Loud and Queer: How These Two Artistic Visionaries Express Their Creative Identity

Expressing one’s artistic autonomy is no easy task. Here are a couple queer individuals who, within their respective fields, are paving the way for self-expression and creative individualism.

Chance Allen

Chance Allen is a junior Journalism and Media Studies double major at Mercer University in Macon, Georgia. He began taking pictures in his junior year of high school, and after navigating his first year of college, decided to pursue his love for photography.

“I think every photographer has their own kind of style, whether they’re trying to do it or not.” Allen said.

Allen takes pride in his creative vision, however he, like us all, faces creative challenges. Night photography in particular, is a challenging but rewarding practice Allen is trying to master. 

The secret to Allen’s success in his field is to always be prepared. He will usually bring his camera everywhere, and take photos of anything and everything happening around him.

“My best photos have come sporadically. I have had some planned shoots, but I think more times than that I’ve had better ones from random moments.” Allen said. 

Photo by Chance Allen

His photos capture the beauty and authenticity within Macon’s community, and his unique style illuminates the community’s rich culture and charming individuals.

“Give yourself the space and time to take photos of what you enjoy.” Allen said. “It takes time. I don’t think it’s for everyone, but if you take the time to really put in the work, it will be more rewarding.” Allen said.


Ivy Marie

Ivy Marie is a junior English Literature and Creative Writing double major at Mercer University. She first started writing when she was little, eventually picked up poetry in middle school, and started to solidify her writing skills in high school.

“I’ve been writing my whole life, but I started taking it seriously as a junior in high school.” Marie said.

Finding her literary voice was a journey for Marie. As she ticked off the poets who she simply could not relate to, she found that there were many that were not the right fit.

“In the beginning it was really hard to find confidence in myself. I knew I didn’t like old poetry. The challenge was finding my own voice.” she said.

Now, as a confident poet, Marie is navigating how to decipher the line between sharing her art without oversharing her personal life.

“I don’t need to make art that shows all of my trauma, everything I’ve been through, all at once.” Marie said. “Some things are good to keep to myself.”

Poetry by Ivy Marie

Marie handles all her poems tenderly. She strives to do justice to her experience while also creating stories that carefully cradle her queer experience.

“No matter what I try to do, it always comes off as very gentle, and very ethereal, even when I don’t mean to.” Marie said.

Marie’s poetry takes a snapshot of her queer experience. Her storytelling makes for vivid, artful pieces of work that perfectly capture what it’s like to feel and live openly and freely.

3 Indie Artists To listen To In 2020

3 Indie Artists To listen To In 2020

2020 brought us a lot of surprising things. In the midst of this chaotic year, the indie music scene has been sprouting new music hits that appeal to a wide range of listeners. Here are a few rising artists dominating the genre.

Tobe Nwigwe

Musician Tobe Nwigwe’s mix of eccentric lyrics and bass- filled sounds makes for an interesting listening experience. He gave us “EAT”, featuring his wife, Ivory Rogers, an upbeat rap single that covers his life growing up as a young black boy in America. His tone and beats convey his musical prowess, and his unique sound have us all listening.

WizTheMc

South African native WizTheMc made his music debut with his mixtape Painting a Picture. His newest single “For a Minute” features a joyous, uplifting beat with a smooth chorus that makes you want to get up and dance. His melodious yet distinct sound is almost like honey to your ears.

Peach Tree Rascals

Peach Tree Rascals is an indie musical group composed of five musicians: Dominic Pizano, Tarrek Abdel-Khaliq, Isaac Peach, Joseph Barros,and Jorge Olazaba. The group released “Mariposa” in 2019, an instant hit to the North American public. The song has a cheerful chorus and smooth backing beat. Their lively music and melodic lyrics are the perfect road trip tunes.

2020 may be a trip, but these artists make it easy to escape the world for a few minutes and simply enjoy their sound.

Biz Tea: Natural Oats Skincare

Biz Tea: Natural Oats Skincare

That Green Tea is collaborating with Natural Oats to do a skincare basket anniversary giveaway. Read to the end on how to enter.


Most businesses don’t see a profit until the third year, but Keta’s business journey was very different. Natural oats flourished as a business in their first year. They specifically gained a lot of traction within the first six months, when they were recognized by Ocala magazine—one of the most prominent local magazines in Florida. Her secret is staying consistent.

Keta was able to use the skills that she had cultivated in journalism in helping run her business. She enjoyed being part of a start-up business but wanted to do more than be an employee. She wanted to start her own thing. Pursuing a store with skincare was something that came very naturally to her. She is used to using natural remedies and finding homeopathic remedies as opposed to buying store-bought products.

She had to wear a lot of hats at the beginning of her natural oats journey. In the beginning, she did her marketing for the products, her research on the products, and made all of the business designs for natural oats. She even did all of the manufacturing and design work.

One of her biggest challenges cultivating the business was letting go of the reins. In the beginning, she took a very heuristic approach to develop her brand. She realized, however, that it would be more cost and time effective to outsource her tasks. One particular thing she let go of the reins was the promotional material for her business.

With her business, Keta strives to bridge the gap between commercial products and natural products, hoping to cultivate a brand that produces products to satisfy all skin types. Keta wants to provide all-natural quality skincare for others while making it as affordable as possible.

Keta has a plethora of products for her customers to choose from. She prices all of the individual products between $3- $20 USD, emphasizing that it is important to her to make products for sensitive skin that are trustworthy and accessible.

Most of Natural Oats’s best products are their handmade soaps, made with natural Coconut oil, Grapeseed oil and rose hip oil. Their organic facial toner comes in to rose water and lavender for sensitive and acne-prone skin types, and in a efficient spray bottle is provides a convenient application.

Words of wisdom she would leave to new business owners are to stay consistent, and not bite off more than you can chew. Time is of the essence, and sometimes it’s essential to keep your fresh and the go of the reins.

Keta’s future for the brand is to have it grow as an entity on its own. She’s working to separate her face from the brand, and ultimately wants the products to speak for themselves.


To enter the giveaway, follow That Green Tea on Twitter @That_Green_Tea before September 4, 2020 for worldwide entries.

Purchases made to US addresses in August will qualify automatically from Natural Oats website or follow Natural Oats on their IG: @naturaloats for their guidelines.

NATURAL OATS PROVIDED ALL IMAGES. USE WITHOUT PERMISSION IS DISCOURAGED.

Gen Z Thrifting: The lns and Outs of Finding Your Style

Gen Z Thrifting: The lns and Outs of Finding Your Style

As a college student, sometimes it can be hard to express your creative individualism while on a budget. Over the course of 2020, I’ve cultivated a few tips and tricks on how to thrift your favorite styles while saving some money.

1. Explore your style

Before you can showcase your thrifting expertise, you have to understand your specific style. Knowing what you like to wear helps you understand what to search for in your thrifting expenditure. I personally love bold, flamboyant pieces, so I am always looking for pieces that cater to my specific style.

2. Shop locally

Some of the best pieces I own I’ve found by sifting through the racks at my local thrift store. Shopping locally allows you to find much more intriguing vintage pieces. Usually, local shops take donations from the surrounding community. Depending on where you live, that community can be full of rich, authentic pieces just waiting for you to thrift them. In addition, local thrift shops usually price their pieces significantly lower than larger, chain thrift shops. You’ll get many more pieces for a fraction of the price, and you’ll have a lot more luck in finding clothes that fit your style.

3. Have a game plan

Thrifting is no simple task. While it is fun, it can take a lot of sifting to find that perfect pair of jeans or jacket. Patience is key. Have a game plan of what you are looking for before going in, and you’ll be more prepared to sift through the endless racks to find what you want.

4. Be adventurous

I would never have been able to develop the style I have now without going outside of my comfort zone and searching for pieces that I usually would not wear. As I sift through the racks, I repeat to myself, “Be adventurous,” You’re never going to know what suites you until you try it on. Although searching for pieces that you wouldn’t normally wear can be scary, your style will become so much more unique and authentic to yourself.

Naomi Parris: How This 20-Year-Old Is Triumphing Individualism In the Fashion World

Naomi Parris: How This 20-Year-Old Is Triumphing Individualism In the Fashion World

Fashion has always been a part of Parris’s life. Her family members were a catalyst to her fashion interest, having dipped their toes into the fashion world. Their insight and wisdom are what motivated her to start her journey. Growing up, her grandmother worked in the garment industry. She often gave Parris samples of clothing and kept her in the loop on the best fashion etiquette. Her brother also worked in a high-end fashion store in New York, Barneys New York, and would often buy her pieces from there. As she grew older, she developed her style, eventually cultivating it into the elegant pieces she posts on her blog today.

Naomi Parris is a 20-year-old Brooklyn native that is paving the way for young, expressive fashion artists. Her style offers a unique mixture of trendy and old-fashioned looks that make for vibrant, riveting pieces. She features these pieces on her blog, EliNay—a place where she encourages subscribers to be themselves and inspires them to live their truth.

Parris is all-too-familiar with the fast fashion trends we see in today’s media. She, however, wants her to content to be set apart from mainstream media. She finds more value in designer clothing, describing that the artistry is what makes the clothes worth wearing.

Parris made her blogging debut in 2017. Before then, she kept her bold looks and advice solely on her Instagram platform; however, she was prompted by her friends to take her fashion expertise a bit further, and thus “EliNay” was born.

For the future of her blog, Parris expresses that although she would like to continue growing the blog, her ultimate dream lies beyond the computer screen. Her biggest goal for the future is to work for fashion corporations like Vogue or Harper’s Bazaar. She hopes to use her expertise on platforms with more extensive reach than the “Elinay” blog, while still creating authentic, ornate pieces of work.


You can follow Naomi Parris on her social medias here IG: @nayelizabethh Twitter:@nayylovelyy Blog: eli-nay.com