Memsperanto

Words by Harrison Johnstone
Art from past Esperanto covers 

Esperanto Magazine is a revolution, and an evolution, of our fave student publication.

First launching as Cautisone in 1970, back when Monash Caulfield was still the Caulfield Institute of Technology. The masthead grew to become The Naked Wasp, then Otico and finally landed on Esperanto in 2003.

The new name brought with it new meaning; not just a student magazine anymore, Esperanto came to represent the language its name was derived from. Embracing stories from across the globe, and presenting the experiences of students who attend one of the nation’s most internationally representative campuses.

Yes, we’re going to get a lil masturbatory on this one; so we’ve reached out to our past editors, art directors, creative directors and marketing mavens to discover their favourite memories from their mag-creating days.

Questions

  • What is your most vivid memory from your time working on Esperanto?
  • What did you love about your time working on Esperanto?

Amber De Luca-Tao (Editor | 2017)

What is your most vivid memory from your time working on Esperanto?

Definitely that kinky time the 2017 Sex Edition arrived and we were casually blowing up sex dolls in the office.

What did you love about your time working on Esperanto?

It was amazing to be able to harness the Esperanto platform as a driving force to endorse open communication about all things youth culture on-campus, no matter how ‘taboo’ the topic.

Dominique Vine (Art Director | 2017)

What is your most vivid memory from your time working on Esperanto?

My most vivid memory from Esperanto would have to be opening the box of the Sex Issue magazines for the first time. It was so nerve-wracking opening the box, but then finally seeing the magazine we took hours to create in front of you was such a rewarding and amazing feeling I won’t ever forget.

What did you love about your time working on Esperanto?

I loved working in a small team with editors who were just as dedicated and passionate as I was about making a product we were going to be really proud of. I also loved getting to work and collaborate with the MADA students to create some really amazing artwork for the magazine, the imagery they created went above and beyond my expectations.

Anne Johnston (Editor | 2016)

What is your most vivid memory from your time working on Esperanto?

My most vivid memory was packing the Sex Edition into the red paper bags and putting the censor sticker on. It took so much longer than we all thought. We took over the boardroom well into the night and had bags of KFC and Red Bulls. It was exhausting, but so worth it to see everyone grabbing them the next day and tearing off the stickers.

What did you love about your time working on Esperanto?

The best part about working on a student magazine is the absolute freedom to talk about issues that matter, show things that matter and start conversations that need to be had on campus. I’m forever grateful for the freedom that Esperanto is allowed.

Carolyn Ang (Art Director | 2016)

What is your most vivid memory from your time working on Esperanto?

Getting the first print issue back. It’s pretty overwhelming getting two thousand copies of your own work back — especially when it’s the Sex Edition and multiples of the cover look like a sea of naked people.

What did you love about your time working on Esperanto?

The absolute freedom to create whatever I wanted. The all-nighters spent getting it done. It was always worth it.

Ruby Furst (Art Director | 2015)

What is your most vivid memory from your time working on Esperanto?

Releasing the sex issue. The blow-up Ken and Barbie sex dolls on the front cover caused a bit of a scene. Apart from that, some of my fondest memories from uni are hanging out until midnight in that Esperanto office – eating chunky Kit Kats and working into the night with the editor at the time, Anna Harcourt.

What did you love about your time working on Esperanto?

I loved working with all of the other creatives in my cohort and putting together something that marked our time at the university. It was the best feeling when the truck would pull up with the huge delivery of magazines. I’d be thankful when everyone’s work looked phenomenal (and mainly thankful that I hadn’t fucked anything up).

Anna Parker (Marketing | 2015)

What is your most vivid memory from your time working on Esperanto?

The cartoon sex doll with “three fuckable love holes” on the hot pink cover of our first edition of Esperanto 2015 (Issue 2: The Sex Issue) is unforgettable in itself. But, overhearing the excited yet hushed conversions that the issue sparked is my most vivid memory.

What did you love about your time working on Esperanto?

Working with so many amazing contributors to create a magazine that influenced the discussions, attitudes and actions of the students.

Anna Harcourt (Editor | 2014)

What is your most vivid memory from your time working on Esperanto?

My most vivid memory was going to the MONSU Fetish Ball as the Esperanto reps, then getting thrown out cos I was too drunk … then trying to “sneak” back in by pretending to be someone else (it didn’t work).

What did you love about your time working on Esperanto?

My favourite thing was being able to go write a review of an ice hockey game, because ice hockey is AMAZING. I normally have zero interest in sports and am an un-coordinated loser but oh my god, that game blew my mind.

Frances Vinall (Editor | 2014)

What is your most vivid memory from your time working on Esperanto?

My most vivid memories are all associated with the Sex Edition. I will never forget the adrenaline rush of coming up with ideas, working desperately to have everything come together on time, and the pure joy of finally seeing our baby in print and being read around campus. For that edition we did a photo spread of “real bodies,” and I messaged every casual acquaintance to grab a photo of them. That was a good introduction to the often-undignified world of journalism.  

What did you love about your time working on Esperanto?

I loved every part of working at Esperanto. If I had to pick one I would say the people. My marketing director and art director, Sarah Gross and Jess Bong, were both absolutely amazing, talented and fun girls. I’ll never forget our all-night office slumber parties putting the finishing touches on a magazine the night before deadline, listening to Taylor Swift with face masks on. We were so lucky that there’s so many talented people hanging around Monash, who enabled us to put out the best student mag in Australia.

Jessica Woon Bong (Art Director | 2014)

What is your most vivid memory from your time working on Esperanto?

Being a little Christian girl who had to cover the Sex Issue. I had to broaden my views and understanding. I met the coolest and most liberated people. I grew tenfold. My world was completely shook and I’m so happy for it. Still Christian. But, completely woke. Esperanto was an amazing experience.

What did you love about your time working on Esperanto?

The two girls I worked with: Francis who was editor and Sarah who was marketing. (And Ming, OFC) I worked with a ride-or-die team who always blurred the lines between friend and colleague. They were always so passionate about what they did. Always. Delivered. We would stay overnight with sleeping bags and wine. We would make sure every fucking issue was delivered to the highest quality. And that set up the next few steps in our careers. I love them all. And the experience I had art directing

Sarah Gross (Marketing Director | 2014)

What is your most vivid memory from your time working on Esperanto?

I have two:

  1. Pulling an all-nighter in the office. Bringing the necessities: laptops, snacks, sleeping bags and a bottle of champagne (of course) 🥂
  2. Taking the magazine beyond print: revamping the website and creating launch events to make Esperanto a community. For the launch of The Creatives Issue we teamed up with a cafe, a photo booth company and invited some of Melbourne’s best creatives to mingle with the readers. It was incredible to see how much the readers got out of the night.

What did you love about your time working on Esperanto?

What did I love about working at Esperanto? Hands down, the team. The people can make or break any job. I was so fortunate to work with two very talented, passionate and pretty damn awesome gals.

Emily Clarke (Art Director | 2013)

What is your most vivid memory from your time working on Esperanto?

Eating chicken katsu curry and sitting in meetings with the girls (Kristen – Editor and Jeyda – Advertising) will always be fond memories of mine. Another great memory is when we would receive Esperato from the printers. I’ll never forget looking around at everyone with their heads buried in the newest edition.

What did you love about your time working on Esperanto?

The best part about working on Esperanto was working with a talented, intelligent and creative team. We all learnt a lot from each other. As the art director it was a great opportunity to get creative and build skills in publication design that I still use day to day.

Kristen Daly (Editor | 2013)

What is your most vivid memory from your time working on Esperanto?

I’d pick three things… firstly, deciding that the ‘13 dream team – Jeyda, Emily and I – were the Powerpuff Girls, and discussing this and other pressing matters over chicken katsu and K-pop in the MONSU offices. Secondly, visiting the Clayton campus to leave copies of the mag everywhere (so cheeky). And finally: getting a lap dance from a stripper called Peaches, shopping for sex toys and posing for polaroids in my undies for our sex-themed edition.

What did you love about your time working on Esperanto?

I loved working with a bunch of talented and fun people, including Emily, Jeyda, Ming and all the wonderful writers who sent us stuff. I also enjoyed spending so much time writing and editing, which are still two of my favourite things in the world. And I loved all the good times.

Jeyda Erdogan (Marketing | 2013)

What is your most vivid memory from your time working on Esperanto?

I remember chilling in the office with the girls and receiving the ad from Subway and realising holy shit this ad is fucking ugly. I also remember when doing the Sex Edition we had to put all of the magazines and a condom in these ziplock bags (because we needed to be sexy and secretive).

What did you love about your time working on Esperanto?

I loved working alongside Emily and Kristen and spitballing ideas in our little office and convincing festivals to give us free tickets in exchange for a spread in the mag.
I love that I had my own freakin office and computer at the uni whilst the rest of the plebs had to squish into the library. I love that it was an amazing experience into the advertising world for me which lead me into my current career at Clems BBDO.

Ming-En Koh (Creative Director | 2012)

What is your most vivid memory from your time working on Esperanto?

Huddling around a stack of our first printed edition delivery with Rupert and Sophie, cutting open a box to the sweet scent of offset ink on KW Doggett papers. Getting to hold the culmination of many late nights, Red Bull and shitty takeaway is something I’ll never forget. I can imagine it’s better than holding your firstborn. *Note: Don’t have kids.

Special mentions go to chatting with famed self-fellating porn star Ron Jeremy (has 25cm dong) as well as Australia’s porn sweetheart Kiki Vidis (now retired) and her sneaky use of Cetaphil face wash to mimic cum.

What did you love about your time working on Esperanto?

Being handed full control to manage, curate and produce an entire printed magazine aimed at our cohort is a once in a lifetime experience. Engaging in the print scene in Melbourne, gaining invaluable mentorship and advice, so we could create the best magazine possible.

Working with my friends, and as a team, was never a chore or dull. Our time gave us pages and pages of lasting memories.

#2012GOAT

Sophie Goulopoulos (Editor | 2011 – 2012)

What is your most vivid memory from your time working on Esperanto?

Visiting the letterpress where we had our business cards made was a real highlight. To see this clunky, steampunk-y and beautifully preserved Heidelberg Press in action was amazing and I still have the samples at home. Also, I don’t know if I’d call it a “vivid” memory (you’ll see why in a second), but doing a Centurion with my fellow editors and making it to 93 before reaching for a bucket.

What did you love about your time working on Esperanto?

Unboxing the latest issue was always my favourite bit. In the digital age, it’s so rewarding to see your hard work and creativity as something tactile and passion for print is something that has stuck with me to this day.

Rupert Carr Gregg (Art Director | 2011 – 2012)

What is your most vivid memory from your time working on Esperanto?

For some reason someone let me do an issue called The Hipster Paradox. Also sleeping/not sleeping in our office the night before every single print deadline – on a couch that smelled worse than the MONSU fridge and that could tell more stories than all issues of the magazine combined.  

What did you love about your time working on Esperanto?

I was lucky enough to work on the magazine in a year where creative director extraordinaire Ming En Koh had begun to create amazing relationships with KW Doggett, Bambra press and Avon graphics and we were able to showcase new paper stocks, embellishments and print processes for every issue. The all white blind emboss cover for our world issue still keeps me up at night.

Scott Templeton (Editor | 2009 – 2010)

What is your most vivid memory from your time working on Esperanto?

My most vivid memory? Thanks to an “article” that had us drink 100 shots of beer in as many minutes, I don’t have many vivid memories anymore… or maybe that is it?

What did you love about your time working on Esperanto?

I “worked” as editor of Esperanto for two years and had the pleasure to work with some super creative people. To “have a seat at the table” as they say when it comes to creating something tangible like a publication was far and away the best thing. If we wanted to pay tribute to Patrick Swayze by dedicating literally an entire magazine to his legacy, we did it. If we wanted to invent our own superhero universe around “sex it up” week with such household heroes like “the furry clam”, well we did that too. It was all laughter, late nights and funky smelling cigarette smoke, and I wouldn’t change any of it.

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