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Franka Asindi Chiedu – Is Back with A Bang

franka asindi chiedu
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+ Speaks on MOTHERHOOD , BLANCK DIGITAL & LIFE

Franka Asindi-Chiedu made headlines when it was announced that she was leaving her creative role as General Editor of Complete Fashion Magazine years ago as no one saw it coming in the fashion community.She later took on a new role digitally as the publisher of Blanck Magazine, shortly after she relocated to the Uk With a series of cover dotting celebrities, Franka told their stories with captivating shoots and enriching content . Over time, she birthed another digital editorial – Blanck Lite. In this interview with Tribe and Elan deputy editor- Aisha Omirin ,  Franka opens up  about  her multiple roles  as a wife , mum , working  as a programme manager within the Health sector and an accomplished digital publisher.

franka asindi chiedu

 

You were working at Complete Fashion magazine here in Nigeria before moving to the UK to start up Blanck Digital. What was the reason for the move?

I got married and wanted to start a family. My husband was living in the UK at the time and even though I had a seemingly great job running Truetales publications, it wasn’t financially viable for us to live the type/standard of life we envisaged in Nigeria, Hence my  decision to relocate.

 

– What is a typical day like for you?

When I’m not running Blanck Magazine,  I work as a programme manager within the Health sector here in the UK. Since the start of the pandemic and eminent lockdowns, my typical day have been pretty much,  waking up early to get my daughter ready for the day, get dressed and resume work in my home office. When I get a break from the flurry of emails and meetings at work, I check social  media for updates and maybe post a thing or two on the Blanck platforms. On some days when I’m in the mood,  I dress up and take pictures of myself for fun.

 

– As a Nigerian starting out a fashion magazine in the UK, what were the challenges you faced?

Two of the main difficulties I faced were one inadequate funding and two -access. There’s only so much free collaborations you can get people to do. Time is precious and bills have to be paid,  so, in as much as people are happy to collaborate with you, you recognise they will at some point need to be paid for their  services. Then there’s also the bit about accessing people and pieces for shoots and all. Getting PR organisations and modelling agencies to trust you enough to want to work with you was pretty stressful.  I had to rely on friends of friends of friends to get a foot in the door even.

To deal with the funding bit, I’ve had to get a day job which  goes  a long way in supporting the production of the magazine.  The downside to this is not having enough time to think and strategize and create as much as I’d like to do for Blanck  but hey! Something has to give.  We take it one day at a time.

 

– Who are your favorite writers?

I don’t have a favourite writer per say. I like to read a lot of my own pieces  and that means I get to write a lot for my consuming pleasure. So, in a way I  am my favourite writer. Having said that,  I consume a lot  of materials from numerous and diverse writers- especially around the time I  get in the mood to write myself.

 

– What is the trait you most deplore in others?

Dishonesty! I’m pretty open about my intentions with people.What you see is usually what you  get with me. I expect the same level of openness or honesty from people I deal with. I also tend to give people the benefit of the doubt until they give me a reason not to. I just can’t stand dubious people.
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– What aspect of your job do you enjoy most?

In respect to Blanck  Magazine and my general work in fashion, I enjoy preparing for and shooting the cover and editorial features for the magazine-  pretty stressful but rewarding. Especially when they come out as imagined

 

 

– What is your most treasured possession?

My most treasured possession is not in material form and would certainly be my mind. I love the way my mind works. Once my mind is in a sound place- I  tend to navigate life or situations tactically.

 

– Who do you most admire in the media space?

I don’t have icons or mentors  or any of the sort.  There are lots of great people doing good, consistent and comnendable work within the industry and should all be celebrated.

 

– What do you consider your greatest achievement?

Being a mother to a lovely little girl is one achievement that at one point I thought would never be possible.  Career-wise, I have a number  of highs that I consider to be great  but I’m yet to get to the greatest- I’d say my story is still being written.

 

– What advise do you have for young people who would like to venture into the media space, particularly writing and publishing?

To be a good writer you must be an ardent reader.  Reading opens up your mind to life’s greatest possibilities and builds your vocabulary and skills in the process.When you write, have the confidence to put  your work out there, the feedback will help you improve and you will overtime develop a portfolio you can use to pitch for roles. Then seek out organisations where you can intern to learn the business of publishing. I’d also add taking courses in graphics design and reading up on product branding – very essential.

 

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