FLAVIA SANTIAGO

Confidence is surely built from many factors but mainly from the loved ones around you and the realization of diversity. Once I started my college years, I was surrounded by all kinds of people and that opened up my horizons. It was easier to see that I didn't have to behave, dress, and look a certain way to be accepted by the people I cared about. Over that time I learned fast to ignore people that like to judge and their negative comments. Since then, life has been lighter and once you reach that, your work follows and you are able to create, exploring your own style and ambitions.

 

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I've always loved myself and was never camera shy, but then as usual, high school happened and messed up my self-esteem and I became a timid person. I was bullied because of my hair's texture and volume, and my underweight skinny body. The process [of accepting myself] was gradual and started by stopping with all the chemical relaxers I was using on my hair and learning more about curly care. 

Once I accepted my hair, accepting my curveless body wasn't that hard. Sadly, society is still very demanding on how women must look and I have some little things in me that I would like to change but that usually depends on my mood. Except my feet. I will always think they are weird looking even though there is nothing wrong with them.

Thankfully, it didn't take much time, once in college, to understand that there isn't such thing as "ugly." We are all beautiful in different ways. 

 

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It's funny because even though I work directly with fashion, my wardrobe is a disaster. It went from childish and cartoonish to basic mostly black and white and I'm very ashamed that I'm too cheap to invest in some fashionable items. So, what usually happens is I transform the old clothes changing the colour and cutting them so I can lie to myself and pretend they are new.

I absolutely hate being cold, so the most comfortable outfit I wore in a shooting was an huge pink coat that looked like a sleeping bag. I just wanted to sleep in it!

Since I don't care much for clothes, I don't have a memorable item. I know I once wore a Prada fur coat so maybe that was the most iconic item, but other than that, I treat all clothing equal. (laughing)

 

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I actually prefer the outdoors shootings and in the craziest outfits and makeup because it's just fun to see people's faces, some are surprised, some laugh, some are confused (laughing).

Studio shootings are more demanding, I think. There are less things to interact with and the focus is all on you alone, so I feel the pressure of controlling every muscle of my body to be in that perfect pose.

Casual outdoor shooting must be the one I feel less comfortable with because I'm in normal daily clothes and very simple makeup, so it's harder to get into the "model mode." (laughing)

 

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One of the most challenging aspects of my work but one that I am truly grateful for is: freelancing. Sometimes I wish I had an agency to take care of the whole scouting process, and I guess I would be more successful financially that way, but freelancing allows me to have the freedom to pick my own work and have a relationship less "work-exclusive" with the artists involved. Maybe the freelance way doesn't get my pocket full but the experiences and the people I meet are worth it.

 

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I have a Law degree that I don't want to use, and now I'm going back to Art School to try to find myself again. I spent five years studying Law and now I'm just starting all over from zero. I was never interested in a solid career, I see myself in a job that would just allow me to talk to people and have enough money to get by, since I don't care about clothes or luxury items. If I have enough for a place and food, I'm good! 

Now, if you ask me about the future in general, I've watched all episodes of Black Mirror, so you can guess how optimistic I am. (laughing)

 

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I'm a big fan of (and believer in) conspiracy theories, so I think that so many things can cause the end of civilization but we are not aware of them. Global warming, nuclear war, or a super virus, they are all possible options, but we are very far from the end.

I believe in the secret elite that controls the world and play society like a Sims/Monopoly mix, and decide everything in how we live (economic crisis, wars, pop culture and even some "natural events") and if we ever go extinct, it will be some consequence from their actions.

I've been called crazy and paranoid and I'm okay with that, some people aren't ready to know the truth anyways.

 













01 // Laurent Ponce // laurentpnce
02 // Anna V. // annavianellophoto
03 // Koray Hussein // korayhussein
04 // Holger M. // holgermadsenfotografia
05 // Uncredited
06 // Uncredited
07 // Holger M. // holgermadsenfotografia
08 // Isabella Leite // _isabellaleite_
09 // Laurent Ponce // laurentpnce
10 // Alice Prenat // portrait_madame
11 // Icemecri // icemecri
12 // Mark // m4rk_toweri_photography
13 // Isabella Leite // _isabellaleite_

 

Flavia Santiago // flaviaesantiago

 

JUNNNKTANK is an online zine which has existed in one form or another since 2006.
For over a decade, the focus has been on highlighting the efforts of inspiring individuals and artists from around the world.

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Submissions are always welcome to junk@junnnktank.com.