Something a lil bit different this week Teamales, I’ve tried my hand at interviewing (hopefully I’ll be better at this than am I at choosing the right foundation shade). I caught up with the ultimate girl boss Lucy Harbron to talk about the latest edition of Kiloran, an online magazine which she created last year. As well as running a blog. And being the perfect feminist friend. Oh and btw she’s only 18. #GOALS.
For anyone who isn’t familiar with your magazine, how would you describe it?
Kiloran is hard to describe as it’s just things created by people all across the world. I guess you could say it’s an arts/culture mag but it’s really just the product of amazing creative brains! We release twice a year (hopefully more soon) and give as little direction as possible so contributors are free to input whatever they want. I’d hope that Kiloran is a very open space- like a haven for young creators.
Tell me about the new issue! When’s it out? What’s it about? (cheeky rhyme) Favourite pieces?
Issue 3 is called “b o d y” and it comes out on the 20th august ahhhh!!! This issue tackles everything to do with the body: issues, beauty, emotions. It’s uncensored and almost confrontational as everyone’s been so honest in their pieces. I was hesitant to pick this theme as it can be a huge and difficult topic, but I know it’s been so therapeutic to dive into my own body issues and struggles and see a creative outcome, it’s like a silver lining when you channel your emotions to a positive outcome. There’s soooo many amazing pieces!! I can’t choose a favourite as they’re incomparable. Some really interesting pieces though are Rue’s; tackling body image issues as a female-bodied, trans-non-binary person, Vida’s piece as it’s just so brutal and heartbreaking, and I adore Lucas’ spoken word poem, his piece really encapsulates what I wanted this issue to be. But every piece took my breath away.
How do you choose the theme for each issue?
Normally the idea pops into my head when I’m having a shower, that’s where I get all my good ideas. The first issue didn’t have a theme as we didn’t know where we wanted to fit in the zine world, but I think the themes for issues 2 (letters) and 3 (body) both stemmed from what I’d been writing. Issue 2 came about after I wrote my letter to the Chelsea hotel as I loved the idea of writing thank yous to things/places rather than just people. It’s the same with this issue really as I often write based around questions and challenges I have with not only my body but society. I come up with themes out of curiosity as, when I get an idea, I’m curious about how others might interpret or develop it.
What inspired you to pick the name ‘Kiloran’?
I get asked this looooads and it was probably stupid of me to name the mag a word I can hardly pronounce let alone explain. Basically Kiloran is a song by a band I loooove called Palace, it’s so vibey and glorious. I listened to it loads when I was first thinking about starting the mag- it was a draft name that’s just kinda stuck. Also, the word kiloran means passionate yet balanced, strong-willed, creative. Embodying your hopes.
Most of us would be way too scared to start a project this big, what inspired you to take the leap?
There was so many layers to the decision. I massively admire creators like Tavi Gevinson who haven’t let their age restrict them. I always wanted to start a mag but felt I was too young (I was 17)- seeing the achievements of young creatives, friends and girls I knew, made me restless so I just did it. Also in summer 2015, I was struggling to find my place, and experienced heartbreak and brutal rejection that really caused me to crumble as a person. I needed to build something that would always be mine and a proud memory. I believe life always forces you to grow towards the light, so looking back I feel like the dark period was just a tunnel, it was a kick in the butt forcing me to finally act on ideas I’d been building in my head and start being more fearless in my hopes and plans.
If you were offered the chance to print paper copies, would you? Or are online magazines the future?
100% would print. The idea of having a physical issue is so appealing to me. But I think online mags are the future just because it’s so accessible- 5/10 years ago there’s no way I would’ve been able to start a mag from scratch and work with people across the world. However we’re a very aesthetically-conscious generation so I doubt the appeal of a beautiful printed magazine would ever be lost. The visuals are such a huge part of creating Kiloran so I’d never pass on a printing opportunity.
If one celebrity was reading your magazine, who would you want it to be? (Apart from me, obvs)
Hmm obviously as a true fanatic I have to say Patti Smith, to me she’s the epitome of a creative, she’s so honest yet remains bold in her work, I’d die if she read it. Also Tavi Gevinson because she was such a key factor in its creation; she’s inspired a whole generation by achieving so many cool things so young, I hope she knows what an impact she’s had. But celebrities aren’t really who Kiloran’s for, it’s more for the small-frys.
What advice would you give to anyone hoping to start a magazine?
Do it. All these advances in tech have given us so much opportunity it would be a waste not to. Act on your ideas! Get in contact with creatives, learn the very basics of web development or find someone to help, share your visions but never sacrifice them. Mostly don’t be afraid. There’s this strange thing now where people are embarrassed to act on their hopes, but never be embarrassed or afraid to show that you’re driven and acting on your dreams. Do it. You’ll feel so proud when you do, there’s nothing better than building your own idea.
(Who else is suddenly super inspired to start a mag!?) You can find Kiloran HERE with a new issue out THIS FRIDAY, as well as Lucy on Twitter and Instagram and Kiloran on Twitter and Instagram aka Teamales you’ve all got lots of following to do tonight.
Note: All images are from Kiloran