Introducing our August Publisher of the Month, Kolor Magazine, a bi-annual high-fashion magazine for black and brown men.
How did Kolor Magazine get started? What’s the inspiration behind it?
Kolor Magazine started after I had gone to several interviews for fashion editorial positions and I wasn’t getting callbacks. I decided I could either continue to wait for someone to hire me to do what I love or I can find a way to do it for myself and Kolor Magazine was born. As we finish out this year and move into 2020 and beyond, Kolor’s inspiration is to create a high fashion space anchored by black and brown men and our stories, ideas, and presence.
What are some challenges you face as a publisher? How do you conquer them?
The unknown is my biggest challenge! As I’m prepping for a shoot I never know which PR firms are going to be able to loan samples or if a model or photographer is going to cancel due to whatever reason. This list grows on the number of things that are simply out of my control as a publisher. To conquer any challenges I may face producing an issue, I refer back to a quote from my mentor Angela Gilltrap on the job of content creators, “our jobs are to be creative on cue.” If I stay in a hustle and get it popping creative mentality, always believe that I can get the job done and I will get the job done a window of opportunity to pivot and move forward always presents itself for me to create.
How do you think publishing digitally has helped Kolor Magazine?
Publishing digitally gives me two great advantages, a better opportunity to reach an international audience and more importantly, a more direct way to reach black and brown men searching online for content with them in mind.
What advice do you have for someone looking to start a magazine?
If you google how to start a magazine like I did, when I made the decision to start Kolor, you’re going to find a bunch of great advice shuffled into a deck of cards stacked against you. The high start-up costs, the unfortunate truth that people aren’t buying print magazines like they once did, an overwhelming and overcrowded digital space that makes it seem like your POV will drown out amongst the big-name media outlets already covering your ideas, the struggle to turn a profit. The list goes on and it’s enough to make you doubt if you should start in the first place, but I did. My advice to you is to just do it. Start and let your personal life journey and passions and the new journey you’ll be embarking on help mold your publication into a niche, unique space that an audience that thinks like you, google searches like you and post on social media like you will enjoy and become your readers.
What is the best part of running a magazine?
The best part of running a magazine is taking the skills I’ve learned, love and passion that I’ve desperately wanted to sew to another magazine to be the best fashion editor they’ve ever seen and investing that into the magazine I’ve created. Now almost two years in that skill set, love and passion are helping me cultivate a loving, respectable, tolerant and stylish space for the audience I want to engage.
Here at Issuu, we believe everyone has a story to tell. How do you like to tell your stories?
I like the tell my stories with the mindset that no matter who you are or how you identify as a black or brown man, straight, gay, femme, masc, bisexual, trans, non-binary or whatever labels that describe who you are that we are brothers and our experience, as different as they may be, can connect us.
What’s next for Kolor Magazine?
Kolor Magazine will continue to develop its brand as a welcoming space for black and brown men. I want to create a space that feels like the army of stand up men that surround me with their love and brotherhood. Every day moving forward we’ll be working towards that goal.