A print version of this article appeared in the September 2013 issue of W27 Newspaper.
These days it is not uncommon for a college student to be involved in multiple extracurricular activities. FIT has no shortage of students who take seven classes, intern three times a week, have part time jobs and play sports all the while maintaining stellar GPA and excelling in everything.
Take Keith Estiler, 22, and Faye Asido, 22, as examples. Keith, a student at Hunter College, and Faye, an Advertising and Marketing Communications student at FIT, both pursue an intriguing endeavor alongside their academic programs: finding emerging artists and featuring their talent on a new online magazine called Obstrusiv Magazine.
Launched October 2012, Obtrusiv’s mission is based on the idea that creativity can be hard to showcase and that creative individuals often have a hard time finding a foothold in displaying their work. This is why the magazine welcomes their creative pursuits and provides them with advice on how to succeed in competitive fields. “We not only want to give a good visual [of their work],” said Estiler, founder and editor-and-chief of Obtrusive, “We also want to interview them and share their story.”
“Obtrusiv derives from the original word obtrusive – and it means to stand out and impose. To prick out from the norm. The original definition has this negative connotation about it, like working in the creative industry does. But our mission is to shine a positive light on it. It’s goes along with the logo as well, the antlers are a symbolism of higher awareness and connection. The connection we make with other creative and our awareness of their talents,” commented Asido.
With over a thousand followers on Twitter and hundreds of print readers, the Obtrusiv team is determined to give emerging artists an outlet to be discovered. “We meet creative people at spontaneous moments,” said Estiler. “Then we all communicate via Facebook, pitching stories and discussing possible features and visuals,” added Asido, Creative Director.
Despite being a relatively new online publication, the Obtrusiv staff is large and includes on-staff writers, video editors, media directors and copy editors. “We all feed off each other’s talents and creativity and learn skills from one another,” explained Asido. “It’s very important to build a team that likes to network and be with whom you like to work,” continued Estiler. “We all pitch in and have a ‘no offense taken’ kind of attitude.”
With Obtrusiv’s one-year anniversary right around the corner, the team is planning on upping their online presence even more. Next on the agenda? Online newsletters. “Success comes with consistency,” said Estier. “We are not making money; we are making connections.”
Aside from networking and having a good team, Obtrusiv’s success, like any other start-up, is also due to hard work. Estiler cites French author Emile Zola to explain: “The artist is nothing without the gift, but the gift is nothing without the work.”