At a glance, one can say that LA Aguinaldo has it all—the tall and charming guy is blessed with a stellar modeling career. But this 26-year-old has always set his sights on something more.
For the past two years, he’s been using his vlogs to share snippets of his life and travel adventures. Fame and expectations may come with being a social media personality, but Aguinaldo is guided by this principle: Stick to your North Star and be yourself on- and off-screen.
This creative is also willing to put in the work, whether he’s doing shoots or editing his videos. Discipline is the key to getting things done, and he has gotten far because of it.
To be You sat down with Aguinaldo to discuss vlogging, his creative process, and everything in between.
You have a successful career as a model. What made you want to start vlogging on YouTube?
I am happy with modeling, but I’ve always seen it as something that is only part of me. It does not define me as a person. I’d definitely say it’s one of my biggest passions.
YouTube was something I’ve always wanted to do. Before “LA All Day,” I was already making random skit videos with my friends (who are now full-time YouTubers as well) and even shoe reviews and travel videos. It was only in 2017 that I decided to create “LA All Day” and take my followers with me on my journey. I haven’t stopped since.
Which vloggers do you look up to and why?
I watch different creators from almost every genre, from travel vloggers like Sam Kolder and Sawyer Hartman, to pranksters like the Nelk Boys, Chris Chann, David Dobrik and, of course, one of the fathers of YouTube vlogging, Casey Neistat. I look up to Gary Vaynerchuk, too. He’s probably one of the biggest reasons I started vlogging.
What’s your creative process as a vlogger, model and artist?
It’s heavy on emotion and inspiration. It’s pretty difficult to create if you’re not motivated or if your environment isn’t that inspiring. Sometimes I’d have moments when I’m super-inspired to shoot and edit videos nonstop. Other times, when I need a little push, I take a break and listen to music or watch other videos that can help kick-start my creative juices.
Everything needs discipline because when inspiration refuses to show up on some days, discipline will always help you get the job done regardless.
I sometimes feel that “you’re only as good as your last work.” There’s always constant pressure to try and top your last video. That’s when the pressure starts to set in—the fear of losing subscribers or momentum.
I guess sometimes it’s good to remind yourself that it’s always okay to take a step back and breathe. When you’re ready, go back in there and create.
You’re a big traveler. How does it inspire you to be a better person?
Traveling definitely helps broaden your way of thinking. Traveling has always led me out of my comfort zone. It makes me realize some dreams and makes me want to achieve even more.
What’s the fashion piece that sparks joy in you?
My rings and jewelry. I might get a piercing, but I’m not sure where to go, though.
What’s the best thing about being a millennial?
We have the world in our pocket. We’re lucky to be living with the internet. We can be many things all at once.
Do you meticulously curate your Instagram feed, or just go for no-filter posts?
I used to care so much to the point that it crippled me. Now I just post whatever I like and I’m way happier.
Amid the social media pressure and expectations, how do you stay true to your brand?
You just have to stick to your North Star. No matter the hardships and trials you go through every day, remind yourself why you do things the way you do.
What to you is an influencer?
For me, being an influencer is more than just influencing people how to dress, what to buy, or where to go. It’s more than just being a “double-tap magnet.”
Being an influencer means that you help people become more of who they are. You aim to inspire, motivate, create, and help people realize that they can be more than just the filters and their curated feeds—they can be themselves.
What are your other goals?
I think it’s all about giving myself the chance to try new and unfamiliar things, to have the same zest for life I’ve always had. I just want to be happy. When you’re happy, you win. —CONTRIBUTED
Photography Jerick Sanchez Styling Luis Carlo San Juan Editorial Assistant Heaven Dwayne Francisco Fashion by Gucci Spring-Summer 2019 (Stores Specialists Inc.)