Mai Mediterranean

Every year family and friends look forward for my birthday party. I choose different theme every year, this year was Mediterranean. The venue was at Mandaloun Mediterranean Cuisine, the restaurant is family owned. The food were great, their lentil soup is the best I ever taste. I just want take the pot home with me.

To top of the evening, belly dancer: Brielle Behira perform. She mix traditional dance with hip hop, very creative of her. I can watch her perform all day. Vision art is breath taken. How she move with the beats of the music and the color choices of outfits, bring it all together.

My birthday is like reunion/networking from business owner, actor, writer, director, comedian and so much more. It is just melting pot of people from all directs, of different background and culture. I love having diversity, group of family and friends. They keep me having open mind about everything and everyone.

Overall, it was great seeing everyone again. We get so busy in our life before you know it, a year passed by. Time move faster, then we can imagine. On the morning of my birthday, I like going see the sunrise. To think and reflect on what I’m done up to this point in life. Where I’m at, where I need be, where I should be this coming year. I set myself goals short and long, to get to my final goal.

Then I need keep surround myself with people who support me, people who keep thing raw, people with mindset of moving forward. Positive energy is hard to find. Having true friendship and loyalty, is gold now days. Find your gold and keep it close to your heart.

Women in Film & Television

“Women in Film & Television – Florida (WIFT-FL) is charged with building positive images of media-makers (both women and men), empowering them to achieve their highest professional/creative potential, and helping more job opportunities throughout the State of Florida.” Personally, I have attended a few of the Jacksonville, Florida WIFT meetings. The networking opportunities are amazing, because you’re meeting people with the same passion who understand your vision.

It’s also a great place to meet new people in the field, from producers to actors, prop makers, make-up artists and more. There’s always information being distributed, which helps everyone out in field. It’s a true support system that pushes you forward. I look forward to seeing where the city Jacksonville takes this organization of professionals.

As a member, I like to show my support wherever I can. I feel it is very important in this industry to be part of this network of support. We need to look out for each other so that we can rise together. Teamwork is key because it’s no fun when you reach your goals, it’s no fun if you don’t have anyone share it with. So come one, come all. We can do this!

California Wedding

I was invited to California, and I couldn’t say no.

California is the epitome of beach life. I was there shooting a wedding and it turned into a vacation. Business and sight-seeing never felt so good.

I was invited to a same-sex wedding and it was so special; the blushing brides were as beautiful as a California sunset. The venue was at golf club, and the landscapes were breath-taking. It was a small affair, but there was so much love in the air.  I’m proud to say that I was a part of their special moment.

After the wedding, I met with several West Coast filmmakers, and photographers and from them I learned about a dramatic difference in expectations as opposed to clients on the East Coast. The folks in California don’t question the value of video and pictures because they want quality, and they know that quality is worth the price. I learned very quickly that clients on the West coast had a completely different attitude toward negotiating prices.

California prices are sky high, the cost of living there is insane! Many of the roads have no lights, and I sometimes felt like I was driving on a deserted road. Everything looked so beautiful, but it pays to drive extra carefully with so many hills and mountains!

The natural landscapes there were beautiful just like the people. Santa Monica was definitely my favorite place to visit. It had a “Baywatch” sort of feel to it. The sand, the ocean, and all the sexy bodies walking around made me drool like a puppy with a new toy.

Being a filmmaker in Los Angeles was an awesome feeling; it was great seeing the Hollywood sign, the walk of fame, and Beverly Hills. I felt proud of myself for saying yes to this trip, and I won’t regret it.  It was truly an amazing experience.  Hollywood is know for the lights, the cameras, the action, and the fame but I don’t really care about the fame at all. I don’t like the spotlight. It doesn’t matter to me, but I’ll ease into for the sake of business. I hated social media once, but I’ve learned to make it my own. One day, I’ll deal with fame on my own terms too – if you want to hang with the big dogs, you gotta do what they do.

NY Fashion Week

BéMai Productions took the opportunity to go to the 2014 Mercedes Benz Fall Fashion Week in New York City. We were working on the television show Fashion Gone Local (FGL) with Yoanna House, who is best known as the cycle 2 winner of America’s Next Top Model. FGL revealed the latest fashions and trends from the world of high fashion and it showed how they are integrated and inspired at the local level.

Once we landed in New York City, we got straight to work. The traffic was crazy, and it was backed up until we got to our hotel. Thank goodness for NYC taxi drivers, they are no joke! We got to our hotel in 20mins. Once we arrived, we got dressed, Yoanna was ready, and we went straight to our first location. There were so many showcases, displays of new products, and chances to interview the fantastic designers there. We saw products from Hard Candy to OPI nail polish; we saw clothes from Carmen Marc Valvo, and we even got a chance to interview Rebecca Taylor.

One person I’ll never forget is J. Alexander also known as Miss J. At first I didn’t recognize him, but once I realized that he was from America’s Next Top Model, I let Miss J get camera-ready. We interviewed him, and he gave us his opinion of all his likes and dislikes during Rebecca Taylor’s runway show. He chose his words very carefully, and this was when I learned to choose your words wisely and how it all comes into play.

I also learned that the Big Apple is also very small, I thought Time Square would be much bigger. This was where the ball drops every year on TV? I am too claustrophobic to ever want to visit during the New Year. I’m a southern baby, I like open spaces and a chance to move around as much as I please.

The experience in New York City was an eye-opener. We got a chance to experience the fast-paced world of television, fashion, paparazzi, celebrities, and the “fake it until you make it” type of people.  New Yorkers walk with confidence, they are who they are, and I love how no one cares about other people’s opinions. The streets are their runways, and it’s personalized to their own taste.