What made you want to make The Goddess Issue?
It was a very natural progression from The Tarot Issue to The Healing Issue and now to The Goddess Issue. I always kind of knew where the direction was headed in terms of the theme, but it was only really when I started the making of the issue that I realised the scope and importance of what I was going to explore and bring to light, at this particularly potent time in society. I think it’s been extremely important for me to have a creative outlet during everything we’ve been exposed to in the last six months or so, like #MeToo and #TimesUp…I think I might’ve driven myself into destruction if i’d not had this release for all of the emotions I was feeling and been able to express them in positive ways that could help women and hopefully make them look at themselves through an enlightened lens. I wanted to really challenge the perception of the ‘ideal’ woman. I think where we currently are, it’s not just privilege to spend time working on our self-love, it’s necessary.
What themes do you explore in this issue?
The premise of the issue is all about exploring the Goddess archetype to realign with modern-day women and the modern-day issues we face. If you think about it, many of the ideas society has about women today - or should I say what is often forced upon us, derive from the ideas and stories of original femmes and goddesses. And they are ancient!! We’re literally still abiding by social norms that were written forever ago and it’s bizarre and irrelevant. So by looking at the themes of the traditional goddess archetype (Beauty, Femininity, Sexuality, Fertility, Virginity, Motherhood and Youth) and talking about them in contemporary ways - honouring how we actually feel, not how we think we’re supposed to, puts power back into women believing they can be goddesses.
What should we be excited to see?
Every. Damn. Page. Haha, you should be excited for lots and lots of bright colour, collage and insane goddess illustrations. Interviews with the most incredible women who’re really doing such positive, soul work to help women transform their lives for the better. I spoke to cover-babe Gala Darling about living “in the vortex” and how to become in complete alignment with your inner and outer self by simply feeling good. I chatted to Vanessa Cuccia, creator and founder of crystal sex-toy company, Chakrubs about how to put sacred energy into your sexual practice and spoke to Mel Wells about intuitive eating and how our food habits can reveal so so much.
How do you think The Goddess Issue has evolved since The Healing Issue?
Oh my God, the level-up is crazy! I said the exact same when The Healing Issue came out but it’s true. I think anyone with the complete Hook collection can really see that. They’re each beautiful in their own right and all very much a reflection of the growth of myself as an artist. Which I like - they’re all very much ‘me’ but still very accessible and relatable. I think The Goddess Issue has more of a sense of identity compared to the previous issues where I was perhaps still finding my feet.
How would you like someone to feel whilst reading The Goddess Issue?
To really feel connected to their divine feminine energy. To feel like they are enough. That they don’t need to be anything other than who they are to still feel worthy as a woman and as a goddess. I think a lot of the time, we try to make ourselves feel smaller for various reasons (*cough* the male ego) and try to fit into boxes that don’t really feel like ‘us’ but this is a celebration of the magic we truly hold within our bones and an offering to modern-day goddesses. I’d just like women to feel like it’s okay if they don’t mirror the narrative we’ve previously only been given.
'Elaine' by Esme Marsh
What does it mean to be a Goddess to you?
To me, being a goddess is all about being open to the constant journey of understanding yourself and your accompanying needs. It’s standing in front of the mirror and acknowledging what you see. Not hiding, denying, dismissing or resenting what’s there but instead being like “I see you and I’m gonna nourish you with the life you deserve to have and enjoy”. It’s honouring who you want to be and not denying yourself of that regardless of how scary that might be at first. I believe that you don’t change, you just become more of who you we’re supposed to be.
Who are some of your favourite Goddess icons, past and present?
I have always identified with the mermaid archetype who, with her powers of beauty, femininity and seduction, is very much an icon of the Goddess. Growing up everyone always knew me as ‘the mermaid’. I get very emotional being by the sea and there’s always just been something in me very aquababe. It’s funny because I don’t have any water signs in my chart other than my Lilith being in Cancer. But that in itself could be interpreted as significant as Lilith is a cosmic void that seeks acknowledgment. This is just speculation of course - I’m not an astrologer but I’d love to have a reading to learn more about whether there’s anything in my planetary placements effecting my connection to the mermaid. I wrote an essay in The Goddess Issue about why we idolise mermaids so much - as I know I’m definitely not alone in saying I grew up obsessed with them.
What did you listen to, read and watch whilst making this issue?
I was very much immersed in the works of those featured in the issue! I read The Goddess Revolution by Mel Wells and Radical Self Love by Gala Darling as well of a lot of Gala’s YouTube videos. It’s important for me to work with and showcase women who I really admire and whose work has had an impact on my life. It makes the process of creating so much more meaningful. I could not recommend those two books enough. And I listened to the Goddess playlist featured in the magazine, of course. I recommend Olivia Louise, Anna Wise and Princess Nokia for some true feminist anthems.
"To me, being a goddess is all about being open to the constant journey of understanding yourself and your accompanying needs. It’s standing in front of the mirror and acknowledging what you see. "
What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced whilst putting together The Goddess Issue?
I can honestly say I’ve been incredibly lucky creatively whilst putting this issue together. I was so so clear with my vision and what I wanted from the issue from the very beginning, it all came together very naturally without any bumps. I know that certainly hasn’t always been the case and it definitely won’t always be like that in the future, but for now I feel incredibly lucky it came together so amazingly. If I had to say one thing, it’d be probably be trying to work basically without a budget. Oh if only I had an endless budget…
What has been a personal highlight whilst working on Hook's third issue?
I genuinely feel like this whole chapter has just been full of so much love and support. Everyone on social media has been so incredibly patient and supportive and it’s really kept my spirits high throughout. Being able to work with such a variety of extremely talented people is such a great reminder that bringing all of these people together and bringing all of this magic together, for something, is so special and worthwhile. A personal highlight would also be giving a platform to one particular goddess who wrote about her journey of overcoming cancer. It is such an empowering, emotive and brave piece of writing and I’m just honoured she felt Hook was the platform to be able to tell that story.
Please share your three favourite quotes from this issue?
“A goddess is just a woman on a journey to getting to know herself.” - Mel Wells
“The biggest myth is that there’s a right and wrong way to be feminine.” - Jess Cochrane
“You have to make your own light.” - Gala Darling
You've recently launched a brilliant website – what should we be looking out for?
I started a monthly series at the beginning of the year called ‘Make Magick Happen (Into the Souls of Independent Makers) where I interview an independent creative all about their work, process, struggles and advice for other DIY artists. I think it’s really valuable to support the community of bad-ass independent creatives because a lot of us hit similar brick walls and it’s amazing and so warming to be able to share some of that and maybe help someone just starting out or needing a bit of a morale boost. I post monthly Editor’s Letters so everyone can stay in the loop with everything on planet Hook and weekly articles, plus all of my latest collages!
And finally, where can our readers buy their Goddess Issue and keep up to date with all things Hook?