The Chicago-based blogger shares her favorite music and affinity for storytelling, the Midwest, and the springtime spot she can't get enough of.
The Midwest is known for lots of things: beer, cheese, lake-effect snow, and mediocre sports teams (even though we'll never admit it). But look deeper and you'll find an intimate hub of culture not just around Chicago, but in underdog cities like Milwaukee, Indianapolis, and Detroit.
Just ask Bria Carter, founder of online magazine Soul Culture. Her entire mission is to share the beauty and creativity thriving here in the Midwest, covering everything from local album releases to fashion news to cutting edge artist interviews.
Though not an artist herself, Bria enjoys watching other people create. Her innate storytelling desire arose when traveling through Western Europe during college, visiting art museums and foreign ghettos. Inspired by the way culture ignites communal passion and emotion, she began sharing her thoughts with friends via Snapchat. After participating in a protest following the release of Laquan McDonald's footage, she was further compelled to share her thoughts, but this time, publicly. As a result, Soul Culture was born and she hasn't stopped since.
Fast forward three years, and Bria is fully-operating the site and has big plans to move forward given all the shifts in digital publishing. While highlighting local creatives is a large part of the blog's identity, Bria will be stepping into the spotlight by adding audio-visual elements into upcoming work—a new exciting challenge for someone who loves "the comfort of hiding behind the keyboard." (Honestly, same.)
"I'm really excited about this transition because it's a brand new challenge for me to tackle!" Bria says. "I'm most comfortable sharing my thoughts and ideas through writing because that's what I've grown accustomed to...but, I'm looking forward to growing the Soul Culture brand by stepping outside of my comfort zone and sharing more sides of myself."
Get to know Bria below and check out her custom playlist here and on Spotify!
Favorite TV show?
I'm the Netflix/Hulu queen... this is tough... I just finished re-watching The Office, so that's at the top of the list. I also love Broad City, Grown-ish, and The Chi.
I love a good IPA, but if I'm in the mood for liquor I go for a Moscow mule!
Favorite Chicago artist?
At the moment my favorite Chicago musician is G Herbo. He's grown so much over the last few years, but still manages to stay true to the classic storytelling. I also love Saba and Noname.
Favorite spot in Chicago?
My favorite spring/summer time spot is the tiny park on the side of Ipsento 606. It's a coffee shop/bar in Wicker Park with an awesome mural and park that's perfect for picnics and getting work done (or not). I might regret broadcasting this gem.
What do you love about the local arts/music community?
I love how supportive everyone is! No matter how well-known a person is within or outside of the community, they're all super willing to offer support or contribute when possible - I don't think there's anything like this anywhere else!
Spotlight On" is a weekly series highlighting Chicago creatives with a twist. We share a slice of their stories and what they love, hoping to inspire and connect.