DATE: 7-12-15 LESSON: n/a TIME IN & OUT: 12pm-12:41 Well... Read More >>
Kellie Koford — Texas Film Connection
I, Kellie Koford, am a 29 year old ex business owner, ex realtor, ex interior designer, and current Administrative Assistant in corporate America. It's fascinating, I know... The truth is, I knew from the age of 10 that I wanted to be in the creative industry. It just really bites that most of my adult life has been spent in anything BUT a real creative environment (no wonder I’ve felt out of place for so long).
I've always been on the edge of choosing a career that would give me that creative outlet as well as having that stable income every month; so I decided to get my Bachelors in interior design from the University of Alabama. HA!! Mind you...I absolutely loved my college years. I met fantastic people who I still keep in touch with today, was able to live in the deep south and add to my already heavy East Texas drawl, be a part of amazing football, and gained significant knowledge on the aesthetics of design. There was just one problem.....I graduated in 2009. YEP, you heard me. That's not a typo. Surely you can see where this story is going as I know I'm not the only person who was starting their adult life in the midst of the second ugliest economic downturn this country has seen.
I decided to return home to Texas because the news was very clear that Texas was the primary survivor (if you can call it that) of all 50 states during the economy crash. That was appealing to me, since not only my family was in Texas, but I was also seeing devastation within my creative industry of choice in Alabama. The company I had done my summer internship with had completely deleted their Interior Design department with the exception of one individual, I stormed the streets and internet to find an ID position with no luck, and I was fresh off a break up with my college sweetheart. The timing couldn't be better to move back in with good ole' Mom and Dad (sigh).
I wish I could tell you that when I moved to Texas everything was greener on the other side of the pasture, but I would be lying to you. The truth of the matter is that I was told numerous times, "We like your portfolio, but right now we are able to hire a person with ten plus years of experience for the price we could hire a new graduate." I couldn't blame them. It was a business decision. A business decision I despised, but a business decision none the less. So what is a creative girl with a fresh degree to do in this case? That's right....start her own business (stop laughing). Shoot, if they weren't going to give me a position where I could gain experience, then I'll create the experience myself! Create it I did; just not the kind I was hoping for.
In the nearly two years I had my business, I don't think I've ever worked so hard in my life. Correction...I KNOW I've never worked so hard in my life. During this time, I held down four jobs to make ends meet. Ends that were being met were not only my business bills, but the student loan bills had started to pile in, along with the normal bills of life that a new adult would have to become accustomed to. It was during this time that I acquired my TX real estate license. If there's any advice I can leave you with, it's that no new business person should start by opening up TWO businesses. What a nightmare.
I finally gave into the advice of my sweet, precious parents which was something like, "Kellie, stop being so stubborn and close your business down. You're just getting more into debt." Who can argue with that? I was getting more into debt. More into debt and more exhausted by the day. So as I began the dissolving of my business, I continued with a couple of my jobs which happened to be in the always stable industry of healthcare. That's right folks! The medicines get better, but the people never do. :) There's no way I could go wrong with hanging out in healthcare. Besides, the creative industry had betrayed me. It chewed me up and spit me out no matter if I had cautiously chosen a "wise" creative job route.
Five years later, I'm still hanging out with the healthcare peeps. Some of them are great! Some of them are not... But I can honestly tell you that burning desire for that creative outlet that first overwhelmed me as a child, never went away. I tried to cover it up by doing creative things on the side. Isn't that what most people do with their hobbies? They make them into their "on the side" gigs? Well not anymore! This TX chick says to heck with that. I'm tired of the everyday 9-5 meeting after meeting after meeting with big wigs who think they're better and smarter than God himself. I'm sick of the structured "this is right" and "this is wrong" attitude. Who decides what's right and wrong anyway??
Let me be free with my expression! Am I not the empowered individual that this bio started out with? Of course I am. That new business owner fire is still here, that ten year old creative kid is still scratching to get out of this 29 year old responsible woman. It's high time I stopped stifling the real me.
I've always been fascinated with the artistry of movies and TV. How people tell stories with this media is beautiful; and it can be ANY story which is fantastic. As far back as I can remember I would listen to music in the car, at home, anywhere really and create story lines in my head of how a movie scene would use that piece of music to get an emotion across to the audience so that they could truly relate to the characters. I've never admitted this to anyone before, but as an adult woman, I still do this anytime I hear music. I think about how the scene would look and what angles are being shown. Story telling through film (be it digital or otherwise) is my passion! I want to reach the masses with inspiring, thought provoking, emotionally driven material.
The real Kellie is back. Hi, it's nice to meet you...