A Little Music, A Little Fashion, And A Little More

A Little Music, A Little Fashion, And A Little More

My experience at Ohio's Fashion Meets Music Festival.
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Over the weekend I attended, you guessed it, another concert! Well, a music festival. It was the Fashion Meets Music Festival in Columbus, OH. Several local and national acts played over the course of two days, bringing great music to several hundred people. The performers included big names like T-Pain, Tegan and Sara, and Third Eye Blind, as well as local groups such as Kid Runner and Liberty Deep Down. In between sets, fashion designers showcased their work on a runway stage.

Officially, I was at the festival as press. One of the coolest aspects about having press credentials was that I was granted access to the photo pit, which is something I've only done once before. If you're not sure what the pit is, it's where photographers stand to take photos of the person or group performing. If you've ever stood at the front of a general admission show in a venue with a barricade, the pit is the area between the barricade and the stage. Not only that, but I was able to do a mini photoshoot with the incredibly talented Cobi (pictured below).

The photoshoot was short, but nevertheless, I enjoyed myself. Cobi was easy to work with, and patient while I was trying not to let my nerves get the better of me. For the most part, he self-posed himself, which helped me feel a little more relaxed. And what a handsome guy, huh?

One encounter I had with a festival goer was with a young woman named Ayanna (pictured above) who mentioned she was there primarily to see Cobi. She was kind enough to do a brief interview with me.

Me: How did you find out about Cobi?

Ayanna: It was on Soundcloud, maybe a year or two ago.

Me: So you've been a fan of his for awhile.

Ayanna: One song, not gonna lie. Not gonna play like I know everything, but it was one song, and he was amazing.

Me: *after she mentioned not seeing him live before* This must have been really great for you.

Ayanna: It was amazing. His energy, the way he like stared out and made eye contact with the crowd, his guitar solos...He was amazing.

Another attendee I met was Kelly Williams (pictured above) after Zøya's set. She was the party of the audience, cheering and dancing. Zøya, who was already excited about playing, smiled and thanked Kelly for her enthusiasm. During a couple points during the set and after, Kelly said she just loved live music.


Speaking of, Zøya was one of my favorite performances from the festival. She gave a performance that showcased her talent and was full of life and passion. She spoke openly and genuinely about why some of her songs were written. Afterwards, she encouraged everyone to meet and chat with her by her merchandise table where she thanked everyone individually for taking time to listen to her set.

My top performance was undoubtedly St. Lucia. I was already a fan of their music, but hearing them live was absolutely astounding. Their music was meant to be heard live. I loved the energy of the crowd, and the energy of the group. During one song, Jean-Philip Grobler (lead vocalist, pictured above) sang almost an entire song in the crowd. He also ran along the barricade high-fiving the crowd up front. One girl (maybe 10 or 11) jumped up and down with excitement when she was one of the people who received a high five. Everyone was singing and having a good time. I'd see St. Lucia again in a heartbeat.

I didn't catch a lot of the fashion. To be honest, I don't care about fashion, so I'm not the best person to review a fashion show. I always thought the clothes models wear on the runway are often bizarre (I have since learned some reasoning behind it). However, what I did like about some of the lines I saw at the festival was that a vast majority of the outfits were surprisingly tame. The colors the designers used worked well together. Many of them also had designs with interesting but not over the top styles. I probably won't take time to look up more of their work, but I could appreciate what I saw at the festival.

Overall, I had a great time at the festival. I took hundreds of photos, and was able to experience something I always envied other photographers for. I loved hearing so many talented performers live and discovering some new music in the process. I talked to other attendees, and a couple of them remembered me from the first day. I met and talked with other photographers, who were most definitely far above my level, but were friendly to talk with, and never acted holier than thou in the pit. I even ran into one I met at a previous show. This year's Fashion Meets Music Festival was my first, so I have no point of reference to prior festivals. If you appreciate live music and find yourself in or near Columbus, the festival is certainly worth looking into.

Cover Image Credit: Julia Humphrey

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8 Reasons Why My Dad Is the Most Important Man In My Life

Forever my number one guy.
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Growing up, there's been one consistent man I can always count on, my father. In any aspect of my life, my dad has always been there, showing me unconditional love and respect every day. No matter what, I know that my dad will always be the most important man in my life for many reasons.

1. He has always been there.

Literally. From the day I was born until today, I have never not been able to count on my dad to be there for me, uplift me and be the best dad he can be.

2. He learned to adapt and suffer through girly trends to make me happy.

I'm sure when my dad was younger and pictured his future, he didn't think about the Barbie pretend pageants, dressing up as a princess, perfecting my pigtails and enduring other countless girly events. My dad never turned me down when I wanted to play a game, no matter what and was always willing to help me pick out cute outfits and do my hair before preschool.

3. He sends the cutest texts.

Random text messages since I have gotten my own cell phone have always come my way from my dad. Those randoms "I love you so much" and "I am so proud of you" never fail to make me smile, and I can always count on my dad for an adorable text message when I'm feeling down.

4. He taught me how to be brave.

When I needed to learn how to swim, he threw me in the pool. When I needed to learn how to ride a bike, he went alongside me and made sure I didn't fall too badly. When I needed to learn how to drive, he was there next to me, making sure I didn't crash.

5. He encourages me to best the best I can be.

My dad sees the best in me, no matter how much I fail. He's always there to support me and turn my failures into successes. He can sit on the phone with me for hours, talking future career stuff and listening to me lay out my future plans and goals. He wants the absolute best for me, and no is never an option, he is always willing to do whatever it takes to get me where I need to be.

6. He gets sentimental way too often, but it's cute.

Whether you're sitting down at the kitchen table, reminiscing about your childhood, or that one song comes on that your dad insists you will dance to together on your wedding day, your dad's emotions often come out in the cutest possible way, forever reminding you how loved you are.


7. He supports you, emotionally and financially.

Need to vent about a guy in your life that isn't treating you well? My dad is there. Need some extra cash to help fund spring break? He's there for that, too.

8. He shows me how I should be treated.

Yes, my dad treats me like a princess, and I don't expect every guy I meet to wait on me hand and foot, but I do expect respect, and that's exactly what my dad showed I deserve. From the way he loves, admires, and respects me, he shows me that there are guys out there who will one day come along and treat me like that. My dad always advises me to not put up with less than I deserve and assures me that the right guy will come along one day.

For these reasons and more, my dad will forever be my No. 1 man. I love you!

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Monsters

An excerpt by Katherine F. Messina

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Fear clawed at my stomach as my heart threatened to beat out of my chest. My legs were shaking from the exertion when the grass beneath my feet turned to concrete. Sweat caused hair to stick to my face. I stopped, looking around, my breathing harsh. A sudden flash of light blinded me as screeching filled the air. I backed towards the woods quickly, tripping over my own feet. My backside hit the ground with a thud. A metal contraption came to a stop inches from me. I took a deep breath, trying to steady myself.

What is that thing?

A tall man stepped out of the strange device. He had large arms and blonde hair. He towered over me.

"What the hell are you doing in the middle of the road? I could have killed you!" he shouted, waving his arms.

I tried to scramble away. His eyes swept over my ripped clothes and bloody feet, and his face changed into one of sympathy.

"Hey," he said in a soothing voice, "I'm sorry. I didn't mean to scare you. Are you okay?"

He held his hand out towards me, and I eyed it suspiciously.

"I'm Tucker," he offered, "What's your name?"

"Sh-shay," I stuttered.

Rustling in the woods behind me spurred me into action.

"Let's go, fast."

Tucker stood completely still and stared into the woods, drawn to the rustling. The Kurasa crashed through the trees, searching for me. Their black eyes landed on Tucker and lit up with malice. They stood a foot taller than him, nearly 7 feet. Their grey skin looked like mud. Tucker froze, and panic filled his eyes.

"In the car," he said, his voice tight.

I didn't argue. I jumped into the metal monstrosity. He was across the road and into the seat with the circular object in front of it in what felt like seconds. I could feel the iron throughout the car. The Kurasa kept their distance. Iron repelled them like most fae even in small doses. I was feeling sick, and I'm only half faerie. The tires squealed as he took off, leaving the Kurasa behind.

"You alright?" Tucker asked, "You look a bit pale."

"Yes, I'll be fine."

"I know that was scary, but it'll be okay. I'll get you far away from them."

"You seem oddly calm for someone who just encountered that," my suspicion rose.

"It's not my first time. Hopefully, it'll be your last. I hunt things like them. Or I used to."

Warning bells went off in my head. What would he do if he found out I was one of them?

"You can let me out soon," I said.

"Don't be ridiculous. I'm going to take you to my place and let you clean up. You'll be safe there, I promise," he gave me a warm smile.

Until you find out what I really am.

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