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Mariah Hagenbach: Cannabis and the Art of Visual Storytelling

What does it take to have a fire Instagram? Oregon-based photographer, Mariah Hagenbach, shares the inspirations behind her cannabis journey.

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Mariah Hagenbach
PHOTO | Mariah Hagenbach

Starting her photography journey capturing the breathtaking natural beauty of the Pacific Northwest, Oregon-based Mariah Hagenbach transports her 50,000 Instagram followers to an atmospheric world of moody landscapes, confident women enjoying the pleasure of the herb, and, of course, stunning cannabis shots. Cannabis Aficionado spoke exclusively to Hagenbach about visual storytelling and cannabis in her home state.

Cannabis Aficionado: How did you get started as a photographer?

Mariah Hagenbach: I bought my first “big kid” camera when I was twenty to take on all my hikes and adventures. I was really interested in capturing long exposure waterfall shots when I first began shooting, just kind of as a hobby. That is really what started it all though.

What connected cannabis and photography for you?

I helped open a dispensary back in 2014 where I worked a bud tender, social media manager and photographer. It all kind of stemmed from taking nug photos for our Leafly menu and social media platforms. I was inspired to combine cannabis and humans a few years ago when I saw Jennifer Thomas doing it. I loved the way she was capturing the beauty of the plant and person without sexualizing either.

What do you look at for inspiration of your unique style?

I get inspired by everything; other photographers, nature, songs, memories. I try my best to make my audience feel something when they look at my images. Sometimes they tell a story, but other times they are just meant to make you feel.

Your Instagram account is beautiful. What’s the importance of social media for you?

We are living in a time of exponential growth and change and having the ability to reach tens of thousands of people is so incredible. I’ve been using my platform to not only post my art but to spread knowledge. I love being part of this cannabis prohibition movement.

I’m hoping what I do is helping normalize the cannabis industry while ending the stigma associated with cannabis and the people who consume it.

Do you have any favorite cannabis photographers?

So many! The list keeps growing as other states continue to legalize cannabis and the cannabis photography world grows. Morgan Leigh English is one of the main people who inspired me to go this direction with my photography. I’ve had the opportunity to shoot with Oleg Zharsky a few times now and I just love his style/uniqueness. I feel like Bess Byers kind of started it all. She paved the way for a lot of us.

What are your go-to strains and why?

I love all things kush! Sativa strains make me a little anxious/paranoid so I tend to stick with indicas and indica dominant strains. My preferred method of consumption will always be smoking out of my bong but if that’s not available, or I’m traveling, I love joints.

Do you have a favorite strain to photograph?

Anything colorful really. I love the purple strains.

Do you have favorite strains from specific growers?

Resin Ranchers flower is always incredible, I don’t think I could pick just one from them.

Do you have a favorite ever shot?

That’s so hard. Every time I try something new, I end up with a new all-time favorite. I think that’s my favorite thing about photography though, I’m constantly growing and changing my look. I love that there are no rules with art.

Nature plays a key role in your Instagram. Where are your favorite places to get away from it all?

I love hiking in the forests around Oregon. I’m absolutely obsessed with the moss and the fog we have here.

How do you rate Oregon cannabis to that of other states?

Since I live in Oregon I may be biased/haven’t tried every states cannabis. With that being said, Oregon has the strictest testing laws and a sincere commitment to craft and sustainable growing. I’m proud to support these farmers and their terpene-rich strains. Also, our laws allow us to choose the nugs we like! This promotes a more dedicated trim and cure which brings out the full potential of our varieties.

Any thoughts on the reported saturation of cannabis in the state?

It’s great for consumers who are looking for some of the best cannabis in the world for the lowest price, but it’s unfortunate for farmers who are barely able to make it by, especially the ones who have been in the industry since the beginning.

Any advice for budding photographers?

Photograph what you’re passionate about-. Find your own niche. Make sure you’re doing it for you and not a following on a social platform.

What do you never leave the house without?

My phone, my planner, and my weed.

See more of Hagenbach’s work in her curated gallery above. Want more? Follow her at @muh_riah.

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After 25 Years, Supreme Closes Iconic Lafayette Store

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PHOTO | Supreme

In a move that has shocked through the streetwear community, Supreme has closed its original space on Lafayette after 25 years of business.

Back in February, the brand announced that its famous Lafayette location would be under renovation. Now, due to the unforeseen closure, the 190 Bowery location in Manhattan will now be the brand’s main location in the Big Apple.

 

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Celebrating 25 years. Pooky, Lafayette Street, New York City 1995 📷 @suekwon_

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Off the Record, It’s National Expungement Week

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National Expungement Week

“Would you like to know an absolutely crazy fact? There are 77 million people in the United States who have a criminal record.” This crazy statistic that instantly grabs your attention is how Seth Rogen opens the PSA for National Expungement Week.

Rogen also asks, “What does ‘expungement’ mean?” ‘On the record’, expungement means, clearing or sealing the record of a person’s prior arrest, criminal charges or conviction.

That’s a possibility for some of the 77 million people with criminal records — a large amount being minor offenses — which make up nearly a quarter of the population of the United States. Having a criminal record seriously impedes the ability to live for millions of people. It restricts access to jobs, housing, education, and the right to vote.

National Expungement Week aka N.E.W. is the initiative of Cage-Free Repair (the non-profit section of Cage-Free Cannabis) Cannabis and Equity First Alliance.

Cage-Free Cannabis is rooted in three kinds of justice, from reparative, to economic and environmental. Equity First Alliance works to bring reparative justice to, and be a voice for, those who have been most harmed by the War on Drugs.

The initiative will see over 40 events held in 30 cities, which will host workshops, allowing people to meet with lawyers and experts who can help them clear records, from September 21-28.

Among other company’s and businesses, N.E.W. is supported by Houseplant, the cannabis company launched by Rogen and Evan Goldberg, in the hopes of exposing the social injustices associated with cannabis convictions.

With 18 events in 15 cities that helped nearly 300 people begin the process of changing their records, the inaugural National Expungement Week in 2018 was clearly a success and led to the initiative returning this year.

If you’re interested in clearing your record or helping someone else do the same, you can find further information — including the dates and details of specific events — on the official site of N.E.W.; offtherecord.us.

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Internet-à-Porter: 5 Wearable Technology Products for Smarter Fashion

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Wearable Technology
PHOTO | Levi Strauss

We live an era where people have a personal computer in their pocket or on their wrist. These devices also have almost instant and interrupted access to the Internet and the global hive mind. That tech continues to get smaller, smarter and faster with each generation. So much, the next logical step for everyday technology is to blend it with everyday apparel — in what is known as wearable technology, or wearables.

From Saint Laurent to Levi’s, these 5 wearables will make you think less about Google Glass and more Internet-à-porter.

Jacquard x Saint Laurent

Wearable Technology

PHOTO | Jacquard

Saint Laurent is a French luxury fashion house (founded by its namesake Yves Saint Laurent), known for its aspirational high-end fashion, handbags and fragrances. And Jacquard by Google transforms clothing, making for an entirely new take on wearables. Jacquard technology is woven into the fabric of your clothes and accessories, such as the Jacquard x Saint Laurent Cit-e Backpack.

From taking photos, to playing music and even navigation, you can control your smartphone from touch gestures made possible by the Jacquard tech integrated into the left strap of the backpack. The backpack functions like the Apple Watch, with the interactive features built into what is an everyday item.

Jacquard x Levi’s

PHOTO | Jacquard

Founded in 1853, Levi’s has a long history of fashionable, yet innovative and functional clothing. The obvious next step was a collab with Jacquard by Google. That resulted in the Levi’s Commuter Trucker Jacket, the first product to be offered by Jacquard, which upgrades one of Levi’s most iconic products with user-friendly tech.

With features like articulated shoulders, reflectors sewn in, and a dropped hem at the tail, the denim jacket was specifically designed for urban cyclists. The Jacquard tech takes the features even further, with the functions woven right into the sleeve of the Commuter Trucker Jacket. This allows riders get directions, control their media, and stay connected while on the bike and on the go.

Bose Audio Sunglasses

PHOTO | Bose

Remember caps with headphones attached? It’s time to forget that kind of novelty. That won’t be difficult after using the Bose Audio Sunglasses. The sunglasses have built-in speakers (it is Bose after all) to make for an immersive audio experience. The thing is, the frames still look like sunglasses, only with the state-of-the-art audio tech embedded in a classic design.

The wearer hears rich, immersive audio, while everyone else hears almost nothing. That’s thanks to the exclusive miniaturized Bose speakers hidden in the temples. The frames aren’t just a comfortable way to listen to music or a podcast, with the company having also developed Bose AR, the first-of-its-kind audio augmented reality platform to complement the tech. That lets users experience more by augmenting the way you experience the world with content for ears instead of eyes (enhancing certain apps like Coachella’s).

Apple Watch

Wearable Technology

PHOTO | Apple

It’s easy to forget that it was one of the first wearables available to the public (and also the best-selling) when it was released in April 2015. So, while the Apple Watch isn’t new tech, it definitely is cutting-edge tech, as the recently announced Apple Watch Series 5 is definitely that.

The Apple Watch is more than an interface between your smartphone and the user. The smartwatch has all the features of your iPhone but incorporates dedicated fitness tracking and health-oriented capabilities. The new Series 5 can even keep an eye on your heart, checking your heart rate throughout the day, notifying you if it appears too high or too low. Being customizable in the way of a case and strap (available from Apple Watch Studio), the Apple Watch isn’t just user-friendly but also a statement.

Oura Ring

PHOTO | Oura

Like a watch, a ring isn’t for everyone. But unlike a watch, a ring is less intrusive, especially when it can still track your sleep and your fitness. That kind of smart ring is available from Oura and is one of the world’s smallest wearables, if not the most advanced.

The Oura packs a lot of features in such a small package. It allows you to gain accurate and usable information of your sleeping patterns, your heart rate, body temperature trends, repository rate, even the steps taken and the calories burned. Not just that, but Oura can measure blood volume (directly from the palmar arteries of the finger) and the amplitude and intensity of body movements (through a 3D accelerometer and gyroscope). Put simply, it’s like an activity tracker but in a more discreet package.

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