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Portraits of Hollywood

It’s more important to understand someone than to judge them. We think the first step to understanding someone is asking them the fundamental questions about who they are and how they became the person they are today. Understanding and empathy are essential building blocks for a better, more compassionate world. We’re incredibly fortunate to be able to ask these questions each week through our interview series. Below you’ll find inspiring interviews from in and around Hollywood.

Ayano Jinnouchi

Ayano was born and raised in Kanagawa, Japan. 
At young age, she started to learn Hip Hop dance, which turned her interest to the urban culture especially the braiding style. 

She graduated from Nihon Beauty Academy in Tokyo.
She worked at a hair salon in a really competitive area called, “Omotesando” for several years. After Salon Experience,She moved to Los Angeles to pursue her the other passion which is dance. 
After many years of being professional dancer , interact with hair stylist on set , She realized that she still have passion for hair. once she moved on hair career again, started working with many dancers as she already had big connection in the industry.
That all lead to a transition back into hair styling, from private clients to have Braiding Booth at many festival and shifted to set work. Read more>>

Mai

For as long as I can remember music has always been a huge part of my life. I started singing when I was a toddler. When I was a little girl I was obsessed with rnb/soul (especially from the 70s-90s). I started writing songs for fun here and there in my notebooks but nothing serious. As I got older I saw the power that artists have to mold their careers into what they envision. It inspired me to take charge and to pursue what I love. I’ve only released a couple songs to this day and have not been consistent.. I wanted to take time out to connect more with myself on a spiritual level and understand who I am before I started releasing on a consistent basis. I want to be as authentic and genuine as possible with my music. I feel like im just now starting. I just moved to LA and am excited to start this new chapter. Read more>>

Charron George

With over 7 years of experience in the beauty industry, I have fully indulged myself in every aspect of beauty, from starting off as a freelance makeup artist working along side models on set, to creating my very own cosmetics line called Kalihaz Cosmetics. Now, I am the owner of Virgo Glow Beauty Bar in West Hollywood specializing in face and body aesthetics. Read more>>

Nicole Safarian

Around 2016, my passion for makeup really started to come to the surface. I remember being so shy and, to be honest terrified, to mention it to anyone. Around that time I had created a secret instagram profile where I slowly started to post pictures of my work (that I did on myself), along with photos of makeup looks which inspired me. I tried my best to be as discrete as possible, from my username, to the angles i’d take pictures of just one side of my face. As slick as I thought I was, my best friends caught me, and immediately asked if it were me running the instagram profile. Read more>>

Rianne Pyle

My journey into film is very unorthodox. I like most filmmakers that come to love the art of visual storytelling had a fascination with movies and tv shows. Despite having a natural inclination to art, I found myself wanting to pursue a career in a STEM field until the summer of my senior year. My mom observed my love of films and put me into a pre-college summer program at the School of Visual Arts- my now alma mater. After my first screenwriting class, I remember texting my mom ‘I can do this for the rest of my life.’ My love for filmmaking was instantly realized and cultivated. And I guess how they say the rest is history! Read more>>

Gädes

It started when I was about 7 years old, my mother used to have a ton of magazines like Vogue, Elle, and many more fashion based mags. I showed her a photo of this beautiful chocolate woman one day and I told her “I want to do that” she said “model? You want to be a model” i said yes and the rest was history I also used to dance, sing, and sew at a very young age Read more>>

Nancy Rahnama

As a child I was taught that nutrition may be the solution to most physical problems; that every illness or ailment could be resolved with a natural ingredient. Growing up, I watched my mother create a nutritional lifestyle that allowed my father to live approximately 30 years past his life expectancy, as he battled heart disease. As a young child this became an influential part of my life, feeding my passion for nutrition. I no longer saw eating as solely a source of fuel, a form of pleasure or something to do when I was bored, but a gateway to health and wellbeing. Read more>>

Reyna Khalil

While In High School I discovered my passion for magazines, and I read every designer, model and beauty article I could find. Born and raised in Nicaragua with a degree in Design, I moved to Los Angeles California where I continued my education in Makeup, in 2013 I began working in the fashion industry. Through years of hard work, I have been fortunate to be a part of many great Makeup Teams and experienced great achievements in international fashion shows. Much of my work has been published in major magazines such as Vogue, Bazzar, People, etc. There is so much more I want to accomplish. Read more>>

Courtney Scheuerman

I started working on this One Woman Show, ‘Holding Court’ a few years ago. It started with actual people from my life, taking real situations and recreating them to tell the story. I had the need for this story to be told. I wanted to bring all the facets of my life together to illustrate that what you see isn’t always the reality of what’s happening on the inside. My journey of learning to love myself and to see myself as the hero of my own story is something I wanted to share because I think it’s something a lot of people struggle with but so rarely talk about. Read more>>

Mariah Iman Wilson

I’m originally from Scottsdale, Arizona. I started dancing when I was 2, I began children’s musical theater at Desert Stages Theater when I was 4 and booked my first commercial at 6! My mom knew I had caught the acting bug when I kept pulling her back to the theater for the next play and the next play. I have an aunt that’s an actress as well and she saw my play, and immediately told my mom to bring me to LA! She set up my first commercial audition and we were late, flying in from Arizona, but she begged the casting director to see me, so they did and that’s how I booked my first commercial. Read more>>

Jill Espino

Ivan and Khrysti started Little Giants when they were expecting their son, Knowledge, in 2013. They couldn’t find clothing and accessories at that time that resonated with their vibe so they decided to create their own pieces. They started selling online first, then scored a pop up in New York in 2016 that was only supposed to last a month. They received overwhelming praise from the pop up that they opened up their first store in Brooklyn in 2017. Read more>>

Erin Cain

I began modeling because I am photogenic, and also because I am able to evolve into my alter ego Erin Emanii CAIN when doing so. I am other wise very shy Read more>>

The Carbon Alchemist

I am an intuitive yet unconventional tarot reader that incorporates traditional decks, universal channeling and quantum work. I am an all around holistic practitioner. I’ve personally survived, triumphed and flourished despite childhood sexual abuse, physical abuse, financial hardship and life threatening illness. With each iteration of spiritual and mental trials I became stronger and more passionate about helping others get to solutions faster and cultivating their own spiritual power and practice. Read more>>

Jacob Chavez

My name is Jacob Chavez. I am the founder and CEO of Jacobs Private Select. Growing up I was a professional boxer and later went on to train an World Class athletes. I know first hand the intense impact high level athletes put on their bodies to perform at their best ability, I knew the nerves and pressure that overwhelms many professional athletes. I wanted to create and organic all natural product to help with muscle recovery, sleep and to help relieve some of the anxiety and stress that many of these athletes face daily. Growing up in Mexico, my family was very into agriculture and farming so I got most of my knowledge for farming early on. About ten years ago I became very interested in hemp plants and the healing components they carry. Read more>>

Audrey Collins

I always always knew I wanted to sing. Music is what made my life so full of color and purpose. I started out in choirs, performing in local musicals, talent shows and pretty much any performing opportunity I could get my hands on at 7 years old. My mom has always supported me. I could walk you through each step I took from there to where I am now, but it would be too long and boring to read. So to summarize, I took almost EVERY avenue I could to sing and be on stage. From being signed to a Seattle Talent Agency (mainly for acting) to taking vocal lessons, to competing in talent shows and even singing National Anthems for the Mariners and other local teams, I was immersed in music. Read more>>

Shorty T

I am from New Orleans, LA and started writing music in my freshman year of high school. Once I mastered my style, things started to take off for me. I made a name for myself in my city but things changed in a major way after Hurricane Katrina hit us. After the storm, I ended up relocating to California. I never expected such a major life change like that. As far as my music was concerned, it was like starting all over. I ended up attending college once I moved to Cali which helped me to start building up my name again. Read more>>

Jennifer Mejicanos

I started in the Beauty Industry around 2016, I first started as a professional makeup artist & went to a school called E.I School of Professional Makeup. It was a one year course that taught me many, many skills, from bridal, TV & Film, Editorial & special effects makeup. It was amazing & I learned so much. I definitely fell in love with the industry. When I graduated 2017 I ventured out to becoming a freelance makeup artist. It was very fun! I mainly did a lot of bridal & runway gigs but I always felt like I wanted to do more. So that’s when I decided I was going back to school to get my esthetician license for California. Definitely one of the best decisions I made, I felt like my knowledge expanded & was just open to a whole new world of skincare. Read more>>

Elvira Guzman

In my late teens worked two jobs at Steve Harvey’s companies while working towards degrees in Political Science and Law & Society at the University of Southern California. After years of hard work, by my early twenties, I was the Director of Publicity for Harvey’s companies, and a college graduate with honors. This hard work ethic helped fueled Elvie G PR to one of the fastest- growing PR & Branding companies serving Hollywood and beyond. Read more>>

Marcus Bohlert

I left my full-time job to take a 15 hour part-time job at a beauty counter. The first make up company I worked for was Bobbi Brown cosmetics. But for some reason Mac cosmetics always caught my eye all the flashy trendy make up looks. So eventually after three failed attempts they let me in and the rest was history. After working two years I encounter I was itching to step off and do my own thing and looking for more opportunity. So why not do make up in the strip club… Three years at the largest strip club on the East Coast in Philly called Delilahs. I started to gain extensive clientele and word was getting out about me. One of my first celebrities I encounter it was DreamDoll the female rapper. Read more>>

Sharon Clawson

I was interested in modeling for as long as I can remember. I would always watch “America’s Next Top Model” as a little girl just dreaming to be able to do what they would. My mom put me into pageants at 11 years old and I remember having such a love-hate relationship with them. I loved meeting people and being on stage, but I didn’t love how it had an impact on my self esteem. Being the only brown girl in the room and not being a size 2, I always felt that I stuck out like a sore thumb. As I spent years working on myself, I decided to get back into it. What gave me the confidence to give my dream a full chance is Ashley Graham’s Ted X Talk. Ever since, I’ve had such a different perspective on myself and new found confidence. I started back up on modeling by meeting up with photographers in Sacramento, building my book for a couple years, and decided to take the leap to move to LA. Read more>>

Melissa Shah

I grew up practicing yoga since childhood, thanks to my mother who knew that yogic practices would support my physical health more than any medications I was taking. Being a first generation Indian-American had its share of challenges and beauty – practicing yoga was a pathway to connecting to my culture. I started studying yoga more deeply at the age of 18, under the guidance of my teachers Sudhir and Niru Parikh. I firmly believe in continuously adapting the practice to the individual as we move through human experiences – your practice has to evolve with you! Having had asthma since I was 2 years old, I’ve seen firsthand the positive effects that yoga and pranayama, when adapted to the individual, can have not only on chronic illnesses, but how we perceive the world! Read more>>

Alexia Young

At a very young age, I remember being obsessed with everything fashion and all things pink and girly. Around thirteen – fourteen, I decided I wanted to have my own business one day BUT I knew it was destined to be in the medical field or fashion industry. I first started with dressing my little sister up whenever I could and doing my friend’s hair and makeup or whoever at the time would let me express my creativity. When I turned around fifteen years old, I had my mom buy me a sewing machine for Christmas and to teach myself how to sew via YouTube but was unsuccessful. Read more>>

Madeline Moore

Hi my name is Maddie Moore and I am the owner of Meals by Maddie, a private meal prep service. I also model and am a part owner of Let’s Grow Podcast and LiMa Fit. I started my meals prep business in April 2017 after losing 40 lbs the previous year. Back then I was an event planner and didn’t make time to workout and was eating really bad. I decided then to join a gym and switch up my diet. My best friend and roomie asked if I could meal prep for her, not being the best cook I was a little nervous but decided for extra income I would and decided to teach myself how to make more recipes for us both. Read more>>

Alus –

Alus is a multifaceted pop/R&B vocalist, songstress, musician, producer, and engineer. Stemming from a musical background and family, she is destined for the stage. Her grandmother, a Juilliard graduate and touring violinist with Frank Sinatra’s The Rat Pack, and father, a drummer and trumpeter, encouraged her musical abilities early on. Growing up in an eclectic musical household, Alus was trained classically in opera. Read more>>

IAKOPO

Global Billboard Artist & Cultural Influencer IAKOPO delivers a new sound to the mainstream Yah Koh Poh Jacob Scott Jones, commonly known as recording artist “iakopo” (yah-koh-po), was born in California and raised in Samoa gaining inspiration through the island lifestyle which is felt through his music His fame in the islands intrigued global producer Rvssian who is known for his work with artists such as Chris Brown, Rhianna, and many others. Iakopo has spent his career touring around the world, gaining a loyal fan base from the U.S to Japan . Iakopo has partnered with several A-List artists such as Shaggy in the hit single “Touch Down” – which hit #31 on the US Billboard Dance Charts. Read more>>

R’Mya DeMarrco

Book Events Boise, Throws amazing Events and Books Artist to Perform! We are combination of event coordinators and booking agents. Currently booking for our Northwest Invasion Your with Afroman, a 10 city tour, traveling through Oregon and Washington, August 1st-14th. You can find us on Instagram and Facebook for more information! Read more>>

Ziang Yang

I got my start working at Jet Studios, one of the most prominent recording studios in Beijing. In 2014, I left for Los Angeles, where I enrolled at the Musician’s Institute to study Bass Guitar Performance and Audio Engineering. After earning my degree in 2016, I got a position as an audio engineer at Blackwood Studios, a reputable recording studio in the Hollywood Hills that is known to be favored by some of the top producers, writers, and artists in the industry. My meticulous attention to detail has earned myself a reputation as a top notch talent in the music industry, which ultimately led me to taking the next step in my career by signing a management deal with 373 Management. Read more>>

Molly Kruse

I grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area, the eldest daughter of two. I was immersed in the rich musicality of my hometown; diving headfirst into artists like the Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Steve Miller Band, and Etta James, plus countless others, was my first formal musical education. I started vocal lessons at 12 years old and after working tirelessly on my voice, I competed in national vocal competitions, performed lead roles in musicals, and sang in school choir for over six years. Read more>>

Jordan Martinez

At the age of seven, Jordan knew that his calling in life was to direct film. In elementary school, Jordan competed in tournament Chess and eventually earned the title, “Western, United States Chess Champion” for his grade division. At the age of seventeen, during the surge in troop numbers in the Middle East, he asked both his parents to sign off for military recruitment. He enlisted in the United States Army and served as a U.S Paratrooper under “Special Operations Command”. Overseas, most of his time was spent in the volatile area of Kandahar Province, Afghanistan in support of “Operation Enduring Freedom”. Read more>>

Desarae Dee

DESARAE DEE • My Story My journey as a musician began at the tender age of 6. I was classically trained on the piano, and I grew up playing gospel, and Caribbean-based music in church. I was shy about music; my parents never heard me practice, and my friends never heard me play. I kept to myself for many years and had no desire to be in the spotlight. I saw music as more of a hobby growing up, and becoming an artist was not even a thought. Then, at the age of 15, I wrote my first song that was filled with many complex chords that I had no idea how to interpret at the time. I knew they were outside of the classical music I grew up playing, and I sought to figure out what they were. Read more>>

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