Charlotte native, Caleyah Gaither is a sophomore journalism and mass communication student who wears many hats. She’s a photographer, hair stylist, video editor and more.
And she was happy to bring those talents to N.C. A&T.
“My mom went here and got pregnant with my sister, so she had to drop out,” she said. “So, I just felt like me going would be continuing her legacy. After going to GHOE and fall open houses, I knew that it was right for me.”
Gaither works with many different organizations on campus and partners with many different brands and companies as an ambassador and photographer.
Creating has always been something Gaither has excelled in. However, she says that it truly blossomed when she arrived on campus.
“I have always been creative, but I think it blossomed into a bigger thing once I came to N.C. A&T,” she said. “Ever since I was younger, I used to draw. My mom would let me paint and graffiti my walls. I would write, do poetry, and music, but being at A&T — being surrounded by more creatives, and people who are free to express themselves — is [where] I blossomed into the person I am now.”
She said she truly does not have a creative process. She just wakes up and goes over any ideas she might have had from the previous day, or just comes up with something on the spot, she said.
“The duality of her concepts, and how influential her style is, shows that her authenticity leads her creativity,” said Trajan Mobley, sophomore journalism student.
From there, she checks to see if she has everything she needs for the particular shoot.
When she needs new products, she goes to a dollar store or thrift stores. This keeps the cost of her shoots relatively low. She is also an advocate for using free apps, as she uses them on her own projects.
“It’s not about what you have — it’s about what you can do with what is given to you and what you can do with it,” she said.
One of her challenges when beginning to curate content was getting camera equipment.
“The biggest struggle I faced was getting camera equipment. It’s so expensive, and for me, it was a struggle. After I got it though, I continued to flip the money back, money-wise, business-wise. After that, it was easier to get more equipment after,” she said.
She also spoke on the pressures on staying consistent and producing quality work.
“If you are not consistent, people will forget and think that you are not good anymore,” she said. “I also believe in posting quality content that appeals to my audience.”
Her peers on campus continue to praise her for her distinct style of content.
“To me, she not only embodies the essence of ‘new school,’ but she also incorporates her own flavor, which is inspiring,” said Anuquet Mangum, sophomore graphic design student.
When needed, she takes social media breaks to relax her mind and just breathe. She encourages others to do the same.
She offers advice to new creatives and others who struggle to produce content.
“Go for it,” she said.