You are a leading media personality, Fashion Photographer, influencer, Art director, Film Producer, Ballerina, a Yoga Mentor, and a mother of four. How do you manage such a remarkable multi-dimensional lifestyle?
Balancing family and work has always been my biggest challenge especially when it involves a child with special needs which requires 24/7 care. I feel that half of me is my son. I am his eyes, his ears, his hands, his feet, and his voice. And because of it I graduated to be a nurse assistant to provide him the best care possible. The challenges that I have faced in life made me put my journalism career on pause.
Photography gives me more flexibility and I am able to work only when I find a gap on my schedule. My family always comes first. I am almost 20 years married and I love everything my husband and I have built together. In order to cope with the anxiety of not being able to work as a journalist and dedicate most of my time to fashion photography I practice hot yoga and movement meditation. During the Covid Pandemic I graduated to be a yoga master instructor of hot yoga. But in reality I did it for myself. Hot yoga is my sanity. I make an effort to practice every day. Through it I create my own calm. I focus on my breath and accept the things I cannot change.
You have completed BFA in Journalism and MA in Fashion Photography. How this education and knowledge has helped you in excelling as a world-leading Fashion Photographer?
I can tell you with complete honesty that education is not what made me a journalist and a fashion photographer. Yes I learned the foundation at school but knowledge came with my own creation and by working on the field, making mistakes, being persistent and vulnerable to learn from the masters. I am attracted to intelligence.
I aspire to be surrounded by people that are knowledgeable and willing to share their life experience. My first opportunity in FP came from this aspiration. I attended a workshop in Las Vegas by Celebrity Photographer John Russo and the owner of Maxim France, Florent Carmin, asked me to join him on the creation of covers for his magazine.
What exercises comprise your fitness regime or workout routine you may wish to share?
Today Hot Yoga is my number 1 regime. It incorporates strength, flexibility, balance, cardio and physical + mental stamina in one session. Room temperature for this hot class varies from 90 to 105 F. I also swim, walk/run on the treadmill, and ride a bike, ski and dance. Growing up dancing ballet, jazz and afro taught me self-discipline and improved my awareness. Exercise for me is a way of keeping my sanity. It doesn’t only burn calories but burns my thoughts and anxiety. So it must be part of my daily routine. The quick-thinking I learned in ballet improved my reflexes, academics and even my time-management skills.
It helped me realize that multiple paths can lead to the same solution and there is always room to make mistakes and improve. Following a fallback plan, dancers acquire perseverance. There were many times that I felt like I couldn’t continue or I wasn’t skilled enough to receive a lead role. However, I had to persist even when it felt like quitting was my only option. Perseverance taught me at an early age that hard work will pay off and that there is always value in continuing an activity you love.
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