The Real Stephen Blatt

If you follow me on any form of social media you have probably seen me post something (or a couple thousand somethings) about the Real Steohen Blatt. Yes i am aware that it is a little overkill haha.

To preface this post the reason I am very excited about this project is for a few reasons. One of them being that I had not costume designed something prior to this in quite awhile (I had worked in many costume department roles, but not as designer). Secondly this is the most widely distributed and viewed piece I have ever designed. Lastly but certainly not least was the amazing collaboration I had designing alongside Hanna Perrson (www.hannasheacostumes.com).

I have really been wanting to give a more in depth view of the piece from pre production to the final product. So here we are....

I signed onto this project without even reading a script, I signed on trusting my producer and going off of Justin Long's general comedic style (Stephen Blatt was conceived and written by Justin and his brother Christian Long). The weekend prior to flying down to Florida to start pre production I designed and was on set filming a short film entitled "The Mustard Seed", and still had not fully read the script. On 2 hours of sleep I was on a plane FINALLY able to focus on the script, pulling key pieces out, what needed to be there, what was open to interpretation and where some opportunities for creative flare as well as collaboration may lay. 

Once I landed I hit the ground running with Hanna. This is where the great collaboration started. We both brought to the table different points of view of each character, neither one was right or wrong, just a different perspective. After talking it out we came to see where each of them fall in terms of the scripted timeframe. Bringing both together we began to visually put the story together. Our collaboration was so fantastic I cannot say enough great things about Hanna and our experience. It was never "your right" or "your wrong" it was "I get what your seeing but thats more the character in season 4". We kept each other focused on the task at hand making it possible to convey the characters story in such a tight timeframe. Timeframe being such a short prep time but also for those whom have not seen the series, the longest episode is 6 minutes and the shortest 2 minutes. Everything needs to be clear and upfront to the viewer. Luckily the script lends itself to that being that Stephen is such an in your face kind of character. 

The final product became a melting pot of several things but ultimately came down to does it work in the timeline in the story. Stephen becomes a sensation in just 3 weeks. So what is achievable in that timeframe when you break it down. Week one he strikes gold, same kid with one heck of a confidence boost, touch of cockiness. Week two the followers really start to flow and begins to create content to keep increasing followership and engagement. Week three he is almost unrecognizable and overcompensating for the time in which he was bullied. 

That overcompensation was a real treat to put together visually through incorporating pieces that he as an individual who skyrockets to instafame realistically could source mixed with custom "designer" pieces as he is a spokesperson for many brands. This was great to counter next to a hyper realistic with stepford/nuclear family undertones with Mr. and Mrs. Blatt. Creating a more dramatic visual, this contrast was also helped with some amazing production design by Sebastian Avery. He created a home and several spaces that remind the audience who Stephen was before, how he was raised along with a few hidden pieces foreshadowing his future. Hanna and I also ha d a few areas where we did not foreshadow but rather show pieces of the former Stephen. 

The big thing about costumes and any visual role in film is this, if it is done right and done well. No one notices it, it's seamless and makes sense. With this project I am 95% thrilled with it, I always think their is room for improvement but I also take into consideration that i was the solo costume and wardrobe person on set. Doing double time to not only design but also prepping garments and dressing talent. So I am pretty satisfied with 95% and I am also thrilled that the first episode has been viewed over 370,000 times on Facebook and an average of 157,500 views across all 8 episodes and thats just on Facebook. The series has also been viewed on Amazon Prime, Funny or Die and Youtube. 

I hope this post leaves you with a little more insight into what goes into costume design as it is far more than just clothes. It is visual storytelling through clothes but also diving into the thought process of a character, similar to the process we go through each time we get dressed. 

stephen blatt1 2.jpg

Catch "The Real Stephen Blatt" starring Justin Long with costumes designed by Keith Nielsen and Hanna Perrson now on Amazon Prime and Funny or Die! Get to know the influencer who contunues to spread awareness for himself. 

 

 

 

THE FIRST STEPS ARE ALWAYS THE HARDEST....

The first steps are always the hardest....but the only way to go is up! 

This past week I set out to get myself running again. Literally.... I used to be a competitive runner starting in high school and beyond. However especially after college my fitness regimen dwindled as I transitioned more into film work (aka 12 hour minimum work day). 

So now that I am taking some time off for myself I wanted to start running again, aside from the exercise it provides for me it was always therapeutic. I can feel my body relax and the stress roll off both physically and psychologically.  That first run was absolute torture, to be expected, it always reminds me of when people talk to me about how they HATE running. It's getting over that hurdle that is hard, accepting that there will be struggle but still continuing forward in hopes of gaining or achieving something greater. 

Gee I really need to take that advice. But isn't that how it goes? It's easier to say it, sometimes even understand it than to actually DO IT. When it comes to doing it we need to have something to leverage. With running for me it was having a past life with it, I know I can do it, I have done it before now just need to rise to the occasion and physically get back there. When it comes to crafting something like a business or a great career I think those who have achieved greatly have been accommodated with a few things. 

In order to rise to the occasion you need some form of an opportunity, something to rise up to, whether that be capital investment, a career opportunity or a crack in the door that you are attempting to pass through. I think this has been my biggest hurdle. I am someone who rises to the occasion and the challenge. Give me a task I am going to complete it in the most efficient way possible and result with the most strategic deliverable. So when I pose the question to myself "why can't I do this for myself, for my own brand?"

Well as my father would say, there is no reason. However the explanation for it is for starters we always undervalue ourselves, our desires and our needs. Secondly when you are producing/creating something  if your a "rise to the occasion" kind of person...there is no one on the other side demanding or challenging the rise. You are that for yourself and we always let ourselves off easier, especially when it comes to new things. 

SO THE CHALLENGE! 

Find something. Rise to the occasion. Achieve.

P.S. I want this body back .____.

NEW BEGINNINGS AND BEING OKAY WITH WHERE YOU ARE RIGHT NOW.

The great thing about being a freelancer is their is ALWAYS a light at the end of the tunnel That is something I am very drawn to. Don't mesh with everyone? Don't sweat it, you will be onto the next thing before you know it. 

This week I wrapped as the Costume Coordinator on a new film titled First Reformed. I am beyond grateful for the team that provided me with this opportunity. No one ever wants to be the first to give someone their first gig, I get it, it means that we don't have a track record. No reference point. This team gave me an opportunity to begin creating a track record within this position for myself. 

The icing on top was when I met with accounting to close out the budget for the department and complimented the organization. I think that speaks to taking/being provided the next step when you are ready for it. 

When it comes to the new beginning aspect, that is what always used to give me a great deal of anxiety. Not knowing what is next...but after living and working freelance for awhile now it has taught me to live in the moment and appreciate the journey.

I have been able to translate that to my personal life as well. As someone in their 20's a huge topic of conversation is always dating. Good, Bad and in between, it always seems to come up. I know so many people who are always just looking for a relationship. By targeting that one thing we limit ourselves to the other possibility. Perhaps this person we go on a date with will not be a good partner for us, but they could be a great friend, a great collaborator. 

I know and come across many talented creators everyday. I listen to their stories and how their journey panned/is panning out and sometimes I get down on myself. Well for starters comparison is dangerous and also I can't change my  journey so far, I can only change it moving forward. So I learn from those around me that I admire, tell myself that this is my journey, that is theres and keep plugging away on my own path. I believe we are fortunate to live in a world where there is room for Madonna, Gaga and Beyonce. Not just one. 

Embrace and focus on your jouney. Be secure with you and where you are headed and applaud those around you, trust me, it will make you better in the long run. 

This is where I am in my life. Remaining open, being okay with where I am right now, not comparing myself and my journey and seeing where new relationships can go. 

Everything happens for a reason inlcuding the areas of work and life that we end up in. 

REMAINING GRATEFUL EVEN WHEN YOUR FACED WITH MASS NEGATIVITY

This week was a rough week. Sorry to start off on not the most positive point but I try to be genuine and not always say "Oh, I'm good" when in reality one may not be. 

This week I stepped into a new role at work, dropped my phone into the toilet and dealt with student loan frustrations, can I get an amen? However through it all and as I write this I am so dam grateful

I am grateful to have a job never mind even get a promotion at a job. I am grateful to have a phone, let alone the capability to get a new one. I am grateful to have the resources (although not so great long term) to go to college. I am grateful to have been educated in a field I love. I am grateful to work and make a living doing something I enjoy and lead a life that is more than the "live, work and die" mentality. 

It is so strange to me. Typically when one is faced with such things one of the last feelings they have is, grateful. Right after school I was really gung ho about beginning a business of my own but then that faded. I didn't have anything to worry about for a decent period where I could had began something. But I didn't.

Now when I am faced with a decent amount of negativity and things against me I more than ever want to begin something of my own. In hoped it is the key to a better tomorrow. I guess it is similar to this example I gave people when they used to ask me for thesis advice in college.

Individuals would ask me "What should I do for my thesis? I don't know what to do?". From my experience I would give them this advice. Think of something you really hate. Something you cannot stand. Then. Hate it even more. Then. Find a solution to it. Take something a negative to a positive.

I think that is why now of all times I want to add another something to my plate at the most unlikely and un-strategic of times. 

Regardless the moral of this post is that of, no matter what ones situation is, is to remain grateful and always know that within oneself is the solution to not only fix the negative but completely erase it.

Stay Grateful.

(Fitting place to plug some grateful dead artwork. I do not own any part of the attached image nor do I claim to or it's creation)

COSTUME AND FASHION: THE DIFFERENCE

The typical reaction people have when revealed that I work in the costume world for film and tv is "Oh that must be so much fun, putting together cute outfits all day", I quickly intercede with "It's not what you think..."

As someone who naturally expresses myself through my clothing choices but happens to work in the world of costume and costume design I feel a responsibility in such situations to educate those around me on the distinct difference. 

Lets start with fashion, shall we? Fashion is an immense artistry and industry that we all come into contact with on a daily basis. When we are in a fashion/styling mindset the goal is to dress someone with the intention for them to look their best for an event or an activity. Finding and tailoring the right clothing for the occasion and putting it together with complimentary shoes and accessories.

Fashion seen on the runway that is presented by a designer, in the designers vision and intention, incorporates a great amount of storytelling, we also see this in editorial format as well. Typically these stories are told through visual presentation in addition to more abstractly through the clothing itself. 

Now let's look at the other side of the spectrum, the costume world. 

I always like to use this example when I have someone in front of me. So imagine you are standing in front of me this is what I would say:

"So you just got cast in a movie I am designing, you (insert name here) are playing a character named Joan who works in the mail room of a 60 story building in manhattan in the 1980s, she is struggling to make ends meet, her husband left her for her sister and left her with 3 kids. She had to take the first job she could, so here we are. You are no longer (insert name here). You are Joan, someone with Joan's backstory cares very little about her outer appearance as she has bigger fish to fry in her life, my job is to convey that through clothing. Joan is not a fabulous creature who wears off the runway Prada. Her clothes are worn, not brand new, her kids clothes are hand me downs. 

This is all of the psychology behind costume design that is never seen but greatly influence the design of the look. In regards to the job very little of it involves clothes. Majority of the work comes from taking, in this example "Joan" off of the pages of the script and into a fully visualized character. 

I encourage you the next time you see a movie or your favorite tv show to take a closer look at the clothes. Are they brand new? How do they fit? Are they worn out? 

Costumes in addition to the many other departments that are required to create a film is massive. So many things go into every piece that not many people realize or recognize. But isn't that what being a master of your craft is? Doing it so well that it looks effortless?

RESPONSIBILITY AND THE WORK YOU PRODUCE

So after awhile of going back and forth between lower level positions and high level positions within the film world, (which kind of messes with my head sometimes) it looks like some things may be happening to help advance my career more permanently. 

A little backstory, I have been working as a Costume Production Assistant on and off for 2 years, in between working as a costume designer, assistant costume designer and that one stint as a stitcher...eeekk. For the most part I have been overwhelmingly fortunate with those whom I have worked with, however once in awhile I get people who get a little too comfortable in seeing me in one role. I am reliable, fast and organized, a few qualities that a lot of Production Assistants are not. So it is understandable. However I am a driven person with aspirations of my own. The team I am working on, on this project went "sounds like someone is too comfortable keeping you where you are" and "thats the problem with being too good at your job"-but atleast they are helping me change that. 

On the current project I signed on to I signed on with a specific understanding and promise. When asked to work on it I explained I was in the phase of transitioning out of being a PA. Unfortunately the roles that are a step up from there were not available as it is a low budget production. However we agreed that once I was able to establish that I was able to perform the basic responsibilities of the job that they were comfortable passing other responsibilities on to me. They really understood that someone needs to learn and perform other job roles in order to advance into them at some point.

Well almost immediately I was interchanging between 3 different job roles. Assistant, Coordinator, and Shopper. It also so happens that the Assistant Designer is leaving 2 weeks before we start to wrap, and I was asked to Coordinate for the remainder of filming and wrap. I am so excited and grateful for this opportunity to take a leap forward. 

This is where the responsibility part of my post title comes in. 

So as you can imagine through juggling 3 roles, a few things sometimes get lost/forgotten. When the question of "Did we get a tie bar for the Sheriff" I was posed with the question. Do I lie and say, "it was in the bag?" or do I own that I forgot.

I decided to own that I forgot about the tie bar and apologize. At least it was only a small thing, but I think it is important to own these small things. I made a mistake, I am human, I am sorry. I think that is a very important virtue too especially when I am moving up in the ranks on this project. If I mess up on recording budget information, I should own it, how can we fix it if one is not honest about what happened. Typically in a professional environment one overlooks the mistake, leads by example and shows how to go about fixing the problem. That is exactly what happened, the show must go on.

We should all take responsibility for our work whether it be in a good or bad context. I take pride and responsibility when I perform things that over exceed expectations. So I at least should take responsibility for something I did incorrectly.

When you blame others, you give up your power to change.
— Unknown

The reason I think I am okay with doing this  is because when I am on various projects I am invested in performing to the best of my abilities so that as a team we can have the best overall outcome. It is simply not one sided!

I strive to continue to lead my work and my work ethic in a non one sided way. In a more overall picture kind of way.!

 

 

 

 

 This is a screenshot from an infomercial Cher did back in the late 80s/90s I believe. I like this as an example because she did it, she owns that this happened in her career. She also owns how it affected her career for many years, how she could not get jobs. She took responsibility for her lack in judgement. Not everyone can do that! But that's why she is Cher and I am just well...me haha 

This is a screenshot from an infomercial Cher did back in the late 80s/90s I believe. I like this as an example because she did it, she owns that this happened in her career. She also owns how it affected her career for many years, how she could not get jobs. She took responsibility for her lack in judgement. Not everyone can do that! But that's why she is Cher and I am just well...me haha 

MY QUEST TO BE CAST ON QUEER EYE FOR THE STRAIGHT GUY REVIVAL

If you happen to follow me on social media you have probably seen a glimpse of my campaign to become one of the new Fab 5 as made famous through Queer Eye For The Straight Guy. 

But I wanted to talk a little bit about why I am so passionately driven towards throwing my name into the ring....

The announcement of the shows reboot comes at a symbolic time to me. When the original show premiered it really shook things up and in my opinion very much helped in the understanding and acceptance of the LGBT community. At a time where the future of LGBT rights in addition to many other individuals rights I see the timing symbolic.....

I am  a big supporter of following your dreams and doing what you love with your life. I believe that if everyone did that and followed that simple guideline todays world would be a little different. With that being said I always strive for 2 things, do what I love to the best of my ability in hopes that it inspire others. At the very least I hope it makes myself happy so then in turn others around me have a positive experience when coming in contact with me, I am a much nicer person when I am happy with what I am doing with my life. After all we spend an average of 90,000 hours at work in out lifetime, it has its impact.

So when it comes to myself and Queer Eye, I want to be an example of a person who does what they love and even something like a pep talk or a great pair of jeans, can change little things inside that make a world of a difference on the outside. I want to inspire and motivate and give some light into a world and future that seems like a dark abyss to many. 

I know it is an insane long shot, but if I was even considered for a part on the show, producers simply would not be disappointed. I would strive to be equally entertaining as I would be striving to feature the talent of 5 fabulous men who may be a little different than the average man, but still nonetheless a man all while continuing the fight for equal right for EVERYONE! 

EVERYONE HAS THEIR UPS AND DOWNS

Something I have always struggled with is, comparison. It's hard not to do when you see people whom you know from certain situations receiving opportunities or accolades that you may not be. It always leads to a sort of self deprecation because I may not be at the exact same stage, HOWEVER, that is the point where I must remind myself that we all have ups and downs. 

Whether our ups and downs are personal or professional, we all have them. We all find some form of success both professionally and personally at different times. Just because someone is in climbing the ladder at a more rapid rate right now and you might not be doesn't mean that you do not have skill or talent etc. etc. 

It just means that our time has not quite arrived, and that's okay. The solution I find comes with LIVING IN THE MOMENT. 

(Side note of encouragement: An actress I was working with shared that she always says "the next thing is only a phone call away, so keep going")

Instead of comparing each others achievements I choose to focus on myself and where I am headed. Some may say that is selfish, and in a way it is. We all should love ourselves unconditionally and take care of ourselves. Do what makes us happy, what makes us feel fulfilled. Through that bit of selfishness it will allow us to be our best selves for others around us.

I feel fulfilled whenever I am creating something or am a part of something creative. I am proud of the fact that, that striving to always be a part of something creative is something I have remained true to. I refuse to sell myself out for a larger paycheck or a higher title. With that comes the ups and downs, especially being a freelancer. 

Sometimes I find myself in charge and sometimes I find myself doing the grunt work. Both are equally important in my mind and that's where I live in the moment. When you are leading it is important to think about when you were a follower, what did you need from a leader?

And when you were/are a leader? What did you need from a follower?

I would like to wrap up this post by sharing a little something about myself. I always remember where I came from and who I am at my core, I find it very important working in what is sometimes a fantasy world. famous people, fabulous parties, fabulous clothes etc. One of those things is whom I happen to be named after....the legendary Keith Richards!

REFLECTION AND NEW BEGINNINGS

Time is man made, I always wonder what life would be like if we did not put so much emphasis on time. Meet that deadline, go here, go there....however time is our reality and with time comes new beginnings every January 1st, but before that comes the sometimes cliche reflection on December 31st. 

Last night as I lay in bed and thought about this past year and reflecting upon it I am able to see for myself little by little where I may fit into this world today. Through it all however I am very  overwhelmed with a sense of gratitude. I am so beyond fortunate always and each year things that were once only a dream are piece by piece becoming a reality.

This year saw many things for me including:

-Working as an assistant on two theatre shows

-I met some (famous) people whom I greatly admire

-I met some (not famous) people whom I greatly admire

-Working within two similar yet drastically different corporate structures

-I costume designed a short film and an episodic show, my first designing in quite some time

-Doing things I always said I would NEVER DO, which is, work freelance or be a costume designer

-I worked my first NYFW shows alongside some people whom I have looked up to for a long time

-I continued to pursue a professional relationship that I have been tailgating for 5 years, YES 5 YEARS!

-I started to "just doing" as opposed to "just saying"

-I felt alive

All of this is career related and for me if you know me that is because I identify so much of who I am into what I do. On the other side of things, the personal side, I am always after becoming the best self I can be, not for others but for me. I always want to be able to push myself farther, create something new, betterment towards leaving even just a scrape behind as a reminder that I was here. 

Here is a little story that was told to me by a good family friend!

Right after I graduated college in May 2015 I had nothing lined up really. I had an idea for a business that soon faded off (long story) and I was just floating. One day I stopped by unannounced to this family friends house and it had been quite some time since we had seen one another. Soon the conversation shifted to what I was doing. I went on and on about what I was doing to find a job in my areas of interest and blah blah blah. She then brought up a good point, the thought that doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result is the definition of an idiot. I laughed. She is very right, she said that if something is not working for you after a span of time, change it, try a different approach. Then I went on to explain how the industry is with online applications and such, she didn't want to hear any of that because at the end of the day "the squeaky wheel gets the oil", in this case the oil is the job. 

Continuing on in the conversation I went on about various opportunities that came my way but I was stalling on them because they were not what I wanted to do. She then opened up to me about the lowest point in her life, she is almost 60 so she has lived through many ups and downs however this was the lowest. She explained the situation and said she wanted nothing more than to lock herself in her house and become a hermit, instead she did the opposite. Every time someone invited her somewhere, to a party, to try something new, something she was good at, something she was bad at...she said YES! She remained OPEN! (There was this great gesture of holding your arms up like a giant funnel, symbolizing you are open to all things that come to you.

One of the examples was the racing of dragon boats on the Connecticut River, she didn't even know what it was, all she said to the person on the other end of the phone, "when and where, I will see you there". By saying yes to that she meant so many interesting people, she was a part of a team and if she did not show up every week she was not only letting herself down but her entire team. It helped her through her tough time, the accountability, and the experience was only possible because when prompted with the opportunity she said YES!

This year I SAID YES and remained OPEN, it brought me to things and people I was not so sure I would ever make it to, both good and bad. This new year I plan on remaining OPEN as well as saying YES, but in addition I am adding GO FOR IT! Life is short and we only regret the things we do not do, as Cher says, "We can always say shit I shouldn't have done that". 

Happy New Year! Be the best YOU you can be, challenge yourself, love yourself, take a leap of faith and in turn your actions will help others to become their best selves too! 

“The most exciting, challenging and significant relationship of all is the one you have with yourself.”
— -Carrie Bradshaw

I JOINED THE CIRCUS...FOR A DAY!

I finally ran away and joined the circus! I did, REALLY, but only for a day! 

To give you a little of the backstory. I was chit chatting with an old friend about touring entertainment and before I knew it I was talking to the Senior Vice President of Wardrobe for Cirque du Soleil. 

That conversation went exceptionally well, I was able to speak about my background and ask questions to see how their organizational setup differs to those that I am familiar with. He encouraged me to go and do a job shadow to see all of the inner workings as he cautioned that this work lifestyle is not for everyone. I happily accepted as each experience educating us in an unfamiliar area that can better influence our future life and career decisions. 

So the day started at 2pm for me, from there I was whisked on a full tour of every knook and cranny of the setup. Walking the footsteps of the artists and creators, I entered through the back tent where training, dressing and pretty much everything takes place. From there I was lead through the tunnel into the Grand Chapiteau. The main backstage area is surprisingly small but I came to a conclusion that I will delve into later.

I was then walked through pretty much every costume in the show, speaking about how they are all cared for and kept looking fresh and new. After all, this show is packed up into a bunch of trucks every 8 weeks in addition to 10 shows a week, that is a lot of wear and tear on a bunch on fabric.

Something I found very interesting is how every role is very condensed, for example the wardrobe assistants are also responsible for maintaining several robot costumes even though they are made more like props and feature little fabric pieces. In addition to small things like ensuring garments that feature battery operated aspects have fully charged batteries. Coming form the film world those would all be handled by separate individuals, but life on tour is all about condensing as many roles as possible.

All in all the main traveling crew is 120 people with 64 trucks. In each city they hire a large number of individuals for roles such as concessions and ticket handling. It is a HUGE operation, a fully moving city but as an audience member you do not get the same experience with this kind of show in a theatre.

My day wrapped up by seeing the show, this show is called : Kurious; Cabinet of Curiosities. I was already a fan as the director also directed Madonna's super bowl halftime performance. Need I say more?

I am very glad I took the day to explore the world and talk with the cast and crew, it is a very intensive work environment that changes location every 8 weeks. Sometimes to very remote and cold places, small things that one might not think about initially upon coming aboard. 

Onto the next adventure, whatever that may be....

Love and Light

K

 

EVERY PROJECT IS A NEW CHAPTER

One week ago I wrapped on the best project of my life (thus far). I had the immense pleasure of working with my great friend and co-designer Hanna Persson (costume goddess) in addition to some amazing actors as well. 

Something interesting for those who have known me for only the past couple of years, I never set out to be a costume designer or work in costumes at all for that matter. I have had a few stints at the job to date but this one, this one was different. I fully immersed myself in the characters, our main character basically became my best friend, which is very easy to do when you are working 18 hours a day for a month straight. 

I have always been passionate and invested in my work, when it came to costumes I used to always be "meh", to be honest. But in recent times my career opportunities mainly came within costume departments for film and tv, always in non designing roles. Of course every job I do I have opinions on characters looks, however their is a time and a place. That time being, when I personally have the opportunity to have an opinion that justifies the characters development. 

But this project wasn't just about being in charge or being able to express my creative vision. It was about the opportunity to express my vision through my passion on a large scale. 

One week later (today) I sit here currently with no jobs on the table. Wondering if I wish it were different? Think again....I might not have a steady cash flow and I may not know what my immediate future holds BUT I do know that...

 I strive everyday to live that day as if it were my last and if my time here on earth ends I want to be able to say one thing...

"That I followed my dreams and helped someone along the way by doing it"

HELLO....ITS ME

It has been A MINUTE! Okay well more like a month!

Post Mozart life has been an amazing rollercoaster that I am so grateful and honored to be on. I have worked on a very high budget film that I am not at liberty to say what it is. But you will all see it in theatres next summer. Then I very rapidly prepped, designed and filmed 2 days on set in upstate New York to then drive back to Connecticut and hop on a plane with only 2.5 hours of sleep.

#thedreamdoesntworkunlessyoudo

It has been crazy but I am enjoying every single minute of everything. Including rising to the challenge. Currently I am working with a fairly small budget which many people I know would just see the number and then run away. Not me.

I am a believer that you can achieve great quality projects on any budget, you just have to shop smarter and devote the time necessary to find the items your looking for at the right price point. A great designer taught me to save money where you can so you can spend money where you want to/need to. 

 

For now it is just one day at a time and figuring out what is next! Good vibes! 

Love and Light!

K

P.S. Never forget your roots. They are what make you who you are today!

WHAT IS MY LIFE?

Have you ever asked yourself the question: What am I doing with my life? I know I have...

What about...What is my life right now? Typically said to oneself when they are experiencing something unexpected.

At the end of this spring into the beginning of summer I found myself asking the question "What am I doing with my life?" Now heading into fall I am saying "What is my life?"

I have achieved and experienced many things I never expected to and have upcoming projects that I once would have written off because "that isn't what I want to do". The other day I was poised with an offer for a short term job. Then I thought to myself "don;t I want to continue saying "What is my life?". Between that and taking my advice of "Just say yes, always say yes"...

I SAID YES! Who knows what it will bring but either way there will be something to learn from it!

On another note: I wrapped on Mozart in the Jungle: Season 3

It was such a bittersweet ending. Our team this season was carefully handpicked and I am so honored and privileged to have worked with such amazing professionals. They openly taught me so many things to help push me forward and upon wrap we all had only love for one another. This was a true TEAM, we picked one another up when we were down and we got through it. 

Oh and upon wrap...THIS happened!

Love and Light!

-K

 

 

 

FULL CIRCLE MOMENT

Life is filled with full circle moments, some are smaller than others. This moment I would say was medium sized! 

This time last year I was in a transition phase post college, not knowing what was happening and overall not really feeling too hot about my future. Then in just an instant things changed and before I knew it I was rocketed to NYC and part of a TV show. 

Right now I am sitting in that same show's offices, one year later wrapping up season 3. It's all crazy to me. I always said I never really wanted to work in film and I never really wanted to work in costumes, including designing them. But here I am one year later with 2 seasons of wardrobe assistant credits, multiple theatre credits, an assistant designer credit and 2 costume design credits heading my way next month.

The reason I am sharing this is to express the importance of NEVER closing anything off completely. Sure we all have our preferences but if I shut out the initial opportunity from season 2 it would not have lead me to all of these other things. 

 

Remain OPEN and say YES!....

And listen to Lady Gaga's new single "Perfect Illusion" out tomorrow! No I am not a paid spokesperson!

Love and Light!

-K

 

 

IT'S BEEN AWHILE....

Hello September! Where has the summer gone, and the summer? I went out last night with a friend and it was starting to feel like fall. So excited to break out the sweaters and the layering, oh wait. I am going to be in Florida for October so I only get a little taste. But there is always a good ole pumpkin spice coffee to bring back all the northeast fall feels. 

Mozart in the Jungle season 3 is winding down, this Tuesday after labor day actually marks one year since I started on season 2. Crazy what can happen in a year when you stop to think about it. So filled with gratitude, an amazing feeling!

Hmmmm whats new in my life? I celebrated my birthday the last week of August. To be honest I almost skipped it, seriously. Like almost deactivated my facebook so no one on social media would see. I am SO GLAD I didn't do that. It was an amazing birthday filled with joy, happiness and CAKE! 

In other news....What am I going to wear to the wrap party???? So many options...So little time. But I think I am going to dress for the season and the venue. 

I think that's all for now!

-K

Side Note....Check out the album "In Your Dreams" by Stevie Nicks. Link below!So good! Every couple of months I rediscover it! LEGENDARY!

 

DEAR DIARY....

Just when you think life; i.e. work; could not get any crazier it does! Showbusiness is INSANE behind the scenes, but I think that's what makes it so interesting. How out of all the insanity something is able to be produced. 

It's hard to stay positive everyday when your tired and have a heavy workload in addition to not knowing what is going to be thrown your way. But something that being a PA has taught me is to start everyday fresh. I use my daily commute as a time to center and clear my mind and open myself to the tasks of the day. 

I know I am constantly referencing things I do relevant to work. Well that is because I am a workaholic. Many people do not understand that. To put it simply I identify so strongly with being a creator. Taking that passion and turning it into a career complicates everything. Usually someones passion is a hobby of some sort, by making it your career sometimes the passion gets lost. 

To prevent such from happening it is important to keep it fresh which is what I love about being a creative freelancer!

On a lighter note my fall is shaping up to be very exciting and opportunistic, can't wait to share it all as it is happening!

 

Love and Light!

 

K

FRIDAY WAS A GOOD DAY!

Have you ever worked a 6 day work week? If so you know the struggle...you know the one where its Thursday but feels like Friday? Well that was me this week so as you can imagine Friday was rough. But you know the saying things happen when you least expect it? Well on Friday I got a phone call and a sweater and exciting show casting info and a music video release. 

Starting with the phone call, I cannot say much, however it is an exciting project that may be bringing me back to Florida for a month to head the Costume department as Designer for (insert celebrity name here)'s web series. 

THEN....I got a text. One of my favorite and fan favorite queens from Rupaul's Drag Race Season 8 is making a cameo on our show this week. Cannot wait to see her. Mum is the word on who!

THEN...I was rocking a characters sweater and before I knew it the sweater became my sweater. #bestbossever

THEN...I got an email. Back in March I Assistant Costume Designed a jazz band's music video. We had not heard much since we filmed, video below! FYI The video is abstract and unique. But keep your eye on the clothes ;)

This was a great but challenging week. I dressed background actors for a gala scene and had lunch with a broadway legend and oh and what would a week be without a few runs to Bloomingdales!!!

Now onto some downtime and some good ole retail therapy! Check out the music video below!!!

Sending Light and Love!

Keith

SATURDAY

This week was INSANE...in many forms of the word. The NYC heat has pushed everyone to another level. Forget looking cute, it's all about survival and getting the job done. Including the actors, I feel that is an important note because many people (myself previously included) think it is so glamorous for the actors. But at the end of the day we are all human and we all work, some in a more "in front of the camera" kind of way.

Today is actually my only day off this weekend as I was very excited about the opportunity to work on the promotional photoshoot for the show. Of course in theory its really exciting but then you add the 97 degree temperature forecast for tomorrow and the idea of a 6 day work week but, hey, I can't complain. I am so very lucky and blessed to be in this position and have a part in an award winning show. 

This upcoming week is going to be interesting and probably MORE INSANE. Why you ask? Well there is no script.....

But on a positive note a fellow colleague of mine from my alma mater is joining the team. In another department but still part of the overall team which is exciting. Follow her and her journey @TheUnreliableTourguide

 

 

 Wardrobe Truck Interior. Complete with in unit washer and dryer, air conditioning and the restroom is always parked right next door!

Wardrobe Truck Interior. Complete with in unit washer and dryer, air conditioning and the restroom is always parked right next door!

MONDAY!

I don't have any intention to make this a daily blog HOWEVER today was super fun and filled with a few surprises. 

The day started with a set run where I walked by Mario Cantone aka Anthony Marantino from Sex in the City aka my spirit animal.

Then I helped dress 300 background actors for an awesome club scene. We all loved when they would lay out all of their options and we would simply say "yea thats good" and they go "well, which one?" and we just say "all of it"....it was that kind of look. Which is the look of PURE AWESOMENESS!! 

I enjoy that when I get to work everyday I really never know what to expect. Every day is so different! That is why its simply the #AdventuresOfKeith

SPECIAL SHOUTOUT to the guy who thought I was a famous youtuber and to the super cute rocker guy!

THATS ALL.....

 

WELCOME!

Hello All!

Welcome to my official Blog page! If you follow me on Facebook you probably saw #KeithThePA in your feed. This posting spree was inspired by the consistent question of "What do you do" as well as various questions such as "How do you measure your success in such a role?". It is a crazy job that effects ones way of life, but it is a valid stepping stone.

To recap my intro week of #KeithThePA. Here are my top 5 pointers for anyone looking to start out in the film industry in general and more specifically within the wardrobe department.

POINTERS:

#1: BE PREPARED FOR ANYTHING

#2: Dress for success...Literally

#3 ALWAYS be available and if you are not available...SAY YOU ARE!

#4 MAINTAIN ORGANIZATION AND EFFICIENCY

#5 Plain and simple...Don't be an Idiot!

I have enjoyed posting throughout the week and want to keep the momentum going, I hope you join me in my life's adventures! 

#TheAdventuresofKeit

P.S. In New York the work hard play hard mentality rings very true. This weekend I splurged on a front and center ticket to see Cats with Leona Lewis and boy was it AMAZING! #Iconic