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theodora confronts her desire to build a culture of her own

view our complete artistic collaboration with theodora here

R&B singer-songwriter theodora has got people catching on. Since her exclusive streaming of highs on SAND, she has gone on to release Talking Insane which boosted her monthly listenership on Spotify to 59.8k. These days, she's more certain about her identity from music to fashion and visual art. To her, shaping one's own culture involves precision and will.

theodora confronts her desire to build a culture of her own

by SAND Magazine

August 17, 2018

Written by theodora / Photographed by Wanjie Li

Creating has always been my longest standing struggle. To create something of meaning to me, to others, and the wider industry is an unrelenting pressure. But transitioning into music full-time proved to me that the value of creating is in the unending rigour and pursuit; that the process of creating is, in itself, invaluable to the world. 
That if we all were to stop creating one day, out of fear — whether of survival, perception, or our own deprecation — we would lose the culture we’re fighting so hard to build here. This leaves me in pure belief that if we persist in putting our sincere selves into the days we have, we leave the space around us better off. 
Leaving my nine to five job to pursue music full time was one of the most pivotal decisions I have ever made to the quality of my life. One that I think to be a confrontation of the meaning I wanted my life to have and how I would make my life count. As uncertain as an independent job in the creative arts is, leaving my job was undoubtedly the right move for me to find freedom in my creativity and meaning in the work I did. This is where the personal value of my creativity gave value back to my community.
I knew I couldn’t demand culture or social identity if I refused to actively build my own.
To me, culture is the amalgamation of individuals finding a way to express themselves authentically regardless of the limitations (or sometimes opportunities) of where they come from. It’s the drawing of experiences, opinions, and ideals to share a piece of yourself with those walking with you, wherever in the world that may be for you. When people insist on creating under every circumstance, culture becomes uninhibited by classification, popularity, or monopoly. This resilience and persistence to share and empathise is what I believe builds culture.

In creating nothing is ever wasted. As long as you believe you’re putting an authentic piece of yourself in the work you do, that is what defines the creative process – one that we should be kinder to those in pursuit of.
A process that makes the unrest worth it.
Stay up to date with theodora here
Lyric video to 'Talking Insane' here


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