Photographer Charles Schoenberger
Photo Credit: Brojackson visuals
In a world where mass media dominate, it’s easy to feel like there’s no room for unheard voices and emerging talent. But Trystanne Cunningham, a Haitian born entrepreneur, is changing that with her visionary magazine, TrooRa.
When Cunningham moved from Haiti to California with her family as a teenager, she was filled with excitement at the prospect of immersing herself in the life and glamor that Hollywood had so famously portrayed. When she arrived though, it wasn’t easy to adjust; she barely spoke English, leading her to enroll in English as a Second Language classes the summer prior to continuing her education in a new, public school environment. Cunningham did so well, that she was able to skip the eighth grade and go straight into high school.
As a teenager, Cunningham was captivated by the beauty of traditional magazines. She found herself particularly inspired by Naomi Campbell: an iconic Black SuperModel whose entrepreneurial success she deeply admired as a role model. She loved learning about different cultures, new places and emerging trends – a love that has remained unshakable.
After graduating high school, Cunningham decided to pursue her passion for performance art by attending college and studying Theater and Drama. However, she eventually found herself working a variety of jobs that weren’t fulfilling enough. After getting an opportunity to work for a magazine, she quickly realized her calling.
At one point, someone told Cunningham that she’d never have what it takes to start a magazine – this only made her more determined. Thus began her journey towards creating something beautiful on her own terms.
She began taking graphic design classes and researching the publishing industry, where she identified a gap in the market: there wasn’t really a magazine that focused on diverse, undiscovered brands, unique talent, and inspiring stories from around the world. Cunningham saw an opportunity to create a publication that would amplify the voices of those who were yet to be heard.
As a result, TrooRa Magazine was born with the aim of promoting diverse entrepreneurs, emerging brands, creatives and distinctive artists coupled with stories of hope. The name TrooRa is derived from “truly rare,” which embodies the magazine’s commitment to showcasing the rare, the unique, and the extraordinary. Cunningham’s team scours the globe for fascinating narratives, seeking to emulate the editorial work of legendary editors such as Andre Leon Tally, Edward Enninful, Grace Coddington, and Anna Wintour. With her mission to forever engage and empower creatives and audiences alike, she continues to intrigue with her unique ability to meticulously curate the magazine’s content and its launch events.
Based on her belief that beauty is not just skin deep, she has created a platform that highlights people from all walks of life. TrooRa Magazine’s pages are filled with captivating images and articles featuring home design, culinary, travel, art, fashion, beauty, wellness, and more. TrooRa showcases the rare and beautiful in all industries.
TrooRa has become a beacon of hope for many who feel left out of mainstream media. Through the publication and its associated events and multifaceted services, Cunningham has fostered growth and new connections globally for creatives, entrepreneurs, and their communities.
Her story is one of remarkable perseverance – an inspiring tale encapsulating innovation amidst adversity with purposeful creativity leading the way. Perhaps that is why TrooRa is more than just a magazine – it’s a movement, a platform that celebrates diversity, individuality, and the strength of the human spirit.
If you would like to get in touch with Trystanne Cunningham or her company, you can do it through her – Linkedin Page