art behind the scenes

Welcome to the Summer 2017 Issue of Halfstack Magazine

Friday, June 16, 2017 HALFSTACK MAGAZINE

Hello Readers,

Welcome to the summer issues of Halfstack Magazine. This issue was inspired by the idea of Chicago Pride, which ended up taking on a double meaning as we worked through organizing it. On one hand, we are showcasing iconic Chicago people, brands and organizations that are making an impact on their local communities.



On the other hand, we are celebrating the diversity within Chicago and highlighting LGBTQ communities; with a special focus on the gender spectrum and those who are non-binary through our cover shoot with Rebirth Garments and Designer: Sky Cubacub. Sky’s vision is an inspiration and the Rebirth line is a vibrant collection that is expressive and fun. We shot the cover story at Fleetwood Roller Rink, an iconic establishment that’s been around for 60 years. Laura and Shirin, were the duo behind the cameras helping me bring this vision to life. We also had some new faces join the crew this issue. Jen Geronimo Smothers worked as our set stylist, Jennie Velasco was on board as set assistant, Danielle Hazekamp and Tanya Renelt created the makeup and hair magic you see in the feature. Our models were a diverse group of women. Patrice Walden works in Fashion Retail Management, Dasha Guyton is the stylist and blogger behind: Windy City Wardrobe and Eli Borrowman is an artist and the designer behind the indie line: Fermented Fruit.



We open up this issue with an incredible Behind the Lens feature on Colleen Chrzanowski. She shares a visual story of a young girl who is as brave as they come. Emmalyn Freeze has encountered countless moments where she would have every right to be tired of her fight, but after 13 brain surgeries she still finds joy in the world around her. Colleen recently completed a beautiful shoot that embodies the spirit of Emmalyn and was kind enough to share the images with us for this issue.



Throughout this issue, we explore themes of feminism, gender equality and highlight companies that are working on creating change from a global perspective such as: Tuli and Emily Vs. Bear.  Jen highlights interviews from 3 female founders from her experience at The Rent the Runway Foundations’ Project Entrepreneur Venture Competition and Weekend Workshop in New York City in April.  Jen also interview’s Michael DeAnda, who is an IIT graduate student who is researching gender and race in the gaming industry.

As we enter summer vacation, Liv shares her thoughts on pursuing internships for the college student readers out there. Jen Rector shares a spotlight on Tuli, an accessory company working to fight global poverty through fashion fair trade.  Avante has an insightful interview with NYC based Portrait Film Photographer: Olive.



For all of you fashion and beauty mavens out there, this issue is sure to be a hit. Danielle and Michelle have stocked this issue to the brim with grooming and beauty guides, tutorials and interviews of industry Pros. Meanwhile, Teresa is back with her Looks for Less column. We close out this issue with a motivational N’Sights for the Soul column from Nisha and a spotlight on Cirque Du Soleil’s most recent show: Luzia. Jennie Velasco proclaims all our readers need to check it out in July when the big tent hits Chicago. 

You can see the making of this issue on our Youtube Channel here! 


I hope you enjoy this issue. Thank you for supporting us! I want to express my gratitude to those of you who are making an impact on the creative vision of our brand as you made your investment to download this issue. I have a vision and it’s incredibly humbling as I continue to see our issues reach readers all around the globe. I can only hope our team inspires each of you as much as the people and organizations inspire us that we feature in each issue.

Thank you for reading!
Jen Lezan




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