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Meet Laura Santoyo

Today we’d like to introduce you to Laura Santoyo.

Laura, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I was born in Colombia and since I can remember I’ve always love art. I was always drawing, painting, reading, telling stories to my younger siblings and often those stories became plays, we dressed up and perform in front of our parents and family. When I was 12, we moved to Peru and I was fascinated by the history, the ruins and the culture of the country. I loved the colors of the traditional dresses, the masks, the dances and the cuisine. After I finished high school, I decided to go to Quebec, Canada and study Creative Arts, Literature and Languages. While in Canada I became interested in world cinema, I used to live next to a small theatre that played independent movies from all over the world. I went back to Colombia and study architecture I loved the process of conceptualization, designing spaces and creating experiences for the inhabitants. My passion for art and architecture led me later to study ephemeral architecture, scenography and finally production design. I moved to LA six years ago and have had the opportunity to work with many talented people on TV shows, music videos, commercials and films.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
I think the biggest challenge has been moving to LA where I didn’t know anybody but it’s also the best decision I’ve made.

We’d love to hear more about your work and what you are currently focused on. What else should we know?
I am a production designer. I work in collaboration with other filmmakers in different media content like films, music videos, tv and commercials. I’m very passionate about my work, I seek out work that I can connect with on a personal and aesthetic level. I’m always curious, always soaking up ideas, always creative. I like taking disparate things and putting them together in unexpected and revelatory ways. I have the highest standards for myself. Every detail is thought of. I have a strong and unique sense of aesthetics. I am incredibly precise when it comes to expressing the story and the characters visually. I understand the language of cinema and use every tool at my disposal to help tell the story. Whether it’s knowing how to make use of space, or how to evoke a certain subtext with just color. I have strong instincts and know what I am after, but I am also completely open to conversation and developing ideas in concert with the team.

Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
The first thing that comes to mind is passion. I also know how to present my ideas clearly – both verbally and visually, I have leadership skills, I remain calm under pressure, I know how to prioritize, stay organized, and keep others motivated to work at a high standard. A good attitude is also very important!

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