BREAKAWAY

I've only been alive for slightly over two decades, but even I know that life is just not that simple to follow a fixed pattern. How anyone can expect our existence to be so black and white is beyond my understanding. This isn't Stepford, it's the real world. The only thing that could possibly be so monochromatic is maybe this outfit, which I wore last month during London Fashion Week. You're probably wondering what the hell I'm on about, so saddle up, kids. Over the last week, I've been hit with some unfortunate and unexpected reminders that fate is far beyond our control and it's gotten me to reevaluate several aspects of my life. Firstly, as I've said before, it's good to have direction, but you can't plan life in meticulous detail because you never know when she's going to throw a curveball at you. Secondly, I spend a lot of time trying to please others, but I really don't think it's worth the time anymore. Life is fragile. Life is ephemeral. I shouldn't be persecuted for doing things that bring me joy, satisfaction and a sense of purpose. I don't believe that there is only one way to live life, so no one should force their ideals onto others. I may make mistakes along the way, but hey, those are my mistakes to learn from. It really infuriates me to see bigotry, no matter the context. Live and let live. Try it. I'll guarantee you the world will be a much better place. At the risk of sounding like a whiny, overprivileged kid, I begin my rant. Growing up in an Asian society can be suffocating in some ways. From a young...

ORNAMENT OF THE WORLD

While ransacking folder after folder on my hard drive in pursuit of some self-portraits shot a while back, I stumbled upon photos from my 10 days spent in Spain. After gushing about the magic of Granada, I completely forgot to post about the remainder of the trip. These set of photos are from the historically rich city of Córdoba - the cultural heart of Andalucía. So I'm sharing these before I forget again, while you wait for more updates on Paris Fashion Week. Soon. I promise. Córdoba was only meant to be a 24 hour stopover as I made my way to Madrid from Granada - little did I know how quickly I was about to be enchanted all over again. Completely unprepared and unaware of what to do in this city, I arrived by train under the shade of the stars. A strange sensation filled me as noticed the emptiness surrounding me on the streets, with the exception of the occasional fog rolling by. Being the clumsy character that I am, I struggled through narrow, cobblestoned streets with my trolley bag that clearly was made for far smoother surfaces. I reach my hotel and join the rest of the city's inhabitants in slumber. The following morning I explored the vicinity on foot - a little bit of a habit I've developed while travelling. I pass gardens and plazas, still lush and green, giggling children chasing mariposas and horses waiting to begin their day's share of carriage-pulling. As I walked, the winter sun warmed my skin. But there was something about this light that was different. Filtering through branches, heavy with oranges, it scattered shadows in all directions and bathed the city in a dusty glow of gold - as though to acknowledge the antiquity of this...

ON DUTY

I'm assuming you've been following me and my #fixatedFRANCE antics on Instagram over the past couple of days. It's been a total whirlwind and I have no idea where the time's gone. I'm still recuperating and coming to my senses. You can imagine how swamped I must be if I, the biggest procrastinator, had to forego idling around. The last two weeks have been hectic, to say the least. Not only was it the busiest time of year in the fashion industry, with Paris Fashion Week in full swing, but in the academic year as well, with deadlines stacking up as the end of semester draws to a close. While education is always my first priority, I couldn't pass up the opportunity to cover fashion week for Fashionide and Clara Indonesia. Like most of my friends, who see my life through the rose-coloured glasses of Snapchat, you're probably thinking something along the lines of "wow, lucky him, he's having so much fun". Yes, I too believe that I'm incredibly lucky to be able to do what I love. And yes, I do have fun attending shows and experiencing Paris in all her overwhelming glory. But there's so much more to it than what you see on social media... or rather what I selectively show you on social media. Blood, sweat and tears are involved. Figuratively and literally. When I'm in Paris, first and foremost, I'm there for work - as a writer, reviewing shows and collections, and as a photographer, shooting street style. Once these are covered each day, I revert to university duties, which consist of endless readings and toiling over essays across multiple...
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