YJ: What are you studying at Columbia University?
JG: Art history and business.
YJ: Has blogging been a life-long interest?
JG: I started on blog when I was so young, I think a Sophomore in high school because I loved writing. At the same, it was very fashion-focused, because that seemed to have been the trend—but I soon realized that that was not really who I was or am now. Over the years, my platform has transitioned a lot: it has gone through changes, revisions, and re-vamps—all of which were part of the process of me figuring out my preferences and my voice—essentially leading up to where I’m at today.
I love to create and I love being able to have conversations over shared experiences—all of which I’ve channeled into my platforms, and hope to continue to do so. I’m not sure I want this to be my full-time job, but I definitely want to continue it for as long as possible. So, now, I’m just trying to build a good foundation for when I graduate next year.
I will say that my blog has definitely pushed me to come into my own and to realize what it is that I really love doing and sharing. I was actually a competitive runner for years (and fun fact: was recruited to Columbia for XC/T&F), but had to take a bit of time off after having to deal with some personal things. Last year, I decided that I needed to grab hold of myself again and get back on track. I decided to train for the marathon in November which completely changed my outlook on things and got me back into the routine that I had always loved. I realized in this whole process that my passions really lie in health, fitness, and beauty—and since, have shifted my platform and focus.
I am leaning towards pursuing something in the beauty industry, but can’t quite say what that will be yet! ;)
YJ: Where do you find inspiration, when needing it?
JG: When I need inspiration I tend to take a step back and try to do something that will get my creative juices flowing again. For me, this is really anything from working out, to cooking or playing the guitar. I love music so much and really wish I had it in me to pursue something in that industry….but I’m so weird about singing and/or playing in front of people that I kind of always do it without people knowing. But it’s the best release, and the best way of laying everything out on the table.
YJ: If you could tell your younger self one thing about life, what would it be?
JG: I definitely would tell my younger self to not waste one minute behind unhappy—whether that's with friends, a relationship, or even an activity. I hate to say it, but everyone is always looking to bring you down in some way or another, but at the end of the day, you need to have enough confidence in yourself to look beyond this and be happy with who you are. I’ve really struggled with this over the past couple of years and it is something I’m still trying to come to terms with. It’s so easy to get caught up in what other people think or what they try to say to get you to stop doing your own thing. But at the end of the day, who cares? You have to do you.
YJ: What are you still looking to achieve?
JG: I really want to be my own boss (don’t we all!!) but honestly, this is something that I’ve dreamed about since I was little—and I think that’s why I haven’t given up on my platform even though it has grown so slowly. At the same time, I really want to make an impact. I want to be able to relate to people, to motivate them, and be a role model.
YJ: What do you think is different about your creative process?
JG: I oftentimes feel like I am running on stress—haha, okay maybe its’ not really stress but just my need to constantly be doing something productive. It’s so hard for me to just sit back and relax. But, I think this is where my creativity comes from. If an idea comes to mind, I have to like jot it down on one of my 500 lists and then re-visit it over and over. I’m always moving from one thing to the next, and I think that makes for a very unique creative process.
YJ: What would you say to someone who may think that their talent is not an ideal career path?
JG: I am all about doing what you love, but I am also all about being successful—what this means to each person is different. What I can say, though, is that there are so many ways to figure out a compromise: there are ways to achieve success in a way that incorporates one of your passions/something that fulfills you, and you can’t give up on trying to figure out what that is. But its’ ultimately a process of trial-and-error.
YJ: What music do you listen to for motivation?
JG: My music tastes are ALL OVER THE PLACE and what I listen to really depends on my mood. I listen to a lot of rap, while also to a bunch of alternatives, country, and old music. So much of the music I listen to depends on how a song will resonate with me in the moment, but I think that’s really cool. Like, it sort of makes sense, you know?
In the gym, its a different story. I’ve gone through every one of the Workout playlists on Apple Music and have no shame. They work!!
YJ: What’s been your favorite project in your career so far?
JG: I’ve had the privilege of being a part of some really cool projects over the past couple of years, but here are a few of the ones that I’ve stepped back and been like, “wow, that was so cool.”
- Adidas Women asked me to do a social media campaign for them in 2015, right as I was heading into my Freshman year of college. I created a month’s worth of content for them that they blasted across their social media channels. I was so stoked, and since have maintained a really great relationship with the brand.
- In 2016, I was asked to present at the Fragrance Foundation Awards alongside my friend Patrick Finnegan and Luka Sabbat. The three of us had been doing a little circuit of panels that focused on Gen Z and social media marketing. This was single-handedly probably one of the most amazing things I’ve been a part of. I got to meet some really incredible people and it also was one of the first moments where I became really intrigued by beauty. I was so nervous to present but also, was so honored to be there. It was amazing.
- Last year, I was asked to be a rep for Glossier, which has opened so many doors and really pushed by platform in the direction I think I have always wanted it to go. Not to mention, I have been able to learn so much about product marketing, etc. that has proved very beneficial for projects I am currently working on. It has also landed itself to being part of a great network.
YJ: What are 3 activities still left on your bucket list?
- Go to Asia (I’ve never been and am dying to go.)
- Record a few songs in a recording studio (Have been dying to do this, I’m just too nervous)
- Run a marathon under 3:30 (I ran 3:53 last year)
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