my name is amelian, like a $1,000,000 dollars. i’ve been saying this since i was a lil’ milly.
︎ my pro-nouns are she/her/they/them.
︎ i am a polymath born and raised in anchorage, alaska. my coming of age happened between deep east oakland, california and east anchorage. dad is a descendant of chattel slavery by way of lousiana + oakland. mom is from tokyo, japan. in the streets they call my ethnicity blasian, though that term to me, sounds like a zesty chicken wing flavor sauce.
︎ my political, creative and arts practice explores the intersections of race, labor, ethnicity, culture, gender, pop culture, communication, activism, healing arts, metaphysics, economic development, transparency, fashion, etymology and design.
︎ i am:
︎ the founder of Sisters With Invoices
︎ a community facilitator
︎ creative director
︎ cultural consultant
︎ critic, writer, voice
︎ empathic clairsentient
︎ a wardrobe stylist, designer
︎ home/studio organizer (think marie kondo with weed + incense burning at all times helping you sort through your thangs )
︎ labor, financial abuse and reshaping the definition of “productivity” is a deep interest of mine. additionally, i believe spiritual and economic development go hand in hand.
︎ we have all done what we have to do to survive, to get gigs, to catch those checks. ︎ i’ve found peace within forgiveness, softness and search for joy every day. my life is full of blessings in the form of perspective, purpose, healing. because of community, family, friends and kind strangers
︎ i enjoy karaoke anywhere and everywhere, getting dressed, conversation, incense burning, mutha nature, painting, music, critical thinking, water worship, psilocybin, abolition, hitting the open road, print/zine/book culture, incense, manifesting, thrifting, ice skating, reading, metaphysics, cannabis, family time, collaborating on sewing projects with my mom and kisses from my rescue cat pluto.
︎ deeply influenced by:
my ancestors. my dynamic multi talented sisters and parents, bell hooks. swv. ida b. wells. total. sojourner truth. aretha franklin. audre lorde, james baldwin.
yayoi kusama. organization. spirit. water. bath houses. cultural critics. bravery. travel, non conformity.
bachelors in journalism media studies with a minor in fine arts from University Of Nevada Las Vegas.
︎ life mantra: assimilation is the death of self expression.
︎ energy: punk monk
video by Kayla Reefer
SWI was founded in 2018 in response to the varying levels of industry exploitation i experienced behind the and in front of the camera over the past decade. first, as a model at the hands of ADIDAS and JEREMY SCOTT a global marketing campaign, in which i did not sign a release authroizing the use of my image, nor was i compensated a single penny.behind the scenesas a wardrobe stylist was a experience littered with exploitation and business abuses. a light bulb clicked when the connection was made between the psychological, financial, white supremacist long standing systemic factors that also confirmed my trauma. as soon as i opened up about my battle with suicide, depression, and substance abuse sharing my story at our very first meeting, the clouds opened up. styling made me but community saved me.
SWI is committed to creating safe spaces and educating freelance QTBIPOC creatives from the substantial harm that lurks behind the scenes. there are countless stories of media abuses that many have suffered in silence for fear of blacklisting. media literacy, safe spaces and community fortify our mission to empower our belief that reclaiming media is a form of reparations.
illustration by debora cheyenne cruchon