When I started this blog in October of 2013, I was told by a plethora of adults that I was "too young" and "too inexperienced" to start capitalizing on my future career. I've never been one to let discouraging criticism affect my ambition, and retrospectively, these comments are inane. In a world where technology is taking over, publishing was as easy as clicking a button, gaining publicity was as easy as typing a 140-character Tweet, and sourcing initial inspiration was as easy as opening a magazine. I feel proud that I was able to prove my nay-sayers wrong.

Honing my skills as an amateur fashion journalist has been a life-changing experience. I have been able to interview immensely talented individuals, research and report on topics that I am passionate about, and inspire others to be confident and outspoken. I've learned effective SEO methods, how to avoid violating copyright laws, and how to evolve my original voice. And as this blog's following grows, I find it empowering to continue challenging myself. How can I keep PTO exciting? How can I present my readers from Denver to Denmark with a viewpoint they've never considered before? I may be reporting on fashion and beauty (a focus that may seem stupid and superficial to some) but through my "passion for fashion" I am able to promote the important virtues of accepting yourself, keeping an open mind, never taking life too seriously, and more.

I write articles and interview artists. I wear Canadian Tuxedos and enjoy being the "ugly friend". I invite my readers to ask questions and I adore featuring contributing authors. Soon I might be producing my own videos and designing my own clothes. But for now, I want to focus on styling. 

Working with Madeline Hicks (my "partner-in-creativity") and our two godly models Samantha Rivera and Chris Jones (my couple crush of the century) to conceptualize an entire fashion editorial was much more difficult than I initially imagined it would be. Following the typical fashion-mag procedure, I created a moodboard of images to draw inspiration from. Then, after reviewing all eighty-one images over... and over... and over again, I focused on the eleven themes that, from my perception, connected all the pictures: youth, love, excitement, emotion, hesitancy, sex, strength, vulnerability, curiosity, dependence, and reality.

From there I was faced with the daunting task of styling six unique looksEasy, right? WRONG. Picking outfits for myself is a piece of cake; I am exponentially familiar with every curve of my body and I know exactly what styles work on my figure. Incorporating ten themes in dressing two of the most genetically-gifted people I know forced me not only out of my comfort zone but also out of my head – I was forced to imagine the clothes hanging from someone else's limbs other than my own, for an intended vibe slightly different than my own preferred style. I scoured my closet and my favorite thrift and vintage stores to create six sexily sporty ensembles that looked as good on the hanger as it did on their bodies. 

Today, crammed into my RAV 4 blasting Soulja Boy and LolaWolf, we embarked on a journey to Denver's South Broadway area to shoot ONE. I saw a stranger's genitals as he peed in an alleyway, Maddie worked her magic behind the lens, Chris almost sliced the entirety of his face and body open with a shattered window pane, and Samantha proved she is the hottest person on the face of the planet. I am so, so proud of my first fashion editorial; I feel so lucky to have been able to work with such motivating people that share my excitements, dreams, and ideas. Without further explanations, I present the combined effort of four hard-working individuals. Here, absorb ONE