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Collaborator Curated

Joe Mikoli is a professional Graphic Designer and a published photographer from Los Angeles, CA.

Joe’s photo work has been featured in Muscle & Fitness UK, Oxygen magazine, PopSugar Fitness, and Today Show online. Throughout his creative career in the graphic arts, Joe collaborated with a multitude of renowned & lucrative brands, personal brands, including but not limited to Team EDGE & EDGE Supps, Body Ambition Fitness, America’s Next Great Trainer, Natalie Jill, Ingrid Romero, Obi Obadike, Phillips & Pelly, HitchFit, Fit Girl Wear, Extreme Results Fitness, Bootoga Worldwide, Fit Mom Diet, and more.

He has built up well over a decade of extensive hands-on experience, that is focused on the fitness, health & wellness, corporate industries, and small businesses.

As a talented creative, Joe has been interviewed by Voyage LA Magazine, alongside making an appearance on his first podcast, Veteran’s Brother last fall. With his knowledge, he has proven himself to be completely dedicated to working effortlessly in achieving all of his client’s needs. These accomplishments were possible because of his ability to combine his skills in leading-edge computer applications such as Adobe Creative Suite, with his knowledge of photography and graphic design. 

Inspired by all forms of photography, especially natural light, and the ever-growing graphic design field, Joe plans on continuing to hone his creative craft.



Check out some of his recommended products to help throughout a creative career:

 

1. Nikon D750 – Since 2015, this is the only DSLR Full Frame camera I still use to this very day. This is a beautiful camera with great low light capabilities and picture quality that still takes fabulous photos.

2. MagMod MagSphere – I have used most of the flash diffusion products and this is my favorite and gives me the best results. Produces great lighting and quality results.

3. MagMod MagBounce: I love this diffuser for groups of people and events, quick and easy to mount and remove, folds to fit in the camera bag. It provides excellent soft light from a portable quick-change system. Distributes more light more evenly than any other on-camera flash diffuser.

4. Westcott Ice Light 2: This continuous light is incredible. I use it mostly for a photo that casts terrifically soft and beautiful light for closeups. The best continuous portable light I’ve owned!

5. Flashpoint Evolv 200 Portable Flash Unit: Simply an amazing and useful piece of lighting equipment for my fitness and fashion photos. It’s great, small, and powerful.

“Those who use his services can rest assured knowing that his commitment to constant growth and a knack for thinking outside of the box, while crafting visually striking graphics for business branding, marketing purposes, and beyond, will meet each and every one of their goals.”

– Joe Mikoli 

 



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Lenny Vuitton is truly a dreamer; from inside his surreal conscious out fly creatures with three eyes and slimey noses turning into elaborate doodles and garments.

Lenny Vuitton takes a daring yet exciting approach in his mission to dismantle society’s expectations. A lifestyle brand that unifies art and fashion while drawing relations to every aspect of life; offering a variety of products from painted furniture and abstract sculptures to crazy swag. This cult-like lifestyle is truly a FUCK YOU to the standard fashion industry and in the bigger picture, society. Lenny Vuitton creates inspiration for those who want to escape reality.

Being a graffiti artist, Lenny is inspired by dismantling and recreating; taking common iconography and remixing it as his own. Something about doing what’s provocative or different is so enticing to people.



Check out some of his recommended products to help throughout uncanny fashion career:

 

1. VEVOR Flash Dryer: Screen Printing Equipment: Used to Heat Shirts and dry the plastisol paint used to screenprint on them. Needed to dry paint that I use, plastisol does not air dry.

2. Aluminum Screen Printing Frames: Used to hold the artwork/ designs that I used for my screen printed clothes and artwork, I also get custom screens made from ANTHEM SCREEN PRINTING. This cuts time and works on creating my screens when not able to burn my own screens.

3. Ecotex Red NP Plastisol Ink For Screen Printing: Used for screen printing, better than water-based paints, leaves a plastic texturization on the garments rather than seeping into the textile. Plastic like texture that sits on top of shirt/ vinyl-like.

4. Miniature Paint Brushes Detail Set: Used for painting on canvas and clothing, I tend to include a lot of small fine details in my work; so a small brush is essential. I like to create little things that may not be noticeable at first, then as time goes on the wearer or observer will notice more and more detail. Like a gift that doesn’t stop giving, there is always something new found in my work to entertain.

5. Montana BLACK 400ml Popular Colors Set of 12: Used to spray paint various mediums, clothes, canvas, walls, etcetera. Considering I destroy/dismantle anything in my reach with my creations, I use spray paint for pretty much anything.

“The rush feels when others are observing or gawking at you while being different is compelling.”

– John Lenahan

 

 



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Dell is a director, editor, and videographer who goes by the alias @fakedell on Instagram. Currently working for the media group and record label at Mass Appeal, he continues to strive in all elements of media.

He has previously has worked for the Cleveland Browns/NFL and also Lavish Visions which is an advertising group that his friends and he started up in college. Mostly interested in shooting music-related fields, fashion, art, and sports are a major interest as well.

 



Check out some of his recommended products to help throughout a creative career:

 

1. Sony Alpha a7iii Mirrorless Digital Camera – This is the hottest affordable camera out right now, if you know what you’re doing and you have the money then I would highly advise going for this camera. It duals in video and photo well so if you like cameras, you can do the most with this one. Until the A7siii comes out of course.

2. DJI Ronin-S Essentials Kit 3-Axis Gimbal Stabilizer – If you need stable footage and something accessible, then this stabilizer will be your best bet. I personally use the Ronin-m but I think that this is much more useful in certain situations and half the price.

3. DJI Mavic 2 Pro Drone Quadcopter: Drones are always useful for videos because shots from above add endless opportunities and just another element that makes your visual more enjoyable. This drone right here is the best for the price.

4. Rokinon Cine DS Lens Kit: This is a great bundle on the lens. You get 4 prime lenses with a great range on aperture so you can shoot in low light. You might have to buy four lenses but the price per lens is unmatched and you can do a lot with this kit.

5. Apple MacBook Pro 15in Core i7 2.5GHz Retina: 16 GB of RAM and 512 gb of memory on a Macbook for less then $1500 is all you need for basic editing. Don’t bother getting the newer models with this deal on Amazon.

“Life’s short. So, let’s just do what we want. And if it works, it works. If it doesn’t, it doesn’t, but we’re going to do it how we want to do it.”

– Cole Bennett

 



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Alana McKinney is a blogger and budding photographer born and raised just outside of Atlanta, Georgia.

She is the owner and principal blogger of SolelyLiving.com, an advice blog for other millennial women who feel lost at any given time on their journey through adulthood. She writes to share a candid, down-to-earth perspective on the adulting dilemmas of millennial women. (Because she knows what it’s like to have your expectations not match your reality.)

The blog represents the ambitious fempreneur, the over-stressed 9-5er, the exhausted parents who need a break, the adventurous travel babe, and every woman in between. Solely Living is taking the confusion out of growing up by helping women create the life they see in their dreams.



Keeping her schedule in order takes a lot of planning and preparation, so here are a few products she uses to make sure she never misses a thing:

 

1. Magnetic Dry Erase Calendar – I couldn’t function without first creating my calendar for the month. It’s too hard to book events without first knowing when/where else I have to be.

2. AmazonBasics Lightweight Tripod – I take photos almost everywhere I go and sometimes my cell phone won’t get the proper shot. Having this baby in my trunk along with my camera really is a lifesaver when I’m on a time crunch and can’t go back home.

3. Food Storage Containers: Since I’m always on-the-go and like to stay away from fast food, bringing food with me on the road is a must. I can easily pack up leftovers for the next day so I can just grab and go!

4. Journal for My Thoughts: Inspiration hits everywhere and sometimes I need to write it down versus type it in my phone so I keep a cute journal with me for motivation to be more intentional.

5. Envelope Laptop Bag: It’s super sleek and can hold all my essentials. If I’m going to be out for a while, I’ll bring this with my tablet so I don’t fall behind on work.

“The only moment that truly matters is the moment you decide to stop doubting yourself.”


I created this quote because it speaks true to my real life and, I think, so many others. We always dwell on the moments that didn’t work out or that turned out wrong, but the only moment that needs our attention is the moment we start believing in ourselves.



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Joanna Kalafatis is an actress, blogger, and photographer working out of Los Angeles, California; she has previously lived in Athens, Greece and New York.

She has published two photo books on “Abandoned California” with Arcadia Publishing and runs a travel blog at LosetheMap.com. Joanna has also traveled to over 40 countries and worked with major travel brands including Hipmunk, Mapquest, and JUCY Campervan in the past.

In addition to writing about travel and cultures, she is passionate about social causes; she helped film a documentary in a Syrian refugee camp in Idomeni, Greece, has worked with charities such as Centro Infantil in Mexico, and partnered with Omaze to promote and help fund Tanzanian charities.

As far as acting, Joanna has appeared in commercials for Mitsubishi, worked as a voice actress in franchises such as Metal Gear Solid, in music videos for Pierce the Veil and Lil Wayne, and acted in many independent films.



Juggling a few connected but different careers is always a balancing act, so she has a few products to help her organize and get the best out of her time:

 

1. Sunski Madrona Polarized Sunglasses For Men & Women: I used to really have a block against wearing sunglasses, but I travel to a lot of very sunny destinations and need to protect my eyes. The great thing about these glasses is that they are made from recycled plastic!

2. JOBY GorillaPod 3K Kit: So many shots require a tripod to get that truly detailed, professional look and I especially love long exposure shots. You can place the JOBY almost anywhere and set up a great shot; it’s extremely lightweight and great for the road.

3. GoPro HERO7 Black: Even though I will never part with my Canon, this GoPro has been amazing to get active/underwater travel shots and videos I couldn’t really get with my DSLR camera.

4. Osprey Mira AG 26 Hydration Pack:  Whether I’m going on a long hike to get some great photos and want to stay hydrated, or just need to comfortably carry my gear with me when I walk around a new city, this backpack has been a lifesaver.

5. Essentials Dot Matrix Notebook – A5 Size: This is the perfect notebook for those who use the Bullet Journal Method; I like writing things down manually, but using this one notebook helped me merge all my planners, to do lists, brainstorming maps, etc. in one place so I can stay on top of my work and responsibilities.

“A person needs a little madness, or else they never dare cut the rope and be free.” ~ Nikos Kazantzakis


I love this quote by one of my favorite Greek authors because it captures the idea that once you have learned what all the rules and expectations of you are, you need to trust your instincts to break them a little so you can truly achieve your dreams.



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Denardo Lee Gastin is a multitalented, versatile artist born & raised in Atlanta, GA.

Since childhood, he’s developed a heavy interest, in the world of arts and entertainment, plus raising himself on various pop culture, through his childhood in the 1990s. Because of his ADHD, he used to draw on classwork and homework developing an obsession with building a collection of VHS, CDs, DVDs, and Blu-Rays. Mainly, anything that was based on Japanese culture.

When it comes to my art, he’s graphic designer, musician, digital artist, retoucher, video editor, and last but not least, a photographer. As of 2019, he’s 11 times published (including in The Fox Magazine, on his birthday of August 3, 2018).



Check out some of his favorite products along his photographic journey:

 

1. Nikon D850 – Since 2013, this is my first, and only DSLR camera, that I still use to this very day. At the time of its release in 2012, it boosted the most megapixels, which has been overtaken since, plus with the mirrorless era, this camera model still packs a punch.

2. Neewer 5 in 1 Reflector – Being mainly an outdoor shooter, especially in sunlight, using a reflector on my subject, brings out a glowing but thaumaturgical effect on my subject, making them, without the use of electricity flashing on them.

3. Love Louder: 33 Ways To Amplify Your Life –  I’ve owned this book, for a year. In recent times, when it comes to posting my content on Social Media, I have something called “D.L.Gommentaries,”  which are commentaries that either provides Behind The Scenes of the art, or some self-help motivation. Because I have influenced certain people with my motivation, even before I owned this book, this book has helped me become more happy with my life, and I highly recommend it.

4. iPad Pro – Because I’m also a musician and a digital artist, and I’m unable to afford studio time or the more expensive but professional equipment, with the purchase of several different apps on the iTunes store, I’ve used this device to utilize those creative mediums with (alongside the Apple Pencil).

5. Sony WI-C400 Wireless In-Ear Headphones – When I want to listen to my music on the go, or communicate with people on the phone without holding it, I can always count on these headphones.

“The biggest purpose in life, is for us to be happy, and there are millions of ways to make our melancholic lives, turn to blithesome, and be very pulchritudinous afterwards.”
– D.L Gastin

 



Connect With D.L!

 

 

Lauren Conklin is a violinist from Nashville, TN. She writes, arranges, and has over fifteen years of performance experience on several tours, including opening for acts such as Jools Holland, Montgomery Gentry, Josh Thompson, and Kix Brooks.

She has played venues from the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville to the Royal Albert Concert Hall in London, and has worked with artists and productions like Miley Cyrus, Lonestar, Florida Georgia Line, ABC/CMT’s Nashville, The CMT Awards, Little Big Town, Andra Day, Lee Ann Womack, as the featured artist for Bonafonte’s international advertising campaign, and currently tours with 2015’s AGM Female Group of the Year/2016 Country Christian Group of the Year, HighRoad.

Lauren started off 2019 by releasing the first track from her new project “Water Music,” her first album of original instrumentals, which is now available on all digital platforms. 



Check out some of her favorite products to use as an emerging musician:

 

1. LR Baggs Venue DIThis is a musician specific pick, but I really can’t say enough good things about this DI. I’ve had mine for almost 7 years now, use it every time I play, and it’s still in perfect condition. Great EQ, a tuner, and a boost–as a fiddle player, I love it, and many of the great acoustic guitar and mandolin players I work with a lot love it too!

2. Kindle PaperwhiteI absolutely love my Kindle Paperwhite! You can set it to either be backlit or not, with a variety of brightnesses, the new one is waterproof, and now I can have hundreds of books with me when I travel without a second suitcase.

3. Wireless HeadphonesThese headphones sound amazing AND you don’t have to keep up with the dongle adaptor thing if you have a newer iPhone (I have lost so many of those it’s not even funny anymore). Win-win.

4. The Perfect Planner  – I would never get anywhere or get anything done without this planner, it is my lifeline! I love that it’s undated, so you can start and end whenever you want, and it has tons of space for putting down to do lists/shopping lists/notes/etc! Also comes with great goal setting sheets at beginning of every month and fun stickers.

5. BIC Color Collection PensThis may be dorky, but I’m obsessed with pens. These are my favorites, and it may just be me, but really great colorful pens make me feel so much more creative and excited to get to work!

“Great things are done by a series of small things brought together”
– Vincent Van Gogh


I love this quote because it is such a good reminder that even if you can only make very small progress towards your goals and dreams each day, those small steps are what will eventually become your big accomplishments!



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