“I remember when I was 11 my father bought my postcards from his trip to the UK. Ever since then I really wanted to go. He told me he would take me but never managed to bring me in the next five years.
Even without visiting I knew I wanted to come here, and at the age of 16, pretty much the first opportunity I got, I made the move. The first time I moved in was also the first time I visited here. I had my bags and found a place in Brighton, where I could afford to start off by myself, and that’s it, I went from there. I didn’t have much more of a plan than that I just know what I wanted to do.
No matter what’s expected for you, if you have drive then just go for it. Otherwise you’ll never know what will happen. That’s what I did.
I moved 9 houses in the last 5 years, and my life changes massively every time. You have no idea. I’ve met so many awesome people along the way, honestly!
You get to understand different people and situations, how to adapt to them and mature. For me, exploring is key – if you have the energy and power, explore in every way possible.
London is busy place, it has productive environment. I need it. I’m a laid back person generally , so being in a city where everything is always on the move is what makes me get things done, otherwise I’d happily sit back and relax the whole time , and I wouldn’t have any of what I have to show now.”
“I started music when I was 6. It’s been in my family for generations: my grandad was big into classical music, and my dad too
I think I wrote my first piece of music when i was about 16 or 17, yeah that really was a big moment for me. It’s that kick you get when you make that first break. Whether a t-shirt print designer who makes their first t-shirt, or a journalists first published article, or writing your first song, there’s this rush of achievement you feel. And after that you’re hooked. So it’s good and bad you know, because then there’s no going back, you get addicted.
My mum had been sick on and off for years, and this really put things into perspective about doing what you really want because you never know when it will be too late. I know a lot of people say it, but I strongly believe you should do what you love. And I think not enough people live this way.”
Luis: We studied together in illustration, she works for a newspaper that I illustrated for, he is a skill full illustrator and he is a fashion professional in character – is that a good description.
Rafael: We met five minutes ago for the first time.
Manrutt: But it was planned. We have kept in touch through Instagram, and then Luis told us he was coming to London, so we all arranged this day to finally meet in person.
Luis: I never been in London before so I came with my husband for three days and then I messaged the group to say I’m here and we should meet.
Jeremy: Plan today? We don’t have any plan for the day. We don’t have any plan you know… artists(!)
Manrutt: It is really important to connect. Working individually as a freelancer can be very isolated. Sometimes we are treated very poorly by others in the industry. So it is good to meet other like-minded artists to share our stories, exchange opinions, and to know I have support and not to suffer in silence. This will build a genuine, loving, and supportive community. In the world of social media where everything is consumed digitally, I miss and value human contacts. This can become rare in the capital city and I would like to break this cliche and do it more often.
From left to right:Manrutt, Luis Camargo, Rafael Zugliani, Ana, Jeremy Combot
– check out the Profiles tab for more info. and contact details for on Manrutt and Luis –
“I’m in full time modelling. I live over in Sweden now, and I’m back down for Fashion Week.
It wasn’t something I ever thought of doing – but once when I was out with my mum and someone came over and asked me if I’d ever considered modelling. I was 6ft 2 at the age of 15, so there was a lot of potential opportunities for me. So I kind of just fell into it. I’m 17 now, and the last two years have been incredible – my life changed like you can’t imagine. I had to leave school, because there was no way I could do both, with travelling to different countries on shoots, I was busy every day of the week. The most memorable thing I’ve done so far was probably my first GQ shoot, and I was involved in a piece with Juergen Teller. There were 4 of us, and we were flown over to Greenland where we had to pose without any clothes on, outside in the snow. Yeh, that was crazy, and of course, because it’s Jurgen Teller, you do it and know it’s also going to be an important art work that will be published.
I’ll probably do this until 24/25 I think, but I’m enjoying it, and will figure out later what I’ll do next. I’m quite chill with it. It’s what I advise other people too – stay chill and go for what you want, things will work themselves out along the way.”
“I am camera technician. I work in the film industry. I am from Guadeloupe, in the Caribbean. I spent the last few years working between the Caribbean, Paris and London but I needed to settle somewhere. That’s how I ended up in London.
At home, in Guadeloupe, we have a small film industry who is growing very fast but we don’t have the opportunities yet to do a proper career in the camera department. I came to London to grow and become a Director of Photography. I am here to get experience, learn as much as possible. Living oversea is a great life experience.
My Dream is to reach my goal, travel the world to make films, settle in a hot country and have a family….Find the next Nigerian Spike Lee and make films with him all over Africa, or something like that 🙂
My turning point was my high school diploma. I passed my exam, turned 18 and moved to Paris the following week. I remember my mom asking me confirmation on my plans for Uni. At that point, I think that she understood that I was determined, so my uncle took me ticket to Paris. I became independent. When you are 18, it’s feels like having two wings growing on your back.
My parents would prefer me to stay in the Caribbeans and become an accountant or a doctor, but they trusted me enough to let me go and follow my dreams. I think it’s important that parents trust their children vision. It build their confidence and ambition. The society need confident and ambitious people and the world will always need storytellers.”
“Once I finished law school, I worked as a junior lawyer back in Romania. I had shorter hair then.
But after that I got a project, in art – I wrote scenarios for theatre places and also played as an actor in a remake of Oscar Wilde’s book. We did an adaptation on his play, a Portrait of Dorian Grey – read the book if you haven’t done so. We adapted it to our day, with a modern version of the character. It’s a very psychological story, about religion, and power… and what happens to him once he takes his Uncle’s fortunes.
I chose to quit my both jobs – as a junior lawyer and as a manager in a big company involved in real estate construction. At that time I was engaged to a girl for four years, who was a judge. She fell in depression for a long time… and she saw things differently after her depression. You know, she studied a lot and didn’t go out anymore. After a long period of this, she didn’t have any more energy, any more power to fight against any of the difficulties. And you have to provide a happiness to your soul so you can keep good balance. She is now in a hospital for people with mental issues. So she came one day and said “I don’t love you anymore, I don’t want to be together”. And really I was doing both the jobs for her because I wanted to be able to provide her the comfort. As a man I do not need that many things, she needed more the make up, the clothes… I was just wanting to share the feelings with someone and have what I need, nothing luxurious.
After this I decided I can’t stay anymore in my country, everywhere I went we had a memory ‘we went there for the first time to eat’ or ‘we met at that corner’ and so on. So I knew I had to change places and start a new life. Then I got this project from a friend of mine, I met her in Milano when I was playing soccer for Inter Milan. She was a Director from the United States. So I showed her Milan and Italy, and we made friends. She knew I was writing poetry and other things, and she proposed me ‘you have talent, you should focus on this… look I have a good opportunity for you – we are going with a private theatre in the US. It is mostly with a charity but they are paying well, and you can help to write the scenarios with us’.
I accepted and started to work with them… and then they thought it was a good idea for me to also try as an actor. They gave me some training, and I started to let my hair grow, because it was for the role. Now the project has finished but I have decided to keep the hair.”