It’s official! Red Bull is coming to Korea! 미국의 대표적인 에너지 드링크가 한국에 들어오기로 했습니다! And we here at Yahae! are working with Red Bull to bring you the news first!
Well, the original electrically enervating elixir is coming to Korea to take up its rightful place as the energy drink of choice. And they’re bringing the cars, the cans, and looking for Red Bull models to roll out onto the streets of Seoul with! They want girls who are outgoing, healthy, and athletic. This isn’t your standard Korean-style, “racing girl” campaign, but one that prefers those with the Red Bull lifestyle — you’re a young lady who works and plays hard, is social and defaults to a smile, and you have a healthy constitution (and even a few bruises?!) from your bike, snowboarding, or boogie-boarding antics over the weekend.
To inquire about joining the Red Bull team, drop a line here.
Our magazine - Yahae! - is also looking for models for editorial and other spreads — if you want exposure as a model, also drop a line here.
As for the rest of us, get ready to get your wings! By the end of the summer, Da Bull is coming to town!
What Happens When Foreign Fashion Magazines Enter the Korean Market?
I was just searching around Naver’s excellent newspaper archive to find reports on the first foreign fashion magazines were about the enter the Korean market in 1996, the first of which was to be Vogue Korea. Most of the article talks about how much of the content would come from translated articles (60-70%) and how much of it would be specific to the Korean version (30-40%). Not surprisingly, there was quite a bit of trepidation and even suspicion on the part of some, as the brand power of a worldwide heavy-hitter like Vogue coming into a domestic-only market, which was populated at the time by Korean fashion magazines Let’s, Ecole, Ceci, Figaro, and Vivid, was a clear threat in terms of content and competition. But that wasn’t the only point of fear. A representative of the YMCA was quoted in her concerns that “Excessive competition among fashion magazines representing women will create a distorted beauty standard in terms of appearance and clothing” and that “especially with the advent of Korean editions of foreign fashion magazines, careful thought must be given in the editing style that we prevent a Korean culture identity crisis from occurring.”
It’s interesting that the similarities to Yahae! as the first independent fashion magazine to enter Korea, in a market that is somewhat different than the paper magazine market of an earlier era — as robust as the independent online publishing market is in the US, a similar market simply doesn’t exist in Korea. This is for two main reasons, the first being the huge cultural barrier that exists to expressing strong opinions without the backing of formal authority in public, and the second has to do with the total dominance of Korean Internet by the portal system, with Naver and Daum as the prime examples. I prefer to call these portals “Internet jaebeol" (conglomerates), but the overall effect has been to keep content in the hands of the powers-that-be, as opposed to being produced by the you-and-me’s of the world.
So, the issue of a foreign magazine entering the Korean market isn’t there for us, but the idea that we are going to somehow “distort” or “misrepresent” Korean fashion to the outside world certainly is, from the publication of the first photo book on Korean fashion (The Seoul Fashion Report) to the creation of this magazine, Yahae! There is concern over the name, which many Koreans forget did not always mean “sexy” but had a broader meaning of a “risqué” style or a “gauche” color or style. An older meaning also included the feeling of being “cheesy” or perhaps even the recent meaning of “kitschy” in terms of appearance, as well. Combined with the fact that the word is often used to mean “overly sexy” these days, Yahae! is an appropriately sexy and edgy name and brand that is ripe for reworking and re-appropriation. Given the fact that I do plan to see more competitors entering the online market soon, but combined with the fact that Korean magazines like to play it pretty, light, and safe — whereas many of the younger generation has definitely grown tired of this style, having been weaned on American television, music, and movies — it’s high time that a real edgy fashion mag came onto the scene.
Because, as in nearly every media format in Korea, it takes a foreign influence to raise the standards of the game, as the Korean tendency is to maintain the status quo and fear anything new, especially if it comes from outside Korea’s borders. Here’s to the hope that we have the same success as many of our media predecessors!
"여기서 가치관에 대한 비판을 하자는 게 아니다. 난 단지 이 독특한 한국의 문화적, 물리적 공간을 이용해 사진 촬영하는 내 동기에 대해 이야기하고 있는 것이다. 정말로 많은 외국인들은 이 공간을 흥미롭게 생각한다. 한국인들은 ‘나라 망신’에 대해 염려하고 국가 이미지를 중요하게 생각하지만, 외국인들은 다수의 한국인들이 걱정하는 부분에 대해 ‘부정적’인지 ‘긍정적’인지 따지지 않는다." [영어 원본을 읽을 수도 있고 한국말로 나오는 온 기사를 읽으세요]
내일에 우리 첫 editorial 패션화보가 나올 겁니다. Rachel Park이란 넥타이 디자이너에 대한 자세한 이야기도 나오고! 꼭 다시 오세요!
"I’m not making a value judgement here; I’m merely talking about my motivations for making a photo shoot utilizing this uniquely Korean cultural and physical backdrop. Indeed, most non-Koreans would find this space also fascinating. Despite Koreans’ tendency to think only in terms of national image or shame ("나라망신"), the actual foreigners most Koreans are worried about don’t really care about "negative" or "positive" — they’re looking for what’s interesting, for cultural item that are new to them, that deepen interest in the culture in general. Koreans, when thinking about how some supposedly "negative" aspects of Korean culture bring embarrassment, are stuck in an irrelevant frame of thinking based on "shame," which is rooted in Confucian ideas of following social rules and sticking to one’s social roles. Westerners, for example, simply aren’t thinking in these terms when looking in from the outside." [Read the entire article in English translation or the Korean version on OhmyNews.]
Also, our first fashion editorial, highlighting Rachel Park and her ties for our first issue, will come out tomorrow! Stay tuned, join and follow us, and get your fix of Korean lifestyle and fashion both tomorrow and every day!
세계역사상에 한국패션과 생활에 대한 사진집이 하나밖에 안 나온 것입니다. 바로 우리가 만들었습니다. 영어와 한국말로 둘다 나오고 원래 1000권밖에 출판을 안했습니다. 많이 안 남아있지는 않지만 아직은 주문이 가능합니다. 주문하면 사인된 걸 받을 거고 질문있으시면 메일을 해주세요.
There is only one book about Korean fashion and lifestyle in the world, and we published it — in both English and Korean — in 2009. Only 1000 copies were printed, and there are not much more than a handful left. Order your signed copy today! You can also order directly or email in for more questions.