Preview our feature with our cover star Dove Cameron below, and check out the full 14-page interview and photoshoot in The Untitled Magazine‘s latest print edition, The INNOVATE Issue out now.
“Innovation to me really means completely tapping out of every other input from anything other than yourself, drawing completely from the purest space that you can — that is uninterrupted by any other frequency, any other opinion, any other human beings — and creating from there. Creating something fresh, something new from a place that is entirely for you.” It’s a perspective on the concept of innovation that, on the surface, seems simple. But as actress and singer Dove Cameron explains it further, one begins to understand just how nuanced and unique her philosophy is. “In trying to create for others, we muddy our juices and our natural connections to something greater than us. And we introduce our own ego. And I think that ruins innovation. Innovation has to come from a place that is wordless, and then finds its way into the zeitgeist.”
She practices what she preaches by seeking to “cut [herself] off from as many influences as possible.” Referring to a quote from Polish artist Stanisław Szukalski, she elaborates: “‘If you want to create new things for this world, never listen to anybody. You have to suck your wisdom, all of the knowledge, from your thumb. Your own self.’ I think that’s where innovation comes from.” This sentiment also inspires her to not intentionally break the mold for the sake of it, explaining that “the reason we have so much that has already been done and things that are so repetitive and malnourished creatively, is because we’re constantly trying to either do what someone’s done before or reinvent the wheel. But if you suck all of the wisdom from your own thumb, you’ll always be innovating.” Innovation for innovation’s sake is never Dove Cameron’s goal, and keeping that mantra in mind has been remarkably effective for her throughout her career.
The 25-year old star, perhaps best known for her start on the Disney Channel, has since branched out to encompass a rich filmography of musicals, romantic comedies, and TV dramas, as well as a growing discography of pop hits. Though living in the spotlight, Dove’s approach to her life and work is introspective, deep, and ever-evolving. Recently, Cameron graced the cover of Gay Times to talk candidly about her status as a queer person. Though Dove informally “came out” on Instagram less than a year prior, fans were surprised, even shocked, at the singer’s queerness. “I think the reason that the Gay Times cover made such an impact was because it was a very black and white kind of announcement. I had been publicly out for…ever, but people just need to have it be done by the book. They need to have it be announced in that way for it to be fully recognized…It wasn’t even registering as anything because it had always been something so natural to me. It’s not that I came out, it’s the Gay Times cover that came out.”
Despite an uneven road to being a public queer figure, Dove Cameron continues to embrace her identity, though people only “re-colored their experience of [her] retroactively.” In fact, the change in attitudes from people shocked by the news is wonderful in her eyes, and has transformed her immensely. “I think it’s positively impacted my career… I think there was always something about me that people didn’t love, and they couldn’t put their finger on the fact of why they didn’t. It was like they saw 90% of me, and whatever the last 10% was that they didn’t see, it was making them highly uncomfortable. I think when the Gay Times cover came out…People are able to love me better and more. Everybody really showed up for who I always have been, that they now really understood, which was kind of amazing.”
Over the course of the next year, keep an eye out, I’m releasing a lot.” Along with her intimate upcoming solo tour, An Evening with Dove Cameron, where she’ll be performing her entire discography, she also hopes to kick off 2022 with her first EP. “The creative output is very high over here, and it changes literally daily. I’m in a great, lovely creative zone/spiral/tornado/twister, and I’m excited to see what comes of that. And I’m excited to share with you guys!”
Dove Cameron @DoveCameron
Photography by Indira Cesarine @indiracesarine for @theuntitledmagazine
Stylist Erin Walsh @erinwalshstyle
Stylist Assistant Madeleine Kennedy @madeleinekennedy
Make-up by Melissa Hernandez @melissa.hernandez
Hair by Clayton Hawkins @claytonhawkins
Photographed on location at Sofitel Los Angeles @sofitellosangeles