Mercedes Esquivel Breaks NYFW

Photography by Mercedes Esquivel, Interview by Kira Shipway

Name: Mercedes Esquivel

Birthplace: California

Currently Living: Los Angeles

Astrological Sign: Scorpio

Insta: @damnitmercedes

As a dear friend of Hannah's you've been a Break Babe since the beginning. From then until now, what has your experience been in watching the community grow and develop?

I’m so glad I met Hannah when I did and have been able to bear witness to all of her insane ideas, which almost instantly become realized. I truly don’t know anyone as ambitious, generous and selfless as her. I watched The Break grow from being a small online vintage shop to a huge community, where everyone is given a platform and opportunities that they otherwise wouldn’t get with any other businesses. You go to The Break as a stranger and leave as someone’s best friend/family. It’s a huge deal.

What does the idea of breaking nyfw mean to you?

Breaking the hierarchy, breaking the idea that you’re only as important as your online presence and the fashion week events you’re invited to.

Tell us a little bit about your work. How did you get involved in photography? Do you work in any other mediums?

It all started when I was about sixteen after begging my parents for a digital point and shoot to take Myspace selfies. A couple years later, thanks to the internet, I taught myself how to shoot with proper analog cameras and became that elusive girl at parties—taking everyone’s drunk photos for my next homemade zine. I made tons of self-portraits (being that I was my first and only muse at the time) almost a decade ago. This all eventually brought me to a point where my photos were recognized by people who really inspired me and helped me get to where I’m at today. I used to draw, sometimes I write poetry because I’m a dark sensy girl, but photography is my one true medium (for now).

Where/when do you feel the most inspired?

Sometimes it's as simple as seeing photos I wish I had taken. There’s so many people out there who inspire me. Otherwise, when I’m driving really long distances to gorgeous places and the music is full blast.

What was your favorite (or most surprising) moment from BREAK NYFW FW18?

Favorite moment was definitely during the runway show. Looking back on the photos and seeing people's faces makes you realize how excited everyone was to be a part of the show or be there to experience it.

Who are you at the party?

Either dancing the entire time or in a corner talking very intensely about something with a stranger.

Future goals, hopes and dreams?

Near future goals include creating a more timeless body of work, seeing new places, learning a new medium. I dream of being comfortable, surrounded by people I adore, and having insane stories to tell. Hopefully in a more peaceful world.

Tell us a secret?

I have so many secrets… and a very delicate relationship to sharing. However, I don’t mind sharing that I only wear white cotton socks and white cotton underwear. For some reason. Also, cooking is therapy.

Favorite image you took at BREAK NYFW and why?

I like this funny photo of Sarah fixing the runway. She’s a boss.