Thank you for letting yourself be seen and heard and giving this issue life.  


Thank you to our team of photographers who brought vibrance to this Issue. They worked almost every day, planning and editing. This issue is entirely possible because of their vision and dedication. 

Firstly to Paige for being with us from the beginning, and bringing a candid approach to Messy. Her photography always sets the tone for our issues and inspires the team to push forward with her eye for detail, love for imperfection (we will go through film photos at night and swoon over perfectly captured pimples and belly rolls) and her unwavering need to capture life. When we were traveling in Nice, she fell ill and just before passing out, she grabbed her camera to take a photo of a bulldog sprawled out on the cobblestone. She always has a joint rolled and you should see her smile as she flips through her photos or catches a moment in time. (P.S.... sorry I dyed your hair green when I meant to dye it blue). 

Sham for experimenting, bringing out the 120 mm shots, letting us pretend that we know what we are doing, and running around lower east side for four hours trying to find sprinkles and strawberries. He really pushed every single shoot and brought out breathtaking images that made us switch the concept of the magazine from being a single image per person to honoring the art with as much space as it needed to breathe. Also, Sham gives great hugs.


Brandon for taking the bus from Boston and being down with every strange idea and inspiring the cam corder movement. He shows every artist that you don’t have to have perfect equipment to capture a feeling. He brings stories and concepts to every shoot, and can make a dystopian world out of any street corner because of his eye. Thank you for pushing the team and inspiring all of us to look at life through a different lens, also MVP for most photos per roll used.


Jess for making the shoots an adventure, whether it was trains to aquarium or trams to Roosevelt Island, she worked hard to create a scene, make people feel comfortable. Being around her makes you instantly happy, and she is always there to encourage and cuddle. Oh, and hit her up if you need a stick-and-poke.



Jheyda for taking unpredictable photos and merging darkness, beauty, and rawness of intimacy from the moment she started scouting for this issue. Our favorite emails or notifications to get were when she had new photos for us to see, we would sit in silence scrolling back and forth and zooming in on the details. 


Curt for showing up, even late at night to conceptualize and be present with the growth and change we wanted this issue as a whole to face throughout the months. For taking our (at times) vague directions and running with ideas in ways he hadn’t yet. We love how poignantly he captures people, there is an essence of simplistic grandeur in all of his shots. 

Kehan for always being the first to arrive at the party and eating seconds of our homemade curry. She is truly a joy to sit beside and talk photos or just talk about life. She is so supportive, loving, and encouraging. She brings a level of grace and focus and keeps the rest of us from being cynical about New York, or the greater world. 



Ashley for assisting and helping keep this whole production & Paige under control. Through managing emails, making calls, convincing places to let us shoot, and generally leading by example just by being the boss bitch that she is. Ashley is both the cheerleader and coach and knows when to smile or get serious. Also she’s more of a bird than a butterfly. 


Shout out to Elizabeth street photos for processing over 50 of our film rolls and doing them all by the end of the day. Shout out to Iconic Magazines on the corner of Prince & Mulberry for giving me a bagel and coffee when my card declined. Shout out to McNally Jackson for a) putting Messy on it’s shelves b) having the cheapest cup of coffee in Nolita c) selling us a damaged copy of our own magazine when we needed to prove to the niece of an Italian mob member that we had real enough jobs to rent out the apartment above her restaurant. We didn’t get the place. Shout out to shitty cups of black coffee that made this magazine happen. Shout out to wasabi peanuts (ask Sham, he gets it). Shout out to friends who like to make art just because and strangers who smile back. Shout out to Hemlock printers & JP for dealing with our unprofessional antics, shout out to our parents always for everything, shout out to Delilah, Sammy, Mika, Lexie, Auntie Karen, Jena, Paris, Lavenia, RJ, Savannah, Libby, Chelsea, Fii, Ola, Alexa, Zoe, Carie & Weston, Camille, Dolly & Daisy, Caroline from DRØME, and lastly, for Bill, our super, for not kicking us out of our apartment. 


This issue was made with love


Em + Cyb




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