This #Pride, we’re truly proud to showcase the incredible array of talented LGBTQIA+ creators on our platform and beyond, starting with the photographer, Marcus Branch.

Marcus Branch is a Philadelphia-based photographer and artist whose work celebrates the BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ experience, embraces inclusivity, and contributes a broadened perspective of underrepresented communities. His honest and reflective images honor Black joy, light, and celebration amidst the darkness. 

“I continue to preach about our capacity as humans, the power we possess and the ability to shape, challenge, and change the conversation,” Branch told Dazed

A renaissance man with an affinity for portraiture, Branch graduated from the University of the Arts in 2014 with a BFA in Photography. Along the way, he also served as a rehearsal director and principal dancer in a dance theater company, a practicing filmmaker, and an internationally published model and photographer. Branch willingly juggles his passions and exhibits commitment and an undeniable love for the act and impact of creation.

The photographer has been globally recognized, having worked with star talent such as Dominique Jackson of FX’s “Pose” (in which Branch himself makes a cameo in season 3!), Philip Lim, Yara Shahidi, Tina Knowles, and Ari Lennox. His work has been featured in publications like Interview Magazine, i-D, Dazed, Afropunk, Marie Claire, Polaroid Magazine, Gay Times Magazine, Caldera Magazine, The Tenth Magazine, Vice Austria, and Urban Outfitters.

Branch was notably awarded the Robert Mapplethorpe Award by Off the Wall Gallery and Deemed one of 12 Top Fashion Photographers of Philadelphia. 

You can check out their latest projects on Creatively here.  

Caption: Meet Marcus Branch, a photographer, performer and director celebrating BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ experiences.

What is the first creative project you remember?

The first creative project I can remember is a magazine and associated blogs that I created in 2009, titled SKLTN-M (short for “Skeleton Magazine”). I would document and interview unique and intriguing individuals in Philadelphia, sharing their story and taking a step into their world. It was a passion project that turned into one hell of a portfolio piece come college.

Describe your aesthetic in three words.

Honest, Reflective, and Celebratory. 

Photographed by Marcus Branch. 

What was the most fulfilling collaboration you’ve worked on?

The most fulfilling collaboration I have worked on was just weeks before we all went into quarantine in 2020. I was asked to photograph Dominique Jackson, an icon in the ballroom community and Mother Elektra on FX’s “Pose,” for Marie Claire. Not only was I photographing a woman that I truly admire, but I was also a part of a team that was made up of Black and Brown creatives and queers; everything about this shoot aligned with my creative intentions. Before I began shooting, I pulled Dominique to the side and asked if there were any angles that she’d like me to stay away from to flatter her best, and her response still sticks with me: “You are here to capture our truth, no restrictions necessary.” My heart exploded. 

The legendary Dominique Jackson for Marie Claire, photographed by Marcus Branch.

What’s one creative project that taught you something fundamental about yourself?

One creative project that taught me something fundamental about myself was a series I was commissioned to do for i-D magazine surrounding the 2020 election and (specifically) Pennsylvania’s democratic victory, and the youth that voted. I remember being entirely nervous for this shoot, innately. I had everything planned and lit, muses scheduled, assistants on hand, but I was still so nervous. I was nervous about the outcome and whether what was in my head would translate in the images, nervous about whether I organized this properly, if it would go as planned. 

I then realized as I began photographing that my nerves were being misunderstood and misplaced. My nerves were coming from a place of fear, a fear of failing or letting down those involved. I don’t like to live in or through fear, but in and through love. I learned just how capable I am, even in the thick of doubt, to cultivate and organize a space of love, reflection, and honesty. 

“Leading a Pathway to Change: Young Voters of PA on Changing the State Blue,” photographed by Marcus Branch for i-D.

Do you think creativity is something you’re born with, or something you’re taught?

I believe creativity is something that everyone is born with, it’s just a matter of who decides to exercise it.

What’s the last dream you had?

The last dream that I had, that I can remember, is in shambles, almost like a movie trailer. I remember small parts, like vignettes. My dreams as of late have involved adventure, a lot of adventure. They have also involved forms of “the end.” Not just natural disaster, rapture-like forms of “the end,” but terroristic, government-issued attacks. I’m talking helicopters, dropped bombs, and civil hysteria. It’s very cinematic, and dark at times. But hey, you asked. 

One hundred years from now, what do you hope people write about your work?

One hundred years from now, I hope people write the truth. I obviously can’t dictate what will or would be written but I hope that it’s honest, reflective, and celebratory. I hope that they write that my work has contributed to dismantling toxic masculinity, celebrated the marginalized, gave light and voice to the unseen and unheard, and that it honestly reflected the times from my perspective. 

Follow @marcusbranch on Creatively

Creatively is more than a platform—we’re a creative collective. 

Questions or feedback? Email us at feedback@creatively.life

When it comes to building a creative career, we know visibility matters. This past month, we were proud to put AAPI creators at the forefront of all our programming—from the teachers we featured as part of our #CreativelyClasses series to the creative work we showcased on our social accounts. We’re honored to close this powerful month with creative powerhouse, Puno. 

Jennifer Puno (better known as Puno or on Instagram as @punodostres) is a UX designer, creative director, digital entrepreneur, and the founder of ilovecreatives, a platform connecting fellow creative “slashies” with digital courses, resources, and a community of like-minded freelancers. The L.A. based art director and branding whiz is also the host of Girlboss Radio, the go-to podcast for stories about women redefining success on their own terms. 

As a multifaceted creative with an enduring passion for learning from and connecting with the world around her, Puno has bridged the gap between technology and creativity to create a number of businesses that provide both inspiration and opportunities for those around the globe. She does it with style and cheer, calling her hybrid pedagogy, “edu-tainment.”

Puno lives for those who are also living that “slashie” life—a term she uses to describe folks that embrace doing multiple things all at once. With speaking appearances at SXSW, Squarespace, Create + Cultivate, and General Assembly, her creative capital is widely revered and recognized. 

When she’s not helping other entrepreneurs stack their digital skills, you can find Puno creating highly elaborate photoshoots with her cat, Muad’dib—a feline influencer in her own right.

You can check out their latest projects on Creatively here. And tap on the “AAPI Creator Spotlight” at the top of your Discover feed to see all the incredible AAPI creators we’re showcasing this month!

Caption: Meet digital entrepreneur, creative director, podcast host, and all around creative – Puno (aka @punodostres).

What is the first creative project you remember?

I think I was 11, but I had written a story called, “The Tortoise and the Teenage Mutant Rabbits,” or something like that. 😂. It was a version of “The Tortoise and The Hare,” but Nickelodeon style. I was born in 1984, heh. 

I loved being on the computer but at the time, AOL was charging hourly (right?!) for the internet and there’s not much to do after you beat Carmen San Diego for the 10th time. I remember how scary a blank page was, but also I loved… typing? Who doesn’t like pressing buttons! It was quite a few pages, and I really surprised myself that I was able to finish it. 

Unfortunately, I showed it to someone and they told me it sounded really childish. At the time, that seemed like a bad thing so I didn’t write again until I was in college and made my first html webpage. Another blank page strikes again!

Since then, and especially at ilovecreatives, I’ve embraced that I am a childish, goofy, simple writer. It’s a bummer that I lost all those years of writing, so I really take the time to give people encouraging advice. But I also believe in opinions and finding your audience. I don’t want to be blanket sunshine. If I have an opinion, I just say that it’s my perspective and it’s subjective. Do you

Describe your aesthetic in three words.

Fun, quick, off. 

Caption: Puno and Muad’Dib, also known as @muaddibthecat, serving looks. Puno regularly creates beautiful and ornate sets for her feline friend’s buzzy portraits.

What was the most fulfilling collaboration you’ve worked on?

Building a life with my husband. This is the most important relationship in my life and it’s wild that we weaved work into it, too.

What’s one creative project that taught you something fundamental about yourself?

Our Squarespace design course. I realized that I love teaching and getting people excited about their potential. 

Caption: Puno founded www.ilovecreatives.com which provides resources and a community that celebrates being a multi-hyphenate (or being a “slashie”).

Do you think creativity is something you’re born with, or something you’re taught?

Neither, it’s a process. 

What’s the last dream you had?

I had an animated talk show like “Space Ghost” meets “Clarissa Explains It All.” 

Caption: Puno is the newest host of Girlboss Radio, a podcast with a mission to “delight your minds and ears with stories that redefine success.” 

One hundred years from now, what do you hope people write about your work?

Oh wow, 100! Hmm… “It made me smile.”  

Follow @punodostres on Creatively]

Creatively is more than a platform—we’re a creative collective. 

Questions or feedback? Email us at feedback@creatively.life

When it comes to building a creative career, we know visibility matters. So all this AAPI Heritage Month, we’re proud to put AAPI creators at the forefront of all our programming—from the teachers we feature as part of our #CreativelyClasses series to the creative work we spotlight on our social accounts, including the amazing R. Kikuo Johnson. 

R. Kikuo Johnson is a cartoonist, graphic novelist and educator based in Brooklyn. His award-winning drawings and stories have appeared on book jackets and skateboard decks, in an array of editorial publications, and on the cover of The New Yorker

Johnson grew up in rural Maui, Hawaii, where he spent a lot of time exploring the woods, climbing trees, devouring comic books, and creating his own. He’s since traded ink for pixels’ his signature palette often bearing graphic pops of inky blacks and all shades of blue. Johnson’s birthplace has often played a muse to his professional work—his forthcoming graphic novella, “No One Else,” is a family drama set on the island of Maui. 

His first big breaks took a little bit of luck and a lot of hustle. Johnson cold-called a legendary comics publisher and pitched what became his first graphic novel. He spent weeks sending a spec comic strip to every magazine art director he could find an email address for, and landed a gig for The New Yorker. His contributions to The New Yorker have ranged from full-page artwork of notables like pop princess Lorde, to a fitness-themed comic strip series, to the ultimate crown jewel: cover illustrations.

The prolific illustrator also teaches at the Rhode Island School of Design. His portfolio of projects range from designing wrapping paper to labels of local coffee roasters. Clients include Airbnb, Apple, The Atlantic, ESPN, The Guggenheim Foundation, GQ, The New York Times, Nickelodeon, and Nike among others. 

You can check out their latest projects on Creatively here. And tap on the “AAPI Creator Spotlight” at the top of your Discover feed to see all the incredible AAPI creators we’re showcasing this month!

Meet illustrator and cartoonist, R. Kikuo Johnson.

What is the first creative project you remember?

I wrote and drew 25 issues of a superhero comic book unironically titled, “Windman,” when I was eight years old. I’m 40 now, and I still wish I could just draw comics all day. My newest graphic novel, No One Else, is due out in November.  

Describe your aesthetic in three words.

Narrative, naturalistic, cartoony.

Johnson’s debut graphic novel, “Night Fisher,” is a coming of age drama set in Hawaii. The award-winning book will be rereleased in hardcover with retouched drawings in honor of its 15th anniversary this October. 

What was the most fulfilling collaboration you’ve worked on?

Drawing covers for The New Yorker is the most fulfilling. Most jobs in the field of illustration involve articulating someone else’s ideas, but The New Yorker cover offers a very rare opportunity for illustrators to express their own ideas on a highly visible platform. The magazine’s Art Editor, Françoise Mouly, is a brilliant teacher and collaborator. Somehow, she manages to make the illustrations better and helps me sharpen my own voice at the same time.

What’s one creative project that taught you something fundamental about yourself?

My last cover for The New Yorker changed me in ways I did not expect. I used to think my ultimate career goal was to tell the stories that I want to tell. When I was tasked with drawing a response to the wave of Anti-Asian violence in America, I felt immense pressure to try to give voice to others. I’m embarrassed to admit that it was the first time I felt that impulse at my drawing table.

Johnson’s striking cover illustration for “The New Yorker” was his creative response to the wave of Anti-Asian violence in America.

Do you think creativity is something you’re born with, or something you’re taught?

I think I was probably born with an attraction to drawings and the patience to sit and draw for hours. That combination of attraction and patience seems like it’s the recipe for “creativity.”  

What’s the last dream you had?

I’m always dreaming of Maui, the place where I grew up, and my friends and family there.

One hundred years from now, what do you hope people write about your work?

“It’s so hard to relate to this 21st century drivel now that we live in a sustainable global utopia.”

Follow @RKikuoJohnson on Creatively

Creatively is more than a platform—we’re a creative collective. 

Questions or feedback? Email us at feedback@creatively.life

When it comes to building a creative career, we know visibility matters. So all this AAPI Heritage Month, we’re proud to put AAPI creators at the forefront of all our programming—from the teachers we feature as part of our #CreativelyClasses series to the creative work we spotlight on our social accounts, including the incredibly talented Jeremy Nguyen.

Jeremy Nguyen is an illustrator, humor writer, and cartoonist based in Brooklyn, New York. His work has been featured in magazines like The New Yorker and several books, board games, and hotels around the country. 

The Savannah College of Art and Design grad moved to Bushwick in 2011 to pursue a stand-up comedy career and honed his humor with a comic strip called “Stranger Than Bushwick,” which poked fun at his gentrifying Brooklyn neighborhood.

Nguyen’s sharp wit and whimsical humor gained a following and he broke through as a cartoonist for the New Yorker in 2017. He’s called their single-panel toons “the original memes.” Nguyen, who has described himself as a writer first and an artist second, finds inspiration from the world around him—jotting down dialogue he overhears in diners and coffee shops, then sketching and marrying wordplay with the art. The end result could essentially be considered an illustrated standup routine. 

In recent years Nguyen has co-produced a monthly comics reading series called “Panels to the People,” and has occasionally made appearances at live comedy shows, conventions, and other special events. 
You can check out their latest projects on Creatively [here]. And tap on the “AAPI Creator Spotlight” at the top of your Discover feed to see all the incredible AAPI creators we’re showcasing this month!

Meet cartoonist, illustrator, and humor writer, Jeremy Nguyen.

What is the first creative project you remember?

As kids, my brother and I would construct these really cool original Lego sets. We basically had a formula of creating five floors of a tree fort for our archers and knights to guard. As I would get older, I’d try to go taller and taller incorporating new Legos we got that year, without losing aesthetic and function. It got weird though, since we’d be forced to mix in weirder sets, and all of a sudden our cowboys are working hand in hand with our pirates to defend the fort from incoming dragons and Bionicles. Actually, that’d make a good cartoon…

Describe your aesthetic in three words.

Funny, modern, traditional.

What was the most fulfilling collaboration you’ve worked on?

My best friend from college and I made a board game in 2019 called Santa Monica. I flew out to Santa Monica and walked the boardwalk while I took a ton of pictures and made a billion observations. We stayed in a house for a week just living this board game. I was busy drawing buildings and beach activities while he refined gameplay with play-testers. And we’d hang out and joke like we did when we were in college. It was a really special week that flew by and it’s so cool to see a fully printed and playable board game as the result of it. It’s also nominated for a Golden Geek Award for Game of the Year!

What’s one creative project that taught you something fundamental about yourself?

I gave myself projects when I left college, like creating art for Tumblr. And I learned that I am fundamentally bad at making fan art. I felt desperate trying to play in that world, making art for likes. I have love for all the comics I read, TV shows I watch, but I just couldn’t channel any of that into creating fan interpretations of it. 

Props to people who do, fan art can be a great way to figure out your craft. But for me, I was always interested in making original stuff, dreaming that something I created would get other people to make fan art of. I eventually found my way back because New Yorker cartoons came from all those things I love. I stuck J. Jonah Jameson into a cartoon, my favorite Spider-Man character!

Do you think creativity is something you’re born with, or something you’re taught?

Creativity is like any muscle. You can be born with better genes, but you can train yourself to be just as strong as anyone. 

What’s the last dream you had?

Oh, I hate questions like these. I always forget dreams I just had, or just told someone, but I think I had a dream where Julia Louis-Dreyfuss was my mother? Or maybe I watched a ton of Veep recently and Selena Mayer creeped into my head to yell at me for something. In any case, I need to see a therapist and see what this means. My mother is not nice.

One hundred years from now, what do you hope people write about your work?

I’d love my cartoons to still be relevant in a hundred years. But I’m also realistic that humor will evolve and my cartoons will make no sense to that generation’s idea of what’s funny. Pandas might be extinct then and then all my panda cartoons featuring living pandas will be extremely offensive. But, I’d rather they say nothing about my work if they say I was a nice person. Or hot. 

Follow @JeremyNguyen on Creatively

Creatively is more than a platform—we’re a creative collective. 

Questions or feedback? Email us at feedback@creatively.life

When it comes to building a creative career, we know visibility matters. So all this AAPI Heritage Month, we’re proud to put AAPI creators at the forefront of all our programming—from the teachers we feature as part of our #CreativelyClasses series to the creative work we spotlight on our social accounts, starting with the incomparable Tiger.

Tiger is a Los Angeles-based celebrity hairstylist and entrepreneur known for setting  looks that capture a vibe. His power ponytails, tousled top knots, and effortless “I woke up like this” tresses have established his rightful place in the industry. 

Finding his flow styling hair was no accident—his grandfather was also a celebrity hairstylist in Hawaii. And young Tiger, who is of Filipino descent, began styling his mother and his sister’s hair when he was just nine years old. 

From there, the budding hair guru became his own muse—rocking wigs, changing up his hair color, and installing his own waist-long braids. Tiger would get stopped on the street by passersby who had one question: who did your hair? Many were shocked that it was him. From there, he decided to hone his skills, pursuing a professional hairstyling career and obtaining his cosmetology license in 2011.

Tiger’s career began at a Drybar salon in L.A. but things really took off when he joined the cast of “LA Hair” Season 6 on WE TV in 2016. His hard work, creative stylings, and free spirit caught the attention of many within the entertainment industry and he began creating looks for celebrities like Mariah Carey, Nicole Scherzinger, Mel B, Christina Milian, Blac Chyna, Tamar Braxton, Karrueche Tran, and Cassie to name a few.

You can check out their latest projects on Creatively here. And tap on the “AAPI Creator Spotlight” at the top of your Discover feed to see all the incredible AAPI creators we’re showcasing this month!

Meet Tiger, a Hawaii-born and now LA-based celebrity hairstylist.

What is the first creative project you remember?

My first creative project with hair that I remember was a hair competition. Our objective was to create a hairstyle that revolved around swirls. So I made a huge headpiece with lots of swirls and curls in it, but I also made a full-on dress out of hair that matched the headpiece—just as a flex. I’m really into fashion, so I wanted to connect the whole thing together and it turned out super dope. And of course, I won.

Describe your aesthetic in three words.

My aesthetic in three words would be cultured, chill, clean.

Singer and actress, Cassie, is one of Tiger’s long-standing clients.

What was the most fulfilling collaboration you’ve worked on?

One of the most fulfilling creative collaborations that I’ve worked on is a collaboration with a dear friend of mine, Michael Mann, a wardrobe stylist. He commissioned me to do a maternity shoot with a celebrity, Draya Michelle, and it was the first time I had worked on a shoot. The outcome was just so amazing—how we were able to just portray everything that she was emitting at that time from her beautiful pregnancy and her glow to her fun, youthful-yet-sexy spirit, all through the styling of the wardrobe and the hair and makeup. And she just looked completely beautiful. From that moment on I was super-hooked on being able to capture moments like that through creative photoshoots.

What’s one creative project that taught you something fundamental about yourself?

A creative project that taught me something fundamental about myself was a recent campaign that I was hired for to do men’s braids and haircuts, which isn’t my usual thing that I’m booked on photo shoots for doing, but I do dabble in that with my everyday clients. Someone happened to know that I’ve dabbled in braids so they reached out [to book me]. I went on set and did my braids and haircuts and the photo shoot turned out amazing. It taught me that I definitely have a lot of well-rounded talents that I should be using a lot more to my advantage and it also gave me a little confidence boost to show more of that skill set.

Do you think creativity is something you’re born with or something you’re taught?

I think that creativity is something that we are definitely born with but I also strongly believe that it is something that can be and should be nourished. When someone takes full control of their creativity and isn’t limited by external boundaries, the possibilities are endless.

A photoshoot with the iconic Mariah Carey, featuring hair by Tiger.

What’s the last dream you had?

It’s hard for me to remember dreams specifically, but I do know that I have been having a lot of dreams about the plans that I have for the moves I want to make in my future, and I think that is a really good sign.

One hundred years from now, what do you hope people write about your work?

100 years from now I would want people to describe my work as simply fearless.

Follow @Tiger on Creatively

Creatively is more than a platform—we’re a creative collective. 

Questions or feedback? Email us at feedback@creatively.life

LOWFIELD is a Los Angeles based photography team composed of Sarah Barlow and Stephen Schofield. Combining their sensibilities in documentary, editorial, and dark-edge, they create imagery and motion through a variety of digital and analog formats. 

The duo originally met and started collaborating in Nashville, Tennessee, where their first major job was Taylor Swift’s “Red” album (2012). Soon after, LOWFIELD began working with artists like Pharrell, Halsey, Meghan Trainor, and Hailee Steineld among others. 

In 2014, Barlow and Schofield decided to relocate to Los Angeles, CA, to be closer to their management and clients. During this time, they collaborated once again with Taylor Swift, producing the iconic polaroid shot that covered her “1989” album (2014). They also began a working relationship with Hollister, the global retail company owned by Abercrombie & Fitch.

Currently, LOWFIELD continues working within both the music and fashion industries. Schofield creates music and sound design for television and film with his music production team 528XO, for clients like The Kooples, DSW, and Tommy Hilfiger. Barlow, along with her two cousins, currently hosts a self-improvement podcast called, “Somewhere In The Between.”

You can check out their latest projects on Creatively here.

What is the first creative project you remember?

Stephen: The first creative project that comes to mind would probably be around 2012 in Nashville. Sarah and I had just started collaborating and did a test for a local agency. We had zero styling/hair/make-up [on-set], nor did we have any photo support (digital, lighting, camera assistant, etc.) at that time. 

All we knew at the time was that we wanted to create something that said something visually as well as thematically. The location was in this huge metal scrap yard and we spent all day sneaking around shooting our model interacting with twisted metal formations. I don’t believe we even published the story, however the journey from start to end, concept to completion was a very exciting process for the two of us.

Describe your aesthetic in three words.

Underexposed, evolving, nostalgic.

Taylor Swift’s 1989 album cover, photographed by LOWFIELD.

What was the most fulfilling collaboration you’ve worked on?

We are currently in the middle—well, actually the beginning—of a personal project titled “Modern Raphaelites” where we explore evolving roles and identities of masculinity and femininity in modern society, all paletted in a sort of Rosetti/Waterhouse way. So far, the images we have captured feel the most honest and exciting to us and the subjects feel the most inspiring to our own personal tastes. We will probably continue to shoot and collaborate with various models and photo teams for another year before we edit our work into something ready to show.

What’s one creative project that taught you something fundamental about yourself?

Every single one. Each time we shoot there is always a new problem to solve, personality to learn, and a new way to depict what we’re trying to say. We are determined to never arrive and thus constantly learning new particularities which helps keep our creativity alive.

An intimate fashion editorial shot by LOWFIELD.

Do you think creativity is something you’re born with or something you’re taught?

Both. Taste and identity, however, are way more difficult to attain. There’s a reason why when you see a Sally Mann or Tim Walker or even a Roversi you easily can tell whose work it is. Creativity needs to be personally challenged and cultivated constantly.

Tyga for Flaunt Magazine, photographed by LOWFIELD.

What’s the last dream you had?

Stephen: I was in an abandoned house and a cluster of black widows started chasing me. Seems pretty on-brand.

One hundred years from now, what do you hope people write about your work?

Stephen: Hopefully our work still reads as “current” and “exciting” because that really shows the work has stood the test of time. I still reference [Steven] Meisel’s 1992 Marc Jacobs shoot with Kristen McMenamy, Nadja Auermann, and Naomi Campbell and feel that it still looks current and exciting. It’s not 100 years old yet… but still, it is almost 30 years old…so what’s another 70 years of grunge soaked nostalgia? 

Maybe it, along with our work, will be transformed into a hologram 100 years from now.

Follow @LOWFIELD on Creatively.

Creatively is more than a platform—we’re a creative collective. 

Questions or feedback? Email us at feedback@creatively.life

Kathrin Marchenko

Kathrin Marchenko is a textile artist and designer specializing in custom embroidery masterpieces. Her divine signature stitch is akin to a gestural drawing, the energy and emotion of each stroke evident in the stunning details of her threaded portraits and anatomical studies. These celestial designs are embroidered into transparent tulle fabric and seized by a wooden hoop, giving each piece a 3D effect.  

Born in Moscow, Marchenko studied and grew up in a small but cozy city in the Kharkov region of Ukraine. After admiring embroidered dresses from designers like Valentino, Elie Saab, and Dior, Marchenko was inspired to create an embroidered tulle blouse for a sewing course in 2016. She was hooked. The following year she took an embroidery course at Ecole Lesage School in Paris. 

Marchenko’s elegant fashion pieces conjure images of a vibrant fairytale. Feather-light tulle gloves look like translucent wings, flecked with Swarovski crystals. Brightly colored pheasants embroidered on a black tulle bodysuit show a more playful side. Beyond embroidery, Marchenko also creates resin art studded with dried flowers or speckled with gold leaf.

You can check out their latest projects on Creatively here.

Meet Kathrin Marchenko.

What is the first creative project you remember?

At the age of 15, I was given paint to paint on ceramics, on vases and saucers. They, of course, did not find applications, but I really liked to mix a lot of shades and watch them frosting, they turned into bizarre shapes. 

I think, from that moment, I had a great desire to work with color, and over time this desire found itself in embroidery. 

Describe your aesthetic in three words.

Expression, sensuality, meditation.

What was the most fulfilling collaboration you’ve worked on?

The project I had with Gigi Hadid and V Magazine. We worked together for V Magazine’s Gigi Journal Part II. I expressed the theme of quarantine through a girl in a mask. She can be anyone—a doctor, a nurse, an artist, an ordinary passerby. In a pandemic, we are all equal, and each of us wears a mask or other personal protective equipment for global security.

 “The Flowering of The Soul.” Marchenko uses tulle, cotton thread, and a wooden hoop in this original work depicting a girl in a mask.

What’s one creative project that taught you something fundamental about yourself?

The set of works, “Touché Amore,” has shown my unconscious fear of love, of feeling anything. I had no plan before working on this project, but that’s how it turned for me.

Touche Amore, Piece III. Embroidery on hand-painted silk organza.

Do you think creativity is something you’re born with, or something you’re taught?

I think creativity is symbiotic, something with which you are born and it never leaves you. You see the world in this special, creative way and it has an impact on everything you do.

What’s the last dream you had?

A dream about free borders between our countries. My grandpa lives in Ukraine, while I live in Moscow, Russia. It’s really hard nowadays to see the people you love. So I hope one day all over the world people will have this opportunity to be near those they value and love. 

One hundred years from now, what do you hope people write about your work?

I hope that people will say that my works were sincere, done with honesty. That I expressed my feelings—good or bad—with my work, and that I wanted to make the world a little bit better with my art.

Follow @KathrinMarchenko on Creatively.

Creatively is more than a platform—we’re a creative collective. 

Questions or feedback? Email us at feedback@creatively.life

Carlotta Kohl

Carlotta Kohl is a German born, New York raised photographer, artist, and model. Kohl’s work deals with ideas of female sexuality and identity. Her aesthetic demonstrates that what may appear to be soft, innocent, and candy-colored on the surface can nurture deeper observations, revealing emotionally charged themes about the female experience. 

With a photo degree from School of Visual Arts, her photography work includes editorials in magazines like L’Officiel Paris, Hommes, Singapore, Numero Tokyo, Playboy, and So it Goes. In addition, Kohl has worked on special projects with brands like Miu Miu, Gucci, Alberta Ferretti, and Tiffany and Co. The gifted photographer has also spent time in front of the lens. Represented by Elite Model Management, Kohl made her runway debut in Milan, modeling for MaxMara and Alberta Ferretti. 

Kohl’s encaustic works, sculptures and fine art photo works have appeared in various galleries in Paris, New York, and California. Her work can also be found in “Babe,” a collection of work by young female artists. 

Kohl’s credits include design and film; she recently directed the music video for “Chinatown” (featuring Bruce Springsteen) by the band Bleachers and she’s currently working on a photo documentary about the lives of four teenage girls. 

You can check out her latest projects on Creatively here.

What is the first creative project you remember?

I very clearly remember meticulously making imprints. I must have learned it in school or something, but I remember this really nagging feeling that I had to “document” these things because they were important. 

Elite SS19 x Polaroid Show Package, taken by and of Kohl.

Describe your aesthetic in three words.

Nostalgic, melancholic, dreamscape.

What was the most fulfilling collaboration you’ve worked on?

It’s the one I’m working on now. I’m following a group of teenage girls and documenting them as they grow up in New York. I spotted them in the summer of 2019 on the street in the Lower East Side and I was enamored.  

Kohl’s signature melancholic and nostalgic approach to photography embodied here for Rachel Antonoff’s SS20 Lookbook.

What’s one creative project that taught you something fundamental about yourself?

Honestly again, it’s the project I’m working on now. I really didn’t know how important it is/was for me to work on something that’s real and something that I’ve been through. It’s heartbreaking and healing going back to a time that is actually the root/basis of my work. 

Do you think creativity is something you’re born with, or something you’re taught?

I think true creativity is something you’re born with. But I think people pigeonhole what creativity is. There’s a huge spectrum and it can transcend many different fields.

“Golden Eye” for So It Goes Magazine, shot by Kohl.

What’s the last dream you had?

Probably a nightmare. I’m so used to it though, that they’re just dreams now. And they’re also so ridiculously decodable—it’s almost painfully cliché. 

One hundred years from now, what do you hope people write about your work?

That’s not for me to figure out.

Follow @CarlottaKohl on Creatively.

Creatively is more than a platform—we’re a creative collective. 

Questions or feedback? Email us at feedback@creatively.life

KidSuper

Colm Dillane a.k.a. KidSuper is a New York designer whose boundless creativity can’t be contained in a single tag. His creative collective of people, ideas, and mediums not only makes clothing but also produces films, art shows, and music videos. 

It all started when Dillane, the son of a Spanish artist and an Irish fisherman, launched a t-shirt company with his friends, screen printing the goods in his parent’s basement and selling them out of his high school cafeteria. In college, the NYU sophomore expanded his grassroots operations, converting his dorm room into a shop and selling his KidSuper branded clothing to fellow undergrads. It didn’t take long for the fresh streetwear brand to take off.  

KidSuper the brand (and KidSuper the guy) now live and breathe at the cross-section of high fashion, music, and art. Some statement pieces look as if they were ripped directly from an abstract painter’s raw canvas or sketchbook. The label is known for bold patterns, wild graphics, and whimsical designs. Take a denim work jacket constructed like a piece of folk art—each color of the farm landscape patched together with separate pieces of fabric. Or an oversized coat completely covered by the faces of two people kissing but with the KidSuper twist; the jacket opens up on the kiss. 

Always innovating, for Paris Fashion Week Dillane embraced the digital event with a stop motion animation catwalk of his Spring/Summer 2021 collection. He’s expanded his fashion kingdom, attaining cult status by creating statement pieces that have attracted co-signs from culture hounds like Lil Baby, Young Thug, and Gunna and locked deals with major brands like Nike and Puma. 

You can check out their latest projects on Creatively here.

Colm Dillane a.k.a. KidSuper in his Brooklyn storefront and studio.

What is the first creative project you remember?

Wow, that’s a hard one. I grew up with a mother who was an artsy-type. So every morning or everyday after school, I would come home to a project that she made up. In first grade for Valentine’s Day, we hand stamped cards with potatoes for everybody in the class. I remember so many projects, videos, and silly things. 

Describe your aesthetic in three words.

Fun. Vibrant…and…hodgepodge? Yeah, that’s probably not good to say that. Let’s try another word instead of hodgepodge. Ambitious. [Laughs]

What was the most fulfilling collaboration you’ve worked on?

There’s been many. From J. Balvin, from Proera, from Flatbush Zombies, The Underachievers–that was a huge one for me because that marked the first collaboration co-sign that I got. 

I think the most fulfilling one for me was PUMA just because I was able to check off so many life goals in one collaboration. I got a global collaboration, I got my own shoe, I got my own soccer cleat, but from there we got Héctor Bellerín, a professional player in the EPL [English Premier League] to wear the cleat and that was a crazy bucket list item. And we’re building a KidSuper x PUMA soccer field which is also a life goal. And then also, the “Scram” cartoon we used to promote the PUMA collection ended up being a 30-minute pilot cartoon for what I think could be a KidSuper cartoon with potential to be on streaming platforms. I’m pitching that out. 

There were so many things I was able to do in that collaboration that I was able to accomplish and finesse a little bit. So yeah, that was fulfilling. I just love the idea of someone coming to you, “Hey, this is a collaboration we should do,” and me being able to come up with different projects outside of what you’d typically think a collaboration should be. 

KidSuper (far right) and friends modeling the PUMA x KidSuper Studios exclusive collaboration.

What’s one creative project that taught you something fundamental about yourself?

Gosh, these are some hard hitting questions. I would say it was the fashion show in Paris. It was such a big undertaking and I was a little bit unprepared and really didn’t know what to expect. [It was] a financially, physically, and mentally draining project. 

It was just cool to have so many of my friends figure it out and be on the same stage, same platform as Louis Vuotton and Hermes. What I found out about myself was that having good people around you is always important, no matter if they are the most skillful or not, just having a good team and a good group of friends. And I guess I also learned that things are possible, so shoot for the stars. You can compete with Hermes and Louis Vutton. 

Do you think creativity is something you’re born with, or something you’re taught?

I say this all the time: I think creativity is inherent. I think humans have that; humans are born with problem-solving skills. The term “creativity” makes problem-solving seem like it’s this blessing from another power whereas I think creatives are people with problem-solving skills that have been nurtured and supported. And I think everybody can be creative if they’re not only always asked questions and asked for solutions but also are supported. I think a lot of times people don’t have the confidence to say they are creative. I think most creatives are egomaniacs because to be creative you just need to be confident in your ideas. 

KidSuper A/W ‘21 for Paris Fashion Week.

What’s the last dream you had?

[Laughs]. My dreams are worse than my reality. The one I had the other day was I had sex with my highschool girlfriend who currently has a boyfriend and I felt so bad about it because I ruined their ten-year relationship and I was just devastated and didn’t know what to do. My dreams are always worse than my reality.

One hundred years from now, what do you hope people write about your work?

100 years from now? I hope people go to my work as inspiration to channel their optimism and freedom and they look to my work as a guiding light to think without any bounds. Like, “Oh man, [KidSuper] has inspired me to be boundless.” 

Follow @KidSuper on Creatively.

Creatively is more than a platform—we’re a creative collective. 

Questions or feedback? Email us at feedback@creatively.life

Thomas Evans a.k.a. Detour

Thomas Evans, a.k.a. Detour, is a Denver-based creative specializing in large scale public art, interactive visuals, portraiture, immersive spaces, and creative directing. A born collaborator and “military brat,” Detour pulls from every conceivable experience that has shaped his landscapes and perspectives, examining the future of culture, music and society. 

“I always tell artists that we’re basically historians,” Detour told My Modern Met. “You can really tell what society was a thousand years ago based on the art that was created and the materials used and the subject matter.”

Detour’s vibrant portraiture has honored the lives of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd as well as featured celebrities ranging from Anthony Bourdain to Erykah Badu—all with euphoric colors and striking detail. His work is an ongoing experimentation in visual art, music, and multi-sensory technologies like interactive paintings. The self-taught artist has been drawing his whole life and although he never attended art school, he does have an MBA in Marketing. This has no doubt helped him to navigate major partnerships with clients like Netflix, Red Bull Mountain Dew, the NBA, and General Motors.

With his ever-evolving approach to art, Detour’s focus is on expanding customary views of creativity and challenging fine-art paradigms by mixing traditional mediums with new approaches—all the while opening up the creative process from that of a singular artist, to one that thrives on multi-layered collaboration and viewer participation. 

You can check out his latest projects on Creatively here.

Portrait of the artist, Thomas Evans a.k.a. Detour.

What is the first creative project you remember?

The first major project that I remember participating in was painting a mural for my high school. This was the first time I was able to actually create a mural. This was in Ramstein, Germany. Our mascot was a Lion and we were called the Royals. It took myself and another fellow student about a week to complete. It was an interesting time because I didn’t know exactly what I was doing but it would lead to building confidence in my identity as an artist. 

Describe your aesthetic.

I would describe my aesthetics as being at the intersection of figurative community work and bright, bold expressions of color. Like any artist, my work and aesthetics evolve over time.

An original mural in Denver by Detour.

What was the most fulfilling collaboration you’ve worked on?

One of the most fulfilling collaborations was my last exhibition. We needed to turn the space into a museum for an imaginary band in the future. It required a ton of different art pieces to be fabricated in different mediums. This allowed me the opportunity to work with several different artists specializing in several different mediums. I had to get everything from an electric motorcycle built to a 6-foot-tall harp fabricated from scratch. This experience taught me a lot about working with others.

What’s one creative project that taught you something fundamental about yourself?

Creative projects that get me outside of the country really teach me about myself because it forces me to learn all new things. The residencies I participated in in France and Argentina taught me a lot about creative problem-solving. They both forced me to look inward when it came to my ideas about creating my own opportunities. 

Do you think creativity is something you’re born with, or something you’re taught?

I think everyone is born with creativity because it’s all about creating new connections between ideas. Because everyone comes from different perspectives y’all have the opportunity to create new things. It is something that has to be nurtured as well. Those that nurture their creative process, through reading, learning, traveling, and other forms of exploring, have more opportunities to create unique perspectives that then lead to new and original ideas.

Thomas “Detour” Evans stands in front of his mural at RedLine Contemporary Art Center. Photo by Chayce Lanphear.

What’s the last dream you had?

Unfortunately, I do not remember. I can’t recall the last dream I’ve had because it has been years. Hopefully that is not a bad thing. Lol!

One hundred years from now, what do you hope people write about your work?

It’s very hard to think about what will be relevant in 100 years. I hope that they will at least see how I tried to capture this time on Earth in a bottle. My wish is that they will  see and appreciate a colorful perspective of what was happening in our society. 

Follow @Detour on Creatively.

Creatively is more than a platform—we’re a creative collective. 

Questions or feedback? Email us at feedback@creatively.life