POC In Punk: Meet Nicole Marsan

For you personally, what have you experienced as a POC in the music scene (either good or bad). What’s your perspective on POC in the scene?

The double whammy is not only being a POC but a female POC. Things are already hard enough being either/or in this world, but both? It's an even tougher situation. I always feel like the odd one out in the crowd at shows like the alt/punk music scene isn't meant for "people like me." Which unfortunately is emphasized even more so on the photography side.

What inspired you to work in the music industry and what do you hope to achieve?

There's no greater feeling I've felt and still feel than when I'm at a show in general. Show after show, I'd look over the barricade, see the photographers, and at the end of the night see their finished products and be so mesmerized by their photos encapsulating these genuine, raw moments of energy. I wanted to be a part of that, and know what that felt like. So, I forged my path, and even though I haven't made it far yet, I can say without a doubt that it's the purest euphoria for me. I've never had a hobby that truly felt like my own happy place until now.

I'd love to be a part of the culture change where people like me feel properly represented and never feel out of place- where people could look at the work I've done and aspire to start their own creative journey in life that brings them joy like it's brought me.

Growing up, did you feel like there was a good amount of representation for you? If you had someoe who you looked up to, who is this person?

I'll never forget my first time seeing Issues open, and I turned to my best friend, who is also a black female, and we were both in shock that in the atl/punk scene there was a black member of the band, Sky. We had a similar reaction our first time seeing The Summer Set together, and we were floored that they had a (very talented) female drummer, Jess. It was something we didn't even realize how uncommon either of those situations were to see until they were right in front of our eyes. Then there was my first time seeing a black photographer on tour, Chris Anderson, and he's my biggest motivation along with Nicole Stephens and Luis Rodriguez who I haven't gotten to see myself on tour yet, but they are big inspirations for me as well!

What are some ways non-POC allies can support POC?

Reach out a hand. Lend an ear. Don't assume. Be mindful of what you say and post. Help put an end to stereotypes. Correct the people close to you, and don't be afraid to be corrected yourself- we all have room to grow and learn. Perpetuate inclusivity (we don't bite, I promise :) ) and share, share, share!!