Coming of age is a tough process…

I have always been afraid of growing up, and as my teen years have come to a close and as my 20s are in full swing, it feels as though I am being hurled further and further into a process I am not yet equipped to handle.

While I am still afraid of growing up, I have begun to find some sort of beauty in it. Over the past five or so years, I have changed in ways I could have never imagined, I have met people that have drastically altered the course of my life, I have experienced emotions that are so unimaginably boundless that I have learned what it means be free.

This process oftentimes knocked me down, but in those moments, where time slowed down and things intensified, I learned how to pick myself back up and grow. I have been forced into various situations like these, that have tried me unlike any other, but from them came something beautiful – my coming of age.

For as long as I can remember, “coming of age,” as a genre, has been my favorite mode of artistic and creative expression. I have looked up to the storytellers that have conjured up these worlds and have strived to emulate their vision in the work I produce.

In this project I use these films, books and songs to contextualize my coming of age – my process of growth, my understandings of triumph and hardship, my internalizations of joy and sadness. These images are divided into five sections: end of an era, new beginnings, awake, a work in progress and youthful brashness.

Each of these describes a different part of this period and takes us all the way to the present day… a period of youthful brashness – one characterized by immense energy and zest for life, while retaining a childlike wonder and awe for the world.

Though the quotes I used are all borrowed from others that have inspired me, I wanted to share, once again, something I wrote in my journal a long time ago, but keep coming back to: “Life is risky, tough and beautiful… sometimes all at once. Learning to love this has taken me a really long time, but I am starting to actually trust in it.”


This is a playlist I put together with songs I feel best encapsulate my coming of age.