Today we have an amazing interview featuring Jazzi Black!
Today we have an amazing interview featuring Jazzi Black! Jazzi is a visual artist who has overcome all the odds and she continues to succeed. By letting us into her world, we learned things about Jazzi that inspired us all. She also gives advice on how you too, can press forward regardless of the circumstances, check it out.
What experiences growing up, negative or positive, shaped the woman you are today?
When I was younger I wore glasses, I was the skinny/nerdy girl. I made friends by doing everyone’s homework, so my self-esteem and confidence were extremely low. Growing up, every women has those insecurities; by acknowledging them and understanding that you are worth more than what you think that you are, you are able to define yourself. My grandmother pretty much taught me everything that I know. My father is the reason why I have an entrepreneurial mindset, which actually plays a big part of who I am today. A lot of big decisions that I make today are based off of things that I watched them do.
When did you realize you had a passion for art, specifically photography, website design, and videography?
I actually have only been doing this for two years now, prior to visual arts I was in theatre. I was in theatre since I was 5 years old. I went to Prairie View University on a theatre scholarship. I didn’t take it because I didn’t want to take all of those classes, I just wanted to jump in. My friend suggested I do communications; I didn’t even know what it was at that time. So prior to this, I was actually in front of the camera, doing interviews, hosting hump day, things like that. I didn’t even have a desire to be behind the camera, I just wanted to be the face. One day, I just happened to get behind the camera. An organization needed a videographer to shoot a breast cancer event. After that, I fell in love with editing. It was easy for me to get into it because in High School I did audio editing. I wanted to be an audio engineer. I am a tech nerd, so the artistry just sort of merged into it. I’ve always had a passion for art.
Do you think that school is important and why?
Yes, I do think school is important, all school! If you’re getting some sort of knowledge, I think it’s a good thing. However as far as school being a necessity I am 50/50. I have many friends who are not in school who are thriving in the industry. I have friends who have dropped out of school, who are thriving in their business. I would say the key to it all is motivating yourself, you have to find something that inspires you. If you do not have anything that inspires you, you will not do anything.
What are your goals, as far as creating?
I just recently started a company called “Mystic Vysion" which is the corporate side of it all. Jazzi Black Productions is all about the client, like documentaries and web series, things that will allow me to be creative. “Mystic Vysions” is going to be the corporate side of it all, like commercials, website design, and rebranding. As far as my creative vision, ultimately with all of my productions I want to enlighten people and I want to change the way people think (definitely when it comes to the way people perceive the world). However, my overall goal when I initially started Jazzi Black Productions was not just to change the way people think, but I wanted them to have the desire to explore on their own. Many people do not have the desire to learn and that bothers me. Taking things and showing people a different way to look at things through visuals, that’s my ultimate goal and I take it very seriously.
Have you ever struggled with anything while trying to accomplish your goals?
I struggle every day, I even struggled today. Things happen, but I am a problem solver, and I love being challenged. Even though things may hit the fan, to me, that’s just life saying take a detour and find a new way to do it. A lot of times people are afraid, but that excites me. For instance, I am in the process of moving, the semester is almost over, I am in grad school, and it takes a lot of strength for me to even get up and go. My aunt recently passed, last week, so we had to make a lot of arrangements. I’ve just been on an emotional rollercoaster. As far as my business, I am actually a professional photographer for a publishing studio and our season just ended last week. I think to myself, “What am I going to do now?“ Again, those things just excite me, I think to myself, "What’s next?” My advice to anyone that feels as if they hit rock bottom, would be to understand that we will hit rock bottom daily, if that’s what God needs us to do in order for us to keep going.
Also, I struggle with being a woman in a male dominated industry. I have great respect for men, that’s something I’ve been taught by my father, “Always let a man b be a man, because I need a man to let me be a woman when it’s time.” When I go to different events, there’s always an intensity of intimidation because I am a woman. You have to walk in places with courage on your face, if not, they will try to eat you alive. I demand respect when I walk into the room.
Before school started I interned for ABC, in Sacramento, doing work out of Texas. When I finally went out to California I figured I was going to get the job. I went out to breakfast with one of the producers, expecting to lock in the job, the next thing you know he told me they had put a pause on the job in order to do to other projects. After returning from breakfast, there was a guy walking out and ironically he was applying for the same position. I figured there was some “fishy” things going on. However, a few weeks later, I ended up getting a job with MTV.
That just lets me know sometimes it doesn’t matter how good your resume is, sometimes you’ll get judged and knocked down simply because you’re a woman.
Who do you look up to in the industry and why?
There’s a number of people I look up to! I love Karen Civil. I have been following her career for about 3-4 years. She’s one of my biggest inspirations as far as a business woman, her role in the media and her role in helping high profile celebrities; being able to relate, and still give back to the media, it’s definitely motivating and she’s just amazing to me.
What advice do you have for women wanting to fulfill the same dream?
First I would say do not be afraid to ask for help. I, myself have a lot of pride, so it took me a while to learn I cannot do everything on my own and I do not have all of the answers. Especially if there are people willing to help you, ask for help. If there aren’t people around, go out and find them. Secondly, I would say be cautious of your brand, your name is everything. Keep a smile on your face, remain lady like and take care of your business first. You have a lot of times to party, do not let your brand pertain of you going out to a club every night. Lastly, I would say keep your faith. Things happen daily, and when you really sit down and pray about it, you realize life is going to be life. You have to love life and trust that everything will be okay. That’s the fun thing about living, the spontaneous things that happen every day. I love life, I think if everyone loved life it would make a lot of things go a lot smoother. You have to keep your faith.
To learn more about Jazzi Black visit her on Instagram @ JazziBlack