This shoot means so much to me in so many ways. I love culture- because each culture is so rich, I love sexuality- it's fluid and interesting. This shoot started with a photographer requesting to shoot with an actor who sometimes models. It turned into a political statement on race, culture, and sexuality. So tune into this weeks #IndustryTalk with none other than the actor, model, and writer #RomanAnthony at the #RomanEmpire where #RomanReigns. #PaolinoPhotography #MakeupByKai #SherahStylist #IStandWithOrlando #LGBTEquality #Liberation #Actor #Writer #Model #AndrogynyRead More
If you're gay and black or simply live in LA then you either know or know of Jayce Baron. He's everyone's friend and inspiration. So after careful review and finding out who this guy is I decided he must be interviewed for #IndustryTalk. Not just because he's an author and I love to read, not just because he's a baptist preachers kid and I grew up in a baptist church, not because he has a degree in entertainment communication, and not because he's created a media network and I'm an actor. All of which are great but I was more enthralled with his philanthropy. I’ve learned that the character of any great artist can be measured by the friends they keep and how they give back.
R|A: Thanks for being apart of the #IndustryTalk family Jayce. You're a pretty well known LGBT Advocate here in Los Angeles. At what point in your life did you decide that this is what you wanted to do?
J|B: Ha! The funny thing is I still get a little weirded out when people call me an advocate because it was never really what I set out to accomplish, it just passionately happened. I started Kiss & Tell Networks after I saw the success of a live LGBTQ panel discussion I hosted and produced. After I saw the response I knew that this was my God given calling and I was going to do whatever it took to unify the community, but with my sense of style!
R|A: What did you want to be growing up? I mean did you know you would be a writer, a social entrepreneur, and an LGBT advocate?
J|B: Absolutely NOT! Are you kidding me? I used to fail the spelling part of the SATs in elementary all the time! I do remember writing a lot of stories and organizing full blown productions with my younger siblings for my parents, but I just thought that was me being bossy living the definition of the older child syndrome. I went to college for Communications with an emphasis in Public Relations because I knew I loved to talk and loved a good party. I modeled for a bit as well. When I saw how superficial... what I was doing for a paycheck, was becoming, I knew I needed something with more weight and fulfillment. Everything I am today career-wise was unintentional and a direct result of simply doing what I love, learning from my mistakes, and the universe giving me everything I need to fulfill my duties on this earth.
R|A: I caught an episode or two of your Itunes podcast Kiss & Tell Radio, which was very eye opening with celebrity news, dating, and sex. When did you start your podcast and for those creatives who would love to do what you're doing how did you start podcasting?
J|B: Yes Shar and I love doing our show. We have two completely different personalities so listeners get a kick out of our dynamic. I started Kiss & Tell Radio because I wanted an easy way to produce content between live Kiss & Tell shows. It was a lot easier than I thought! I got a recorder from Amazon, my sister created the intro beat, and we literally just record the set list of topics. The tech stuff with the RSS feed and getting it on iTunes was all stuff I googled and figured out. It's almost been a year since the first show and we're launching the NYC hosts within weeks. Also, we just signed on with REVRY, an LGBT entertainment platform you can subscribe to on Apple TV, Ruko, etc. It's been an extremely fun process!
R|A: You’ve recently celebrated the release of your new book: Absolutely Me. Can you tell readers what your book is about?
J|B: Yes! My novel "Absolutely Me" is finally out! The book is about a young man name Eli who is going through all the motions of self discovery with his sexuality. It's cool because each chapter is a different guy he is dealing with. Whether it's some sneaky sex scandal, just fucking, seriously dating, or your typical "situationship", he's trying to find out what the hell being gay is. He realizes at the end that his sexuality has nothing to do with others, but all to do with himself. I hate to brag, but it's a good read! I'm really hard on myself, but I have to say I am very proud with this accomplishment and even more happy with the way people are responding.
R|A: I was reading a passage of your book which was very nostalgic for me. You described NYC so well you've had to live there? What was the inspiration behind Absolutely Me?
J|B: New York City will always have my heart. My mother was raised in Queens so I was always out there growing up. I ended up moving there permanently right after college and the experience blew my mind in so many unexpected ways. I told you I'm from California, so I never owned a pair of boots, shoveled snow... nothing. I was clueless and totally had to relearn how to live. I'm still out there once a month for meetings and I facilitate a youth workshop in Brooklyn. I'd say I'm bicoastal on a budget!
A lot of "Absolutely Me" is based on experience, shared stories, or situations any young person who is trying to figure out life goes though, especially if they identify as LGBTQ. There is not really a road map on how to do this and sexual fluidity is just now becoming socially accepted. I wanted people, whatever demographic, to relate, laugh, and learn. Those were my intensions.
R|A: What advice can you give aspiring writers?
J|B: Like Nike's slogan... "Just do it." I was recently asked how I started writing my book and I literally just started writing a story and describing everything I felt during that time. I randomly found what I had written in my gmail inbox years later and decided it was the perfect time to finish and conclude the story. Same with my blog. The more you do it, the better you get. So start now! It will all eventually make sense. Hold yourself accountable meet your own deadlines and just put your heart into it.
R|A: I read that you're also a PK (Preacher's Kid). Baptist no-less, (I'm baptist...long story), what was your experience like growing up in a religious household? Personally I think we all get to a point where who we’re becoming conflicts with the principles we were brought up on.
J|B: One thing I am extremely grateful for is I was raised to know the difference between religion and my relationship with God. I was always raised in environments that got me a lot of attention and being in the first family was one of them. This made the church more human, which can be interpreted in many ways. For me, it was clear that people, whether in the first family or Peaches the stripper are humans and make mistakes. Because of that, I never really put leaders of any church on a pedestal much like fans do for their favorite music artist. When I went through my own personal journey of reconciling with my sexuality and knowing God loves me when maybe "religion" did not, it made all the difference. Jesus is and always will be the homie.
R|A: Tell readers more about your blog? What inspires you?
J|B: I just started writing about the lessons I was learning and idiot mistakes I made. I didn't even promote my blog at first... it was just for me. When I started showing my friends they got a kick out of it and encouraged me to share. Sometimes I'll wake up at 3:24am and words will just start pouring out. I just grab my phone and start writing and clean it up the next day.
R|A: What's next for Jayce?
J|B: Oh my goodness that is a loaded question with an even bigger answer. I'm always creating but I've learned to take things one step at a time. Well, 2016 is pretty much already planned out. Launching Kiss & Tell Live Las Vegas with Senator Kelvin and Woody Atkinson this summer. We have two more live shows around the country closing out the year. I have a couple outside writing opportunities. Several workshop and speaking engagements based around my book, "Absolutely Me". And lets just say if all goes according to plan I'll be completely off the grid for about a month filming. Stay tuned
R|A: What most important piece of advice would you say have helped you in life?
J|B: My dad once told a 19 year old me while I was cussing out someone on the phone that, "You're only given a certain amount of energy per lifetime... use it wisely." He probably doesn't remember but the words have become a pivotal lead in the way I navigate through life. I'm so aware of how I spend my time and energy now. I'm very slow to anger and I am extremely mindful on keeping a balanced work and personal life.
It's always amazing when an artist can use their art to be of service to the community. Oddly enough I met Javonte at a posh club in Hollywood. I was with a singer friend of mines who introduced me and said you have to get this guy on your blog. So of course I had to do my research to find out why he needed to be featured. Well after much research and learning of Javonte Rose’s journey to becoming a model and activist through personal struggle I decided to reach out for an interview. I must say that art stems from so much, and the best art stems from the greatest pain. With his activism and “I’m Here!” campaign he's inspired youth to have self-love, and respect. Let's chat with Mr. Rose...
R|A: Javonte you grew up in a small New Hampshire town- kicked out at the age of 15/16 and has now created this brand. How did you turn your life around to becoming not only a popular activist and motivational speaker but to this booked model?
J|R: When I was a young boy I always told myself I’m going to be something and I just stayed strong. When the time was right I did what I had to do. I worked hard for what I wanted in life and I would never give up. My Life is just starting and is falling into place. I’m still working- not only on myself, but learning to influence others each day. God is always watching and opening doors to those who wait.
R|A: Can you tell myself and the readers more about your “I’m Here!” campaign? How did this campaign come about?
J|R: IM HERE! Came from others out in the world. I was just being myself on social media, and people would see that. They write me in the DM's asking me how can you be yourself and there’s so many people out there that’s still criticizing! I would tell them, I never cared what anyone said, I always had a strong head on my shoulders and I live life for me not for others.
R|A: Now you're also in the process of publishing your first book… Can you explain what the book will be about? What publishing company will be distributing your book and was it hard finding a company to support your movement?
J|R: Yes, I’ve always thought of writing a book about my life. It was just an obstacle course, and I feel free and ready to tell the world. I will be giving further details on the name on me social media @javonterose & @imhere.4u. The book will be on Amazon, Kindle , and print- available online and through my website.
R|A: What advice do you find yourself continuously gifting to hurt people? I've read some of the messages people have sent you and it seems you know a great deal about pain and healing?
J|R: In my life I’ve dealt with a lot of physical and mental pain. I was one to keep it inside to myself and somehow it just made me stronger. I knew were I wanted to be in life and I knew nobody was going to stop me. I always tell them there’s a light at the end of the path. DON’T GIVE UP! Just stand tall, and don’t let them knock you down. To be yourself, and to live life for you.
R|A: Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
J|R: I see myself further into my modeling and acting career. I see my brand being international and making a difference in the world. Having a platform for kids in need.
R|A: How does an activist become a model? How did that opportunity present itself?
J|R: I've been a model since about 17 years old. I’ve started this movement back in October in 2015! I always wanted to help out others and do something. The time became right and I went for it.
R|A: Who was a pivotal person in the shaping of your life? We all have a life-line when we just need to talk or something. Who was that person for you?
J|R: A lot of times I felt alone. I’d be by myself. I always looked up to God. That one person I can always call was my ex-girlfriend from teenage years, Amani Tyrance.
R|A: I've seen on your site that you're also into fitness. What are some of your diet & work out tips?
J|R: I’ve been working out since I was 12. I eat a lot of chicken and fruits. Always have your protein shakes, most important for your workouts. I workout mostly every day.
R|A: Now it is the political season so I just have to ask who are you interested in seeing as our next President and why?
J|R: Honestly I am still indecisive, power and money makes our society dwell in chaos; when it comes to politics. It’s hard to truly receive authenticity within individual parties and their hidden agenda.
This week's guest on the #IndustryTalk entertainment blog is none other than my girl- actress Amber Nicolle Gilbert. We met through previous actor and friend to the blog Dueal Andrews and I honestly must admit I admire this woman's hustle. Not only does she work, but she's constantly studying her craft and at the moment is learning stage combat. Let's sit down with Miss. Niccolle and find out what it's like being a black female actress in Hollywood and what we can expect from her in the future.
R|A: Thank you Amber for being apart of the #IndustryTalk blog family. So I guess my first question would be why acting and when did you know realize this was something you wanted to do?
A|N|G: At first playing basketball was my passion. I was very proficient in basketball as well as track and field. My dream was to play professionally for the WNBA. After high school, I ended up choosing another career to pursue which is acting. I feel that acting encompasses all aspects of humanity and that is something I want to be a part of.
R|A: You’ve recently just completed a short with friend to the blog Dueal Andrews titled Former Flames, what's the film about?
A|N|G: Former Flames is about two friends reminiscing on the good memories they had with each other in high school. Both friends end up having too much to drink and sleep together. This short was based off a true story that happened in my life. Dueal and I were high school sweethearts as well as good friends. I always wanted to collaborate with actor Dueal Andrews, so when given the opportunity, I took advantage.
R|A: Many times in this industry we befriend other entertainers and we want to create the art we want to see. What was it like working with your best friend, and what advice positive and negative would you say can arise from working with friends?
A|N|G: It was a great learning experience working with someone on a project from the ground up. It definitely teaches you your strength and weaknesses in the business. My advice is just to have fun and definitely keep a cocktail or two around (ha-ha). You want to make sure that you take everyone’s vision into consideration. COMMUNICATION IS KEY without that you wont have a successful joint venture.
R|A: Do you plan on releasing your project online, or submitting to any festivals?
A|N|G: Yes, I will be releasing the short on my website and submitting it to festivalsonce post production is finished. Former Flames will be released sometime in the summer.
R|A: You have a very impressive resume, what would you say was your most favorite role to play and why?
A|N|G: My favorite role would have to be playing a lawyer. At times, I get type cast due to my tattoos. I work really hard to be taken seriously as an actress and prove to people in the industry that I can play other roles besides the “the tough chick” or “the seductive girl”. It is a great feeling knowing that people see me for my acting ability, not just based off my exotic appearance. Don’t get me wrong, I love my tattoos and will never get rid of them (they are a part of me). Surprisingly I get more roles and auditions that requires me to be “the girl next door” or “the conservative role”.
R|A: What advice can you give aspiring entertainers?
A|N|G: The best advice I can give to aspiring entertainers is NOT TO GIVE UP and to keep striving towards your goal. There may be times when it is rough, but you can’t let that affect you. Always follow your dreams and if this is something you want to do, don’t let ANYONE discourage you. It takes determination to get to your destination. Most importantly, it is very important to stay focused and to have positive people who are going to motivate you. I strongly encourage aspiring entertainers to get involved in social networking events (it is so important to network). The last advice I will give is to collaborate with other actors and start making independent projects. The industry has changed so much over the years, so it’s a lot of ways to get noticed these days.
R|A: I understand you're currently taking combat training… What made you want to learn that technique and how often are you in class learning?
A|N|G: I am currently studying a Filipino martial arts called Pekiti Tirsia Kali. Action is one of my favorite genres in TV and Film. I want to be prepared when auditioning for roles that require combat training. Actresses who have done a lot of action films such as Zoe Saldana and Angelina Jolie are my biggest inspirations. I will love to have an opportunity to work in an action film. Combat training is not as easy as people think, it takes a lot of self-discipline and dedication. There is a lot to learn such as how to properly use a weapon on set, even throwing a punch or kick. In order to keep my combat training skills sharp, I train three times a week.
R|A: How do you prepare for a role?
A|N|G: When preparing for a role, I like to first read the entire script. After reading the entire script, I began to break down the scenes and develop character choices. I forget about being “the actress” and really focus on becoming who the character is. I want to be able to have that connection to the character and be in the moment. I like to find elements of the character that I feel are different and similar to me.
R|A: Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
A|N|G: In five years, I see myself being on a series also in action movies. Outside from acting, I will like to get into more writing and producing of TV and Film, I also want to develop affordable acting programs for aspiring actors/actresses.
R|A: This industry is very discouraging. What would you say was the most discouraging thing someone has said to you in the industry and how did you overcome that?
A|N|G: I haven’t really experienced someone specifically in the industry saying something negative to me. I will say that just being in the industry and dealing with the ups and downs can be very discouraging itself. Whenever I’m feeling discouraged, I remember my purpose and know that all of my hard work will eventually pay off.
PHILIPPIANS 4:13 I CAN DO ALL THINGS THROUGH CHRIST WHICH STRENGTHENS ME.