We Want To Know: Julia Eskins & Aleyah Solomon of Here & There Magazine
Julia Eskins and Aleyah Solomon are the co-founders of Here & There Magazine, a digital publication covering fashion, art and design in major cities around the globe. They have published issues covering the culture of Toronto, New York, Miami, Montreal, London and Paris, with Barcelona being their most recently released issue. I had the chance to speak with these two jet-setting content creators over Skype on the heels of their return from Barcelona to get to know more about them and the magazine they created together.
Julia is the Editor of Here & There and writes most of the features for the publication. As long as she can remember, Julia had a love of writing, a passion that led to her role as editor of her high school newspaper, and that further saw her to pursue a journalism degree from Carleton University. She always had a love for arts and culture journalism and for magazines, and Here & There satisfies her love of both. Prior to co-founding Here & There, Julia worked as an editor at several lifestyle publications including a fashion magazine in Toronto, which is where she met Aleyah Solomon.
Aleyah is the Creative Director & Photographer of Here & There. She was always an artistic child and spent much of her childhood involved in different creative and musical activities. Eventually, she took a strong liking to photography, and from the moment her mother gifted her a camera, Aleyah was taking pictures of everything. She especially loved candidly capturing family and friends, and remembers pinning up her floral bed sheet for a backdrop, creating a makeshift studio to photograph her stuffed animals, setting them each up for their portrait. I think it's pretty clear this was a girl who had an early inkling of what she wanted to be when she grew up!
Julia and Aleyah were often paired together to cover arts and culture events at the publication where they initially met. They enjoyed working together and quickly developed a friendship; their professional and personal bond was so strong that they decided to branch off and start their own venture together, and Here & There Magazine was founded in the summer of 2015.
In the planning stages of each issue, Julia and Aleyah employ a mix of research and instinct when choosing the city that they will featured next. They tend to choose cities that have a developing arts scene, cities that are influential in the fashion scene, all the while keeping areas in mind that will make for a visually compelling backdrop to illustrate the editorials and features. They seek out creatives who have an interesting story to tell, artists for who the city they are featuring has influenced their work. What makes their content unique is that Julia and Aleyah spend time in the places they write about, not as tourists, but as locals – they really immerse themselves in the local culture, walk everywhere they can, take public transit, live like a city native. And other than a Europe-based staff journalist and an editorial assistant, Konstantina Pyrnokoki, Julia & Aleyah connect and work with local resources for services from styling to hair and makeup – this not only realizes a more authentic representation for the aesthetic of the city they are featuring, but also makes them privy to the learning about the best of everything, from sought-after spots for photoshoots to the best after-work cocktail!
When they aren't working on their quarterly publication, Julia and Aleyah are at work producing city guides for places they have visited that are as curated and cultural as their quarterly issues, but not as content-heavy. They also publish helpful packing guides – more than just a list of things to bring, they use this category of their site to showcase their favourite brands and essential items for specific regions, as well as share how they incorporated these items into their trip. Julia and Aleyah's packing guides offers a space for them to share a little more of their personalities, as well as provide a sneak peek at what to expect from their upcoming issue.
Want more? Here's what else We Want To Know about Julia and Aleyah, let's here from them:
I can't start my morning without… lemon water followed by a strong cup of coffee. I love trying different roasts and blends from various places. I’m still working through the three bags of beans I picked up during a recent trip to Nicaragua!
I have a weakness for… the sun. I love being outside! I wear sunscreen daily but I couldn’t imagine fully enjoying summer or a vacation without getting a bit of a tan.
Most people don't know that I… am passionate about fitness. Since as long as I can remember, I’ve had an innate desire to move daily. I was a ballet and contemporary dancer from age three to 18, so being active has always been second nature to me. These days, I love long distance running, yoga, pilates and trying anything new, like surfing and boxing.
Currently reading… ‘All the Ugly and Wonderful Things’ by Bryn Greenwood. Another journalist recommended it to me. I was expecting it to be similar to Nabokov's ‘Lolita’. So far it’s very different, yet equally unputdownable.
I want… to run a marathon, write a novel, continue learning Spanish and return to Elephant Nature Park in Northern Thailand (or another animal sanctuary elsewhere) to volunteer.
I can't start my morning without… dedicating the first 20 minutes to meditation to set my intentions for the day. You should always start your day on a positive note! That, and I drink water as soon as I wake up before going for a run.
I have a weakness for… sunglasses! I seriously love every pair I try on and have a hard time talking myself out of buying them!
Most people don't know that I… am really fascinated with nutrition and natural healing. I often watch health documentaries and read articles on different types of foods and spices to benefit one’s health and to heal specific ailments.
Currently reading… ‘How The French Think’ by Sudhir Hazareesingh. It was given to me before moving to Paris and is about the history of French philosophy and politics.
I want… to be a good role model for my three nieces, to speak French fluently, adopt two dogs and to keep challenging myself in new ways, artistically and as a person in general.
Many thanks to Julia and Aleyah for participating in #WeWantToKnow!
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