age ain't nothing but a number

Follow Matt Jones’ lens into New York City’s youth. They’ve got fire in their bellies and love in their hearts and a look that makes life feel like a walk in the park!

|
Aug 20 2015, 1:40pm

Arsun Sorrenti, 16

What do you want to be?
A musician.

What were you like at school?
I'm still at school, I'm super rad.

When was your first kiss?
When I was 14 with a girl named Lily. 

What's the hardest part of growing up?
I haven't grown up yet.

What's the best piece of advice you've ever been given?
You've gotta bleed to get paid and don't be pussy whipped.

What did you used to think you were right about, but when you grew up, realized you were totally wrong about?
Still haven't grown up, but everything.

What's the bravest thing you've ever done?
Getting through school.

Finish this sentence: Age is... a word. 

@arsunx

Gray wears dress and jewelry model's own.

Gray Sorrenti, 14

What do you want to be?
A photographer.

What were you like at school?
A bad girl.

When was your first kiss?  
I never kiss and tell.

What's the hardest part of growing up?
Shaving.

What's the best piece of advice you've ever been given?
Be yourself, trust your instincts, trust your eye, feel it from your gut and discover new things instead of doing what everybody else does.

What do you want to do before you die?
I'm not worried about dying.

What did you used to think you were right about, but when you grew up, realized you were totally wrong about?
Wearing Victoria's Secret padded bras.

What's the bravest thing you've ever done?
Living with Arsun.

Who do you look up to?
My uncle Dave.

Finish this sentence: Age is... inevitable. 

@graysorrenti

Grouch wears all clothing model's own.

Grouch, 19

Where are you from?
I'm a Kansas boy. 

What do you want to be?
At this point in my life I don't want to be anything besides a musician, and that doesn't mean I want to be on the radio, I just want to play my guitar.

What were you like in school?
Until about third grade I lived in the city and then I moved to my grandparents near the country and went to school with a bunch of rednecks. I went from a school with a bunch of mixed kids to an all white school and everyone gave me shit because I was mixed. 

When was your first kiss?
I was probably like seven and it was with this girl named Ebony.

What's the best piece of advice you've ever been given?
My grandfather always told me 'you gotta deal with the hand of cards you were dealt.' You just gotta deal with your life. I always remember that during hard times.

What's the most difficult thing about growing up?
For me, it was dealing with racism. I'm from the Midwest and I'd go to the city and meet some kid from Missouri, from some bum fuck town and they'd always be racist and it really pissed me off. My dad is brown, he'd get pulled over just driving me to school and the cops would search his car. 

What did you used to think you were right about, but when you grew up, realized you were totally wrong about?
The world is a good place.

What's the bravest thing you've ever done?
I stared down the barrel of a assault rifle protecting my friend's younger brother.

Who do you look up to?
The sheeple.

Finish this sentence: Age is… is a dumb number that means you're getting closer to death.

Amilna wears jacket vintage Levi's. T-shirt Fruit of the Loom. Jeans APC. Boots vintage at 10Ft Single by Stella Dallas.

Amilna Estevão, 17

Where are you from?
Luanda, Angola.

What's the hardest part of growing up?
Having all the responsibility and not relying on anyone else to help you.

What's the best piece of advice you've ever been given?
Be strong, stay focused, and never listen to other people! ;)

What's the bravest thing you can do as a young person?
Traveling the world alone because it's a good way to learn independence. 

Finish this sentence: Age is... something to treasure in the moment.  

@amilnaestevao

Lux wears T-shirt Fruit of the Loom. Adea wears T-shirt and shorts vintage at The Quality Mending Company. Necklace Claire's Accessories. Earrings, bracelets and ring model's own.

Lux Lennox, 17 and Adea Lennox, 19

What do you want to be?
L: I want to travel and see as much of the world as possible.

What were you like at school?
L: A kid who liked to have fun.
A: Precocious.

Tell us about your first kiss?
L: Age 11 with Lucia Ribisi.
A: A kid named Miles, my best friend turned boyfriend.

What's the hardest part of growing up?
L: Being able to build your mind.
A: Learning to navigate.

What's the best advice you've ever been given?
L: Be kind to yourself and kind to others.
A: Go big or go home.

What do you want to do before you die?
A: Sky dive, ride a horse through a river, learn how to change a tyre and speak another language.

What's the bravest thing you've ever done?
L: Withheld from living for other people and started living for myself.

Who do you look up to?
L: People who are past the fake reality humans have made for themselves.
A: My aunt Alyra.

Finish this sentence: Age is... L: experience. A: arbitrary. 

@luxlennox

@adealennox

Isabella wears hoodie American Apparel. T-shirt and jeans model's own.

Isabella Emmack, 17

What's the hardest part of growing up?
The hardest part of growing up is learning more about the world and the realities of everything good and bad in it. When you are a child you live in a state of euphoria, where everything is happiness and bliss. As you grow older you realize everything isn't as perfect as it seems.

What's the best piece of advice you've ever been given?
That change is inevitable.

What's the bravest thing you can do as a young person?
To be yourself in a society that pushes conformity.

Finish this sentence: Age is... just a number. 

@isabellaemmack

Alice wears top Alexander Wang. Shorts vintage at Screaming Mimi's. Choker Claire's Accessories. Jewelry model's own. Alex wears jacket and T-shirt Prada. Jeans Denizen. Hat model's own.

Alice Vanessa Metza, 17 & Alex Pado, 18

Where are you from?
Alice: Inglewood.
Alex: LA.

What's the hardest part of growing up?
Alex: Seeing my mom get breast cancer when I was in 4th grade.

What's the best piece of advice you've ever been given?
Alex: A homeless vet in LA told me, 'Man, you just have to paint with crayons,' meaning think outside the box more, push the norm and do things differently in life.

What's the bravest thing you can do as a young person?
Alice: Tell my peers how I really feel and be true to myself.
Alex: Keep your mind open, be yourself, and push towards social change and awareness. This generation so far has made great leaps and bounds in social equality and acceptance, I think if the youth pushes for it more and we strive to change things, we can do even more.

Finish this sentence: Age is... Alice: a documentation of progression and achievement. 

Boomer wears shirt Ben Sherman. Jeans Levi's. Braces The Sock Man. 

Boomer Feith, 15

Where are you from?
Manhattan.

What do you want to be?
A movie-maker.

What were you like at school?
I'm still in school.

What's the hardest part of growing up?
Other kids.

What's the best piece of advice you've ever been given?
I never remember advice. Like ever.

What do you want to do before you die?
Make a movie. A really good movie.

What's the bravest thing you've ever done?
Being myself. Just even walking around on the street by myself I think is a big thing every day.

Finish this sentence: Age is... just the number of how many birthday cakes you've eaten. 

Ginger wears top vintage at Ritual NYC. Overalls Topshop. Nico wears customized t-shirt by Marc Hundley at Team Gallery. Jeans Acne.

Ginger Leigh Ryan,19 & Nico-Lou Monheim Carrasquilio, 18

Where are you from?
G: LA.
N: The Lower East Side.

What do you want to be?
G: An actress.
N: A filmmaker.

What were you like at school?
G: Awkward. I was unsure of what I wanted to be.
N: Really unsatisfied.

Tell us about your first kiss?
G: A French exchange student when I was 16.
N: Too eager and very awkward.

What's the best piece of advice you've ever been given?
G: Be like a duck, gliding smooth on the surface, while your legs flail underneath.

What do you want to do before you die?
G: I want to visit everywhere in the world.
N: Today someone told me to 'Be poor and have a good summer'. I like that.

What's the bravest thing you've ever done?
G: Learning to be responsible.

Who do you look up to?
N: As cliché as it is, my mom.

Finish this sentence: Age is... G: a number. N: irrelevant. 

@gingerleighryan

nicolou.com

Julia wears top DKNY. Skirt Saint Laurent by Hedi Slimane. Choker Claire's Accessories. Tights model's own. Shoes vintage at Screaming Mimi's.

Julia Cummings, 19

Where are you from?
New York.

What's the hardest part of growing up?
Getting used to change. The world, your world, your body, your mind... it's all constantly changing! It's hard to accept the unpredictable.

What's the best piece of advice you've ever been given?
When you wake up in the morning, look in the mirror and tell yourself: you're a bad bitch from hell and nobody can fuck with you!

What's the bravest thing you can do as a young person?
It's brave to practice forgiveness to others but also to yourself. It's important to be self-loving instead of self-sabotaging.

Finish this sentence: Age is... a moment in time!  

@sunflowerbean

Damaris wears all clothing model's own.

Damaris Goddrie, 18

Where are you from?
Holland.

What's the hardest part of growing up?
Having responsibilities.

What's the best piece of advice you've ever been given?
Don't be so harsh on yourself.

What's the bravest thing you can do as a young person?
Making your own decisions and following through with them. Doing something you're passionate about even if it's not seen as something appropriate for where you are in life.

Finish this sentence: Age is... accumulated time that doesn't mean anything if you haven't used it to learn from it.  

@damarisgoddrie

Georgia wears all clothing model's own.

Georgia Howorth, 18

Where are you from?
London.

What's the hardest part of growing up?
Growing down.

What's the best piece of advice you've ever been given?
Never be afraid to ask. The worst that can happen is a no.

What's the bravest thing you can do as a young person?
Believe in yourself and be yourself.

Finish this sentence: Age is...inevitable. 

Marley wears jacket 3.1 Philip Lim. Top American Apparel. Jeans Levi's. Necklace Claire's Accessories.

Marley Parker, 22

Where are you from?
Spanish Harlem, NYC.

What do you want to be?
Everything. I want to DJ, be a funky rapper, graffiti artist, painter, activist and general lover.

What were you like in school?
Different. Immature I guess.

When was your first kiss?
When I was 13, it was with some cute kid at a free crib.

What's the hardest part of growing up?
Not always being right.

What's the best piece of advice you've ever been given?
Don't give a fuck, love yourself.

What do you want to do before you die?
I'm not corny I swear, but I would love to save or greatly impact the life of someone less fortunate.

What's the bravest thing you've ever done?
Show strangers my art.

Finish this sentence: Age is... earth years. It rarely correlates with maturity.

Credits


Photography Matt Jones
Styling Havana Laffitte
Styling assistance Rochelle Adam
Printing at Lovely NYC
Models Isabella at DNA. Alice Vanessa Metza, Alexander Prado and Amilna Estevao at Society. Julia Cumming at Premier. Boomer, Ginger, Nico, Lux Adea, Marley Parker, Grouch, Gray Sorrenti and Arsun Sorrenti. 
Film directed and filmed by Joe Cohen
Concept and produced by Matt Jones