XL Trailblazers Mario Reed
1.How did you get the connect to Fashion Nova Men?
My connect at Fashion Nova is a dear friend and fellow photographer who I have learned a lot from over the years. He started out doing club photography and portraits for local models in Boston and Rhode Island. He took the leap of faith and moved here to Los Angeles where he built a very respectable clientele, including models like Amber Rose and Erica Mena. He then started shooting for Fashion Nova and is now one of their leading content producers. Being a friend, he recognized the work I’ve been putting in over the years and when Fashion Nova asked for Plus Size models, he brought my Instagram to their attention. The rest was history.
2.How long did it take you to plan your engagement photos?
Lol you might not believe this, but my engagement photos were planned in a matter of 24 hours. My fiancé knew she wanted a “City Scene” for the photos as our wedding is on a rooftop in LA. From there, I reached out to a contact I’d previously met through Peerspace, which is an amazing tool if you are looking for reasonable locations to do your shooting or any kind of event for that matter. Peerspace is that Sweetspot just below Airbnb for your hourly projects or meetings, that you don’t need for days at a time. From there, I booked the space for $50 in Downtown LA, and my roommate, another fellow photographer and good friend was more than willing to help us out. The next day, we got our Sunday Best outfits, hopped in my car and headed to the studio. We were in and out in about 30 minutes. It’s a beautiful thing when the photographer is a friend. My roommate has seen our relationship from almost start to present and knows us both very well. The chemistry is just seamless and I think that shows, in the end, resulted photos.
3.What inspired you to start a couples YouTube channel?
Mannn…my fiancé and I are both avid Youtube watchers. I watch Youtube more than anything on TV other than sports games. She actually had her own channel for years and then life happens and she stepped away for a while. Us being together and realizing how goofy, quirky, but also insightful we are made us ask ourselves, why not? We’d often post our adventures on our Instagram stories and would get responses asking us for more information or input on whatever matter we were discussing. Even on the chill days, people seemed to just want to know more about our lives because we seemed to be “interesting people” I guess…I’m being modest….we dope as fuck. But anyways, I had told years ago about the financial potential that Youtube provides, but never did my own research. Then to be honest, I began watching more of her YouTube families, how they acted, got their start, and how they were currently living – and it was a no brainer. ReedBetweenTheLines was born #RBTL. Make sure you go subscribe lol
4.Tell us how the Percxption clothing Brand was created?
Percxption began Spring of 2013 in my college apartment. I’d previously been asked to help design for a friends clothing line, and ultimately become a partner. Being young, we didn’t know what we were doing and that quickly dissolved. That period of time definitely sparked something in me that made me feel I had every resource to start a clothing line and ultimately design company on my own. Percxption is more than just clothing, its a symbol. The logo is an Iceberg. 90% of it’s mass is beneath the surface, and beneath the surface of the logo is a crown. Deeper than that, not everyone sees the iceberg when looking at the image. Some see a pyramid, some see a crown flipped upside down, other see a random shape, either way no one’s perception is wrong, hence the name Percxption. Own whatever is unique to you. There are no right or wrong answers, as long as you are true to yourself. I’ve always been into Fashion and Design, but never once considered being a fashion designer. Percxption to me is a brand that allows me to check as many boxes as I want without fear of becoming a Jack of all trades, but master of none. Percxption offers Photography, as I am a photographer, Styling, as I am a stylist, Graphic Design, as I am a graphic designer, Interior Design, Consultations…you get the point. My long term dream is to turn Percxption into a non-profit that will have creative centers and workspaces for youth to attend and learn that creativity, and ultimately creative thinking, is the key to innovation, innovation is the key to our future. It breaks my heart to hear a child say they can’t “draw” or are not creative. I understand that not everyone is given the skill of Picasso, but there are even people who’s perception of his work are extremely negative…and they wouldn’t be wrong. Creativity is about challenging your mind, challenging conformity, confidently. And if there was ever an impact I want Percxption to leave it would be that. Just be your dope self.
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Hola Mi Tribesmen I guess I’ll start by introducing myself. I’m Kirklan Hawes the Founder and creator of XLTribe.com. This site was birthed from an old idea I had to create a community of like-minded guys that was tired of being miss represent and wanted to be displayed in the truest form. Changing the way Big & Tall Men are perceived is the goal for XLTribe.com.