Nova Lorraine: Lifelong Learner, Creative Founder, Mother

Photographed by VITAL AGIBALOW for HENSEL

Nova Lorraine started her career in medicine and holds a master’s degree in clinical psychology. She later made an award-winning decision to study fashion design at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York. Just recently, Nova was recently recognized for her efforts with a Top 50 in Fashion, Apparel, and Beauty Award.

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Early in her career, Nova received many accolades for her design sensibility, including Haute Couture Designer of the Year and multiple Rising Star Nominations by Fashion Group International. In addition, her designs have graced the big screen and television, as well as in the pages of Italian Vogue and Essence Magazine.

In 2007, Nova launched Raine Magazine, an international media platform that features the next big names in fashion, culture, and technology.

Nova recently launched the “Unleash Your SuperNova,” a podcast in which she interviews the gutsiest creatives from around the globe. Currently, Nova is entering back into the performance realm with acting and improv and recently landed a role in her third theatrical stage production. She also enjoys lecturing at universities, public speaking, and writing poetry in her free time.

MEMORIES
From an early age, your love for fashion and performing flourished, allowing you to become a dancer, fashion designer, and actor. Can you describe your experiences and how they helped fine-tune your crafts?

I never had any formal training in dance, just a passion for expressing myself through that medium. The opportunity presented itself in college, when I was asked to join a dance team to compete for a championship title at the university’s talent competition. Our dance team won and was also invited to compete on MTV. Excitedly enough, we won that competition as well. Both of those experiences gave me the confidence to audition for a professional dance company in Boston. That was such an incredible time in my life.
In terms of fashion, graduate school was cut short when I opted to leave after getting my master’s in clinical psychology in order to go to New York City to study at the Fashion Institute of Technology. It’s funny how unpredictable yet thrilling life is.

MINDSET
How would you describe a creative entrepreneur?
I believe a creative entrepreneur is someone who uses their creative gifts to produce something that helps better a community of people, no matter how big or small.

FITNESS / WELLNESS
Have you ever faced the issue of burnout in your career? How did you overcome it?

Shortly after having my fourth child, I opened a store in New York. This was in addition to running my design company, consulting for other entrepreneurs, and launching Raine Magazine. When my youngest turned 2, I started to feel the mental drain of it all. It became harder and harder to want to go into the store, create new designs, or publish new issues for the magazine. I realized I was becoming burnt out. I didn’t love what I was creating anymore. I knew I needed a drastic change, especially in my environment to reinvigorate that spark that was once there— something I thought would never go dim.

About a year later, we moved our family to coastal Florida to be near the beach. I knew that by being near the ocean, I would be able to replenish myself and find a new source of inspiration. The relocation led to growing Raine Magazine and getting my passion back for both fashion and performance.

MENTORS / ADVICE
What advice would you lend to a budding talent on the rise in your chosen field?

Before embarking on any journey, take the time to examine your “why.” That is your North Star for guiding your path. It’s good to do this check-in every six months to help keep you on track.

OBSTACLES
What is your viewpoint of failure and how best to deal with it?

As a friend once shared with me, failure is a form of learning or refinement. Welcome the failures— they help make you stronger and wiser if you allow them to.

THE REAL YOU
Describe yourself in five words or less.

Creative, passionate, compassionate, imaginative, and curious.

What are your superpowers, and how have they helped you excel?

Intuition, empathy, and storytelling. I like to use my gut to guide me, my sensitivity to better understand people, and my passion for teaching through words and pictures to inspire.

FUTURE OPPORTUNITIES
What’s next for you?

I am very excited about publishing my book about bridging the gap between creativity and entrepreneurship, growing the Raine Podcast Network, and releasing more of my creative writing to the world.

By: Bryson Littlejohn

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