The Iconic Edition
Advice
|20 Sep|8 mins

How The Face of Our Spring Occasions Campaign Is Changing Fashion

Meet the multitalented editor of POCC magazine. 
Kate Tregoning
20 Sep
Share:

Get to know Melbourne-based model, Mercy Sang, the face of our Spring Occasions campaign and the force behind POCC Magazine (People of Colour Collective), a Solange Knowles-approved independent publication, celebrating creative by, and featuring, people of colour. 

Advice
|20 Sep|8 mins

How The Face of Our Spring Occasions Campaign Is Changing Fashion

Meet the multitalented editor of POCC magazine. 
Kate Tregoning
20 Sep
Share:

Get to know Melbourne-based model, Mercy Sang, the face of our Spring Occasions campaign and the force behind POCC Magazine (People of Colour Collective), a Solange Knowles-approved independent publication, celebrating creative by, and featuring, people of colour. 

Mercy, thanks for modelling our Spring Occasions campaign. Not only are you a model, but an editor of POCC Mag. How did you start out in the industry?
“Thank you so much for having me! I actually had an interesting start to the industry. My friend secretly sent photos of me to agencies and that’s how I got signed haha.”

Did you always want to work in fashion, growing up? 
“Yes and no, I was always subconsciously interested in fashion because of my mother, she would dress me up a lot when I was younger but I never really thought that I could ever work in fashion, it never really seemed realistic. I thought I was going to be a lawyer or get into politics when I was younger.”

What’s your favourite thing to wear? 
“I recently purchased a jacket from the Prada 2015 Fall ready to wear collection. It’s one of my favourite collections ever so I haven’t stopped obsessing over it just yet.”

How does it feel to wear the collections?
“I enjoy wearing items that inspire me in general, regardless of time or season. I definitely always make sure to purchase items that will forever be timeless.”

What gets you out of bed in the morning?
“My 10 alarms.” 

What do you never leave home without?
“Right now a vintage hand mirror that was gifted to me for my birthday.”

Tell us about the magazine. Why did you feel compelled to start it? 
“Poccmag was just an idea for a very long time. Being in the industry I found myself surrounded by so many poc creatives, many of whom I am extremely lucky and grateful to call my friends now. I wanted to create a space that not only celebrated them but also showcased how talented they are.”

Do you shoot and create the content, or is it a platform for what’s currently going on in the industry?
“All the content that I create I shoot from scratch based on an idea or a story that we are trying to convey. I definitely try not to follow the current trend but rather what I am inspired by in that moment.”

Where do you source talent to contribute?
“I definitely draw on friends and it has been incredible to be able to collaborate and work with my friends, but I do get submissions and people who love what the magazine stands for and want to be a part of it.”

What has been the reaction since launch? 
“Incredible. I have had an immense amount of support that I didn’t expect, however very grateful.”

Name-drop time. Has anyone commented on POCC that’s surprised you?
“The feature on Saint Heron by Solange, definitely.”

This may seem obvious, but what is the concern with underrepresentation of people of colour?
“The media essentially tells us how the world works and how we are viewed. Underrepresented individuals are tremendously impacted, especially when the little representation that they do receive is typically stereotyped. It can be extremely limiting as you start believing that, that is all you can offer and frankly what you are only expected to offer.”

What are the impacts?
“It is important and crucial that we ensure that people of colour are valued and deemed as enough just as they are. This is done by celebrating diversity. It is vital that we are encouraging poc individuals to break the stereotypes, or rather the mould, that society has restricted us to.”

What does the fashion industry do well? 
“The fashion industry right now is definitely changing, slowly but surely a change is currently occurring.”

...What lessons does it still have to learn? 
“That there is a difference between celebrating and appropriating and the only way to ensure that is to hire more people of colour. Diversity should be widely spread in the background also.”

What do you do to switch off after a long day? 
“No screen time. I believe in distancing from technology after dark.”

When you need to laugh, what can you always rely on? 
“My best friend Flavia.”

What’s your guilty pleasure? 
“Terrible TV shows.” 

Who do you most admire? Professionally and personally. 
“Miuccia Prada.”

Who is the one person whose advice you always listen to? ...What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received? 
“My psychic. The best piece of advice I recently received from my psychic is to always be my authentic self.”

What’s your personal goal for the future? 
“To have Poccmag in print which is currently in the works.”

What do you hope for the legacy of the mag? 
“I hope that it is able to establish a name for itself and is perceived as a platform that truly celebrates diversity and champions poc creatives. I hope that it encourages more spaces as such and more poc creatives to believe in their work and dreams.”

Kate Tregoning
Features Editor
Related Articles