• Art,  International Voices

    Censored

    My name is Matilda Tran & I’m a Vietnamese international student at Miss Hall’s School in Pittsfield, Massachusetts. I’m a lover of art & I work in several mediums: photography—mostly experimental—, drawing, fabric/textile, and music. Photography is my main platform and I’m currently focusing on capturing/triggering the feeling of awkwardness and tension. “Censored” is a photography project I’ve been working on that explores my experience and observation of the suppression of women across the different cultures that I have been raised in, namely the American culture and Southeast Asian culture. I seek to use the different types of flowers to symbolize the expectations that surround girls as we grow up,…

  • Hair & Beauty,  Writing

    Masks We Wear

    Introducing Katya Avila, a senior at Scotch Plains-Fanwood Highschool. Growing up can be hard, especially with the ever present beauty standards set by the media and society. Katya shares with us her experience growing up Chinese-Filipino, seeing little representation of women like herself in the beauty industry around her. When flipping through pages of any style and beauty magazine, it’s easy to be drawn into the advertisements promoting the newest “peachy pink” eyeshadow palette or “skin perfecting” foundation, or really any cosmetics shown on the shiny pages. They feature beautiful women with flawless glowing faces and sparkling eyes, telling people that with this new product, they’ll be perfect too.  …

  • Misc,  Writing

    The Story Within

    Meet Grace Rivera, musical enthuiast and acting powerhouse. I was simply blown away hearing Grace’s music; read her story below to be awed by her talent too! Music has and forever will be my favorite form of storytelling. We are constantly surrounded by it. The day I discovered theatre, my perspective on sharing stories changed. Not only can you use music and dance, but you can also use acting to tell your story. The first musical I ever saw was The Lion King.  To me, it wasn’t just the famous animated Disney movie we all know and love, but it was about discovering your true potential and immersing yourself in…

  • Misc,  Writing

    Looking Back on 2018

    In honor of the new year, staff writer Jasmine Simmons decided to pay tribute to all the women of 2018 that made her year special. Serena Williams ¨I have a daughter and I stand for what’s right. You owe me an apology.¨ Serena Williams is known as a world renowned tennis player and one of the most dominant athletes of all time. She is known for her grace, power, and resilience. However, this past September at the US Open during the finals the referee made some calls that she felt questioned her integrity. He gave her multiple penalties, one for receiving coaching, another for smashing her racket, and then a…

  • Keepin' It Real,  Writing

    Branches

    Did I mention that besides being an amazing artist, Jiji is a natural writer? Yes, Jiji is back with another piece, this time about her childhood attempting to understand her mixed-race and queer identity. Read her piece below for a thought-provoking coming of age story. I am far from my mother’s tree, yet I’m the roots of her tree, keeping her grounded. I am a constant reminder of how her family has developed, how deep the roots go and how high the branches reach. The fusion of cultures celebrated in my home was an environment molded solely by my mother. My mother passed on her eyes to me, her unique lens…

  • Writing

    Speak Up

    Following the killing of American journalist Jamal Khashoggi, Siddrah was inspired to write an opinion piece on the power of journalism. Read below for another powerful insight by one of our APC staff writers! As a passionate American teenager with a Middle Eastern ethnicity ambitious to pursue my education in the field of journalism, the typical exchange I have between Arab family members and adults when discussing my future results in them having responses such as; “You want to be a journalist?! You do know that they are going to (imprison, kidnap, kill) you right?” Those are only some of the quite irrational statements adults tell me; a teenager in…

  • Dear Brown Girl

    Dear Brown Girl: Diyaa

    A few months ago I had the pleasure of sitting down and talking with Diyaa on a range of subjects from being bi-sexual in her home country of Bangladesh, to using her privilege to be an ally to others around her. Click here to watch her interview! Music Credit: HookSounds.com

  • International Voices,  Writing

    Only Love, not Hate

    Luiza Vilanova is a high schooler from Brazil. The definition of multi-talented, Luiza is a writer for the publication Around the World and is also the founder and CEO of the community outreach initiative Gotinhas do Bem. In addition, Luiza is also a skilled writer. Below is an excerpt from a narrative that she wrote, detailing the racial polarization of Apartheid through the eyes of a white highschooler.  From my bedroom window, I could see through the darkness and gaze down at the hoards of fleeing people. The new policy of “good neighborliness” had come to fruition, and the first signs of the nightmare to which blacks would be subjected were already…

  • Art

    Ain’t Got Nothin’ But the Blues

    Meet Samantha Powell, a senior at Newark Academy and basically the most talented singer you’ll ever meet. Listening to one of Sam’s videos you might even mistake her for a professional. Click here to watch her latest jazz performance! (Did I mention she has a full orchestra accompanying her? Yes, she’s that good…)  

  • Art

    A New Medium

    Hailing from New York, Jiji’s always been a natural artist. Her medium includes drawings and even the repurposing of clothing. Anyone that’s ever seen Jiji’s art can agree that it’s truly magical. Check out her pieces below! Art has been a part of my life since the day I was born. I grew up in a family full of artists and creators, so from a young age, I was encouraged to draw and paint and explore all different mediums. As I grew, so did my view of art, always exposing new ideas and mediums that I had never experimented with before. The endless possibilities that art provided, grabbed me and…

  • Art

    Music in Me

    Jessica Zheng is a junior at Newark Academy. Music has always played an integral part in her life, especially her place in her school choir. Let’s hear more!                               When my mom signed me up for choir in third grade I never looked back. I can still remember my pitchy little voice at age 10 (to be honest I’m probably still pitchy it’s just harder to notice) trying my best to sound “mature” in a big group of people. Some of these people would become some of my closest friends, but I wouldn’t know that until much…

  • Dear Brown Girl

    Dear Brown Girl: Kaia Baker

    Hey, Afro Puff fam! We are proud to be launching a new video series called Dear Brown Girl where we’ll be discussing varying topics with girls of color around the world. The next few videos of the series will be centered around travel. Let us know what you think in the comments below and show us some love on social media with the #APCDearBrownGirl and #BrownGirlsTravel. Yours, Tyler Newman       Music Credit: <a href=”https://www.hooksounds.com”>HookSounds.com</a>