Hello Audrey readers – meet our latest Audrey Style Gal (and the first from California!) – Chesley Tolentino!
Our latest Audrey Style Gal comes all the way from Toronto – Jessy of The Little Dust Princess!
Meet our first Audrey Style Gal: Shai Chung of Drink on Shoes.
In previous years, Asian models and designers have been been taking large strides. For example, more than ever – we are beginning to see more Asian faces gracing the pages of the world’s top fashion magazines, walking the runways of renowned fashion designers (40% of the models walking were women of Asian descent during New York Fashion Week in February 2012), and featured in international ad campaigns for popular brands. Fashion designers of Asian descent have also been making a name for themselves, such as designer collaborations with national retail chains such as Target, H&M, and Macy’s. Follow our monthly series as we name the best of the best featuring Asians in Fashion.
Rise of South Asian Models: Vogue India‘s highlight on Alyssah Ali, Ashika Pratt, and Jessica Clarke
Photo credit: Asian Models Blog
When Karl Lagerfield made a stunning move to feature nine (yes, NINE) models of South Asian descent in Chanel’s Pre-Fall India-themed collection last year – it was nothing short of amazing. It’s well known that Lagerfield hasn’t featured a racially diverse group of models in his previous shows. Prior to the show, Lakshmi Menon was arguably the most popular model of South Asian descent (from India). But with this move, more South Asian models are fast becoming more popular in the fashion industry. Vogue India takes a strong note of this of course, featuring three fresh faces: Alyssa Ali (Indian-Trinidian-Candian, IMG), Ashika Pratt (Indian descent from New Zealand, Anima Creatives), and Jessica Clarke (Indian-Nigerian, Marilyn) – in this lovely spread (click on the image to see more pictures from the editorial!).
Want to be featured on the audreymagazine.com? Send us your applications to be an Audrey Style Gal! We’ll be featuring a fashionista every week – so here’s your chance to share your style with us (and the world!)!
Send us at least two photos of your best outfits (day, night, no matter!), with descriptions of your outfit. In your email, please also answer these questions:
3. Describe your style – who/what influences your style?
4. What is the most prized possession in your wardrobe?
5. Favorite hotspot/Place You’re Most Likely to Be Seen (and why you like it)?
6. Style tip for Audrey Readers?
7. Optional: Twitter/Blog/Website?
Send your submissions to email@example.com. We’re looking forward to seeing them!
“Runway is fantastic because it is so high energy. Anything can happen, anything can go wrong, and everything can be phenomenal.” — Brent Chua
ISSUE: Fall 2011
STORY: Shirley Lau
Brent Chua’s inimitable look graces designer clothing ads and high fashion catwalks.
Killer abs, a signature Mohawk and a fabulously fierce mug have made Chinese- Filipino American model Brent Chua a hot commodity in the modeling world. The 26-year-old now calls East Village in New York City home, but he used to spend his days traveling around Europe and Asia, strutting down the runway for Versace and Gucci, and starring in ad campaigns for Macy’s and United Colors of Benetton.
“Creating images for editorials or fashion houses with talented individuals is an amazing experience; [I’m] constantly trying to bring something new,” says Chua. “And runway is fantastic because it is so high energy. Anything can happen, anything can go wrong, and everything can be phenomenal.”
That anything-can-happen mentality was what actually started Chua on the road to fame. He was spotted by a fashion show producer in a club — at this point he’d never even considered being a model — and his career skyrocketed. In 2004, he was voted Male Model of the Year at the Singapore Fashion Awards.
So why is Chua’s look so sought-after? It may well be his androgynous mien, epitomized in a series of photos where he’s donning a blanket of feathers and a hot pair of heels. Chua’s a bit more philosophical about it. “Your perception of yourself seems to basically be a gathered perception of what others have thought of you and made you aware of,” he says.
Whatever it is that makes Chua supermodel-worthy, it doesn’t seem to affect his down-to-earth perspective on life. He recognizes that modeling isn’t a lifelong career, so he wants to reverse roles and become the man behind the camera.
“I really enjoy taking photographs so it would be great to keep doing that,” he says. “I find a lot of inspiration in cinema and reading and observing the passersby in the city.”
— Shirley Lau
More stories from Audrey Magazine’s Archives here.
As we’re hitting the colder time of the year, a scarf is my favorite accessory to wear. They’re easy to carry and add a pop to any old outfit.
So imagine my delight when I found this mesmerizing video on 25 different ways you can wear a scarf! This tutorial is taught by youtuber wendyslookbook and is so fun and easy to watch and learn!
Special props to the editor and cameraman for taking this beyond just another homemade Youtube video.
Check out the video for yourself!
Which is your favorite way to wear a scarf?
With a big gala to attend, Audrey Magazine asks an important question: what to wear?
The theme of the night was “A Vintage Hollywood Black Tie Affair” so what better place to look for a dress than to designer Sue Wong’s fabulous line of vintage silhouettes, beads, feathers and hues?
I decided to capture the difficult task on trying on many beautiful Sue Wong gowns on film and share with you all the journey.
Take a look below! Continue Reading »
After two seasons on the hit FOX series Glee, Jenna Ushkowitz is hitting all the right notes.
ISSUE: FALL 2011
DEPT: Cover Feature
Photographer: Diana King
Wardrobe: Lyndzi Trang
Makeup: Allie Lapidus
Hair: Gaelle Secretin
Photo Assistants: Kevin Burnstein, Kevin Kozicki
Styling Assistant: Jacqueline Nguyen
Location: Park Plaza Hotel
Story: Janice Jann
Two years ago, when I first interviewed Jenna Ushkowitz, she was in the middle of shooting the first season of Glee, an innovative new show with a lot of promise, hype and a heart-stopping cover of “Don’t Stop Believin.’”
Jenna was excitable and chatty, like any other 23-year-old with her first big break would be. I had asked her then if she was prepared for her impending fame.
Jenna replied, “We can just take it step by step. Do we feel that [the show’s] special? Yes. But I don’t think any of us are thinking, ‘Oh, we’re going to be so famous.’”
Flash forward to the present. How things have changed. If Jenna didn’t think she was heading towards fame back then, she has to face that she is indeed famous now. Glee has become a cultural phenomenon, nominated for 19 Emmys and four Golden Globes, its songs topping iTunes every week. Chris Colfer has been named one of Time Magazine’s 100 Most Important People for his portrayal of gay teenager, Kurt Hummel. And Jenna, along with her on-screen boyfriend played by Harry Shum, Jr., are two of the most recognizable Asians on television.
The now 25-year-old Korean American, raised in New York by her adoptive parents, realized this when the cast headed to the Big Apple to film an episode last season.
“We thought we would go shoot and a couple of fans would be there,” Jenna remembers. “It was insane. Hundreds and hundreds of kids showed up. There were barricades everywhere. It was overwhelming, amazing and kind of wakes you up, going, ‘holy crap, this is my life now!’” For Jenna, life over the past two years has taken her from bartending to singing on Broadway’s Spring Awakening to playing goth-girl Tina
Cohen-Chang on one of the most influential shows on primetime television. And yet Jenna maintains she’s still the same. “Your life doesn’t have to change if you don’t want it to,” she says. I sat down with Jenna at Los Angeles’s exclusive members-only Soho House (one indication of how life has changed — Jenna’s a member),
catching her in between shooting the show’s season 2 finale and the Glee summer concert tour. Just like I would with any girlfriend, we chatted about boys, clothes and Glee.
Audrey Magazine: Life seems to be going very smoothly for you right now. Can you take us back to a time when this wasn’t the case?
Jenna Ushkowitz: In 2007/8, before Spring Awakening, I had just graduated from college and was bartending. I was really unhappy and was like, “I need to be getting a job right now singing and dancing and not slinging drinks,” you know? I was with my friend at lunch in New York one day and he asked, “What do you want to do?” I was like, “I want to be on a TV show and I don’t want to have to give up theatre.” And here I am. It’s weird. I will never forget that.
Because I did it. I don’t understand people who can just sit and be comfortable and not do something about it when they’re unhappy with their lives. I was always, “Get whatever you want, when you want it, and if you’re not happy, change it.” Life’s too short, why not be happy every single day? That’s why I was like, “I have to do this.” Even if it takes years just to get a show.
AM: We’ve heard some of your co-stars’ crazy Glee audition stories. (Lea Michele’s car crash minutes before her Glee audition.) What was yours?
JU: The whole cast [of Spring Awakening] basically went in and read for Glee. AlI I had to do was say “w-w-we’re d-d-d-dooomed” with a little bit of a stutter and Tourette’s. I didn’t realize I had to say another stutter line and they were like, “OK, do the other line.” So I was like, “Uh, yeah ….” I walked out of the audition and was like, “I didn’t get that.”
A month later, Ryan Murphy was in town and they asked me to sing and improvise for them. He asked, “Who do you think Tina is?” I did this whole improv in the stutter about how my mom thought glee club was a really good outlet for me and Ryan said, “I liked how you kept her really positive.” I passed and went to test for the network in L.A. I had to take a red eye and I couldn’t sleep, I was anxious. I had never been to L.A. by myself before. Two hours [after auditioning], they said, “you got it!”
I called my friend and she said that’s amazing [because] her boyfriend had just gotten a [beer bottle cap] and it said “Never flee from glee.” I framed [that]. It’s all about syn- chronicity; it was the right place at the right time. [In] two years I had gone from bartending to Spring Awakening to Glee with no breaks in between. I’m going in the right direction right now, I know that.
AM: I thought one of the breakout moments for Tina in the show was when she made the speech about how there were no Asian sex symbols to look up to, so she wants to become one herself. Did you realize that speech is just as relevant to Jenna Ushkowitz as it is to Tina?
JU: Now that I think about it, yeah! Subconsciously, it’s totally true. When you are a minority, especially in this show, people focus in on that and I’m glad I got that storyline. I never really thought about it, but my idols were Lea Salonga and Sandra Oh and they’re Asian, too! It wasn’t, “they’re Asian so I idolize them.” It’s just that they are amazing and broke barriers and are who I aspire to be. We are the few in Hollywood making a name for ourselves so I do think about young girls who aspire to do what I’m doing now.
We’re acting, but we’re also making a difference and I never thought I would be able to do both at the same time. To make sure that arts in education is pushed and the message that different is beautiful and good. Be who you are and never be ashamed of it. We’re showing the world what most schools are like and what kids in schools are like. Not the Gossip Girls, not the 90210’s, with more of the glamorous lives. I love those shows, but kids are more like, “you were me in school, you’re representing me.” So it’s cool we’re lucky enough to do that.
AM: You seem to get along well with the rest of the cast, always saying, “We did this and we did that.”
JU: We’re a family. We came up creating this thing with Ryan and we did it for ourselves, basically. It’s our baby and now we’re sharing it with the world. We really do love each other. We all hang out, we all go to dinners. We have wonderful relationships outside the show.
AM: Has the dynamic changed now?
JU: We’ve only gotten closer. We now know each other really well. We know how we work, we know what clicks. We’ll have tiffs, we’ll argue, but in the most lovely way. Literally, we are each other’s cores. They’re my family and I’ll be sad when they all go away ‘cause I won’t be able to see them every day like I do now. We’re all lifelong friends.
AM: Who are you closest with?
JU: I have different relationships with everybody. Those girls are my sisters. Kevin [McHale] and I are peas in a pod. We get each other. We finish each other’s sentences. We’re all extremely close. It’s weird, I know people say, “You guys are just faking it, you all hate each other” and the tabloids try to do weird stuff, but it’s just this organic thing and I think that’s why it’s so successful. The chemistry worked, you know?
AM: Speaking of chemistry, let’s talk about Tina’s rela- tionship with Mike Chang.
JU: Mike Chang is amazing. We’re the longest standing couple on Glee now. Not everybody lasts on Glee, as you’ve seen. But I love working with Harry and we have a great time together. I would like to see Tina and Artie get into it. Not necessarily get back together, but we never really resolved [the breakup]. I still feel unresolved about it and I don’t know if they’re doing it on purpose. I’d like to do a triangle, [but] I couldn’t pick which one to be with ‘cause I think they’re both great.
AM: What is it like kissing Harry?
JU: [Laughs] A girl never kisses and tells!
AM: What else is off-topic for you?
JU: Relationships. Off-topic. My family, I won’t talk too much about. You can hit on me all you want, but don’t touch my family. I try not to talk about them too much ‘cause that’s my safety zone. When you go home, nothing changes.
You want to share things with the people who know and appreciate you. I’m a pretty open book. But my personal life is my personal life. The tabloids have plugged me with Kevin and if you don’t give them anything, it just becomes boring to them and they kind of leave you alone. That’s why we Twitter, to let people see a little more into our lives rather than reading a tabloid. We prefer that, saying I had a lovely dinner with my friend rather than the tabloids saying, “walking into a bar drunk.” Once you get to the top, people love to bring you down. I don’t think we should give them a chance to do that.
AM: Do you even have time to date?
JU: Not really. In New York it was a lot easier ‘cause I had a lot of friends. Here it’s really hard — I didn’t even have friends. So to meet a guy? It’s just hard. Especially now. You have to be careful when you meet people and be aware of what they want. You never know. I’ve finally met some friends of friends.
AM: What kind of guys do you like?
JU: I said I would never date actors, but that’s a lie. Who else do you meet then? I’m a very honest and open person and I just hope someone will give the same to me. You don’t have to be successful, you just have to know where you’re going.
It’s weird, I thought I would be married by 26 when I was younger. Now it’s like, “Oh my god, no way.” Just a good person. Someone who makes you laugh every single day.
AM: Speaking of people you like, you’ve mentioned how you idolize Sandra Oh.
JU: I watch Grey’s Anatomy for Sandra Oh. She’s my favorite. She can do no wrong in my eyes. I still haven’t met her, but I’m dying to. I’m trying to get her on my show. As crazy aunt Sandra or something. She plays crazy so well.
AM: Are you hoping for a similar career path?
JU: I want to be remembered as an actor who really cared about her craft and her work. I want to do what Sandra has done, which is make herself an actress and not an Asian Amer- ican actress. And doing great work and people seeing past the, “Oh, she’s not blonde and blue-eyed.” I want to be able to break those walls and make it socially wanted — not “acceptable” ‘cause I think it is acceptable — to see an Asian girl on the cover of any popular magazine. That’s where I want to go.
Purchase Jenna Ushkowitz’s Fall issue here.