LGBTQI+ | TikTok Trailblazer | @punker_irl | Syd Black

![Alt Text](https://images.squarespace-cdn.com/content/v1/56c346b607eaa09d9189a870/1593466738028-GO53YNZWNB1JBRKOORKY/%40punker_irl.jpg) Syd | @punker_irl | 2M followers | 16 years old | He / Him Syd is an artist, activist, model and comedic social media personality. In a quick span of time Syd has gathered a devoted and active audience across TikTok, Youtube, Instagram and Twitter. His proudest achievement so far was to be featured in a New York Times article. With a bright future ahead, Syd looks forward to furthering his career in the arts, using his platform to encourage people to be themselves and bring positive change to the world. What is your favorite place to create TikToks and why?
My bedroom is probably my favorite place to create TikToks because it is where I find the most freedom to express myself. I’m able to hang posters, art, or decorate with whatever things inspire me.

How did your relationship with TikTok change in quarantine? Quarantine has changed my relationship with TikTok by giving me more time to interact with my followers. I’ve been able to do video chats and get their feedback on projects I’m working on and it has been great!
punkerirl FLAUNT
Which current injustice is important to you and why? The current injustice that is most important to me is the discrimination and violence still perpetrated by people on Black Trans Women. Some of that hatred is even from other members of the LGBTQ community. Black Trans women are the members of the community who paved the way for the rights we have today.

How important is it that your Generation learns how to work well together? Or is it?
It’s important that my generation learns how to work well together because We cannot grow and fix the mistakes of the past unless we do.
punkerirl FLAUNT
If you have to eat one thing for the rest of 2020, what is it?
If I had to eat one thing for the rest of 2020 it would be buffalo chicken wings.

Do you think you're still finding out who you are? What are the clues around you as to who that is?
I am still figuring myself out, and I always will be. I’m one of those people who is constantly changing and I mean everyone is constantly changing but I want to be a different person almost every day. I don’t know who I want to be in the future but I know that I will be changing.

Why do you think self-expression is more important than ever?
Self expression has always been important. Without self expression everyone would be so bland. Everyone expresses themselves in one way or another, it doesn’t matter if you have a “basic” style or the “craziest” style, you’re still expressing yourself.

What's something often misunderstood about you?
I think a common way people misunderstand me is by assuming I am a mean or aggressive person. The only reason they say that is because they see me expressing myself when I’m standing up for others or myself, so I am using a harsh tone. I never mean to come off as aggressive or angry, but it seems that’s when people pay the most attention. I’m all about positivity and I’m usually very chill and calm, you just have to pay attention to see those parts of who I am as well.
punkerirl FLAUNT
Is it ok to change your mind sometimes? How come? What's the context?
It is always okay to change your mindset. People speak negatively about it all the time but changing your mind is a basic human activity. To break it down simply it’s like food, as a kid you may not have liked a certain food but as you grow older you love that food. Everyone is constantly changing, and I don’t think change is a bad thing. We should all be willing to consider new experiences and the things we learn in life and use them to change and grow.

Give some advice to the you of last year? If I looked back on the last year the advice I’d give myself would be to stop being so worried about what other people are saying to you. If you want people to like you more you need to be true to yourself first and realize that people love authenticity. Always be true to yourself.