SHEEP: The Identity Issue Editorial


 The Identity Issue Editorial Spread

Words by Nolan Goff | Art Direction by Kourtney Jackson-Smith | Photography by Jace Lumley

In 2005, an odd thing happened. A group of sheep farmers watched in horror as one of their flock willingly took a plunge off the side of a cliff, falling to it's death. What followed next is truly stranger than fiction: one by one, the remaining 1500 sheep followed suit, with 450 meeting their end, and the rest only surviving because of the soft pile that formed at the bottom. Pretty grim, right?


It's 2017, and a similar phenomenon happens every day on Melrose in West Hollywood. If you're local, you've most certainly seen it: throngs of bloggers, Instagrammers, and tourists having their photos taken in front of the now infamous pink Paul Smith wall. Of course, there's nothing wrong with taking a photo there. We've been tempted to do it ourselves. We get it; it's pretty and pink and everyone else is doing it. 


This magnetism feels symbolic though; of something lying underneath the surface of our snapping and 'gramming. This month, we're curious: where has our sense of individuality gone? When did conforming become the norm?  Where has the individualism gone, in both aesthetic taste and personal perspective, across our beloved interwebs? We're on a mission to find that sensation again. 


Of course, we'd be remiss to not shout out some of our aesthetic heroes, who have found a way to be wholly themselves. We're looking at youyouyouyouyouyou, and you. You inspire us with your envelope-pushing and fearless explorations, your personal curiosities, and your constant breaking down of the status quo. We could all use a little more of that. Keep it up y'all. -- Nolan Goff, Director of Content at Matte Black