By Dillon Turman

Underground – a subculture or simply a place beneath existence that harbors no life and desolation. To me the word “underground” translates into my very existence. As you may be able to identify--with further analysis—the photo attached represents a boy torn between keeping the mask that bares all stereotypes, all stigmas and normalcy and removing it to show and fully express his true self. That boy is me – and I live in a world that truly makes no sense within the 8 to 5, but as the evening and weekend hours manifest, my identity and artistry lights up and kisses the earth like the sun at dawn. I wish to sacrifice myself as a token of the world many of my artist peers live in. By nature, we thrive on the lesser talked about topics, the intricacy of the color palettes our days have to offer and perhaps the poetry of our live situation(s). Which furthermore brings me to my point that life can be trying; it can come with many adversities and if it is believed by other that you are different, life can be much more difficult. Historically, change has never been something that has been taken lightly in our world – as humans we naturally have an aversion to it. We have faced prejudice, oppression and the masking of our truest and most raw identities at the expense of society. But as we are beginning to evolve as a human race, we must ask ourselves: are we becoming more apt to change? Our world now represents mixtures of more than one race in just one body, a melting pot of traditions so rampant that we begin to question our heritages and finally our love for one another. I believe that it takes understanding and the utmost intelligence in order to respect our irrepressible adoration for those of our same gender, not of our same gender and perhaps even those in between. Transcendence is beyond the horizon because we as humans are allowing ourselves the ability to grow, create, discover and become empathetic with compassion. Let us allow ourselves to take it to the next level, let us experience the seventh realm of existence.