This girl was super lucky to have the opportunity to interview the Editor-in-Chief of Flare Magazine, as one of her first major projects at the Ryerson School of Fashion. Here is the story:
Forensic Psychology Led Him to Fashion – You never know what degree you’ll need to make your way into the world of fashion.
Being Editor-in-Chief of any magazine is a big deal in the fashion industry, and not anyone can sit in the editorial throne. It takes a special personality, specific style of leadership and creative eye to hold the position. On top of the 35-year-old Canadian fashion powerhouse, Flare Magazine, we found exactly that.
I had the incredible opportunity to interview Cameron Williamson the current Editor-in-Chief of Flare Magazine. He is definitely no Miranda Priestly from “The Devil Wears Prada,” when it comes to his personality, but he exudes the same drive and motivation to be competing in the industry. Cameron has been involved in fashion for 15 years, starting as an intern at a Toronto based Magazine called Saturday Night. He spontaneously applied to the internship program after realizing his true passion for fashion. It was a defining moment in his life after just having studied forensic Psychology at a university level, off and on for 6 years.
Williamson often jokes about how his studies in psychology have helped in dealing with the difficult personalities of creative people. Fashion is constantly referred to as a degrading, selfish and judgmental high societal world. But when asked, “Do you consider the world of Fashion to be a superficial industry?” he answered graciously “sometimes.” But according to Williamson it is because the industry is an easy target, since it is based around how we dress, so the key word is “shallow” not superficial. Of course not everyone is shallow, more often than not the shallow individuals are the ones who do not end up being as successful.
Anyways fashion is about adaptability. Whether the change is due to new trends or styles, the economy, environment, culture or just a change in season, the way people dress does follow what’s happening in the world. Therefore those who adapt quickly and in the right direction are the ones who stand out from the crowd.
As a Creative Director, Art Director and Editor-in-Chief Cameron has learned a lot about the ins and outs of the industry. He kindly gave some advice for eager, interested fashion students like myself. The first tip was to get digital, digital, digital. As the age of technology continues to take over written publications, many magazines are putting more focus on their online presence. When one searches Flare on Google you can find all their articles, stories and upcoming news just by the click of a button. This makes it much easier for anyone in the world to get access to the Canadian magazine. So understanding software’s like WordPress and Photoshop and being involved in social media, are important skills for anyone looking to make their way into fashion.
The second piece of advice Williamson had to offer was to take internships, volunteer opportunities and networking connection very seriously. The first impression you make in fashion lasts for a lifetime. For instance never show up late, use every piece of criticism you get and always bring something of your own idea to the table. It is about making the impression that well help you excel in the long run.
Although with all that said, Cameron Williamson still strongly believes fashion needs to be considered fun and shouldn’t be taken so seriously. Everyone is very different and expresses themselves differently in the way they dress. It is important to consider everyone individual and unique, therefore there has to be something for everyone. Williamson’s strategy is to do his best to make sure that Flare caters to everyone, whatever religion, culture or background. Which definitely shows in their latest issue displaying Mindy Kaling. Mindy displays a confident and curvy Indian woman, which is rare since most of the time we see the size 0 supermodels. In my mind this shows Williamson’s abilities to take risks and emphasize the culturally diverse country we live in, and it is awesome. Cameron Williamson has made me even more eager, intrigued and excited to be studying Fashion.