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Office Pick of the Week: American Deadstock Cherry Blossom Halter!!

“Perfect summer top for peeps who have closets consisting of all black!”

- Victoria Nuguid, Swaychic Assistant Buyer




SwayMate of the Month: July – Spaghetto

Published on July 17, 2014, by in Swaychic, SWAYmate.

SwayChic will now be continuing our SwayMate of the Month series featuring cool girls doing cool stuff who we feel represent our brand. First up, for July, we bring you Diana Manfredi, better known as “Spaghetto,” an Italian Los Angeles based filmmaker who’s directed videos for the likes of Brooke Candy and Kreayshawn, and has worked with companies such as Facebook, MTV, Levi’s, Ray Ban, and Vogue. We chatted with Diana about her work, her style, her love of watermelons, and her latest documentary project, #Twekumentary.

You are a total Jill of all Trades! What are your crafts, and how do manage balancing all of them?

I started doing photography, painting and graphic design when I was a teenager, then a friend gave me an old camera that I started shooting at punk shows with. I was still living in Italy, I’m Italian :) from there I fell in love with video editing and I started editing skateboarding videos. I had a skateboarding brand with my ex boyfriend and I also wrote, shot, and edited a documentary about my skateboarder friends in Milano that did really well, it sold out some theaters in Italy and won some money, it all started from there. When I started Spaghetto Productions I tried to put all the artistic things I loved to do together. So my videos have a distinctive style because they are a mix of drawings/graphic designs and love for editing and other stuff I like, even nail art and watermelon! I just somehow, instead of balancing, incorporated everything I like into one.

Was film what you always wanted to do? How did you get into it? And what does being a “filmmaker” mean to you?

I was always into art, experimenting with different creative things I liked, trying to learn a lil bit of this and a little bit of that, until I started doing videos. Then I realized that it was what I really wanted to do and I just focused on that. I got into directing through video editing. I loved editing so much. I’m a big video nerd, I used to spend 15 hours a day in front of my computer editing, learning all the technical computer stuff and shit. I’m a super DIY person, I do everything myself, I like being 100% independent, and able to do a project from start to finish on my own if I need to. While I love to collaborate with other people, I take pride in the fact that I taught myself how to do everything, from writing a screenplay, to doing production, photography, graphic design, animations, even my website I did myself, sometimes it’s just faster to learn how to do something instead asking people and relying on them. Waiting on people or depending on others gives me anxiety. Being a filmmaker for me means that I have the opportunity to take an idea that I had trapped inside my head and make it visible. I can say something, and tell a message, while making that idea public. For me, the process of making a video is just as important as the final product. The things you learn, the challenges, the people you meet and share your ideas and vision with, it’s just an amazing experience every time. I love my job, it’s super hard and draining, but it pays off.

Tell us more about #Twerkumentary and how it came into being.

I made a few documentaries then got more into music videos and loved it because they were shorter projects so I could do a lot of them in a short amount of time, and it was really fun. But after a couple of years I started to miss doing documentaries, and telling stories, and not having to deal with artists, managers, and labels, rush deadlines, or fit ideas into three minute videos. Too many rules and compromises make me unhappy. I was looking for a new documentary to direct and twerking is one of those American things that, as a female and foreigner, makes me very curious. I’m really into diversity and global communication, how technologies spread phenomenons all around the world, and how different cultures react to the same phenomenon. #Twerkumentary gives me the chance to talk about all these topics and many more that I care about, such as empowerment and freedom of expression vs objectification, etc.

After watching the trailer, it looks like there are a lot of L.A. based artists involved in the project. Hailing from Italy, what drew you to Los Angeles? Is there anything you miss about home?

I was in SF for five years before I moved to LA three years ago. I love LA because there is the perfect network for the things I do and people are always doing creative stuff and want to get involved in projects. SF was a lot different, it’s like a bubble, you do cool stuff but everything you do there stays there. If you do something successful in LA it gets noticed internationally. For a director it is the best place to be. I don’t miss Italy too much because I go there at least twice a year. Italy is a beautiful place but there are not a lot of opportunities, so most of my friends have moved to Berlin, London, Paris or NYC. I’m actually in London right now, shooting for #Twerkumentary, but I feel like I’m in Milano because all my friends I grew up with are here, lol. I do miss my parents, they are the only reason I go back to Italy every six months, we are very close.

You’ve worked with a long and impressive roster of artists and brands. Who have been your favorite clients?

I worked with Estevan Oriol for a short film I directed for The MOCA and Levis, and that was a really cool experience. This year I did two productions for Vogue and I love working for them, the European agency is really cool, I became really good friends with them, it was a really awesome job. Right now I am doing some cool collabs with my homies’ brand Ain’t Nobody Cool. Serp, who does all the graphics for it, is a really dope artist and is helping me a lot with the art for #Twerkumentary and some of my latest music videos, so S/O Serp and Ain’t Nobody Cool and also the homies Adam & Romo of HAM on Everything who are helping me a lot with #Twerkumentary too. Romo is editing it, he is super talented, I love editing with him. And JP who is an awesome photographer and has shot a lot of footage for #Twerkumentary with me. So blessed to have talented friends who support me <3

Does Spaghetto have a signature style? Do you find that these visual elements blend into your own personal fashion sense?

Yeah, I think my fashion style is similar to my video style, it’s a blend of stuff I like: accessories, colors, nail art, earrings, custom personalized jewelry, watermelons, cartoons, music (I wear band tees a lot), brands I work with, homies I support, etc. I never check fashion magazines or blogs and I don’t have different outfits for different occasions, what I wear in the morning when I leave the house to go to my office on Fairfax. is what I’m gonna wear at night when I go out. I work hella hours, I don’t have time for makeup and heels. I love sweatpants, Vans and Descendents tees :)

Most importantly, how can Sway girls help support #Twerkumentary?

Thank you guys <3 Spreading the word definitely helps :) There are many ways to support my film. Right now I’m doing a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo and any donation really helps. People who donate get cool stuff in return. We are also looking for sponsors and investors, brands can have their product in the film, and investors can be credited as executive producers. We have many doors open for people who want to support the film and get international exposure. You can check out all the options and get in touch with me at www.twerkumentary.com :)

Last words, what’s your life motto?

Work hard, be nice to people and do what makes you happy.