Papertrail Mag Is For The Culture, By The Culture

Papertrail Mag’s Founder Billiejane has boldly taken New York’s underground culture under her wing with the hopes to shed light on the multitude of creatives who make the underground culture thrive in a major way. In this brief interview Billiejane talks about her newly launched publication and the importance in supporting the underground culture. Check out the interview below.


Billiejane Phengsy, also known by many “Lily”


Where are you from?
I am originally from Bridgeport, Connecticut but now based in Brooklyn, NY for about 3 years now.

Zodiac sign?

Congrats on the launch of your magazine, were you nervous with how things were going to turn out for your launch party and how has the feedback been since the launch?

TBH, yes I was really nervous actually but the type of nervous I was .. was more of a butterly in your stomach feeling lol nervous excited.

The feeback since the launch was more than I could ask for, literally the day after the launch event we had so many people post photos, mentions, comments and more. People from all over, different cities and states. I felt as if we brought the culture alive again at it’s best with many creatives who attended. Inspiring photographers and videographers who caught footage at our launch reposted and mentioned us letting us know that they f*ck with us 🙂 . So much support and so fast at that. Notifications on social media was flooding my phone. It is still going on as we speak lol. Other than that it was a good turn out.

What was the inspiration behind you wanting to start a magazine publication?

When I orginally projected this project, I wanted to create a booklet containing images of the underground scenary that includes people, photgraphy, and art in it’s aesthetic form. I always had an infatuation with the underground culture growing up. Currently that’s what I surround myself with, and I get inspired by observing certain individuals as if I was studying a test. I can honestly say I am a bit of a introvert. I wanted to create something that represents what I support since I am a creative individual myself. I also feel as culture/subculture should be recognized. Instead of your everyday celebrity drama. Which i think is boring lol. But yeah, this is where my inspiration begins. Therefore by creating a magazine publication supporting culture would represent the vision of what I see. It also helps to create a platform for creatives. I believe in culture, and I believe in real people and real things.

Considering that we are in a highly intense digital age now do you feel like physical magazine copies will ever go out of style? Or can there be a solid balance between physical and digital? (publications)

Hell no, never. Magazines will go out of style depending on what content you decide to put out and what appeals. Not to bash any other publications that are out, but most of them are very stereotypical. Which means in my own words “Nothing new” . I feel like magazines in a physical form should always show more visual content because people love pictures. Pictures mean a lot, they say alot. So i guess to answer your question, physical magazines will never go out of style, just got to use your brain.

I believe there can be somewhat of a balance of both physical and digital. However digital is great but not everyone has it like that. Some people don’t even have internet, I just think for others. Sometimes people just want a good book to read.


What were some of the obstacles that you faced in starting your publication?

Obstacles.. hmm. Good question, obstacles. In my mind I was questioning how I will be able to execute everything being one person. I will tell you I am a very fast paced person and I can do a million things at once. I as one person can not be in 3 places at once. Especially with the full schedule I have already. Luckily, now I have a team. Who I happily decided to recruit.

What do you feel like will ultimately set you apart from the other magazines out there?

Planning this project for 3 years, that was my essential plan. To make it completely different from all other magazines. It’s self explanatory .. Underground Content Magazine. The name, the description, and the vision. My vision and thoughts for this publication are beyond. I feel that it will set apart from others being that culture keeps people being them. Real recognize real.

Any advice for the peeps out there who are eagerly following their dreams?

My advice is simple.

Remove distractions, and be humble always.

Fav quote?

“The mind is everything. What you think you become.” – Guatama Buddah

Social media handles:

@billiejanes IG @papertrailmag


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