We're re-introducing the #WYLfamily, from co-founders to new interns. Luke joined the Wear Your Label marketing team just a couple months ago. From video shoots to campaign execution, he helps drive our mission to end the stigma.
WYL: Tell us a little bit about yourself
L: I’m a 20 year old student at Ryerson University currently studying film production. Born and raised in Kitchener-Waterloo, I’ve always had a huge passion for film and have never wanted to pursue anything else. I’m currently in the process of producing my first feature length film, Goliath, set to be released in 2017.
WYL: What’s your connection to mental health?
L: I live with depression and Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) - which means I have difficulty regulating my emotions. Best way to sum it up: Feels like you're on the world's shittiest roller-coaster and you can't get off. When you’re happy, you're REALLY happy. When you're sad, you're REALLY sad. My mood can change day to day, hour to hour or even minute to minute. There are many similarities to Bipolar Disorder. Jennifer Lawrence's character in Silver Linings Playbook has BPD (so we’re basically twins and I’ll likely have won an Oscar by 22).
WYL: Why is raising awareness about mental health important to you?
L: Living with it depression and BPD, I’ve become very aware of the stigma surrounding mental illness. It's just something people feel uncomfortable talking about. I want to help change that. Whether it's through the work I do at WYL or the films I produce, my aim is to tell stories about people living with mental illness and foster a community that values the importance of mental health
WYL: Any advice for someone who might be struggling with mental illness?
L: Find out what you love to do and do it. My passion for filmmaking is what’s gotten me this far and continues to get me up each morning.
WYL: Can you tell us a bit about your upcoming film project, Goliath?
L: Goliath is a feature film I’m writing, directing and producing this upcoming summer. What started as a far fetched idea has turned into a large scale production, almost unheard of for people of my age to be taking on.
The film follows Robin Walker, a young woman living with mental illness. When Robin returns home for her father’s funeral, she's forced to face the town she ran from years ago and the damaged family she left behind. Tensions run high when an estranged relative turns up and an old family secret is brought back to the surface.
My goal is to really portray the rawness and difficulty of living with mental illness, while also trying to cope with your surroundings. The film has great characters and a really cool mystery.
You can check out our Indiegogo Campaign here: https://igg.me/at/goliaththefilm/x/3013604
We’ve partnered with WYL on some great perks!
WYL: Why is it important to you to address mental illness in this film?
L: All too often, mental illness is used in films as a plot device or to add a quirk or “depth” to a character. I’ve created a story that focuses on a woman reconnecting with her family and uncovering a mystery. She also happens to have depression and BPD. This is something that’s addressed and certainly plays a role in the film, but is never used to progress the plot or try and evoke emotion from the audience. Much of what you see is based on my experience with the illness. To me, this film has been a way of coping with and also exploring my own mental health.
WYL: Favorite movie of all time?
L: Up in the Air - it’s my tattoo.
WYL: Best thing that's happened to you in 2016 so far?
L: Goliath & Wear Your Label. I couldn’t think of anything I’d rather be doing.
Photos by Lauren Emberson