Between the pandemic and uprisings of the last year, Natalia Mantini felt the urgent need to do something about the trauma she was seeing play out in her communities. The director and photographer — who started shooting as a kid going to punk shows in L.A. — began sharing accessible mental health resources on her Instagram, where her dreamy, warm captures of Patia Borja of @patiasfantasyworld, Zazie Beets, Chloë Sevigny and Yalitza Aparicio live. She got a flood of feedback from followers wanting more.
"It's felt like one of the only anchoring things for me to come back to and focus on during this chaotic time," she says.
The resources were quickly compiled into a Google Doc, and last month, Mantini launched a website called Solace with her collaborator Lizette Ayala. Featuring tips and suggestions for therapy, herbalism, food, yoga and more, Solace is "an ever-evolving library of resources for mental health support, healing, and wellness with a focus on BIPOC & LGBTQ communities."
"It's so necessary and so crucial for people to have support for their mental health," Mantini says. "The fact that it's wildly needed but also not accessible is to me very dangerous. [Solace] is a tool that people can use to navigate their own healing. I hope that it's an empowering and accessible tool for people to use however they want because they know what's best for themselves."
The mantra keeping me sane right now is:
My favorite healing practice lately is:
The place I feel most at peace in L.A.:
I’m inspired by:
My lucky charm:
A podcast that’s giving me perspective:
A collective or organization I’m supporting:
🔥~🌟 ~ 🌟 ~🔥~🌟~🔥
Screenshot my mood
A selfie that captures my mood this month:
"My mood is feeling meditative this month."
The last thing I wrote in my Notes app:
"Last thing in my notes: Erykah Badu lyrics."
The meme I can’t get out of my head:
"I'm deeply obsessed with @afffirmations entire account. I feel seen."
🔥~🌟 ~ 🌟 ~🔥~🌟~🔥
This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.