Hi, I’m Leah, and I’m a multimedia storyteller who loves to get her hands dirty, too.
By seat, I’m a writer, illustrator, and sometimes astrologer.
By feet, I’m a photographer, farmer, and cook.
I’m particularly passionate about plant-based food, holistic wellness, and the root causes of cultural trends. Whether studying stars or soil, and whether hunkered down at my computer or heavy lifting in the mud, I’m interested in getting to the heart of the matter at hand. I look to Mother Nature (nickname: Mama Nay) as a mentor, offering abundant lessons on growth and grounding.
I work with brands, entrepreneurs, and organizations to craft verbal and visual strategy that’s equally smart and sincere. In addition to copywriting on a freelance basis, I regularly edit articles and newsletters for The Fold Magazine (previously Clementine Daily) and write for a range of online outlets like mindbodygreen, Birchbox, My Modern Met, Electrify Magazine, Design*Sponge, and Elephant Journal. I do custom commissioned illustrations, and my photography clients range from sweetgreen to Bitten to Girls Write Now. I’ve also styled photo shoots and events with Zio & Sons.
What I’m saying is, if it’s a form of storytelling, chances are that it’s in my wheelhouse, and it’s all based in my initial background in public relations, marketing, and corporate communications. I got my professional start as a public relations coordinator for a New York-based firm whose blog, newsletter, and full spectrum of social media pages I conceptualized and created. I also launched the viral #dailydoseofwhimsy Instagram campaign at Pink Olive and wrote the monthly “love letters” (like this one) for the store’s sister company called OliveBox, in addition to spearheading blogging, public relations, social media strategy, graphic design, and events.
I built The Core Stories when I was still living in the Big Apple (get the pun now?) and craving a place to share some true stories of my own. You’ll find those personal tales on the Core Stories blog and on Instagram, where my aim is to expose the timelessness in timely trends, the quiet solace in the hustle, and the magnificence in all of life’s mess. I also design and sell greeting cards and prints based on the Core Stories themes.
When I’m not at my desk, surrounded by swirls of paper and pencils and shiny screens, I might be off on a long run or whirling around the kitchen, whipping up a mean plant-based feast. But I’m probably out in the dirt. Driven almost sheerly by curiosity, I left New York in September 2016 to spend a year traveling all over North America as an apprentice on more than 10 different organic farms, studying both the practical, procedural aspects of small-scale farming and its associated psychological and cultural implications. I fell in love with soft soil, tomato picking, and playing a direct role in honest and sustainable food systems, which led me towards my work with Masienda, the critically-acclaimed sourcers and purveyors of heirloom Mexican corn for chefs around the world. As their social media and communications consultant in the summer of 2017, I helped launch their three-ingredient, non-GMO, nixtamalized corn tortilla company called Masienda Bodega, and I developed a fanatic fascination for heirloom crops and Mexican farming practices in the process. That’s how I wound up moving to Oaxaca, Mexico — a key cradle of plant domestication and the native homeland of corn, squash and other staple ingredients — where I spent six months between 2017 and 2018 collaborating with those in the agricultural and culinary realms to foster communication, integrity, and sacred heritage preservation within food systems on both sides of the border.
Back in the U.S. now, I continue to practice the cultivation and preparation of food as a means of enriching livelihood on both individual and larger societal scales. In addition to my freelance work in content creation and strategy, I’m apprenticing at The Bear & Star, an acclaimed farm-to-table restaurant in Los Olivos, California (near Santa Barbara). I spend some of my days growing food on the partnered ranch down the road, other days preparing those just-harvested ingredients in the kitchen, and the in-between moments brainstorming ways of translating this closed-loop, plot-to-plate process to everyday eaters through storytelling. I’m also chipping away at a memoir about my year of nomadic farming.
Portrait by Emma Saccone.