Please introduce yourself, what you do, why you do it, and what you want people to know about you.
I am constantly seeking truth through art. As a writer, I seek to amplify the voices of those who are marginalized. Through acting, I work to create characters that are grounded and impactful. And I use modeling as a way to build my fluidity and confidence.
What qualities make you different and unique from everyone else in the industry?
Well out of respect for everyone in the industry, we are all similar…but also different. Similar in the fact that we find ourselves lining up (virtually) for casting after casting with the hope that we will be one of a small group of people selected for a project. I differ from those in the industry in that my creative decisions are not driven from a desire to acquiesce to modern standards of what is considered to be “success.”
Describe THAT moment when you realized you wanted to do what you do now. Who did you tell first? What has it been like since that moment?
I was in Washington, DC several years ago. I made it to the final interview for an editorial position at a popular news outlet I really admired. After not getting the job I had a mental breakdown and decided to move to California to pursue acting. While I still write as a freelance journalist, my desire to pursue truth through art led me to acting. My life changed the moment I made that decision. The first person I told was my close friend Joseph who later passed away from a car accident.
Moving from Washington, DC to California felt like being catapulted into a completely different reality. One that was flavored with the type of idealism you would hear in a song like “California Dreamin,” and then harshly countered by the sobering effects of poverty and depression. For me, California has been both heaven and hell. But what has been more impactful then those extremes is all of the emotions in between, which is where I draw inspiration from.
What has been the biggest challenge you’ve had to face and how did you overcome it?
The biggest challenge for me has been balancing the need to make money through my art while not creating projects mostly for the sake of money. Unfortunately, I have yet to overcome this challenge.
If you had to pick the TOP 3 people you’d want to meet that could take your career (or business) to the next level…who would those 3 people be?
I would like to meet Dame Dash. I admire his fearlessness in building Roc-A-Fella Records along with Kareem Burke and Jay-Z. Virgil Abloh is someone I would also like to meet. He has made prominent advances in the world of fashion and design. And I would like to meet Mario Van Pebbles. He has been a prolific film director over several decades.