why did you want to present your images only in color and not black and white?

"I had the intention to always capture the movement in color because I always saw black people as well non-black people supporting the cause. I wanted to show a sense of progression from the Civil rights movement and that equality can no longer be seen as just supported by people of color. I always saw diversity in the crowds and wanted to make sure all people saw this dynamic in society."

The banners read: "Defend Black Lives" and "Defund NYPD" location City Hall of Manhattan, NYC. Image By Tyler Wigglesworth

You have traveled to NYC, Richmond VA, Hampton Roads(7 cities) and Washington D.C. What made you go to these places specifically to capture the protesting there?

"Those cities have shown to be prevalent with acts of racial injustice by authority and I connected with the communities' responses in this moment of history. Being born in Richmond and raised in Virginia Beach, the surrounding cities were always part of my upbringing. The responses in all these cities had a common theme and I had to capture these historical events."

If you can convey a message to the next generation thru your photos of the protesting, what would that be?

"I would say that this issue is very real and relevant especially to the people questioning the movement. This is reality, this is happening and this will not stop until there is social justice and equality for us."

Article by Nalan Smartt Jr. of Ceasoning Magazine

Encouraging Words and Creative Tips Through Social Isolation

Circa-April 2020

            Even in the darkest of times in our history, and when societal norms are deemed dangerous practices, the Artist remains timeless.  The Artist has always served as a beacon of inspiration throughout the upper echelons of society as well as our communities.  Writing this in a time when a global pandemic has caused complete disruption in how we view and exchange social interactions, it has become truly difficult to maintain a sense of unfiltered artistic expression.  My colleagues on the Ceasoning Magazine team have also expressed hardship in maintaining their creative outlets but we turned our scope inward for inspiration.  We discussed how we found ways before the Pre-Isolation Era, to tap in to our creative energy and it was a rejuvenating experience.  We shared our routines and strategies with each other, which have yielded refreshing progress for me. I wanted to share these tips to Artists everywhere that are feeling uninspired during this unprecedented time.

Tip 1: Take a break from social media and do some self-care activities

            When using social media many artists find themselves clinging to validation of others. How may likes do I have on this post? Did she/he give me credit in that photo/project?  Hey that looks like better than my work?  Take a break, please.  Find ways to relax. Go for a run.  Try a new cooking recipe. Find your quiet place to meditate.  Do not let that outlet warp your own sense of self worth by valuing solely on the opinions of others.  Enjoy your “Me Time” and focus appreciating your own efforts to validate yourself.

Tip 2: Have conversations with loved ones and share Good times. 

            Positive energy is contagious. We often lose connections with loved ones at times, while furthering our own endeavors.   So many factors can cause that disconnect, however you can still check-in and provide that boost of positivity. An easy way to do so is a trip down memory lane.  We share moments of joy and laughter with the people we love and you can use those memories as a catalyst of good vibes and channel in to your craft.

Tip 3: Carve out your space to create in your living environment.  Don’t be afraid to change the aesthetic in that space.

See that (potentially) crowded space over there?!  Clean it, organize it, then work creatively in it.  Or just rearrange your space and/or switch up your aesthetic in that area.  Sometimes adding color to a wall, changing the lay out of your furniture, or even changing your typical lighting in that space can give you that change to the “feng shui” in your creative space.

Tip 4: Take this time to build on personal skills and crafts

There are many artists who are comfortable where they are in their skill level.  While having a rhythm of creativity is great, I believe as an Artist you are short changing yourself by not “training”. Especially, if you have the time now that you did not have before.  There is a quote “Lost time is never found again.”   Make use of that idle time by perfecting your craft.  Whether it’s the act of doing your skill repetitive times or watching a video that can help you learn more in your industry, it would be beneficial to sharpen your abilities in a competitive global market. 

Tip 5: Re-explore your movie collection and/or your personal library. May come a cross a gem of inspiration. 

Many of us have a collection of blu-rays/dvds and/or books in our possession.  They were purchased for a reason; remember that.  Wipe the dust off of that artifact and re-immerse yourself in to that world.  This time, try to have an open perception or even a different angle when re-exploring one of your favorite movies or books.  Another catalyst can be watching that movie or reading that book that you never got around to.  I have several books that I have to finish myself and I looking forward to doing so.

Take this time to hone in on being a better you.  Re-invest in to your success by in-cooperating self-enlightenment in to your routine.  You cannot neglect the aspect of growth as an Artist or even a Human for that matter.

Article by 
Nalan Smartt Jr
Ceasoning Magazine/CEO
Ceasoningmagazine@gmail.com

The Year 2019 - IN REVIEW

RVA Fashion Week Showcase Spotlights Designers and Fall Fashion

Circa November 2019

Blas Couture displays an ensemble with a "Warlord" headpiece on the runway.
Photo courtesy of Julian Clayton/@prdxphotography(instagram)

When you initially walk into a room or an event, you can feel the energy. That energy can exude from the crowd, the venue or even the actual performance.  When it pertains to a fashion show, you may look to the crowd for that energy, as a particular sound emits and hovers above the music playing in the background.  The atmosphere at the RVAFW (Richmond Virginia Fashion Week) designer showcase that took place on October 13, 2019, had a very calm vibe in the beginning as the spectators were seated.  Once the Hosts Luqman Haskett (Dapper Luq) and Caroline Kalentzos introduced the first designer, you could tell there was burning excitement and anticipation for fashion from the entire crowd in the Dominion Energy Center of the Performing Arts building that night.  The rousing crowd demonstrated excitement and appreciation for all of the designers as the show progressed.      

Fashion shows have a focus in regards to entertainment, which is the presentation of artistic garments on models walking down a runway. In that case, you have no choice but to focus visually on the wardrobe and the person wearing it.  The RVAFW Designer Showcase displayed an array of talent in the fashion arena by highlighting exquisite designers and well-poised models that wore each garment with a perfect blend of confidence and strength.  You could deduce there was a dynamic effort behind the scenes to create an experience, judging the quality of the presentation.  The staff/volunteers were professional; courtesies to everyone whether you were a photographer in the pit or a vendor who asked a question.  Not to mention, when in the lobby, you could overhear people describing their favorite looks in conversations. 

There were a total of ten designers that displayed during the show, Leve Lifted, Iamsewcrazy, Very Ashley, Inceptual Sara, Wav3s, Able, MK Vendetta, Tough Cookie, Harrell’s Menswear, and Blas Couture.  Each Designer had their ownrespective scenes with an intermission after the fifth scene.  They emphasized individuality with each look for their high-end fashion ensembles.  At the same time, the models effortlessly and impressively executed each look while walking and posing.  There was no denying the talent and individuality of expression by the designers.  The experience provided a lasting impression of fashion appreciation and respect for craftsmanship in the fashion world — all taking place in Richmond, Virginia.  Perhaps, RVAFW is the beginning of a fashion renaissance on display for the public to embrace, and to transcend generations from this southern region, not known as the capital for fashion.  We have highlighted looks/pictures below by Julian Clayton(@prdxphotography on instagram) and descriptions by Alexis Brown (Stylist, Designer, Writer)

Article by Wade Seagram (Ceasoning Magazine Writer/Journalist)

20's glam recreated white gown that screams elegance of the times with a ruching bodice and feather overlay add the pop to this sophisticated silhouette featured by Iamsewcrazy at RVA Fall Fashion Weekend 2019
This floral flare dress with plunging neck live and statement earrings were presented by TOUGH COOKIE
LEVE presents the fall trend of comfort in duality with this eye catching crop floral top, paired with the cozy comfort soft trousers enhanced by wine booties and Orange quilted jacket.
Very Ashley featured this Golden/Copper sequin gown that has ruching to compliment the natural shape

To find more information on upcoming events from RVA Fashion week, go to the following link--- https://www.rvafashionweek.com/

CREOLE IN GHENT by Ceasoning Magazine

Circa August 2019

Creole in Ghent is a celebration of the Creole influence in fashion.  Our Stylist for this photo shoot Talysha Marcellus expresses her own Creole language and personality while accomplishing a major milestone. Her 1st photography project where she is behind the lens.  The outfits featured are from 360 Vintage Designs located at 4714 Princess Anne Rd Virginia Beach,Virginia.  The Boutique Owner Tracey Langford has been operating this hidden gem for 7 years now and Ceasoning Magazine truly appreciates her involvement. The Creative team of Photographer Nalan Smartt Jr, Talysha Marcellus, Models Ella Phair and Jhatiana McMurrin, were able to combine vibrant colors and african undertones to create a Euro-Afro fusion while shooting in the Ghent area of Norfolk, Virginia  

New Video Series -SOUNDPROOF

SoundProof is an audio and visual experience catered to creatives and music hungry individuals. This 1st installment of SoundProof features the amazing DJ Wyze based out of Norfolk, Virginia. This DJ believes in the power of music and it’s power of healing in the mental health community. He believes that “The Energy You Create Will Fuel the Future”

https://youtu.be/n1bfWimiTRg - TO VIEW/LISTEN

https://youtu.be/n1bfWimiTRg - TO VIEW/LISTEN

This is SoundProof
Episode 1
by CEASONING Magazine

Follow CEASONING Magazine
IG: @ceasoningmagazine

Produced by: @ceasoningmagazine

Featured DJ - DjWyze: IG @djwyze
Directed by Nalan Smartt @m.smarttguy
Cinematography
-Nalan Smartt IG @m.smarttguy
-Nate Brown IG @madebykap
Sound Edit: @Digginsounds Studio
Video Editor- IG @gopromojones

The 2nd Edition of Ceasoning Magazine (Photography Edition) released on 7-19-19 at select Locations in the Virginia area.

The 2nd Edition of Ceasoning Magazine (Photography Edition) released on 7-19-19 at select Locations in the Virginia area.

Thank you for supporting Ceasoning Magazine.  After careful review of over 5,000 photographic submissions by Photographers we have selected a collection of images that we as a “Magazine for the Arts by the Artists”, believe to have captured the true essence of art through photography.  This 2nd edition of Ceasoning Magazine is a Photography edition and we are truly excited to publish 80+ Virginia artists in one art publication.
- Please see our distributors page for locations.

DIGITAL COPIES AVAILABLE $3- Digital download until 8-26-19

Issue 2 Cover

PRINT COPIES AVAILABLE - $20

We are working on creating a pre-order option thru our website, however they can be purchased at a flat rate of $20 at any of our distribution locations.

  Any other inquiries or questions please contact us through social media by searching for @Ceasoning Magazine on Instagram and Facebook, as well as email at ceasoningmagazine@gmail.com.