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CITY CHRONICLES :: 4 YOUNG CREATIVES CARVING OUT TORONTO'S FUTURE

CITY CHRONICLES :: 4 YOUNG CREATIVES CARVING OUT TORONTO'S FUTURE

By Chief Bosompra

What were you doing when you were a teenager? I know I spent my days scheming on ways to make a little pocket money with my friends as we rode bikes through our neighborhood. When we weren’t doing that, we’d adventure through the woods or drop by a girl’s house while her parents were away at work. Truth Or Dare and Spin the Bottle were the only things on our minds. Times were simple.

Fast forward to 2015 where social media reigns supreme and a 13-year-old might not know who Bill Clinton is but has 15k Instagram followers and can tell you any and everything you need to know about Supreme boots, Raf Simons, and how to not be a fuck boy.

It’s known that the youth have disposable incomes and are the ones who dictate whether or not a toy, brand, or video game become this season’s hottest seller. The only difference now is that they’re not only looking up to celebrities, they’re getting influenced by other teens around the world, thanks to apps like Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat, to name a few. These have birthed the likes of guys like Ian Connor, the self-proclaimed “king of the youth,” Spencer Lee, Jonah Levine, and many more.

I wanted to speak to four young creatives who are poised to shape the music, fashion, and culture scene here in Toronto in the coming years. I asked each of them the same questions, and they all answered with their own unique perspectives.

 

POPEInfluencer/Promoter

Introduce yourself:
Hey, I’m Pope (Isa Cargill). I’m from Vancouver B.C., but moved here to Toronto. I work at Brooklyn Projects Toronto. It’s a sweet job. I love working with streetwear and coming across new styles everyday. I’m outgoing and I enjoy meeting new people and expanding, like, that’s just me. 

How old are you?
I’m 18 years of age.

What do you do creatively?
I do visual work for local brands, promo for Toronto events, I model streetwear, and I’m in the process of building a real fashion music scene for the adolescent street culture. I plan on building a culture where the youth can experiment and express ideas for all interests from fashion, music, and art, to journalism and graphic design. I plan on establishing a culture that allows the youth to be supported, and finding opportunities for the younger generation to have some sort of creative control on projects – [which would allow] the youth to have an influence on what we ultimately consume. Established brands and companies that have supported movements like this have made big impacts in streetwear and the music scene in 2014. By continuing to work with my peers and people around me, we are starting to incorporate a youthful taste into projects we’ve been involved in and will be doing so until Toronto’s adolescent fashion scene has a voice on a global scale.

The “youth wave” and youth influence in music and fashion was talked about a lot in 2014. Why do you think that is?
Because the youth has a innovative sense of style… bringing new trends, new flavour, a whole new age to fashion. Look at Yung Lean, look at Ian Connor, look at Luka Sabbat, like these individuals are iconic in the fashion and music scene all within a short period of time. The industry is changing and is being geared towards youth, due to the fact we are the next generation and we are making “moves” as a generation.

“I’M DOING MY BEST AT BEING ME, AND WORKING ON WHAT I WANT TO BE DONE IN THE CULTURE AROUND ME.”

What impact has social media made in your life and do you feel you’d be the same position without it?
To be honest, no, because with social media you’re able to brand yourself to probably the largest audience in the world. I don’t believe I would ever have friends in Florida or London or Sweden if I didn’t. Some of the coolest influential people I’ve met were through social media and I’m grateful for it, so yeah, social media had a positive impact on me personally.

5 Essential items you own and couldn’t live without?
1. My Alexander Wang – always have a piece on.
2. My wallet – have to have my paper by my side.
3. My cellphone – I need that.
4. My Supreme flags hoodie.
5. My Puffer – because people have cats at their houses and I’m allergic.

Do you have any last words for The Hundreds readers?
I’m doing my best at being me, and working on what I want to be done in the culture around me. Always keep your eyes on the BIGGEST PICTURE, not the bigger picture. #fetch

::

Follow Pope on Instagram at @plugpope.

 

HARRISON Producer

Introduce yourself:
I’m Harrison. I’m a producer based out of Toronto.

How old are you?
I’m 19.

The “youth wave” and youth influence in music and fashion was talked about a lot in 2014. Why do you think that is?
I don’t know [laughs]. Well, it seems like  a lot of emerging artists have been super young lately. It’s easy to gravitate towards “prodigies,” I guess you could say. I just found out that Sway Lee [in Rae Sremmurd] is 19 [laughs], he’s a prime example! Music and fashion are broadening their horizons at a million miles a minute, so the youth is a good place to look for good new thangs.

What impact has social media made in your life and do you feel you’d be the same position without it?
A goddamn huge one that’s what. Maybe it’s sad. Soundcloud is very important to me. People are just nicer on Soundcloud [laughs]. It gives people like me who don’t want to leave their room a chance to show their music to the world. More specifically, a music scene.

IF YOU THINK YOU CAN’T DO IT, YOU’RE A MORON.”

5 Essential items you own and couldn’t live without?
1. My Nintendo 64 – IN MY OPINION some of the most inspirational sounds and visuals are seen in video games. Nintendo just makes so many positive games, it’s really good for when you’re down.
2. My Laptop.
3. Box set of SpongeBob Squarepants – Don’t give me shit for this. Spongebob definitely hits home for a lot of people. I feel like in the later seasons, the creators started to cater to the fans who grew up with the show and it started to get a bit more mature, and it would get you right in the feels when you least expected it.
4. Cigarettes
5. iPod – I can’t leave my house without music.

Do you have any last words for the Hundreds readers?
If you think you can’t do it, you’re a moron.

::

Follow Harrison on Soundcloud here at /harrisonsalive.

 

BECKETT – Aspiring Artist Manager/Consultant

Introduce yourself:
What’s up, my name’s Beckett. I’m from Toronto and grew up in the West end of the city. You can probably find me chilling with my homies around Oakwood, grabbing coffee on Ossington, or helping customers at the OVO shop.

How old are you?
I’m 17.

What do you do creatively?
I started to notice some of my friends from high school were putting out music I fuck with, so I’ve been there to shoot videos/photos and give advice. We’re all young and the stuff we’ve been working on is pretty DIY, but I’ve been mentored a lot about artist management, so it’s a new interest of mine. I’ve always been the kid that my friends go to for knowledge on sneakers, clothes, and music or just advice in general. Right now I’m just juggling whatever creative opportunities come up that work with my interests.

The “youth wave” and youth influence in music and fashion was talked about a lot in 2014. Why do you think that is?
Honestly, when I was younger I’d always be looking up to veterans like Jay Z, Kanye, or even skaters like Chris Haslam. Now there’s younger cats like Rae Sremmurd or Travi$ Scott putting out music that I listen to all the time. Even though we look up to older guys, I think my generation has more control over our product. From the way we wear our clothes to the way we want our music to sound, I see a lot of young guys out there doing things differently. Seems like we finally have a bit of real estate in this community that was built and controlled by adults… pretty stoked to be in Toronto and witness first hand a lot of progression in the last year.

“EVEN THOUGH WE LOOK UP TO OLDER GUYS, I THINK MY GENERATION HAS MORE CONTROL OVER OUR PRODUCT… WE FINALLY HAVE A BIT OF REAL ESTATE IN THIS COMMUNITY THAT WAS BUILT AND CONTROLLED BY ADULTS.”

What impact has social media made in your life and do you feel you’d be the same position without it?
I’ve built some valuable relationships and kept in touch with old friends through social media. To be honest, there’s nothing I’ve accomplished that I couldn’t have be done without it, so I’m glad to meet people and have real life encounters in Toronto. Social media is nice to keep up with fashion, sneaker releases, girls, and other stuff that’s going.

5 Essential items you own and couldn’t live without?
There’s not much I couldn’t live without but these are some things I’m proud to have:

1. Sicaa and Olive – my two dogs are a big part of my family.
2. Passport – the traveling I’ve done and the places I’m excited to see.
3. Vintage sneakers – I’ve been collecting Nikes/Jordans for a couple years.
4. Coffee maker – I’m usually up pretty late, can’t say I’m a morning person.
5. Jade plant – it represents wealth; not just currency but knowledge too. It’s believed the larger it grows the more wealthy you become.

Do you have any last words for the Hundreds readers?
There’s always a kid younger and more talented out there trying to take your spot. Work hard and let your product speak for itself. As long as you’re doing cool shit that people haven’t seen before, the right people will find it and back it.

::

Follow Beckett on Instagram at @beckettsl.

 

ARISTOTLE – Stylist/Artist

Introduce yourself:
I’m Aristotle, and I’m 15.

What do you do creatively?
I style and create for ACC (A Creative Council). I would call myself an overall artist.

The “youth wave” and youth influence in music and fashion was talked about a lot in 2014. Why do you think that is?
You have musicians playing a big role in that. These artists are heavily influencing the youth. There’s a ton of rappers wearing all this high-end stuff like Kanye and all of A$ap Mob, [and] these guys are mentioning the brands in the music, so kids are looking at these artists they love and look up to, and they Google the clothes Rocky’s wearing and talking about, and then they buy it with their Paypal. With musicians – especially in rap – wearing high-end clothes has become the trendiest thing to wear to these kids. Most rappers have been wearing designer forever, but it used to be Gucci and Louis Vuitton. Nowadays it’s Raf Simons and Rick Owens. These artists are all icons to the youth, so all this fashion culture gets exposed to the youth and it’s much more available.

“WEARING HIGH-END CLOTHES HAS BECOME THE TRENDIEST THING TO WEAR TO THESE KIDS… IN MY OPINION, A LOT OF THESE ‘FASHION KIDS’ ARE GONNA BE GONE IN A FEW YEARS.”

I can mostly speaks for fashion though, and I know the entire youth movement is just in another one of its cycles. With every kid having access to the Internet now, they can all easily research designers, brands, or styles easily on the Internet. You have designers like Raf which is a perfect example of this. The stuff he was doing in the early 2000s is now really being appreciated and noticed, not only by the youth, but by the fashion industry as well. I think the whole youth movement/wave is just a cycle. In my opinion, a lot of these “fashion kids” are gonna be gone in a few years.

What impact has social media made in your life and do you feel you’d be the same position without it?
I use social media to mostly observe things I’m interested in. I follow designers and people I like on Instagram and Twitter. I’ve never been big on using it to get popular or get seen. I post what I feel like posting and don’t care for followers. Social media has given me a lot of knowledge, but hasn’t had a large impact on my situation.

5 Essential items you own and couldn’t live without?
1. My phone – because of the communication and looking at things.
2. Earphones – because I always need to be listening to music.
3. Always have to have a pack of Belmonts also.
4. My rings, I wear them everyday. That’s about it.

Do you have any last words for the Hundreds readers?
Watch.

::

Follow Aristotle on Instagram at @realtreecamoandorange.

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