Monday, 28 May 2012

The Truth about my time in LA

I thought it was about time I opened up and told the truth about my time living here in LA. So many people think that I am "living the life", "living the dream" am "the luckiest guy in the world". I wish all of that was true I really do. I wish I could constantly tell my friends and family back home what an amazing time I am having in LA and how I feel so settled like it's home. Well that would be a lie.

LA is a huge city that has so much going on. It is a city of such great opportunity and that's such a huge attraction to the place for so many people, me included. But with opportunities, comes desperation and comes a great deal of competition. Many people in this town will do absolutely anything to succeed, and will go to such extreme lengths to do so, no matter who they trample over in the mean time. They are completely selfish and will only ever contact you if they need something from you. Friendship is a term that so many in this city fail to understand. But the hardest part is that these people are the ones that seem to be succeeding here. I am not using this as an excuse for any of my failings since I've been out here, but it is a big excuse as to why my time here has been a struggle.

Starting fresh in a new city has so many different challenges to overcome. One is to get a group of friends. Sounds the most simple of tasks, but in LA it is one of the hardest things. I am such a social person and I get along with absolutely anyone. I am friendly and approachable, something that's tough to find in people here. I celebrated my birthday a month a go and so many people I invited flaked out. That word "flaked" is used so much out here. Its such a difference to how my life is back in England.

Myself and my girlfriend were out recently with friends, and after about 15 minutes of being at the venue, the whole group of people moved away and sat away from us. Bar 1 or 2 who spoke to us, it was such a strange situation, that we both couldn't quite believe what was happening in front of our eyes. Sounds ridiculous right? Well, its how it is in this town, people just aren't quite as friendly. This certainly could be simply because the people we hang out with we have very little in common with. Conversation seems hard work, and people often only listen if your talking about money and success. Seriously, it seems like people are only interested if you have loads of money, are going on expensive vacations, or if you have met certain celebrities.

Don't get me wrong, I have been very fortunate to meet some great people in this town, and the ones I can call my friends are such great people. Often I feel like maybe I am just searching for a group of friends like I have back at home, which is quite unrealistic to find. I am one of those people who really enjoys socialising and its very important to me to enjoy life with great people.

The feeling of having a very unstable time here does not help the situation either. Without being able to tie down a regular well paying job has been very challenging, and affects how I'm getting on out here. Stability is so key in life, but I have not had any stability since I have been outr here apart from my relationship. Not knowing whether I will be staying in LA permanently or whether I will be returning to London has constantly been on my mind. Debating over my career as well is something that rings constantly on my mind as well, which makes it hard to enjoy myself over here.

Without regular work, financial worries become an issue, which is the hardest way to live your life. I like to work hard and play hard, but in the current situation out here it becomes very difficult when your priorities change. Not knowing when your next pay cheque is coming in is even harder out here when you haven't got a regular job to back you up.

It is important for me to work through these feelings, but writing them down on helps me a lot and I want to let everyone know the truth about my situation out here. It's certainly no walk in the park thats for sure. Let's hope brighter things are waiting just around the corner.

Saturday, 19 May 2012

First Commercial in 3 years!!! Finally!

I finally booked my first commercial in 3 years! I will keep the name of the client quiet for now, well until I see it on the TV that is. Confidentiality agreements and all. But certainly I am not going to hold back how happy I am.

In my first 20 months working as a model, I booked 5 commercials. It was something that for me became the normal to book jobs on this scale. Then believe me it was a huge shock when that changed and after booking a Nintendo DSI commercial 3 years ago, I had nothing. I still went to numerous commercial auditions, callbacks, some options, but none booked up. Not only does my confidence suffer, but importantly my bank balance does as well. So I am over the moon to have booked this one.

More importantly it is my first big job here in the States, which delights not only me and my family, but my agencies too. Their faith in me has been rewarded and their gamble in getting me a visa is certainly now paying off. Without booking anything big, or getting regular work in over here, I have always felt that I let my agency down here. At times I didn't believe it would work out here, but whatever happens now I can be happy and proud of myself. Sounds cheesy, sounds like a load of crap, but believe me its something that has been on my mind ever since I came out here. I felt like a failure. But I am so pleased now.

I cant't go into detail about the commercial at this point, but what i can say is that it is a very very small world! Walking past me on set I thought I recognised somebody. But all of a sudden this girl came up to me with an English accent! I had worked with her previously 4 years ago on a commercial for a Portugese Mineral water company, shot in Lisbon. Random or what?! Couldn't quite believe it. And to top it off, I had my own trailer! Yep, my name on the trailer! I was like an excited little kid and couldn't quite believe it! I wish I could lie and say it had flat screen tv's you name it, but it had a sink, air conditioning, a radio and a mirror!!! Living the high life hey?! ha ha

Anyways, been a lazy week since thanks to my dog keeping me up all week. But start of a new week soon and I am ready to hit the ground running.

Friday, 4 May 2012

Finally....some success in LA

The last post on here was published 2 weeks ago and I was talking about my prospects coming up here in LA after a break away. I am pleased to say that 2 of the 3 have come to fruition and I have just completed filming a new dating concept show. It's been a strange experience to be so busy here in LA for the first time! This last 2 wees have been crazy in so many ways, and the easiest way to tell is that my phone battery lasts me all day at the moment because I am hardly on it ha ha. Always a sign of boredom when your on your phone the whole time. Let's start with the dating show. The show is for a company who produce lot's of similar level of shows that appeals to male viewers. Some are risque, some are very entertaining and I was happy to be hosting a dating concept show. The idea of the show is to teach the "Average Joe" ways of improving their chances with men, from going through many "ice breakers" in various situations to meet women and also some key components to doing so. I was the host of the show and also the "male expert". Yep you guys can laugh I'm sure! But hey a jobs a job. I had to host the show and run through around 50 lines to use on women that involved various scenarios, like the gym, a bar, swimming pool etc. The average joe would act out the line on a girl expert and we would break down his performance. It was so much fun and also great on camera hosting experience. We held various seminars throughout as well, talking about subjects like Body Language and Confidence. Being the host I was ensuring everyone stayed on subject, asking relative questions, offering advise for the average joe and importantly reacting to what the other people say. It was a fantastic experience and I met some good real people and importantly they will look to use me again. Reporting Job I was offered a position reporting for some small newspaper magazine, which again I am treating as a learning experience and some useful footage to add to my reel. I had to go in this week for an emergency call for this company and do one of their shows. It was hard work as there was no prompter and I had to learn a script, something which I need a lot of work on. It was only 2 hours, but it was hard work to get everything done in the right way, tone, attitude to how the client wanted. When you are filling in for someone else on a hosting job, everyone compares you to them and how you do it. It makes it so much harder than if the project is completely new. The outstanding prospect Like with many situations in this town, there is a lot of talk made about some amazing prospects. People like to talk the talk in this town, but more often than not cannot walk the walk. So only time will tell whether this prospect will lead to something. But something that I am learning fast in this town is to not get my hopes up when told about opportunities. Even Better News! Today has turned out to be an amazing day as I have just booked a commercial for next week!!! I will keep the name out of it for now, but I am so excited to finally book a big job here in LA. It is so rewarding after all the auditions I have gone to, the trecking round LA, the money spent on gas etc, but right now it feels so great. Whats so exciting about this commercial is the stages to getting the job. The initial casting was last Thursday which was my birthday night out that I had planned. It was right at the end of the day at the time I had planned to meet my friends, so I initially considered not going to it. Then after getting to the casting, I was so agitated to leave and get going to my birthday drinks that I almost left the casting! I stuck it out and obviously its paid dividends. The callback though came through at 6pm the day before I was due to work on the dating show. I had to cancel filming the show, something that I never ever wanted to do and delay it for a week. Very fortunately the company were very accomodating. And thank goodness because I got the job! Its been a completely different 2 weeks, from being so quiet, to having clashes of work on different days. A whole new experience to get through. But I am feeling absolutely great about life in LA finally and things are finally starting to work out.