Ori Lev for Qwho

Published by Elise Parkes on 23-Aug-2011 Interviews

When did you start your publication & for what reason?

QWHO was born in January 2011 after I returned to Tel-Aviv from a trip to London.  QWHO was created due to a lack of this kind of publication that targets mainly a young, fashion orientated audience.  Most Tel-Aviv publications are lifestyle magazines which target middle-aged woman. Tel-Aviv is such a young, urban & artistic place  thus deserving to have a publication which features all of these things and acts as a platform for young artists from here and internationally to show case their work and get the ‘stage’ that they deserve.

QWHO explores fashion in a whole new way.

What do you think about the current trends of fresh new magazines?

There are a lot of great new magazines out there. Unfortunately, in my opinion some magazines put too much emphasis on photography and not enough on written content. This is something that we try to avoid at QWHO.

What difficulties did you experience when starting your publication off?

I think that the hardest part in starting anything is the ability to translate your vision into something that others in the industry can relate to and, of course, adopt.

And how were the first reactions?

They were amazing!  Even before the magazine went to print people from all over the industry, both in Israel and abroad, really loved the idea of a fresh new publication which is so different to anything on the market. I was and still am truly amazed to see how many people are able to connect with our vision.

What do you love most about creating something that will be an influence in one kind or the other?

I am proud of myself for being brave enough to try and start such an amazing enterprise. We are sparking a change in the local industry, setting a new level of quality ,defining the way things are done and, of course, giving people that are truly talented a stage.

What do you think about the current industry?

I think that fashion has been through a huge transitional phase, especially in the last couple of years, due to the economic crisis. The beautiful thing about the fashion industry is that people are still making it happen. They are still re-inventing the old and showcasing the new. Fashion is all about creativity and explorations which are endless. I can firmly say that the change in the industry has been for the best.

And what are your views about the blogging industry?

Today we live in a world that makes it easy for people with an opinion put it out there. Blogs are just one of many ways to do this. Saying that, blogs are a wonderful way to discover new talent and to see what young boys and girls from somewhere miles away think about fashion. I find it inspiring to see how many people are truly passionate about Fashion.

What are your favourite current publications?

i-D magazine and how it started back in the 80’s is my favourite publication and a great source of inspiration. I also read Hercules magazine, Dazed, Love, Dust and Numero Homme.

Do you think the sudden trend of increasing publications is just a ‘fashionable’ move from blogging?

People are willing to give online and print magazines a chance if the content is right, even if there is nothing more amazing then seeing beautiful ads, editorials and features in print.

Are there any other projects you are working on?

I’m currently working as a creative director for a new menswear brand set to launch this summer in Hong Kong.

What has been the biggest shocker of 2010/2011 so far in the fashion industry?

There have been quite a few shockers this year with John Galliano being fired for racist comments, Dior Homme doing an all red look for their 2011/2012 Fall collection and finally Lady Gaga wearing a meat dress! And to think that we are only half way through the year. I am sure that there are a couple more fashion faux pas yet to come.

Where would you like to see your publication go in the following few years?

I really hope to see QWHO as a strong player both in the local and global fashion markets. The magazine aspires to be a place for new talent to call their home and seek inspiration from. We want to be “the voice” of fashion lovers everywhere.

Do you think there is a solid business in the world of publishing as there was before? Or has the attitude to magazines switched?

Today there’s this notion that the print industry is dead. This is true in regards to newspapers. With almost everyone today owning an I phone or Blackberry there is no longer the need to buy a newspaper as instant updates can be found on the web. The fashion industry has not felt these affects so much though as many prefer to see pictures in print rather than on a screen. Also, a magazine is somewhat of a collector’s item that people enjoy to look at time and time again. I do not fear for the stability of the print magazine but then again the world we live in now is so unpredictable.


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