Updated: Oct 17, 2021
“One of the biggest lessons I've learned from being in Charcoal is what makes someone an artist,” says Chike as both he and Sham reflect on their experiences with Charcoal Magazine over the past two years. The two new Editors-in-Chief talk about how they first fell in love with the magazine and that love has taken them.
Both discovering Charcoal in their senior year of high school, you would think that these Editors in Chief are the same, but they are nothing but the same. “I applied on a whim, and I am glad that I did,” Sham admits, thinking back to her first interactions with the magazine: “I had never modeled before, only small things with friends in the past… so it was great to be included.” On the other hand, Chike was on a mission; “As soon as I got to campus it was a hunt! I couldn’t find it at Splash, and then I somehow found myself at the first meeting after finding the application online.”
Since then, Chike and Sham have found their home in Charcoal. Sham entered as a model, but through the editions found comfort in working as a Creative Director. “Going from a model to a Creative Director I have gotten to see the time and all of the love that goes into [the magazine], and that is truly so fulfilling… truly such a learning experience,” she said. While as a model, Digital Content Manager, Marketing Director, and graphic designer, Chike found comfort both in front of the camera and behind the scenes. “I have enjoyed every project that I have been a part of, in front of and behind the camera… I have been able to express myself in Charcoal in a lot of ways I could have never imagined,” Chike notes, thinking about his past two years with the magazine.
“It’s the gift that
keeps on giving.”
For the past works, one that stood out most to Chike was the Love and Intimacy shoot that both Chike and Sham did together. “I have looked back on it a lot of times, and it was such an emotional shoot for me. It was the last shoot before the pandemic, in the grueling cold… The images that came out… all of the love you see was real. I don’t think I will ever forget,” says Chike. “I completely loved Nude,” Sham responds. “Being a creative director was something different and out of this world… I truly got to see it start to finish.” Chike and Sham just last Spring got to close out the production of Charcoal’s 7th issue, “Nude,” alongside the rest of the 2020-2021 staff.
“It was my baby.”
Moving in as Editors in Chief, Chike and Sham have big ideas for the upcoming year. “I want to create more of a community for the people that we do this all for,” Sham explains. “I want to work with more students, showcase more genres of work and encompass everything form of art that we can.”
“I also want to do better for the community that we already have, for the people who have stuck by us… There are always more and better ways that we can expand the idea and work we do here, and I want to keep working with everyone to reimagine it all.” Chike adds.
When looking to the future, Chike and Sham agree that there is more than what lies within the university. “I want to grow past BU. I want to keep on going and keep on growing,” Sham states. “To me, Charcoal is more like a program instead of a club,” Chike continues as they imagine Charcoal’s future. “One of the biggest lessons I have learned is what makes an artist… It was hard for me to define that for myself until really engaging with people that I admired and respected. I want to be able to say that Charcoal can foster a space for people that no matter who you are, where you come from, what you think your capacity is, you are an artist, you will always be an artist in this space and you will leave this space an artist.”
To see what this duo is able to create with the help of the Charcoal team, make sure to follow @chikeasuzu and @sha.mayam on Instagram. Make sure to come back to read more, From Us in Charcoal.