Working as an actor in the film and television industry is a profession, which takes time and dedication to reach success. The great part of being an actor is you get paid to play and make good money while working. Some sets are very loving and lasting friendships develop. Other rewards including getting invites to screenings, parties, and reasons to buy those pricey pumps (which can be a tax write off). However, the rewards come after the hard, yet enjoyable work.
Many actors want to talk about the suffering and sacrifices they have endured to become a working actor. True, there are many trade offs to this industry. The act of moving here, for example, is a challenge. A challenge as well are the social dynamics of LA has its’ own energy unlike another. At first, it feels overwhelming, but once letting go and embracing the nature of the town, one can begin to love it. As for the film and television industry itself, you need to love it or leave it. If life feels like a lot of sacrifice in the pursuit of film and television acting, then you need to weigh your options. Find ways to succeed in all aspects of the life you desire. For me, I have such passion, love and desire for film and television, I can and do it and pursue it every day. Each day is another opportunity to find greater success both as an artist and human being.
Having said how much I love this town, my first few moments in Hollywood, included some of the most emotionally challenging times of my life. I came from a small town where I was known, liked and had found success. I had graduated college with honors knowing “everything” about acting, yet nothing about getting work. Had I had prior knowledge of the LA experience, and the film and television industry it’s self, I would have alleviated quite a few months of stress. Because of my experiences, I knew, that when in a position to help other new artists, I would give what I could to share my knowledge of what I had been through. A few months ago, a light bulb turned on, where I conceived the idea of “The Daily Actor,” which launched shortly after on January 25th, 2012. I realized how much ground work I had laid, and that my career had really begun to take off. I could teach and show the life of an actor via my own journey.
Each day, on “The Daily Actor,” I give an inside view of what it is really like to pursue work in the entertainment industry. I post anything from my own current projects, to industry topics, to places to check out to help an artist on their own journey. Meant for a place of entertainment with bits of knowledge, anyone can go on the site to get a better understanding of the daily ebbs and flows of life as an actor. Without directly teaching, it is a resource to proper terminology, demos, etiquette ect..
One of my favorite moments shared thus far on “The Daily Actor” was booking “In A World” directed by Lake Bell. Booking a job based on an improv audition was a huge success for me. Last spring, having no improv experience, I auditioned for an improv competition (the”Xecution”). I was chosen for the live show. Not knowing what I was doing and competing against contestants more experienced than I, I had to rely on my previous theatre training and work my butt off to make it through weeks of elimination rounds. Three months of competing and shying past elimination, I made it as the “top 7 competitor”. It was a grueling, four month long competition. In those months, I learned much about freeing up acting skills and just going for it. This made my booking of “In a World” even more memorable. To top the icing on the cake, Lake Bell was amazing and I had an awesome time shooting several scenes on set.
The daredevils, the entrepreneurs, and the supermodel beauties make it in this town. Creating “The Daily Actor” has helped me up my own game. I’ve always “talked” about how one has to be willing to risk to succeed. My “talk” is now public and I have to be willing to “do” on a daily basis. It scares me a little to make my successes and failures so public, but I feel it necessary to push for my own artistic stretch. It also brings others into my life so they can understand that success and failure are all part of the acting life. I have the desire to succeed, and the only way to do it, is to put your self out there. This industry takes passion. Until your career is snowballing, project after project, it takes daily dedication to ones craft. When your life is snowballing project after project, it takes a different type of energy and dedication to stay on top. Pursuing film and television is truly a labor of love. Time and energy reap its rewards, but if it’s solely for fame and fortune, I recommend finding the cure to cancer or becoming a Steve Jobs.
With that said, work is key, but having fun is the most important part of experiencing success. Almost a year ago, my acting coach went down the line of students and told each individual what he/she needed to work on. My career felt a little stagnant, so I was wondering where I needed to work harder. Each person, he gave them a task like read more screenplays, go meet so and so, write ect.. When he got to me, I was eagerly awaiting what I should do, and he told me this: “Go Play. Go have fun. Be a little reckless. Scare your self. Break a few rules”. He went down a huge list of rebellious things I should do and try including coming to class late, or may be a little hung over. He hadn’t ever in, in his teaching career, endowed someone to break rules, but he knew I would take the advice appropriately, and knew it would help me. If I was having fun, I began to allow my self to stay out a little later than normal. If I saw something that scared me, I would try it like talk to a cute guy, do burlesque, go clubbing, try improv, have a drink, say what was on my mind, travel). I began to open up and things began to flow in my direction. I was happy, becoming a stronger artist, and potential opportunities began to come my way. For me, this has been the biggest lesson that I still work on. Allow my self to be open. Allow my self to be free. Allow my self to receive, (good, bad, etc.) so I can give and be so much more rich in the characters I play. I would never advise someone to be reckless, but if I met an artist, like the “me” a year ago, I would give the same advice.
My journey in the film and television industry has just begun. There is quite a bit of career potential ahead and I look forward to pursuing many aspects of it. I intend to range from network television, to mainstream, to internet , to indie films and all areas in-between. Doors are now opening, and I feel incredibly blessed, excited, and ready to walk through!
Since childhood, Erin has demonstrated not only interest, but also passion and talent for the arts. While her peers were riding bikes and playing at the beach, Erin spent her free time writing plays, experimenting with choreography, creating voiceovers, filming school projects and recruiting friends to put on backyard shows. It would only be a matter of time before her destiny to pursue a life with Hollywood’s entertainment industry would be realized.
The daughter of a ballerina, Erin’s journey began at the age of two at a small southern California dance center. Over the next fifteen years, she had the opportunity to study a variety of dance genres, including tap, ballet and jazz and musical theatre. Recognizing that Erin required more stimulation than the rigidity of classical dance, her mother experimented with Erin’s ability in gymnastics. The mental and physical challenge of the sport blended well with Erin’s natural determination and fierce competitive nature. This opened doors for new creative opportunities in the form of professional cheerleading and long distance running.
At the age of 15, Erin endured a life changing injury that challenged her love for the athletic arts. A born athlete, Erin was now faced with physical and mental challenges that limited her options for a potential college scholarship in gymnastics, cheerleading or track. Determined to overcome these limitations, Erin understood that she would have to channel her drive and passion into something else if she were to truly succeed.
College presented the answer to this dilemma when she walked into her first collegiate drama class. Clearly, this was the path Erin was intended to follow. Upon the receipt of a scholarship, Erin was able to pursue a double major in dance and drama, graduating with honors. She was also given additional funds to study with institutions such as Steppenwolf Theatre Company, the Michael Chekov Association, Broadway’s Jerry Mitchell and James Sampliner and De’ll Arte International.
Additional accolades include local television and film experience during her college years and a National College Dance Festival award which lead to a performance at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C.
Erin now resides in Los Angeles, pursuing film and television.