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Rising Stars: Meet Ayana Gordon

Today we’d like to introduce you to Ayana Gordon.

Ayana, we appreciate you taking the time to share your story with us today. Where does your story begin?
I’ve always had an extensive relationship with creativity for as long as I can remember. Creativity was always welcomed in my household, as my parents are creatives themselves. My mom was once a fashion design student; she made and modeled beautiful garments.

My pop created a business where he would collect an assortment of unique musical instruments and fix them in our basement for families and artists throughout the DMV. It was hard not to pick up a few things along the way in our household. As a multi-hyphenate artist, I wear many hats to keep my creativity and curiosity alive. I love to paint, design, up-cycle clothes, collect furniture, and deepen my love for photography.

My journey with photography began when a close family friend allowed me to use his camera during our family event; I was instantly intrigued. Even from a young age, I loved how the camera captured our family moments, mainly because taking photographs seemed rare in our family.

We weren’t big on capturing moments or ourselves. I would sit and fiddle with the camera and try to focus the lens on pure moments of joy and laughter. The results of the photos started a buzz amongst my family; from then on, I was known for having a “good eye” I wasn’t sure what that meant at the time; I just enjoyed the feeling of being able to capture a memory, proof we’ve lived.

After graduating, I extended my schooling at Youtube University, where I learned so much about film photography. Since Covid mandates have lifted, I’ve had opportunities to connect with creatives throughout the DMV area. Learning something new and cultivating relationships as I went along. I created concepts, built teams, and executed my ideas. I loved it.

But the creativity doesn’t stop there, I find myself constantly experimenting with materials and seeing what comes of it, allowing myself the freedom to just create. I’ve built some beautiful pieces along the journey and project after project, it becomes more prevalent to me that I have found something that feels right. A passion for creation.

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way? Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
Early on, in my journey, my artistic insecurities reared their ugly head and sucked the fun out of any form of art. I was made to feel that I wasn’t good enough in any of them.

I let the imposter syndrome creep in, swallowing me whole. “Comparison is the thief of joy” lived true. I would constantly compare my abilities to others, so I searched for hobbies that I was good at and found something I believed to be more “realistic” for me. I began my studies in the Sciences and went to school for Biology and Chemistry.

Fast forward to my abrupt end of college, March 2020. The world came to a halt, forcing everyone into their homes, giving everyone a chance to slow down and reflect. I took the opportunity to dig deeper into who I want to be and what I want from my life, knowing today isn’t promised.

I began to explore the arts again. I started small and began drawing again; I found new interests like modeling, and I started feeling the warmth I used to have about my art, without all the negative thoughts and self-doubt. Art became my outlet in quarantine.

Appreciate you sharing that. What else should we know about what you do?
I see myself as a multi-hyphenate artist who specializes in film photography. Within film photography, I create portraits, fine art, and fashion photography.

When I think of this question, ” What am I known for?” my mind keeps saying, ” What is she [AAMP’d] gonna do next?” I’m doing a lot of things at the same time. so if I’m being honest, I’m not sure what I’m known for yet. I guess that would be a question for my audience.

In my world, I’m known for following what feels good for me. I don’t try to fit into a box or shrink myself. I create loudly and boldly. I embrace the artist within myself, no matter my medium.

What are your plans for the future?
This is just the beginning of my journey, and it has already made me stronger and more genuine in what I’d like to create. I’ve learned the art of gratitude and become filled with it at the thought of my ability to turn my ideas into reality.

I see my art as an extension of myself, how I think, see the world, and amplify the human experience; so I’m looking forward to seeing my work grow and mature as I do. My plan is to continue to push my creative envelope with each shoot and progress each time.

One day soon, I know my work will make its way across the world.

Contact Info:

Image Credits
Kirby Griffin, Luna, Niya, Azmaree Curtis, Yusurah Styled, Charae C., Ajee H, Kelly C, Kiara A., Azmaree C, Essence & Mykal Styled, Monie PA, and Liv F

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