With Harry Styles beginning Love On Tour September fourth, new looks, singing clips and pictures from his concerts will soon fill up our social media timelines. “Harries” everywhere are looking forward to the day Styles arrives at his next venue and performs his best songs, from “Sign of the Times,” to “Falling”. To celebrate his tour, I put together five different Styles-inspired outfits for your inspiration.
As Styles says in his song “Cherry”, for his fans, “there’s a piece of you in how I dress.”
Look #1: Inspired by “Fine Line” Album Cover
Starting off with the most obvious look, inspiration came from Styles’ “Fine Line” album, which was released on December 13, 2019. Because this look might be a little too colorful for everyday wear, events like costume parties would be the perfect place to pull these off. Parties where people dress up as their top Spotify artist have been all over social media lately; having a small, fun party with friends each dressed in their icon’s outfits would be an event to look forward to on a weekend. Thanks to Austin’s wide range of thrift stores, from Texas Thrift to Goodwill, these looks would be very easy and affordable to recreate.
Look #2: Song-specific Outfits
In Styles’ discography, there are plenty of song options to pull inspiration from for a more subtle outfit. For the outfit pictured above, I took inspiration from one of my favorite songs, “Kiwi”, from his debut album “Harry Styles”, released on May 12, 2017. For obvious reasons, the outfit features a range of greens tied in with gold to pull together the color scheme. Though the word “kiwi” is not mentioned once in the song, Styles’ is known for his fruit-titled songs, like “Watermelon Sugar” and “Cherry”. These would be the easiest songs to recreate as outfits, though reading through the lyrics of other songs could potentially spark ideas.
Look #3: Inspired from Photoshoots
Emphasizing the word casual for this business casual look, outfit #3 includes influences from Styles’ personal style. Often, Styles is spotted wearing a colorful suit at events like photoshoots, red carpets and interviews. This outfit would be fun to recreate for a photoshoot day with friends, and you could try a variety of different colors that would achieve a similar look perfectly. I found my look at Texas Thrift located about 10 minutes away from UT campus. Texas Thrift holds various colorful suits towards the back of their store. Though digging through racks is required, finding the perfect outfit always feels like finding a treasure.
Look #4: Concert-inspired
As seen in Styles’ performances, he often wears a blazer or a long-sleeved button-up top. This outfit takes a girly spin on Styles’ concert looks and would be perfect for going out to eat with friends. Though it’s rare for women to wear blazers when they go out, the confidence boost they give is perfect for hanging out with friends and elevating style. This pink blazer also came from Texas Thrift for less than $10, which was the best feeling ever, and it reminded me of Styles as soon as my eyes landed on it.
Look #5: Everyday Merch Outfit
Because the previous getups were for going out or dressing up, this next option is the best for an everyday look and definitely the most comfortable. Bought on the San Antonio date of “Love On Tour”, this t-shirt can be worn multiple ways, from wearing it with leggings to shorts. However, since Styles often uses flare pants, I paired the merchandise with flared jeans to continue to pull from Styles’ influence.
With five different ensembles put together, Styles would definitely approve of each. Hopefully, one look calls to you and pushes you to channel your inner Harry Styles. Take inspiration from one or all looks, for everyday fits or costumes, and have fun dressing up!
Kirsten Dunst’s Filmography has been severely overlooked due to the discourse surrounding her work being labeled with the deadly term, “chick flick.” In this list I will be providing examples of why the unappreciation of Kirsten Dunst’s talent is a grave misfortune, as her film roles throughout her life, especially in her early career, exemplify the importance of her talent in making these female-driven movies powerful and lively.
“All I Wanna Do” (directed by Sarah Kernochan, 1998) – Based in the 1960’s at an all-girls boarding school, a group of rebellious teenage girls led by Verena von Stefan, played by Kirsten Dunst, develop plans to ease some of the constraints enforced by the school. When news comes out about the school being in financial trouble and the solution being converting the institution to be coed, Verena von Stefan becomes passionate about doing everything in her power to not let boys interfere with the girls’ education potential. This feminist film is not only fun to watch but also allows the audience to see the varying girls’ opinions and interpretation of letting boys into their school. Kirsten Dunst is incredible in this movie as she convinces the audience that her character is passionate about the mission, while being a complicated, well-rounded person. Her performance is endearing as she is not the “mean girl,” but instead welcomes people into her club for outcasts and encourages others to fight for social causes. I also found the character, Miss McVane (played by Lynn Redgrave), to be incredibly charming and unknowingly sweet in this movie as she showed that boarding school for girls is not about teaching women to be proper and orderly, but wanting them to have the same access to higher education as men do. Miss McVane and Verena von Stefan are alike in many ways, both having a passion for girls to be themselves without the interruption/influence of men. Miss McVane looks at this all-girls boarding school as a place where “you can discover yourself, which is greater than discovering the opposite sex.”
“Drop Dead Gorgeous” (directed by Michael Patrick Jann, 1999) – I love this movie for its dry, dark humor – something that is often overlooked when women are at the front of this type of comedy. There is so much blatant irony incorporated into this film to highlight the ridiculousness of teenage beauty pageants and the traditional way to look at a girl’s worth. This beauty pageant becomes deadly as the need to win in some contributors of the contest becomes violent. Kirsten Dunst’s character, Amber Atkins, is a talented, charitable, kind, good girl, who everybody roots for. Dunst plays this character extremely well, showing her passion to leave her small town like all the boys have had the opportunity to do, but with the affordance of a sweet smile on her side. This film is severely underrated; I urge everyone to watch this movie if you’re in need of a fun, humorous time.
“Virgin Suicides” (directed by Sofia Coppola, 1999) – Out of all the movies on this list, this is by far my favorite. Director Sofia Coppola is a frequent collaborator with Kirsten Dunst because Coppola realizes Dunst’s worth and appreciates her talent. This movie is sad, but somehow the sadness is not consuming. It tells the tale of five sisters raised in a religious, uptight household with an anxious, controlling mother and a complacent father. Kirsten Dunst’s character, Lux Lisbon, is the main attraction of the sisters, and arguably the film as well. She is the one with the most rebellious, daring tendencies. Despite the movie having an enormously dark mood, this movie is dream-like, and shockingly relatable for teenage girls. In many teen movies, the characters often live a romanticized life of what it’s like being a teenager. This movie does a good job portraying the teenage girl experience, and the intensity of it all. Early on in the movie, the youngest of the Lisbon sisters is asked by an invalidating male doctor why she is so mentally unstable for a girl who has barely lived life, to which she responds, “obviously doctor, you’ve never been a thirteen year old girl.” The monologues placed throughout the film are beautiful and clairvoyant. Lux Lisbon really makes this movie for me, she’s cheery and smart and her desire to rebel is charming. To me, I consider this one of Kirsten Dunst’s best performances and she was only sixteen years old at the time.
“Bring It On” (directed by Peyton Reed, 2000) – This list couldn’t be complete without this iconic, overly dramatic, fun, sassy film. This is arguably one of Kirsten Dunst’s most recognizable performances. Her character, Torrance Shipman, is unintentionally funny with her consistent outbursts sprung from her determination to lead the cheerleading squad to victory. This movie is simply fun to watch as there are catchy cheers and dance moves incorporated but has unfortunately been written off by the negative connotations associated with being labeled a “chick flick.”
5. “Marie Antoinette” (directed by Sofia Coppola, 2006) – This is the latest film on this list but I had to include it because it was snubbed by critics disregarding the film’s excellence and beauty. Like most of Coppola’s films, the aesthetic is dream-like, making you feel entranced as you are drawn into the movie’s plot. The film gives humanity to the historical figure, Marie Antoinette, played by Kirsten Dunst. The pastries, dresses and shoes in this movie are so eye-catching and desirable that it makes the film incredibly attractive to look at. This film doesn’t have much action in it, and could be easily written off as being “slow,” but I believe this film is a solid essence of life piece, even if it’s an extremely wealthy life being portrayed, I find it to be still highly entertaining and humanizing. Dunst gives personality and humanity to her character, showing how young, innocent and naive Antoinette was when she was moved to France to become the queen in waiting.
Trigger Warning: This article includes topics of sexual abuse, drug addiction, and eating disorders.
On July 24, 2018, we all received the news of Demi Lovato’s overdose, wondering how they got to that point. Lovato then took a step away from the spotlight while they worked on recovering, not performing again until the 2020 Grammy’s performance of their song “Anyone”, which I vividly remember watching: Dressed in a long white dress under a spotlight, and Lovato’s pause to stop themself from crying, their first performance back was a powerful and emotional one.
It was not until the release of “Demi Lovato: Dancing With the Devil” on Youtube, that Lovato finally revealed what really happened the night of the overdose, and what they have been doing to make sure it never happens again. With four episodes worth of emotion-packed scenes, Lovato, their friends, family, and team, discuss Lovato’s addiction, sexual assault, and eating disorders – topics they were scared to shine a light on because of their Disney past. If you plan on watching this, be prepared to cry, and go down the rabbit hole of listening to the Dancing With the Devil album, and understanding the references behind their songs- and crying even more.
Episode 1: Losing Control
Kicking off the docuseries, the first episode reveals how during the “Tell Me You Love Me” world tour, Lovato put up a facade of being perfectly fine, while they were being consumed with guilt over their estranged father who had passed away alone, relapsing back into their eating disorder with over-exercising and extreme dieting, and getting hooked back into drugs and alcohol.
The end of the episode dives into the night before the overdose, and how Lovato had become physically dependent on heroin and crack cocaine. It was worrisome to see how even Lovato’s closest friends and family had no clue of them relapsing again because of how good Lovato was at hiding the addiction. Knowing that Lovato was going to overdose later that night and hearing Lovato recount the moments building up to it was anxiety-inducing, knowing nothing could be done.
Watching Lovato compare themself with the sketches drawn up for their tour costumes, which are typically elongated and skinny versions of artists donned in elaborate costumes, showed me something I had never thought of- just how we ourselves may compare ourselves to these celebrities on Instagram, they are comparing themselves to others, so remember that the next time you catch yourself comparing yourself to a celebrity or influencer who is probably doing the same thing.
Episode 2: 5 Minutes from Death
Episode two dives into how close Lovato was to death. It was revealed that had Lovato’s assistant, Jordan Jackson, waited a few more minutes before entering Lovato’s room and calling the ambulance, Lovato would’ve not been here today.
After watching the series, I recommend watching the Dancing With the Devil music video which shows Lovato re-enacting the night and morning after the overdose. After binge-watching the entire docuseries, watching this music video right after had me bawling at four in the morning.
Episode 3: Reclaiming Power
Episode three helped me see just how much fans can overstep into celebrities’ lives sometimes. Though it’s perfectly fine to admire an artist and follow up with their lives, this episode opened my eyes to how much we as fans tend to see celebrities as not human. When the news of Lovato’s overdose had broken out, superfans referred to as Lovatics, sent about four to five thousand death threats daily to Lovato’s friend and backup dancer Dani Vitale, being pointed to as the cause of Lovato’s overdose.
This episode also showed just how much Lovato struggled with having been taken advantage of by their drug dealer the night of the overdose and left for dead. During their relapse, Lovato tried to take back power by having consensual sex with the drug dealer. What shocked me the most, though, was Lovato revealing that this mirrored what had occurred to them when they were younger. At 15, Lovato lost their virginity in a rape, but because they were part of a Disney crowd, Lovato never revealed this part of their life. Though we may be curious as to who it was, as I saw in the many YouTube comments, it is not something that we should be questioning Lovato about. Also, hearing how Lovato’s abuser was never punished or taken out of movies he was in, showed me why Lovato never bothered to shed a light on his identity.
Episode 4: Rebirth
During quarantine, Lovato had time to work on their mental health and explore their identity after a failed engagement. Since the release of the docuseries, Lovato has come out as nonbinary. Lovato has now made a big change to their looks, chopping off their hair to be free of trauma and cut off the gender and sexual roles that were placed on them.
Growing up watching the Camp Rock movies and Sonny with a Chance, having idolized Lovato, watching this four-part series was incredibly sad, yet eye-opening in the fact of just how much Disney tends to want their young cast members to be the perfect role models, something actors such as Bella Thorne and Miley Cyrus have spoken out about since leaving Disney. While we as children were idolizing Lovato and their Disney costars, there is probably so much they have had to hide, making it even more difficult for them to heal.
Think about your favorite album. Who’s the artist? What’s your favorite song? These are probably questions you can answer without even thinking. Do you remember what life was like when it first came out? It’s probably an album you can listen to without skipping, so what makes the transition from song to song so enjoyable? Does the album art make you feel anything? These are questions we don’t often think about, but their answers are part of the reason why we love our favorite albums so much.
Youtuber Nathan Zed created a mini series where he has an honest and humorous discussion about the way we listen to music and how it has evolved in the digital streaming era. As someone with no musical background, but simply a lover of music, his aim for this series was to look deeper into the journey of creating an album and the parts of the process outside of the actual musical production. His series consists of four videos: The Lost Art of Album Sequencing, The Power of Album Covers, The Power of Nostalgic Music, and The Lost Art of Album Rollouts. After watching these videos, I started paying more attention to these elements of an album and thinking about the artist’s creative vision for creating the unique body of work. Now, everytime I listen to music it’s more than just what sounds good, it is an appreciation for the art, talent, and creative vision put into these bodies of work.
Each video changes your perspective on the music listening experience a little more based on which part of the process Zed takes a deep dive into. For each video, I will give a summary of some of the major points Zed brings up, example albums, and what I learned from the video that influences the way I listen to music to this day.
In his video, “The Lost Art of Album Sequencing” Nathan details the auditory journey of listening to an album from front to back. In his video, Zed argues that the major factors that affect the album listening experience are the sequential order and pacing of songs. According to Zed “Anyone can get people’s attention, but how well can they hold it?”. From beginning to end, a story is being told and each song is like a chapter that just keeps building on the one before it. Like any movie or novel, there is the inception, build up, climax, and conclusion. This isn’t necessarily a prerequisite for having a great album as the nature of some albums can be to defy structure or embrace an energy of chaos, but when done right, these factors can make a good album great. The pacing of the songs refers to the mood and energy from song to song. An example of off pacing would be a banger or fast paced high energy song followed by a slow melodic ballad. There are many ways to pace and sequence songs, but the idea is to have a natural connection from one song to the next through sound or theme. Zed compares the pacing of an album to that of a movie and how a movie with pacing that’s off gets confusing, loses its rhythm, and just feels off. The pace and sequence can enhance the listening experience and play a role in telling the story the artist is trying to express in their album.
Some example albums with excellent pacing and sequencing Nathan Zed references are:
Ctrl by SZA
To Pimp a Butterfly by Kendrick Lamar
Blonde by Frank Ocean
Off The Wall by Michael Jackson
Dangerously in Love by Beyonce
Currents by Tame Impala
My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy by Kanye West
After watching this video, I listen to albums differently, noticing the way each song makes me feel from start to finish. I wonder, is the first song drawing me in? What kind of tone is it setting for the album? If the first song is the best song on the album, I’ll probably get disappointed and feel like the rest of the album isn’t even worth listening to. The intro song should be something that hooks me in and makes me not want to let go. And now that I’m hooked, the rest of the story should unfold. The songs should start to build on one another thematically and auditorily. And then there should be a point where I reach the climax of the album. This can be the best song of the album, one that really encompasses the album’s theme, or just changes the dynamic for the rest of the album. By the last song of the album, I should have been able to come down from the high of the climax song and be let down smoothly. The last song should tie the album altogether and leave me something to think about so that it leaves a lasting impression on me as a listener.
In his video “The Power of Album Covers”, Zed explains how influential album covers can be to the music listening experience. The music should be able to stand on its own, but great album art can elevate the audio visual journey by providing a visual representation of the world the artist created for the album. In a way, a good cover art can make the music better and the music can make the cover art better in a mutually beneficial relationship. The power of album art extends to an artist’s career in that good album art can be so powerful that it becomes a part of who you are and will forever be associated with you. According to Zed, some of the factors that can make an album cover good are their ability to feel like a doorway into the world of the album, be so iconic that they transcend the music or genre, or if you’ve seen the cover even if you’ve never heard the music. An important factor in album art is the color scheme used. There are certain feelings associated with certain colors which can be transmitted in the color scheme of an album. An example he uses is the trend in hip hop music in 2015 where a lot of the album covers used blacks, whites, and greys which had a dark and moody feeling for both the art work and subsequently the subject matter of the songs but towards the summer of 2016 there was a shift to more colorful and vibrant album artwork and upbeat high energy music. When it comes to including an artist’s own image on the cover there is still a lot of creative freedom that an artist can have. It is exciting to see an artist in a unique and interesting way on their album cover whether it be through interesting colors, cool makeup, a unique pose, a unique outfit, or some interesting graphic design. Great album artwork can look a variety of ways whether it be minimal, maximal, captivating or any other adjective, but the biggest thing is for album art to make you feel something and be a good visual representation for the album.
Some example albums with iconic and/or powerful album art Nathan Zed references are:
The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill by Lauryn Hill
Abbey Road by The Beatles
Because the Internet by Childish Gambino
To Pimp a Butterfly by kendrick Lamar
Kid A by Radiohead
8701 by Usher
2014 Forest Hills Drive by J. Cole
The Dark Side of the Moon by Pink Floyd
After watching this video, I do have a greater appreciation for album art and now judge new albums that are released. Artists have a lot of creative freedom for album art and in a way have more creative freedom than other mediums like book jackets, movie posters, or video game covers, so I would like to see artists take advantage of that. Good album art isn’t the end all be all to a great album, but it definitely enhances my appreciation and enjoyment of said album. I think about recent albums like Travis Scott’s Astroworld or Tyler the Creator’s Flower Boy and how their album art was so iconic when they first came out, are an accurate visual portrayal of the album’s sounds and themes, and are just so aesthetically pleasing to look at I could decorate my room with their album covers.
The pandemic has without a doubt illuminated the power of nostalgic music. We all yearn for simpler times and memories of the past filled with happiness, friends, school, or even pain. Music is kind of like a time machine in that you can listen to a song and instantly be transported to a different time. Zed argues that “Music is only as good as the memories we have attached to it” because “The music can be good on its own, but the memories attached to it can make the music 100 times better”. Interestingly this can still be true even when we don’t have memories to associate. When listening to music that came out before you were born you can still feel nostalgic for a time you weren’t even alive to experience. Music can be nostalgic because we can associate it with memories, people, and even locations. The down side to the power nostalgic music can have is that it can make us feel stuck in the past and it can be harder to create new experiences with new music thus limiting the evolution of artist creativity and our own personal lives. Nostalgic music is different for everyone because everyone has different tastes and memories, but what’s important is to have a healthy balance between reflecting on the past and trying to live in.
Personally, I’m no stranger to the power of nostalgic music. I’ve listened to music that reminded me of simpler times or fond memories of the past, but I recognize the danger it has too. My relationship with nostalgia is best represented in Dolly Parton’s song “In the Good Old Days (When Times Were Bad)” because she can recall memories of her childhood with fondness, yet recognize they were so painful that she would not try to relive them. I think music can be nostalgic in two ways because it can be a reflection of a point in both chronological time and personal history. For example, Drake’s album, Nothing Was the Same, reminds me of middle school because that album came out during a year when I was in middle school. On the other hand, I didn’t listen to The Weeknd’s album After Hours until a year after it came out because it wasn’t until then that I was going through a breakup and some of the themes of the album resonated with my situation. The music made me feel nostalgic not because of the point in time it came out, but because I was at a point in my life where I felt the strongest connection to the album. It’s natural to want to look back on the past and reflect on some of your happy or sad moments through music, but it’s also important to not let that make you live in the past. The future is bright and there are still so many memories you have to make and people to meet.
In the most recent installment of his series, “The Lost Art of Album Rollouts”, Zed reviews the part of the music process where an artist introduces their new album. Sometimes we see this when an artist themselves changes their look, but in general, it feels like a new era in the artist’s journey. Zed argues that some of the best album rollouts feel like an event. This is especially true for concept albums which have a collective theme or purpose beyond each individual song. Some of music’s greatest albums have a feeling in which a new world was created and the artist themselves might even play a character in that world and little by little, an artist introduces that world until the album is finally released.
There many strategies artists use to carry out the album roll out and throughout music history these included releasing singles, releasing music videos, and doing interviews that lead up to an album drop, or even surprise album drops. In the digital age where there are so many things happening simultaneously and our attention spans are short it is imperative that an artist capture our attention to introduce an album. In recent years artists have utilized art installations, memes, pop-up events, and live performances to introduce their album and are a great way for artists to build connections with their fans and use other mediums to help tell the story of their album. One way artists can also enhance the album rollout is when the album has a theme or the artists created a new world for that album and then they embody it by dressing up as a character from that album for events they attend or when their music videos also revolve around a central theme and feel connected. Good marketing like this can build up excitement for a new album and a new era for both the artist and the listener. Zed notes that “The music lasts longer than the rollout. The music is what’s going to be remembered, but the rollout is an opportunity to create a moment.”
Examples of well-executed album rollouts Nathan Zed references are:
After Hours by The Weeknd
Because the Internet by Childish Gambino
Igor by Tyler the creator
Dirty Computer by Janelle Monae
Astroworld by Travis Scott
2014 Forest Hills Drive by J. Cole
My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy by Kanye West
I’ll admit, I’ve never really paid much attention to album rollouts before. To me, it was never worth the hype or emotional investment because I never wanted it to alter the way I enjoyed the music itself. I will genuinely listen to an album for the first time at least 3 months after it came out because I need the hype to die down in order to form my own opinions and connections to the music without being influenced by everyone’s opinions online. This method works for me, but Zed presented some really unique album rollout examples in recent history and I feel like I missed out on the moment created by its introduction to the world. Moving forward, I do want to pay more attention to the rollout of new albums. It takes a lot of effort and creativity to build the world of a new album and I want to be a part of that experience. I want to get excited about the new world the artist is creating and appreciate all the effort they do to bring that vision to life.
I appreciate Nathan Zed for creating this series as a fun way to look at what goes into making an album besides the music itself because it has changed my entire relationship with music. I now have a greater appreciation for the artistic insight it takes to envision an album, create the music for it, tell a story through the songs, and take the vision one step further with album art and an album rollout. Moving forward, I no longer see music as just a connection to my life, but with an appreciation for the creative endeavor each artist undertakes.
What better way to spend your days in ATX than with your furry best friend?
This past semester, my roommate welcomed a new addition to our household: her senior dog, Alex!
It’s been great having a fourth roommate around since he is such a huge serotonin booster during super stressful points of the semester. But, Alex’s presence has also made me notice something really interesting: Austin –especially West Campus– is such a dog-friendly area.
Whenever we go on walks, so many people just get so happy when they see Alex’s little body trotting along the sidewalk. With some pets and some sniffs (from fellow pooches of course), Alex loves to go on his daily walks.
But, I realized how welcoming stores are as well.
For example, at West Campus Market (709 W 22nd St STE 200), the cashiers always make sure to give Alex a little milk bone dog treat. This kind of surprised me, if I’m honest.
I’m originally from a small suburb outside of Houston, Texas and the usual greeting from store attendants when you have animals with you is a “You need to leave if you have a dog.” So this was a welcomed change.
Anyways, this welcoming feeling continues as you continue your journey through West Campus.
A few blocks over at Rio Mart (2101 Rio Grande St # 1002), the attendants also followed suit and gave Alex another milk bone treat. Of course, the little fluffy man was very happy about this since any treat is always welcomed in this household.
Let’s go a little further, at the Wampus location of Starbucks (504 W 24th St Suite B), and you can get your furry friend what has been adorably named, a ‘puppuccino.’
Now don’t worry! If you’re not familiar with Starbucks and their secret menu items, the ‘puppuccino’ isn’t coffee or anything. It’s just a little cup of whipped cream that’s made especially for your pup.
I highly recommend this fun freebie if you want your pup to have a little sweet treat any time soon.
Overall, it seems that these iconic Wampus stores are such dog-friendly places that make it much easier for dog owners to have their furry friends alongside them.
The fun of owning a pet sometimes comes at the expense of not being able to have them come along everywhere you go, especially if the places are not dog-friendly. But, there’s no need to worry about that in West Campus, that’s for sure.
I hope this small input from my experience of being an adjacent dog-owner has helped you decide whether or not having your fur baby live with you is worth it. (Spoiler: It really is.)