Hello Summer 2019

It's been a while. The last time I documented something was summer 2018. It seems so long ago. Damn. Well, greetings my fellow internet friends. How have you been?

I have been alive and well. Grateful to be living breathing and slowly taking it all in. A lot has happened since last year. I have grown and learned and maybe just maybe become a little bit wiser and more confident in myself.

As most of you know, my one true love has always been photogrpahy. Nothing gives me more joy than capturing moments. I hope to do a lot of that this summer.

Let me outline what I plan to blog about. You can expect a lot of behind the scenes of my photoshoots, this includes ideations/mood boards and the nittty gritty stuff that goes behind each project I do. Lastly, I will also share my thoughts and opinions on being a fashion photographer in this extremely saturated industry.

Annnnnnnd. Yeah. That's about it. Also a disclaimer, I am a terrible writer/speller. Writing and words have never been my strong suit. So please don't be a grammar nazi. Thanks for reading.

Talk to you soon <3

Signing off.

Sumi.

Flower Boy Vibes

This whole shoot was inspired by the new Tyler the Creator album "Flower Boy". I was on the bus on my way home from work listening to "See You Again", when I noticed the most beautiful field of sunflowers. I immediately got off the bus and took in my surrounding. "This is perfect" I thought. 

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20/20, 20/20 vision. Cupid hit me, cupid hit me with precision. 

It's them rose tinted cheeks, it's them dirt-coloured eyes.

Can I get a kiss ? And can you make it last forever ? 

Is Social Media Making Us Unhappy ?

I needed a break. I needed a break to sort everything out. And by “everything,” I mean life. Life was being a tad bit overwhelming, and I was not coping well. Social media, especially, was definitely not helping. I am the type of person who uses social media because I truly love it and believe that it can open up wonderful opportunities. I am extremely active on Instagram, but have recently started using Twitter and Facebook more since the launch of my blog.

With school done, and not having a full time job, I had a lot of spare time on my hands. I have not been productive and I have not been using my time wisely. I found myself scrolling through Instagram and Twitter for hours looking at articles, memes, and cute animal videos.

Despite social media being super awesome and fun, it can also be detrimental to an individual’s mental health. You are constantly bombarded with images of perfect bodies, lives, clothes, and so forth. And to a large extent, it's not good to be overexposing yourself to things like that. It also wastes a lot of your time. You look up from your phone realizing that you did not accomplish anything and start to feel really shitty about yourself.

I knew I needed a break. Not only from social media, but people in general. Sometimes you gotta be alone, go to counselling and just chill by yourself. So I slowly started cutting things out.

How to reduce useless social media and phone usage:

  1. Declutter - start by getting rid of unnecessary apps you don't use (For me this was Snapchat, Tumblr, games, and food apps)
  2. Put your phone on Airplane mode before going to bed
  3. Don’t use your phone as an alarm
  4. Keep your phone as far away from your bed or sleeping/resting area, so it's not the last and first thing you see
  5. Turn off those goddamn notifications. (Yup, mute those group chats, and turn off those Insta and Twitter alerts and notifications)

I did not use social media for a week. This is how I did it.
(Some of you are probably like “that’s nothing”. But trust me, to a person who is constantly on Instagram and Twitter, it's a big deal.)

  1. First I started by not using social media after a certain time, so after 11:30 pm, it was a social media free zone. It did not matter if someone messaged me or tagged me in a photo, I was not going to look or answer.
  2. The first thing I did when I woke up was go to the washroom, and NOT look at my phone.
  3. I told my friends who I talk to a lot on apps, about how I needed space and a break from social media.
  4. Then I slowly started getting rid of the apps. First one was Facebook, then Twitter, then came Instagram.  (note: I did not get rid of Facebook Messenger, since this is how I actually kept in touch with people, however I did minimize how much I spoke to people on there)
  5. At this point my phone was social media free but I still allowed myself to use social media on the computer. (I am a creature of habit, thus I took baby steps to accomplish my goals)
  6. For my computer, I used this program called “Self Control” and it blocks off any websites you want for a desirable amount of time.
  7. I blocked off Facebook first and then Twitter.
  8. I did it slowly. For the first day I blocked off Twitter for half of a day and the next day, I did not use Twitter for the whole day.
  9. I was not perfect during this week. For example, sometimes I tweeted and even checked my Facebook timeline. However I did not use Instagram at all. But from the week onwards I used little to no social media.

Doing this was so liberating. I had a lot of time to think and reevaluate my goals, and do activities that I would usually not have time for. After I did this, I realized I had SO much free time on my hands and that I wasted so much of my life mindlessly scrolling through my phone for no reason. I also needed to figure some things out in my personal life, and this social media and phone break was very much needed and appreciated. Don’t get me wrong, I am still going to use social media. In fact, Instagram and Facebook are my main platforms for displaying my work and life. That being said, I will try to use it less for mindless scrolling and more for content sharing and networking.

So to answer the question, “does social media make us unhappy?” The answer is yes. Yes, to some extent it does. But I believe it does not have to. If used in moderation, social media can be great. However, it also feels great not using it. It's liberating not sharing every moment. It’s wonderful to not see a bunch of useless shit about people you don't care about. In conclusion, this was a very peaceful and calming experience. I highly recommend everyone to try this. It’s great.  

*Note: Please let your loved ones know if you plan on cutting out social media or not using your phone for a while as they might get worried by your silence.*

Thanks for reading.

K

Signing out

Sumi

 

Am I Cool Now ?

Me in my Supreme shirt, sitting on my Supreme toilet, taking a Supreme shit.&nbsp;

Me in my Supreme shirt, sitting on my Supreme toilet, taking a Supreme shit. 

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Now, now, don't go around thinking that I hate Supreme. I don't. In fact I love their clothes. What I dislike is people over glamorizing logos and brands, and this blog is showing that concept but in extreme. For instance a normal t-shirt becomes ten times more expensive and cooler if it has "Supreme" or "Gucci" written over it. But why? 'Cause of the power of the brand. As much as I respect the brand and everything it stands for, sometimes people loose sight of the clothes themselves. And this is just a parody of that situation. 

20 things I learned at 20

Today is April 25th, 2017, and in about fifteen minutes, the clock will strike twelve and I will be twenty. Twenty. God damn, I have lived and breathed for two decades. Damn, time does fly fast. I don’t know what I am typing or where I am going with this, but I somehow want to capture this moment.

So where do I start? 19 was a rollercoaster of a year. To put it in a nutshell it was bat shit crazy. I experienced and felt so many things. Heartbreaks, breakdowns, happiness, love, paradigm shifts. Life has been crazy. But it is somewhat calm now. I am in a good place. It’s been a while since I have been so at peace with myself. Don’t get me wrong there are still internal battles which I struggle with on a day to day basis, but such is life and everyone has their own demons which they fight with on a regular.

I would like to start off by stating all the important things that happened to me while I was 19 that forever changed the way I was:

  • My parents had a messy separation
  • I dropped out of University without telling my parents
  • I started attending George Brown College for Graphic Design
  • I became a vegetarian and found out about the devastating impact animal agriculture has on our planet
  • I found out how cruel and fucked up the meat and dairy industry is
  • I finally talked to someone professional about my depression (took you long enough dumbass)
  • Oh yeah did a Social Media Internship and got a taste of the real world.
  • I watched Cowspiracy and The Gary Yourofsky Speech

All these events significantly shaped me, for better and for worse. So here goes, 20 things I learned by age 20:

  1. Love is hard and complicated, it takes a lot of effort to make relationships work. But if it is meant to be, it shouldn’t be so hard.
  2. Everyone deserves a second chance.
  3. You are young and beautiful, don’t be scared to flaunt that shit ;)
  4. Mental health is more important than your grades/job.
  5. Just because someone is your family does not mean that they must support you.
  6. People care about you, and you are not alone. Trust me there is one person out there who will listen to you and be devastated if you leave this planet.
  7. Carbs are not bad for you.
  8. Exercise will make you happy.
  9. Pursue what you love, don’t give two shits about what your parents think, or what society thinks. Have that goal in your mind and chase it with all the might you’ve got.
  10. You change and so will your friends.
  11. It’s completely okay to not have life figured out (trust me no one really does).
  12. Fake it till you make it.
  13. Minimalism is beautiful. Living with less is beautiful. Stuff is over rated.
  14. Boys are complicated, dating is complicated, and love is complicated. How the fuck does one do that shit anyways???
  15. Life is beautiful and worth living. There is so much to see, so much to do and so much to accomplish.
  16. I want to be my own boss.
  17. No one is going to give you anything, so stop being lazy and get to work. Your goals are not going to accomplish themselve.
  18. Animal agriculture is responsible for 18 percent of greenhouse gas emissions, more than the combined exhaust from all transportation. 
  19. Animals are not ours to eat, wear, experiment on, use for entertainment, or abuse in any way.
  20. The perception of happiness is skewered by information given by our consumerist society. Happiness is not about smiling all the time, it’s not about having that material possession or that person you really like. But rather it is how you handle struggles and overcome struggles and continue to shine through.  Cause like anger, and sadness happiness is just an emotion. You need to be okay with yourself and stop chasing this happily ever after that people keep talking about. Cause happily ever after’s don't exist, and that is the beauty of life.

As J Cole stated, “there is beauty in the struggle ugliness in the success.”

Oh shoot, will you look at that??? 12:15. I am now officially twenty. Does that mean I have to start adulting now? How does one even do that? Its been a wild ride. I wonder how my 20s will be. I am excited to see and find out. I really need to finish my website and create some sort of blog thing. God dammit so much to do. Alright, Sumayyah you made it. Look how far you have come in life, keep it up. I am proud of you. If you are reading this from the future, I really hope you made your dreams come true, and you still have a passion for living. 

Goodnight.

(I want cake. Not any cake. I want birthday cake.)

K

Signing out.

Sumayyah Siddiqa 

 

Trench Coat

The other day I decided to take my brother on a stroll downtown, Queen Street West to be precise. Mainly because I feel like it is one of the coolest places in downtown also because Queen Street West has the dopest walls and street art.

For all you wondering where I got that beautiful trench coat from, the answer is Value Village. (ikr!!!).  It was in mint condition and only cost me $20.00. Blessed! The moment I saw it, I knew I found a gem. Wanna look cool and unique ? Go thrift shopping, trust me, it will up your fashion game by 55.5% 

I know, I know, you are probably supper tired of seeing pictures of flowers and cherry blossoms, but I couldn't resist. So yeah, this is it. I hope you enjoyed that, if not sorry ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

What I was wearing:

  • Trench coat - Thrifted

  • Jeans - TOPSHOP MOTO/petite Jamie

  • Shoes: White Nike Air

  • Watch: Fossil

Why "13 Reasons Why" is not for everyone

Hi there, 

I hope your day has been going well. Today I am going to talk about the really hyped up and talked about show "13 Reasons Why".  I was extremely excited for this show since Selena Gomez was the driving force behind it. (I am a huge Selena fan). Although I was extremely excited to watch it, I was a bit scared as well. The story entails around suicide, abuse and bullying, all situations which I was a bit too familiar with.  

Anyways, I stoped waiting around and jumped on the bandwagon and started watching it. And I am not going to lie, I was imediently hooked. The way the story was being told was great, it kept me on edge and wanting more. However, this show is not for everyone. One word to describe it would be  "TRIGGER!!!" 

If you have a history of abuse and or depression, you might want to steer clear of this show. Cause it can make you take a trip down memory lane in the worst possible way. As I continued watching, I found myself relating to Hannah Baker (the main character) a bit too much. It was almost scary. Like "woah shit, this is exactly how I felt". I found myself getting sadder and sadder watching the show. You're probably like "well duh, it's about a girl killing herself, do you expect to feel happy?" It's not just that. I have personally battled with depression for about three years. (woah it feels scary writing it here, cause only my close friends and councillors know about this) But I have been getting better, it took a lot of hard work and effort to get out of that place. Well I am not completely out of that place, I don't think I ever will be. But I am doing much better, I haven't been suicidal in about a whole year! And it's fucking great. Woot woot.

But shit, when I was watching this show all those dark feelings of suicide and hopelessness came rushing back. And I know I am not the only one. I did a bit of research and even talked to my friend and discovered that a lot of people got negatively affected by the show as well. I applaud the show because its very real, but it can inflict wrong emotions if you are mentally unstable. 

Although the main message of the show is "suicide is horrible",  the show often makes it seem that suicide is good a option. Because in this case Hannah Baker uses suicide as a revenge to show people how much they hurt her. And this idea of revenge could be the driving incentive for many to commit suicide. *sigh* It's complicated to explain, and I am not the best with words. So I really hope this makes sense. 

I am just saying that it sucks, cause it triggers extreme memories. So I did not finish watching season one. And you know what I don't think I am going to watch it. For the sake of my mental health its the best thing to do. 

So what I am trying to say is, yes it's a very real show, that shines light on bullying/suicide. But for some people it can be a bit too real. There are some graphic scenes and point of views which can trigger painful memories and feelings. So if you have dealt with feelings of depression/abuse/sexual assault/self-harm, I would advise you to be careful while watching this show, or just completely avoid it. 

Let me know what you think of this show, how you felt, if you agree or disagree with me. 

Thanks for reading. Stay safe. 

signing out 

Sumi Siddiqa 

Classic Vintage Looks

Let's be honest the urge to shop is hella real in this fast fashion world we live in. I found my self lost in H&M or ZARA buying things that I don't really need or worse that would go out of style in two or three months. 

I have been trying to shop less, and buy clothes which are more sustainable. This look was thrifted. The key to fashion is not having a lot of clothes, but having timeless clothing that can be layered and used over and over again. Enjoy ! 

Looks like I am flipping you off, this was very unintentional.&nbsp;

Looks like I am flipping you off, this was very unintentional. 

How to get Kicked out of Allan's Garden in Style

Hey there, olla, bonjour, hi
(wow I spent way too much time thinking of a way to start this blog)

Anyways, welcome to my website and I am excited to write my very first official blog. I just finished my first year of college and I have nothing better to do than blog about my mundane life, sooo here goes nothing woot woot.

So here is the story, I met up with my friend Kathleen and was like "yo we should totally go for a shoot" and she was like "yeah broooo lets do it !!! " (This is what our conversations sound like in my head, Kathleen is probably reading this and is very disappointed with me. #SorryNotSorry)

So we show up at Allen's Garden with our gear ready to shoot and get tons of great shots only to be patronized by this lady telling us "uh you need a permit to take pictures" . A permit ??? Say what ? But, that didn't stop us from taking pictures nah uh, we are total badass photographers who kept taking pictures. Until another staff approached us and told us to stop taking pictures. This happened about four or five times. *sigh* So we left, our hearts heavy with despair. Just kidding, we still got some great shots. Moral of the story, permits are annoying. 
 

Also if you care about what I am wearing here is the list:

  • Jacket: Trafuluc Outwear from Zara
  • Turtle neck: H&M
  • Jeans: Zara 

Photos done by the one and only Kathleen O'Donnell