Chloe Hallock ~ Inspiration, Light & Passion
The honor of connecting with Chloe Hallock, yoga model, instructor, and clothing designer, has been a treat and a wonderful pleasure! Chloe, in her young years, has simply run circles around the best of them ~ not only her modeling career, but in her dedication to yoga through her instruction, amazing competitive recognition, and launch of her clothing line. Chloe has been fully dedicated to yoga for about five years, and emphatically says she “plans to be for the rest of my days…..The peace I find within asana practice is an invaluable and treasured gift.” Along with yoga, creating art has helped her find a sacred space where she feels she can explore her truth. Chloe states: “I believe in following your passions” – she is living that joy in her daily life and dedication to her practice and teachings. When I look at her yoga photos and product line photos, I see an ever flowing spirit of bright light and love of life. She IS the lotus flower! Learning about Chloe and her passion cannot help but ignite passion within ourselves so that we might go out and fulfill them. She is a true inspiration for us all.
YWS: In five words or less, describe yourself:
CH: Creative, ambitious, loving.
YWS: So let’s first talk about Choco and those amazing tees! How did this evolve and when did you decide to become a designer/artisan?
CH: I have been drawing and painting since I was a tiny girl. Art has weaved itself into every aspect of my life since I was a child. My favorite photos of myself are at age three, finger painting in a tie-dye leotard in the driveway. Ever since, art has been a top priority for me. I have taken numerous classes in painting, drawing, and sculpture over the years in addition to my own individual growth. More recently, I have become enthralled with collage and graffiti. Two years ago, my stepmother suggested I have several of my designs printed onto t-shirts to give out as Christmas presents. The shirts turned out amazing and from there my business, Choco, was born. I named it Choco in honor of my stepmother, which is her beloved cat’s name. The shirts represent the combination of my love of art with yogic principles I strive to live by. I hope my shirts spread the wisdom and beauty I have been so lucky to experience. My line has been a success in Portland OR and I am looking to expand into other markets. Most of the designs are yoga inspired and promote a message of serenity and harmony. I plan to develop my line into a complete active yoga wear collection, ranging from sports bras and shorts to yoga mats and bags.
YWS: Where do you get your ideas?
CH: Yoga inspires me, in so many ways. It has helped me to create designs that are both beautiful aesthetically and inspirational in content. I also love graffiti. My grandmother is an amazing artist and I have always looked up to her.
YWS: What artist or artists inspired or inspires you and your designs?
CH: Van Gogh is a classic for me; I love local art as well.
YWS: Tell us a bit about the symbolic imagery in your work ~
CH: The lotus flower in my Namaste design symbolizes layers blossoming open, peeling off the outer ego to find your true self.
YWS: What has helped to shape you?
CH: SO many things! My family, growing up in Oregon with the amazing surroundings and nature, running through the woods, traveling all over the world, making the best friends I could ever ask for in every experience I have had, going to Bikram Yoga teacher training, modeling for five years, practicing power yoga, competing in Yoga Asana Championships, having meaningful relationships, challenging myself and growing.
YWS: How did you decide on this medium (i.e. clothing)? What are your favorite materials and colors, media, to work with?
CH: I decided to make apparel because it is a wearable form of art. It is also a great way to combine my love of yoga and art by printing my artwork on yoga wear and accessories. I love soft materials; burn out is my current favorite. Bright colors are wonderful; I love creating pieces that make people smile.
YWS: Tell us about your yoga practice and facets of your yoga instruction~
CH: Yoga has been a major part of my life for the past eight years. I took my first class when I was thirteen and fell in love. It felt completely natural for my body, mind and spirit. My practice has evolved over time to include Bikram and Power Vinyasa styles. I finished my Vinyasa teacher training in 2007 in Portland OR. That fall, I took the skills I learned to teach yoga on Semester at Sea. I was able to travel around the world and share the magic of yoga with hundreds. Last fall, 2009, I completed Bikram Yoga Teacher Training and now teach Bikram’s beginning class 4-5 times a week and lead the advanced series. In addition I represented Oregon in the 7th annual Yoga Asana Championships and placed 15th in the USA. I will be returning to LA this March to again represent Oregon in the 8th annual Yoga Asana Championship. I also practice Power Yoga and Pilates. I plan to continue with my extensive practice and grow as a teacher, student, and competitor.
Every time I practice, I am inspired. I learn about my own capabilities and how strong I am. Like my Namaste design with the lotus flower, each time I practice, I peel off layers of myself and feel more pure. That feeling of ecstasy is where I design from.
YWS: What do you find most challenging about being a yoga instructor?
CH: I feel very strongly for my students, sometimes too much! When I teach, I find myself going through the struggle with them, internalizing their experience. My biggest challenge is being able to step back and respect that the students are on their own journey; I am simply leading that magical experience.
YWS: What special skills do you have?
CH: I have tremendous strength, flexibility and concentration. As a result, I can do all of the 84 Bikram advanced poses as well as many advanced power asanas.
YWS: What do you feel is your greatest accomplishment to date?
CH: Becoming a Bikram teacher and representing Oregon two years in row at Nationals.
YWS: OK, so some stuff on the less serious side……! If you could go back in time to have dinner with someone who would it be?
CH: Dali Lama and Gandhi.
YWS: If you could be any animal what would you be?
CH: An antelope, they are fast and graceful.
YWS: If you could be a fruit what fruit would you choose and why?
CH: A mango, they are sweet and juicy and grow in beautiful, tropical areas.
YWS: What was the funniest incident you can remember from/during your instructor training process?
CH: Halloween was very memorable. All 300 trainees dressed up for class and the costumes were so fun and creative! Especially once we all were covered in sweat!
YWS: Out of all your teaching memories which memory/story/incident do you think or rate as the funniest?
CH: Probably when I was about to walk in to teach and as I was taking off my sweatshirt realized I didn’t have a top on! Luckily I noticed before I went in the room and gave everyone a show!
YWS: If you were a God what would you do to the world?
CH: Create and maintain peace.
YWS: Which super power would you like to have and why?
CH: To fly, I have always wanted that power.
YWS: If we took a look inside your refrigerator what would we find?
CH: Fruit, salmon, almond milk, spinach and chocolate.
YWS: In closing, in light of all the media lately about yoga’s origins and how western influence has possibly changed things (in some views in a negative way), what is your take on how American lives have embraced the yoga lifestyle and what do you see or wish for the future?
CH: I feel like America has been incredibly lucky to receive the wisdom and tremendous benefits of yoga. We are truly blessed. I feel that we have embraced it, but like all things in America there has been an element of commercialization. Honestly, it doesn’t bother me though. However way we can get yoga to more people ~ I am all for it. I hope Americans continue to find yoga and treasure it. It is a sacred practice and should be respected.
Chloe’s label, Choco, can be purchased on www.yogawithstyle.com and is also offered in our Greenlawn, New York studio boutique at Esteem Wellness & Fitness. We look forward to offering more designs by Choco as Chloe launches the next phase of her line!