• UO Interviews: New Year New You


    To celebrate a new year of new experiences, we interviewed three diversely creative NYC girls to learn about what they're wanting to do, see, and achieve in 2016. 
    Photos by Anna Ottum


    Name: Shoko Wanger
    Job: Writer
    Neighborhood: Williamsburg Brooklyn
    Astrological sign: Leo
    My top 3 goals for 2016 are to read more for pleasure, write more for play, sleep more for sanity’s sake.
    What are you working on right now? I’m building an online portfolio that will house some of my favorite interviews to date. The bulk of my work thus far has been interview-based, and I’d love to have those conversations in a place where I can easily share them.
    My favorite recent discovery is raw milk ice cream at Morgenstern’s on the Lower East Side. On a cone, at the counter, with a friend.


    Something I’ve always wanted to do is build a treehouse.
    Somewhere I’ve always wanted to go is Morocco. Whenever travel comes up in conversation, it’s the first place that comes to mind. Maybe 2016’s the year.
    Resolutions are for…breaking. I've never been one to make concrete resolutions, but I do have the same wish every year. No matter what, I want to end each year surprised at where it’s taken me. So far, no complaints.
    I predict the next big thing will be decaf.
    Currently on my mind: Patti Smith. Venice Beach. Chocolate cake.

    Follow Shoko on Instagram


    Name: Elise R. Peterson
    Job: Writer, Artist, Educator
    Neighborhood: Crown Heights, Brooklyn
    Astrological sign: Scorpio


    My top 3 goals for 2016 are…
    1) To be kinder and more patient with myself. 
    2) Making more decisions that will monetarily benefit future me. 
    3) Never stop learning. 
    What are you working on right now?
    I feel blessed that so many great opportunities to work with other creatives. In addition to a slew of collaborative projects, I have a few gallery shows happening at the top of the year, and I’ll be expanding my Black Folk series to include merchandise. 
    My favorite recent discovery is… Being your own best friend is pretty damn liberating and the late night joys of Lindt dark chocolate with a touch of sea salt. 


    Something I’ve always wanted to do is… cross someone up in a basketball game. I’ve never actually played a game, but I like to aim high.
    Somewhere I’ve always wanted to go is… the depths of my subconscious. 
    Resolutions are for…things to be considered but not concerned with.
    I predict the next big thing will be… women ruling the world.
    Currently on my mind: What am I going to eat next?

    Follow Elise on Instagram


    Name: Emma Jane Kepley

    Job: Freelance portrait/fashion lifestyle photographer and content producer

    Neighborhood: Williamsburg, Brooklyn 

    Astrological sign: Gemini 


    My top 3 goals for 2016 are…
    1. Travel more for work/ for myself. Would love to collaborate with some different hotels in different countries and the US, and show/capture how I see things at their hotels/ the atmosphere that surrounds them. 
    2. Get published in one of my favorite magazines. I would want it to be one awesome project, and I would want to deliver something that REALLY tells a story. Not just a spread of five images that don't make any sense together. 
    3. Keep meeting/ collaborating with other creative people I admire. 

    What are you working on right now?
    An idea pitch for the next issue of Kinfolk magazine. Also finally having a spare moment to edit some personal work I shot awhile back, and getting my website more up to date. 

    My favorite recent discovery is…
    This is super random, but for my fellow Netflix fanatics...RUN don't walk and start binge watching Luther, Broadchurch and Sherlock Holmes! I have finished them all now, but I am officially upset I am not able to have the BBC channel at my fingertips. That being said, thank goodness for Netflix!


    Something I’ve always wanted to do is…
    Photo wise: I dream about photographing Dakota and Elle Fanning together. I just think that would be one badass shoot with all that bleach blonde hair and pale skin! #oneday 
    Adventure wise: I have always wanted to take a hot air balloon ride. Not just any hot air balloon ride, but the one that floats over Cappadocia, New Zealand! Look it up...you won't be sorry. 

    Somewhere I’ve always wanted to go is…
    Santorini, Greece / Enniskerry, Ireland  

    Resolutions are for…
    Suckers! Why wait to better yourself? Gotta keep on keeping on!

    I predict the next big thing will be…
    I think Meredith Grey via Greys Anatomy said it best: "We spend our whole lives worrying about the future, planning for the future, trying to predict the future. As if figuring it out will somehow cushion the blow. But the future is always changing. The future is the home of of our deepest fears, and our wildest hopes. But one thing is certain: When it finally reveals itself, the future is never the way we imagined it." Honestly I feel like if we knew what was coming we would never grow or even want to grow and learn more. I just always try and make sure to reach beyond my comfort zone. I think I can predict that a lot of things to come in 2016 are going to be keeping me on my toes. That in itself is pretty thrilling. 

    Currently on my mind: 
    The cinnamon roll from Bakeri is ALWAYS on my mind...

    Follow Emma on Instagram
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