Hoping to follow in the footsteps of MAC Cosmetics' First Viva Glam Girl, RuPaul, the Queens make their own Viva Glam screen test. Special guest include Gordon Espinet VP of Make-Up Artistry at M.A.C. and Supermodel/ Actress- Jenny Shimizu. They join myself, Ru, and Merle Ginsberg on the panel to help judge the girls' drag queen status this week.
Ironically, Jenny Shimizu is one of the most natural beauties I've ever met in-person and supercool to boot! It was such a pleasure getting to know her throughout the day of shooting. We laughed, we cried... Jenny, you're the shit!
RUPAUL, MERLE GINSBERG, & GORDON ESPINET
How amazing does RuPaul look here? Mama was working it in another Zaldy creation! This episode was very emotional and I hope it inspires everyone to celebrate life and Keep On Keeping On!
Check out all the extras on LOGO to watch the contestants full Screen Tests as well as the hilarious "Under The Hood" Recap!
Tune in to LOGO Tonight at 10 pm for the Most Exciting and Flamboyant Show On Television!
Once again the remaining Queens will be put through their paces, this time, in a Multi-Media Challenge Extravaganza.
The Next Great Drag Queen Superstar needs to not only be an Electrifying Performer, but also have the Gift of Gab and be a Spokesperson for the Art Form. This week during "The Oprah Challenge" the Queens must channel their inner Oprah, selling themselves on-camera and interviewing The Hollywood Power Couple of Tori Spelling and Dean McDermott on their own Talk Show Set.
My sides were hurting by the time I left the studio this week because I laughed so hard. (Seriously, laughing hysterically for 10 hours straight!)
Guest judges this week are Comedian/ Goddess- Debra Wilson Skelton and Mega-Media Publicist/ Author- Howard Bragman. You should all know and LOVE Debra from MAD TV, and honestly she's one of the funniest and endearing people I've ever had the pleasure of meeting in my life.
HOWARD BRAGMAN & SANTINO RICE
Howard Bragman is a natural at giving his advice to anyone in the Media Limelight, he just released his new book "Where's My Fifteen minutes?" which explains and outlines how to get the recognition you deserve. Howard is a brilliant man to have in your corner. Navigating a career in Entertainment requires media savvy and proper timing and Howard is a master in this field. We all had so much fun during the filming of this episode, I can't wait to watch another exciting week unfold!
Gentleman, Start Your Engines- And May The Best Women Win!
RuPaul's Drag Race, Episode 2/ Michelle Williams W.O.W.
It's Monday Already? Well then, you know what that means...
SANTINO & MICHELLE WILLIAMS
Tune into LOGO tonight and watch the 2nd Episode of RuPaul's Drag Race! Special guest judges are Choreographer/ Artist-Visual-Developer- Frank Gaston and One of Destiny's Children, Singer- Michelle Williams!
This week the contestants are split up into 2 teams to form dueling Girl Groups. See who pulls their weight and who doesn't quite live up to the ideal.
Working with Frank and Michelle on this episode was a blast! Neither of them mince words or pull any punches. I hope the ladies remember that all the judges criticism is meant to help them become stronger. Like Frank said,"There are no bad dancers in the world-just bad attitudes."
If you haven't already, pick up Michelle's Album "The Greatest" and watch the video for We Break The Dawn. She's smoking HOT!
Charisma, Uniqueness, Nerve, & Talent! Learn it, and Learn It Well...
Well, Fantasy finally meets Reality- and hilarity ensues!
I'm proud to announce that Tonight, Feb 2nd, 2009, is the Premiere of "RuPaul's Drag Race!" We're looking for The Next Great Drag Queen Superstar and I guarantee you've never seen anything like this before. Yours truly, along with best- selling author and fashion journalist Merle Ginsberg, and The Legendary RuPaul Charles are the permanent weekly judges of this outrageous competition. Our panel is joined each week by 2 very special guest judges to help us narrow down the Queens to determine a Winner, as well as, the 2 unfortunate ladies who've received the lowest scores and are forced to "Lip-sync For Their Lives!" After their simultaneous performances, one is told "Chantez" you stay, and the other told to "Sashay" away. These Queens have come a long way to get here and they aren't going out without a fight!
I'm so fired up to watch it all unfold on TV and I'm equally thrilled for all the amazingly talented contestants! Drag is not a mild interest but a way of life. These Queens have perfected their craft and their illusions their whole lives. Working on this show was so much fun for me. RuPaul is a true iconoclast in entertainment and a paragon of Drag. Ru has duel roles on the show, not only as the ultimate decider of who stay or gos, but also serves platters of wisdom up as mentor through each challenge. Not since RuPaul's reign throughout the 90's has this art form received this type of attention. We're out to discover that ONE Queen to carry the torch into the future. Drag as an art form is a combination of being knowledgeable of, and skilled at, many disciplines. The Next Great Drag Queen is one part entertainer, one part make-up artist, one part hair-stylist, one part fashion designer, one part dancer, one part model, one part singer, one part comedian, one part provocateur, and one part chameleon. This abundance of references coming to life through an individual can be overwhelmingly beautiful and exhilarating to watch. I was truly surprised by the level of talent I witnessed each week. I've seen my fair share of Drag Revues but these performers are some of the best I've ever seen.
Appearance is a public statement everyone makes. "We were all born naked and the rest is drag," RuPaul once famously said. Everyone can learn something new from a Drag Queen. RuPaul's Drag Race will educate and entertain as well, and hopefully raise and answer many questions about all things Drag- the Art of Drag, Drag Queens, Trannys, etc. Viewers will be privileged to the entire trans-formative process. I'm looking forward to this since I only saw and judged each contestant as their Drag Persona on the runway.
I'm on the other side of the judging table this go around and believe me, I didn't take this responsibility lightly! I had my work cut out for me, At times you could experience sensory overload with everything that was coming at you. I had my eye on every flamboyant detail but I really had to concentrate not to laugh out loud through the entire taping! I'm bringing to the table a deep appreciation for these creators, there are many similarities between what they and I, as a fashion designer, create. The old rules and rhythms of Fashion do not necessarily apply. This type of display of creativity is limitless- and I should add, really is only limited by each performers vision. Dress is significant, quality and taste are also rewarded, but our 4 main criteria are Charisma, Uniqueness, Nerve, and Talent. Reality TV can be an emotional and illogical business, I left each episode thinking it couldn't possibly get any better, but it did! As each episode developed, and the competition became tougher, in equal measure, so did the passion in every one's spirit. I can tell you that I laughed, and I cried, and I fell in love with every one of the incredibly talented and fearless contestants. I think you will too.
There are many misconceptions about Drag and still a lot of stigmas attached to it's practitioners. Drag is an appreciation of Women and Femininity. Drag is creative and inspirational. Drag is a reflection of our culture and our notions of sexuality. Drag Queens are a diverse group of creative human beings with a mutual bond and love for what they do. Drag is an exaggeration of life at it's best- practiced even in poverty. Drag is a riot in heels! Drag is freedom. I've always loved Drag Queens, of course there's the visual, the outrageous costumes and dramatic make-up, but I also respond to the inimitable courage one must have to commit oneself to the lifestyle. I love that Drag Queens confuse people with their irreverence of defined gender. Drag is decadent fantasy and twisted beauty both witty and seductive. Imagination, not money- is what propels Art, and it couldn't be more fitting to this variety of artists. Tonight's 'Drag On A Dime' Episode will echo these sentiments and quickly weed out those who didn't put the stiletto to the metal.
So, Rebecca, Ongina, Jade, Victoria, Shannel, Bebe, Tammie, Akashia, and Nina, I wish you all the best on your journeys. You are all the Top Upcoming Legendary Children- Whatever you want to be, YOU BE! You're wagons just got hitched to the star you've always dreamed about. The World is yours, You have space for all that you intend! It's going to be an incredible season. GENTLEMEN, START YOUR ENGINES, & MAY THE BEST WOMEN WIN!
Our first episode kicks in the door with special guest judges Photographer/ Director Mike Ruiz and Fashion Designer Icon, Bob Mackie! Yes, Yes! Touch this skin, touch this skin, honey- Touch all of this... What? LOL
RuPaul's Drag Race airs every Monday night at 10pm on LOGO. Watch and let me know what you think! XOXOXO SANTINO
Question and Answers- Fashion, Icons, Style, Trends
These questions were previously posed to me and answered elsewhere on another Blog on another website. I however, realized that hardly anyone ever read it because the original site is so ridiculous to navigate, most can't be bothered. I spent a lot of time in answering these questions it would at least be nice to know that someone actually read them and were possibly inspired to come up with their own answers to these questions, especially to form a list of your favorite Fashion Icons. I had a lot of fun answering these so if you get a chance to read some of my thoughts on the current state of fashion, feel free to leave some of your own. Much Love, SANTINO
Who are the designers and fashion icons that have inspired you the most?
Oh man, how much space do we have here?
I've been inspired greatly by many amazingly stylish individuals in history and a few that are consistently expressing themselves today. As for my favorite Fashion Icons, they're in no particular order: Catherine Deneuve, David Bowie, Marie Antoinette, Beau Brummel, Mary-Kate Olsen, Ashley Olsen, Leigh Bowery, Keith Richards, Diana Ross, Isabella Blow, Oscar Wilde, Kate Moss, Earth, Wind, & Fire, Patti Wilson, Marisa Berenson, Grace Jones, Guy Bourdin, Bjork, Diana Vreeland, Jacqueline de Ribes, Pat Cleveland, Joan Crawford, Cary Grant, Carine Roitfeld, Kanye West, Anna Piaggi, Anita Pallenberg, Gram Parsons, Dodie Rosecrans, Cecil Beaton, Chloe Sevigny, Jeff Lynne, Veruschka, Eric Vidmar.
Also, King George IV, Doris Duke, King Louis XIV, Drew Barrymore, Jefferson Hack, Audrey Hepburn, Grace Kelly, Betty Page, Helmut Newton, Liya Kebede, Antonio Lopez, Gloria Guinness, Steven Meisel, Alek Wek, Mick Jagger, Lou Lou de la Falais, Fiona Scarry, Jean-Baptiste Mondino, Franca Sozzani, Lou Doillon, Lauren Bacall, Anna Wintour, Liberace, Cher, Hank Williams, Slick Rick, Nan Kempner, Johnny Depp, Naomi Campbell, Jackie Kennedy, Jennifer Connelly, C.Z. Guest, Sophia Loren, Victoria Traina, Vanessa Traina, Milla Jovovich, Marc Bolan, Jane Birkin, Prince, Gloria Swanson, and Mark Twain.
As for my favorite Fashion Designers, also in no particular order: Yohji Yamamoto, Adrian, James Galanos, Martin Margiela, Oscar de la Renta, Yves Saint Laurent, Giorgio di Sant'Angelo, Azzedine Alaia, Jean-Paul Gaultier, Valentino Garavani, Vivienne Westwood, Alexander McQueen, Gianni Versace, Karl Lagerfeld, Christian Lacroix, Hubert de Givenchy, Kenzo Takada, Elsa Schiaparelli, Gianfranco Ferre, Raf Simons, Christian Dior, Giorgio Armani, Hussein Chalayan, Viktor & Rolf, Alber Elbaz, Paul Poiret, Halston, Zandra Rhodes, Nicolas Ghesquiere, Charles Frederick Worth, Madeleine Vionnet, Cristobal Balenciaga, Charles James, Edith Head, Heidi Slimane, Kaisik Wong, Kate Mulleavy, Laura Mulleavy, Manolo Blahnik, Norma Kamali, Rei Kawakubo, Thierry Mugler, Ossie Clark, Barbara Hulanicki, Elio Fiorucci, Mary McFadden, and Mariano Fortuny.
Well, I'm sure I'm leaving somebody out, but that's all I can think up right now! Sorry to those I've forgotten to mention!
What advice would you give readers for finding fashion on a budget?
Make your own clothes! And if that's not going to happen, buy fewer clothes!
Seriously, whatever your budget is for the season, use it to invest in 2 to 3 new pieces. Many subscribe to the "All You Can Eat" mentality of acquiring a wardrobe. Don't do that!
Quality, not quantity should be the rule for a fashionista on a budget. For instance, if you decide that 1 of your 3 pieces to purchase is a classic and flattering cocktail dress that cost $3000.00 -- do that... You could wear it to every special event for the year, styling it differently each time with accessories and shoes. You would consistently be the chicest women in the room guaranteed!
Unfortunately, many women run to the mall, or worse, and try to always buy something new and cheap. Not realizing that they themselves will look just that- new and cheap! Try to incorporate quality and uniqueness into your personal style. Obtain a look that is timeless and expensive. Intelligently invest in better fashion that will become a signature piece in your wardrobe.
Splurge on inexpensive accessories to curb your consumer appetite. Take your time, plan in advance, and concentrate on the fit of every garment you buy from now on.
What are the BIGGEST FASHION MISTAKES people make?
People blindly following trends! People just buying clothes impulsively, then ending up with garments that aren't appropriate for their body types. It seems that as many articles and books that there are to outline the invaluable tips and golden rules of dressing yourself, no one's listening! I see a lot of poorly dressed men, but women make the biggest fashion mistakes. For starters, knowing how to navigate all the ill-conceived merchandise is paramount. Maneuvering through the sea of bullshit to find something appropriate and chic is tough at most department stores because there are more bad choices than good. Take more time when making your final selections. Look to better designer boutiques before heading to larger department stores. Your personal style should dictate and guide you to selecting new additions to your wardrobe. Every piece should be tailored to your mood and personality. Become a better version of yourself!
What should women wear to holiday parties?
I wish women took the time to look as if they were going to a Holiday party every day! Don't be afraid to be festive. If a woman can mix the humorous, kitschy themes of the season with something that is flattering and elegant, they'll brighten up the room.
I love when anyone makes an effort, and there's no such thing as being over-dressed as far as I'm concerned. The Holidays are perfect for pieces that would normally be perceived as "over the top." Metallic fringe mini dresses, elaborately beaded sweater sets, sequined cocktail dresses and blazers, embroidered suede skirts are all appropriate. Wear a dress that helps you resemble the star on top of the Christmas tree! Standout, shine, and twinkle ladies!
First Impressions: What clothing catches your eye when sizing someone up?
If someone has style, I can spot them from a mile away! It doesn't matter "what" they're wearing, but more importantly it's "how" they're wearing it. Nonetheless, if there's one thing that will articulate volumes about someone, it's shoes! Men, you only need to own 2 pairs of dress shoes and 1 pair of trainers.
Your dress shoes should be in the range of $550-$900 per pair. Investing in quality footwear will change your life! The price range is only a guide to know you're in the right ballpark. If you look hard enough during end of the season sales, men can find classic brown and black quality dress shoes and boots for 50% off.
Women. Seriously? When I meet a woman in $30 shoes, it pains my heart. "Cheater" shoes aren't fooling anyone! Prostitutes and strippers wear cheap shoes. Remember that. Don't be cheap when it comes to shoes. In this awesome age of instant Internet gratification, there is no excuse for not having the appropriate pair of shoes.
At http://www.zappos.com you can find an awesome selection of footwear. Platforms, wedges, pumps, ballet flats, boots, women have so many options. Bergdorf Goodman, http://www.bergdorfgoodman.com, has some of the sickest shoes ever. Look at the radical beauty of the footwear by Christian Louboutin, Giuseppe Zanotti, Cesare Paciotti and Manolo Blahnik. If anything, by acquiring a pair or 2 of these will attract you a better suitor, but most definitely you'll look like a million bucks
Do you have a one "GO-TO ITEM" in your closet? And why?
Recently, I purchased a great-looking tuxedo shirt from Japanese designer label, Number Nine. It works under a blazer or alone with dark denim jeans. The shirt is beautifully made and is a great shade of fawn gray. I've already gotten quite a lot of wear out of it and it's become the "go to" item when I'm in a hurry or traveling and I need to pack with versatility in mind. I'm sure I will have it in my closet for years to come!
What trends do you see right now in Fashion?
I never have been one to follow trends. So I can't really tell you what everybody else is doing. I really feel like if you've got your finger on the pulse of what's going on in the world, quite possibly your designs are going to relate to other designer's work in some way. That's how a trend happens. What I really love about fashion today is that really, anything is possible and anything goes! It's more about personal style than anything now. The variables and finishing that I choose for my designs stays consistent. I will always love quality textiles, luxurious textures, and rich colors. I don't suggest that anyone should follow trends -- ever. Cultivate your own personal style and invest in pieces that make you look your best!
What do you think is next for the world of Fashion?
There is a direct correlation between what is going on in the world and what is going on in the world of fashion. With the exit of our current President we will see an explosion of creativity and color amongst American designers. A new environment will emerge to explore progressive subject matter and vibrant fantasies.
Hopefully, with the changes that will take place in the near future, it will bring back the joy we once had as a nation and bring the joy back in fashion. More fantasy and more fearlessness -- I'm putting it out there so let's watch what happens!
Where do you look for design inspiration?
I look everywhere for design inspiration. However, Music, Nature, and Art are the biggest influences for my work. Contemporary art has always greatly inspired me. It just has a way of surprising me by what it does to my thought process.
In the Saturn spot, I take everyone to one of my favorite and most inspirational places in Los Angeles. The Broad Art Foundation houses the largest collection of Contemporary Art in the world and I've been fortunate enough to attend several exhibitions there. The inside never fails to blow my mind and leave me pondering many aspects of the work that I've absorbed while I was there.
The galleries are the perfect setting for enjoying such powerful Art. From surface textures and unexpected color combinations to profound conceptual ideas, every work is simultaneously stimulating and unpredictable. In the spot, I specifically talk about the work of Albert Oehlen. The 5 examples of his work were just hung for an exhibit that will open in February 2008 along with works by John Baldessari, Mark Tansey and many others.
Eli Broad and The Broad Art Foundation are dedicated to building a collection of diverse works by the greatest artists of our time. They have created a great resource for people to enjoy these amazing works. By loaning out the collection to prominent museums and galleries all over the world the collection is in constant rotation. Truly inspirational!
Absorbing influences outside of Fashion keeps my eye fresh and keeps me motivated to create inspiring work myself. For more information about The Broad Art Foundation go to: http://www.broadartfoundation.org
On the topic of 'RETHINKING FASHION', How do you approach Fashion and make it your own?
I'm always thinking about Fashion. I'm always re-evaluating Fashion. I'm a designer with his finger on the pulse of what's happening. Everything I see and hear goes through my internal filter. My creative process allows me to take everything into consideration in order to create something that feels right to me, right now. When I get that feeling, I know it's right; I know I've designed something desirable and intoxicating.
Every journey is exciting because it ends in rewards. I enjoy projecting what beauty means to me. My consciousness, my instincts, and my overall imagination are all in tune with the universe. I'm a champion of progressive thought and new ideas. I'm constantly refining my own distinct look.
It seems to me that in the current landscape of Fashion, many designers' definition of "inspiration" and "re-thinking Fashion" are synonymous with blatant plagiarism. One can gain knowledge from Vintage, but more commonly than most, I'm witnessing a crop of copycat couturiers that feel by changing the color or fabric that they have done some kind of service to the original. It's obviously not the case and pretty ridiculous. It leaves me with an existential sickness for the overall future of Fashion. My personal approach is a logical progression from where I began as a designer. I continue to strive to create beauty in the world and I believe that what I'm cultivating is current and relevant. My stories, the quality of materials, and finishing, could never be mistaken for the work of anyone else. Asking myself questions -- about what I want to see women and men wearing in the future helps me come up with the answers to what I will create next.
Welcome to my world... Current soundtrack: Eric B. and Rakim
It's been a long time! I shouldn't have left you without a strong rhyme to step to. Think of how many weak blogs you slept through... Times up, I'm sorry I kept you! Thinking of this, you keep repeating you miss, the rhymes from the trendsettin' soloist And you sit by the internet, hands on the keys, soon As you see it, pump up the volume!
"Why haven't you been updating your blog?," you're asking. Well, some days I don't have enough time to put on a fresh pair of socks, much less my Spock ears to play Webmaster. Other days, I don't have the motivation to even go near a computer. The thought of wiping my aspirations on the information superhighway (how's that for an outdated phrase) just doesn't compare to actually "living it" and "doing it"! I've said it before-I can't be in front of the camera and behind the camera simultaneously. Not with many dresses to make and events to attend can I sit composing witty paragraphs to accompany all of my photos. I know many of you come back time and time again looking for some new content from me. Thank you for caring! Bear with me, and be satisfied that you caught me on a good day, or a slow day. And, with that said, we're off.
Let's see, what have I been up to since last August??? Urgh... yeah, let's not start it off like that because no one wants to read a 300 page, blog entry. I'll focus on some fairly recent happenings.
Everyone probably saw my new commercial. It was kinda' fun to make, but far too short, and I wish that the director, Glenn Lazzaro, would have been the one that did the final edit, instead of some High School AV class that moonlights at the Bravo Network... WTF? Oh well, if everyone was blessed with my taste level, no one would need designers.
I meet a lot of the Saturn bigwigs in NYC last week, and I know they were happy with the spot. So, I might as well stop beating a dead horse (note to self: Just smile and say, 'It's Neat!'). You probably saw the ad during the premier of Project Runway Season 4 (AKA Project Rami). The people at Saturn asked me to take them to a place that inspired me, so the first place that popped into my mind was The Broad Art Foundation.
This whole experience (I was led to believe) would also be available online, in a ten-minute, extended version; thus providing a much more in-depth look at the Foundation and its appeal. I expected that the longer piece would be done by the time the "teaser" spot aired, but I guess not. Then again, you have to be Stephen "f-ing" Hawking to ferret out the spot on the BravoTV.com website. Ideally, someone really skilled is editing the longer piece and taking their sweet time with it. The Broad Art Foundation is really incredible. I wrote a very long piece that's set to accompany the longer spot. I'll let you know if/when the longer ad and my video see the light of day. Of course, you can view the ad again. Just focus on the positives! Here's the direct link... It should be located right next to my blog on the PR site.
During the shoot, I kept giving the producers heart attacks, because they had to keep reminding me to keep my hands on the wheel while I was delivering my lines. I'm an expressive guy, what can I say?!? I didn't see what they were worried about. Because of my height, I not only had at least one hand, but also two knees, jammed up against the wheel. Knee steering allows you to keep your hands free to eat 'In & Out Burger' while you're driving-just set the cruise control and hope no school children or baby ducks get in your way. The cramped driver's side interior is a handy feature for people who need to multi-task while driving to and from work in L.A. traffic.
This past Wednesday, I watched the Project Runway premier with an incredible group of people. Jill Soloway hosted Julie Wolfson, Andy Richter, (see "Andy Richter Controls the Universe" on youtube.com, hilarious) me, and many other guests. I made new friends and got to hear the P.O.V. of a dozen youngsters! I had a great time at the party, you may have already read about it... but if not, you can read all about the evening and a short interview with yours truly at the following link:
I also wanted to share one of my favorite quotes from the interview.
"Yeah I'll tell you what I think. Some people see my honesty as being mean. You just have to roll with that. I'm honest. There are some people I like because of their personality. There are other people I like because of actually what they are saying with clothes. I root for all designers in general. I root for them. Whether they don't have it together right now. Well maybe next month they will. Maybe in five years they will. Maybe in ten years they will and some retrospective that they do will somehow explain everything. The advice I've given to all the designers is that the end will justify the means. Regardless whether Simone was kicked off first. People go home early on the show. It's not the end of the world. Decide what you want to be and be the best you that you can be."
How I've gone from barely blogging to this... I'm remind of my good friend Charity who, with her husband Steve, delivered Quadruplets a few weeks ago back in my home state of Missouri. They already had one son, Aidan, and now they have FIVE! From one to five, yeah... that's how I'm feeling, "Calgon, take me away!" Alright... So, since everyone knows I love blogging so much, and that I've got so much free time on my hands, I decided to take on one more blogging project at Elle.com. Yeah, I was as surprised as you when I was asked to contribute (I can assure you, it certainly didn't come down from the desk of the Almighty Nina Garcia.). Lots of progressive things are happening over at Elle, two major tastemakers are changing the look and feel of Elle by leaps and bounds! Joe Zee and Matthias Vriens (google them) are both now at Elle, and because of them, I'm now a subscriber. Hopefully, they will keep making changes over there (Wink, Wink- Nudge, Nudge!). I'll be giving my insight and perspective on each episode of Season 4 on my Elle blog. Check out this link below, and refer back here if "someone" pulls the plug on it in future installments:
So much more to say, and so much that I need to revisit now that I have some more help. More on all that, but I will save it for another day. Oh, I'll also be announcing a few surprises in the works for Fall 2008. See you soon.
Much Love, SANTINO
P.S. Jamey is a married man and his bride is the shit! My brother's back from Asia. My friend Tony just finished a sick film in Canada. I just had a 15-year High School Reunion...Surreal. Don't Forget: Bad Boy's of Runway Part Deux with Jeffrey Sebelia at The University of Rhode Island November 29th!
I was just going to leisurely post this article on here and not write much else. However, I've got so many feelings running through my mind, I feel it necessary to release some of them here. It's gonna be all over the place, so just deal with some stream of consciousness type of writing.
The irony in being on the cover of this magazine isn't lost on me...
Much has been spoken to me already today about this insightful article in New York Magazine. It's in regards to Bravo Network's reality show contestants and their lives after their 15 minutes of fame. After reading this piece, I took more time than usual today to reflect on all the beautiful things that I have in my life, as opposed to all the things that I don't have. I really feel that most of the designers I'm close with are doing very well in the advent of being on the show. But I can also sympathize for those that are not doing as well. Why it takes hearing about someone else's misfortune to remind you of your own vulnerabilities?
Building both a reputation and a business is, in a nutshell, what has occupied my time since Project Runway. I've achieve a great deal of success and I've cultivated professional freedom and leverage through my exposure and celebrity. Having taken the risk to participate in the show allowed me to partake in many opportunities I would likely not have had. Maybe some have changed their minds about the decision they'd made by going on the show. For me, no question, I would do it all again, no regrets! There's always going to be a downside to everything. Even at my favorite work place experience there were a few assholes I had to deal with. That's how it goes!
My life is no fantasy, but it is also plenty dislocated from reality- that I can tell the "Before" from the "After."
I struggle still to this day with things. I probably will struggle in some way all my life!
Staying true to myself, only taking on projects that inspire me, and going to bed happy have been major guidelines for my life after the show. Others might have a completely different agenda. Cool, whatever floats your boat. Sure, it's in my nature to never be satisfied, to never be content, but I also know that anything worth having the right way, is worth waiting for the time it takes to make it happen as well. It's a constant see-saw in my brain weighing out my own effectiveness. I also know that my plans and ambitions are no small feat, but I can't help but push myself.
I'm my own worst critic. So regardless of how much I've accomplished thus far, I feel like I've done nothing yet.
It's only knowing where I've come from and what I've achieved in my life that is comforting when I'm speeding through my days.
Dealing with so many new variables as well as old habits that I'm trying to decipher - keeps me distracted and at the same time focused.
Evolving involves forgetting as well as remembering, for me at least- personally and professionally. You must accept the bad with the good, and you must know the grotesque in order to know true beauty... Why would Project Runway be any different?
I never imagined anything would come any easier from my experience on Project Runway. I never have any preconceived ideas of what tomorrow will bring and I'm still excited about the same things I've been excited about since I was a child. I'm truly grateful to have had the experience in my life. That experience and every one that came before it, and every one that will come after it will be the accumulation of ideas and feelings and actions that will illustrate my journey on this Earth. Life is a series of ups and downs. Making the effort and being consistent are keys to becoming a success.
I wish all the best to any and every one of the past contestants who've been through this or similar experiences. Although I don't consider every one I've meet through my experience to be a friend, by no means do I consider them an enemy. I would undoubtedly give assistance to any one of them who asked it of me. I can also understand that it might be frustrating to be anyone else but me from my season of Project Runway- I don't think I need to apologize to anyone for that, but if it helps- I'm sorry.
Everyone will find their way, eventually, as long as they persevere. People will develop differently and at their own pace. I would never be so ignorant as to count anyone out. Possibilities and opportunities are endless. Decide what your goals are and what will make you the happiest, and take steps in that direction. Advice that helps me daily, is honestly the only advice I'd like to give regarding being a more effective human being, and it is the proverb that says: GOD HELPS THOSE WHO HELP THEMSELVES. Pretty simple...
You don't need permission from anyone to continue living your dreams. Just be proactive about your career. In the same respect, NO ONE OWES YOU ANYTHING. Find happiness in the little things when you become frustrated in life. Never take what people say negatively about you to heart. People who make a career out of that are really just envious and secretly wish they had talent. Of all the anonymous hate mail I've received never once has someone confronted me in person. That's just the downside of human nature.
DO NOT GIVE IN TO DEFEAT. Give yourself time, but never quit! Make yourself happy. KNOW YOUR WORTH. Growth takes time. Your agenda is the most important agenda. Surround yourself with visual stimulation and objects of fantasy. THE END WILL JUSTIFY THE MEANS.
I learned so much the past 3 years that has enriched my life. I'm happy to have had a moment to type these random thoughts out. I've found little time to document and blog about all the events and work that I'm doing. Somethings got to give... so I'll write again when I can.
I consider myself very fortunate to be where I am in my life right now. I've merely just begun to achieve some of the dreams that I've imagined for myself. My life since the end of Project Runway 2 hasn't slowed down one bit. I know that technically my "15 minutes" started over 2 years ago, but approaching the anniversary of my 33rd year on this planet, my fame is only approaching it's first 30 second mark! The love I receive on a daily basis is overwhelming. I'm forever creating and immersing myself in fulfilling projects. There's a connection to everything I do- Fashion, Music, Film. (It's funny how people want to tell you what you can and can't do. )
It never gets old to hear people rooting for me. (It's something I wish people did for each other more often) In closing, I'd just like to say sure, I've got miles to go before I sleep, but I'm happy, I'm inspired, I'm in love, and every day that I wake up excited to pursue my dreams, I'm SUCCESSFUL!
Hi Everybody, Recently, I collaborated with an amazingly creative band by the name Howardamb. We covered the Missy Elliot song, "Lick Shots" Watch the fun that ensued while filming the video. I'm really proud of how the whole experience turned out.... Can't wait to hear what Missy and Timbaland think of this version! I'm happy to finally be able to share this with you, let me know what you think!
WARNING! SOME EXPLICIT CONTENT! DON'T WATCH IF YOU ARE INCLINED TO GET UPSET WITH CURSE WORDS OR IRREVERENT LANGUAGE!
Also, check out Howardamb's website, always ones for keeping people guessing, Howarbamb defies genres, and can't be placed in any one box. The only thing you can assume about the music they create is that it will always surprise and inspire! And being surprised and inspired is a rarity, but for me, it's a daily necessity! Can't wait to do it again! See you soon!