Today we’d like to introduce you to Manny Jay.
Manny, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
In 2013, I began my career in fashion as an editorial stylist in New York City. I’ve had the opportunity to work alongside some of the industry’s most influential photographers, models, hair and makeup artist. My resume includes assisting legendary costume designer, and fashion stylist Patricia Field. Since relocating to Los Angeles, I’ve developed my own signature styling aesthetic “youthful chic, effortlessly glam”, I’m also currently the “Fashion Marketing Editor” at Galore Magazine and have contributed to more than 11 covers over the course of a year.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Freelancing is NEVER a smooth road. I’ve had more “NO’s” then “Yes”, yet I never complain because this is what the industry is all about. For every “no” a bigger “yes” has always presented itself to me. I believe to achieve a certain level of credibility you have to really work your way up. Assisting is not an easy job, but I always encourage people to find a great mentor and study their craft. You can always take what you’ve learned and apply it to your own. Some of the struggles I’ve encountered styling include difficult clients and managers, time management, and also I’ve had to learn how to be EXTREMELY organized.
We’d love to hear more about your work and what you are currently focused on. What else should we know?
I started my own wardrobe styling and creative direction company in 2017. I style celebrities and also everyday people, whether it’s personal shopping, curating your closet, costume design, etc. I also freelance as a fashion marketing editor for Galore magazine. I’m always working on fashion editorials. I love styling fashion editorials because I’m really able to push my creative boundaries.
I’m very proud of how far I’ve come as a company over the past two years. Throughout almost my entire styling career, I’ve had to balance working two jobs because my creative job wasn’t enough to survive finically. Since 2017 I’ve been able to pursue my dreams 24/7 because I’m self-employed. I know what sets me apart from others is my drive to want to be better then I was yesterday. I was diagnosed with leukemia on June 24th, 2009 at the age of 19. That diagnosis really gave me the push to want all the beautiful things life has to offer. I’m a huge dreamer and I believe 100% if you can envision it in your mind you can achieve it.
If you had to go back in time and start over, would you have done anything differently?
I would have taken my career more serious in the beginning. I spent a lot of time partying at events and social gatherings believing that this was what I needed to do to obtain credibility and also build my network. Although yes, you can meet people and build business relationships from events and networking. I’ve personally learned what works best for me, is EMAILING, and putting in the physical WORK! At one point, I was shooting almost twice a week to build up my portfolio. Agents are not interested in who you know or where you’ve been. They want to see the work you produce because at the end of the day you’re creating an image for clients and providing a service. It’s important to leave a lasting impression on your clients because word of mouth in the industry will also open up many opportunities. My advice is to not be so hard on yourself and enjoy the ride, the good and the bad, it will all pay off!
- Website: www.manny-jay.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Image of me in the purple was shot by: Juan Veloz