Meet the Cast: Spring Break 2014

Meet the Cast: Spring Break 2014
This spring break, American Eagle Outfitters took our 16 Project Live Your Life winners to Miami for an adventure of a lifetime. Unlike past Project Live Your Life photo shoots, this cast wasn’t exploring the streets of New York City or the wilds of Alaska, but rather were helping beautify Miami as part of Alternative Spring Break.
Get to know the 16 inspiring individuals that helped street artist Lakwena turn a vacant lot into a work of art. Click through to learn more about them and be sure to show us why you love your hometown with #heartthiscity on Twitter and Instagram for your chance to attend Alternative Spring Break.

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Meet the Cast: Devin

Meet the Cast: Devin

Meet Devin, an artist and photographer from Athens, Georgia. Devin is a winner of Project Live Your Life and is currently featured in our Spring Break 2014 campaign. Learn more about him and follow him on Twitter and Instagram.

You’re from Athens, GA. What do you heart about your city?

I love that it’s a college town and the numerous concert venues that they have there. I am an arts and entertainment reporter and I got to cover and photograph around 12 bands that came and played just in last semester. The music scene is a huge plus that I love about it here. The Georgia Museum of Art is also located on campus and the festivals that they have frequently are also pretty great.

You’re an artist. How did you find your love of art?

I’ve been drawing ever since I could remember, but I didn’t realize how in love with it I was until recently. With painting and drawing, the idea of capturing an emotion, thought, place and person as it was or they were in one moment in time is sort of just amazing.

Where do you draw your inspiration from?

Definitely from the people around me, my friends and other artists and photographers as well.

Who is your artist icon?

I’m going to cheat and pick two on this one. Andy Warhol, because his photography and art is really hip and I actually have two of his prints in my apartment in Athens. The second is Steve McCurry. He’s a really phenomenal well-known photojournalist and if you ever have time, check out his work. I promise you’re life will be positively changed for the better.

As an artist, you’ve watched Wynwood Walls go from a blank slate to a colorful piece of art. What emotions were you feeling during this process?

Being apart of the process and especially collaborating with my cast mates during the initial process and then coming back on the last day and seeing how it all turned out was one of the greatest things ever. I definitely felt a lot of feelings of accomplishment, pride, happiness and camaraderie. I don’t think anything really brings people together as much as creating something, so that bond with my cast and crew and also the thought and idea that people in that city will possibly be inspired by that.

What does art mean to you?

A chance to express yourself in one of most incredible ways possible. It’s sort of like a language, but to different people and at different times it can mean completely different things.

You’re a photographer as well. What are your favorite things to snap?

Pretty much I like to shoot people, concerts, sunrises/sunsets and people again!

Is this your first time to Miami? What about this city inspires you?

Yes. Being in Wynwood Walls and seeing all of the street art all around the city was kind of awesome. The art, scenery, people, attractions and just the busyness of the city as a whole inspired me.

What makes you unique? What characteristics help tell your story?

I love people a lot. I love learning from them, meeting them, hearing about them and just being around them. I go by the idea that each and every single person that you meet changes your life for the better or worst depending on how you let them impact you, so I treasure each person that I do get the opportunity to meet. I’m really into photography, I’m an arts & entertainment reporter, I’m in love with painting and drawing, I’m really really awkward and I like to make fun of myself a lot because it’s hilarious.

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Meet the Cast: Emily

Meet the Cast: Emily

Meet Emily, a fashion merchandising student and winner of American Eagle Outfitters Project Live Your Life, currently featured in our Spring Break 2014 campaign. Get to know this artist and aspiring fashion blogger whose free spirit inspired us. Be sure to follow Emily on Twitter and Instagram as well!

You’re studying fashion merchandising. What do you think the big trends for 2014 will be?

I think the vintage and urban looks will easily continue to dominate this upcoming year. I think furs with florals will make a comeback as well as unique cuts featuring geometrical shapes and very modern/very new textiles and patterns. The Bohemian look will really play out in 2014, and I feel like femininity is taking a whole new turn of looking more masculine. What can I say, women are taking over- even men’s clothing.

What makes your style different from others?

My style can be very relatable but in a different way. I’m into the bohemian/punk look, while still looking feminine. I’m not your average girly-girl- I’m probably the farthest thing! I find myself matching black with black almost everyday. I like dark, earthy colors and mixing them with another color that really pops (usually with my shoes). But then again, I don’t really settle on one style, I like to switch it up every now and then!

Do you have any fashion icons?

My fashion icon would probably be Vanessa Hudgens! I love what she comes up with, she never seems to disappoint me fashion wise!

What is one trend that you want to come back?

The 1920s were so elegant and fun! I want to be in a Gatsby movie just to wear one those gorgeous dresses.

What is one trend that you wish would stay in the past?

I personally get inspired by ALL trends- we can all learn something from other styles, fashion is a way to express yourself. It wouldn’t be fair to outcast someone’s personality.

Who or what influences your style?

Nature is a huge inspiration to me. I love looking at and exploring new things. I live in an area where the commute to the mountains, beach, and deserts are all pretty reasonable. I hope to travel the world one day to get inspired by new and exciting things!

What characteristics make you stand out?

I’m such a weirdo that I don’t think it’s possible for me not to stand out.

You also describe yourself an artist. What inspires you to create?

My inspirations are all the people I’ve had the pleasure of crossing paths with. I love being around new, unique personalities- it really gets my creative juices flowing!

What does “art” mean to you?

Art to me is LIFE. If I didn’t have art in my life I don’t know what I’d do!

Tell us about your part of the mural. What motivated you to draw what you did?

What motivated me was everyone back home. I have so many friends and family that support me in everything I do, and the surreal, crazy feeling of just being in Miami really inspired me to create something beautiful with my American Eagle Outfitters family.

You’re from Claremont, Ca. What do you heart about your city?

I heart how artsy my city is- I’m surrounded by creative individuals so I can just be myself when it comes to art. Everyone is so accepting and I learn and see new things everyday here!

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Meet the Cast: Amber

Meet the Cast: Amber

 

Meet Amber, a dancer and winner of American Eagle Outfitters Project Live Your Life from Baltimore, Maryland, currently featured in our Spring Break 2014 campaign. You may remember Amber from Project Live Your Life: San Francisco. We wanted to ask Amber a little bit more about her art of choice, dance, and what she “hearts” about her city. Read on to learn more about her and be sure to follow Amber on Twitter and Instagram.

Who inspires you to dance?

There isn’t really a specific person that inspires me to dance, but there are people that inspire me to become more skilled. Those people would have to be Misty Copeland and Michaela DePrince for ballet and Cyrus, Twitch, Ian Eastwood and Kaelynn Harris for hip-hop. I dance because I love it and couldn’t imagine myself doing anything else. When I’m not in dance class for a long period of time I feel like something is missing. One time I didn’t dance for four months and I started crying and begging my mom to put me back in dance class. That moment of my life made me realize how much I can’t live without it.

What is your favorite type of dance?

I like all types of dance but I would have to say that my favorite would have to be ballet and contemporary.

Dance is an art form. Do you agree?

Dance is definitely an art form. Through dance you can express how you feel and really interpret what’s in your mind and heart. It’s the same with people in visual art, instrumental, vocal, acting, etc.- art is just simply a way of communication and expression without just simply talking to someone.

How do you feel when you’re dancing?

When I’m dancing feel like I can be who ever I want to be, I can feel however I want feel and I can say what ever I want to say. I feel like my whole self and nothing less than me.

What are some of your biggest challenges that you’ve faced while dancing?

Some of my biggest challenges I have faced while dancing is that I get nervous when I realize that people are actually watching me. When i don’t pay attention to the people, I do so much better.

What has been your greatest dance achievement?

My greatest dance achievement would have to be making it into two of the best art high schools in Baltimore. I have attended both for about two years and they made a huge impact on my life. I couldn’t be more thankful and blessed.

You’re from Baltimore, MD. What do you heart about your city?

What I heart about my city is the strength that everyone has here- everyone has their own story.

Tell us about your part of the mural. What inspired you to draw what you did?

I’m very bubbly and girly. I thought that the colors, flowers and patterns I used reflected my personality.

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Meet the Cast: Dannay

Meet the Cast: Dannay

Meet Dannay, an actress from Santa Clarita, California and winner of American Eagle Outfitters Project Live Your Life. We chatted with Dannay about how she stays motivated to keep active, who she looks up to as an actress and about her personal style. Keep reading to learn more about Dannay and follow her on Twitter and Instagram.

You describe yourself as pretty active-what activities do you enjoy?

I really love to play basketball. I’ve been playing for about 12 years. I played on an all boys travel team and was a starter. I also played for my high school team and I still play here and there with my older brothers and some friends for fun. It’s always my workout during the week.

What motivates you to stay active?

My brothers motivate me. They are so active and they get me up and motivate me to stay active and healthy. Like I said, I love to play basketball. I also like to run, but I’d rather play basketball. Its the best feeling once your done with a pick-up game or just shooting around.

You’re an actress as well. When did you first get into acting?

I started to get into acting when I was 16. I did commercials for Nickelodeon, promos and campaigns. I did a lot of short films. I booked a feature film, Insidious 2…its a horror movie. It was my first big screen appearance. I am towards the end of the movie-I played Allison. Allison got in a bad car accident and is catatonic. It was so awesome to play that role.

Who is your biggest inspiration when it comes to the acting world?

I have three: Jennifer Aniston, Rachel McAdams and Sandra Bullock. I would die if I had an opportunity to work with them. They’re all so different, but I take some advice and inspiration from all of them. They are natural and seem to be fearless when they have a role. I love that and I always copy that in my work-I give it my all.

What are some of the biggest challenges that you’ve had to face while acting?

Some of the biggest challenges I face sometimes is just going for it. I hold back a lot because I actually think about how I would look like if I did a line in my head and so I hold back. You cant do that in acting because it means you’re not in your work, you’re over-thinking the script and you’re not in the moment. I always tell myself, if I’m doing a scene playing a person and that person was on set watching me play their life, I have to go for it and be fearless. In acting, you’re bringing someones life to LIFE and you have to portray that in those moments. I just think its an awesome feeling playing someone other than yourself.

You also love to style. How would you describe your own style?

I love old-school stuff. I always rock high-wasted shorts with my long socks or sometimes tights-they’re my favorites. I really love the Favorite Boyfriend Jean, they’re super comfortable and you can rock either boots or some cute sneakers with them. That’s my everyday style. Or tight high-rise jeans with boots and jewelry. Jewelry definitely puts your outfit together, like a cherry on top.

Do you feel that style is art?

It is because art is different, style is different. Everyone has their own uniqueness to how they dress or how they write, how they draw and how they take photos. Everyone is different and I love that. I’d rather be different with my own style rather than mimic someone.

What are some of your favorite trends for 2014?

I’m really digging the flannels. I was never really into flannel, I never liked them or the colors. Now, I’ve been wearing them around my waist with a cute crop and cute jeans. The flannel just throws a cool vintage look to it and dresses up your outfit.

Who are your style icons?

I don’t really have style icons, I really just like anyone who has cool look to them and I see how they look on me. I love the old school icon looks. I wish I lived back then, there clothes were so dam cool!

You’re from Santa Clarita, CA. What do you heart about your city?

I heart my city because it’s awesome.

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Meet the Cast: Joey

Meet the Cast: Joey

Meet Joey from Whittier, California, one of our winners of American Eagle Outfitters Project Live Your Life, currently featured in our Spring Break 2014 campaign. Joey loves music and when he isn’t jamming out with his friends, he’s a volunteer soccer coach. Read to learn more about Joey and follow him on Instagram for an inside view of his life.

You’re from California. What about your city/state do you heart?

I love the beaches and weather! They are both very nice and they compliment each other very well.

 

We hear you love music.What is it about music that you love most?

Picking up an instrument and manipulating it to make amazing sounds is what I love most about music.

What is your favorite instrument to play?

Guitar is my favorite instrument to play. I love carrying it around and singing along with friends.

 

Are there any instruments that you don’t know how to play but want to learn?

Saxophone is an instrument I’ve always wanted to explore. It has such a soothing sound.

Do you write your own music? What inspires your lyrics?

I haven’t written any music yet, but I aspire to definitely write something in the near future.

 

You also like sports. What kind of adventure sports are you into?

I like all sports, but my favorite would have to be soccer. I play almost every popular sport out there.

How did you start getting into adventure sports?

I started playing soccer when I was 10 and I have been fascinated ever since.

How do you feel when you’re active in these sports?

I feel like it’s an art where I can paint a picture and it’ll be engraved into people’s minds. For example, if I make a great save while I’m goalkeeper, people will remember me for that. I would have also contributed to my team’s success.

Are there any adventure sports athletes that inspire you?

My favorite goalkeeper is Iker Casillas. He plays for the Spanish national team. I like him because he is a well balanced human being: he is an accomplished, professional athlete as well as a philanthropist.

Are there any sports that you haven’t tried that you want to get into?

I would like to try out lacrosse. It seems like a very technical sport and I love challenges.

What characteristics make you unique? What makes you stand out from the crowd?

I’m very humorous and I love meeting new people. I like making people comfortable around me and sparking up conversations with complete strangers.

What inspires you to get to know and learn about others?

I’m a very curious person. I like learning about others because I get a fundamental understanding about people. I want to learn and meet as many people as humanely possible. I also see learning as a never ending process and I see it as an opportunity to growing as an individual.

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