We had the good fortune of connecting with Aaron Anthony Harper and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Aaron Anthony, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
For me personally, taking risk is everything honestly. I’m a firm believer that anything is possible if you put your mind to it, however, you’ll never know what the possibilities could be without one thing, and that one thing is risk taking. I literally would not be where I am, or be in the position that I am in today without taking any risk. Growing up, everyone around me was contempt with staying in their hometown and working a regular job, and essentially just living a regular life. Absolutely nothing wrong with that, but for me, I always knew I wanted more, but I needed to take a leap of faith, and ultimately take a risk in order to achieve that, and that’s exactly what I did. Iv’e always been someone to differ from the rest of the crowd, to break the trend, and ultimately to pursue anything and everything that I want to do and accomplish in my life, but again, none of that is possible without risk taking.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
There’s an interesting realization I just came to with that question. Im finding that to talk about my art is almost impossible. Sometimes feelings are rather difficult to translate into language. Maybe its because I am still so young in this industry I haven’t yet fully carved out my exact style as a filmmaker that anyone could point to and say “Thats Aaron Harper’s work”. It’s almost like a validation is needed before I can say it myself. I don’t know, maybe my style is raw honesty in everything I do. I guess my story themes on the belief that whatever it is in life that your passionate about, or whatever stirs you insides and lights that fire, it’s your duty in this life to pursue it. As a filmmaker, my story begins when I was about 4 years old. I lived with my grandmother at the time; I was obsessed with The Lion King. There’s that one scene where Simba is being raised by the Rafiki (the baboon) above Pride Rock. Id rewatch that on repeat. There’s something uniquely etherial about how scenes from a film can shift us and hit chord inside us in a way nothing else can. From there on I knew I was a filmmaker in my soul through and through. I went to college initially for communications but I realized I was severely depressed following that path. I wasn’t expressing my true authentic self and I really hated the way life was looking for me at the time. I took an acting class and it made me realize that I needed to stop playing around and do what I was here to do. This is your one life and you cant waste it. So I switched my major to acting and eventually moved to Los Angeles to do just that. It was a major transition moving to LA from Hawaii. The competition is surreal and there’s no room from error here. Coming from Hawaii, I was a big fish in a small pond. When I got to LA, I remember the first audition I went into, all the other actors auditioning were wearing the exact same thing as me. It. was a humbling experience to say the least, but like all the challenges in life, I think it’s wise to remind yourself that you’re the only you that will ever be. There’s only one of each of us. No point is beating yourself up because you’re not enough of A or B. Everything comes in divine timing. The roles we’re meant to fill will always coming to us if we meet them half way. Yes, Ive had to opportunity to work on incredible projects with incredible people-yet Im not fully satisfied. For me personally I just still have that fire inside that feels like its just starting to get bigger. Thats a lesson Im still learning…to be okay with where Im at right now or to give myself enough credit for the accomplishments Ive done. So with that being, stay tuned for what’s to come!
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Definitely need to take in account that currently COVID-19 is a thing sadly. But with those protocols there’s still a handful of things to do like the drive-in theatres. But if we were in a world where COVID wasn’t a thing, the first thing Id do would be to take them to do the touristy stuff like Hollywood Blvd, Beverly Hills, and the Santa Monica Pier. Can’t not see West Hollywood . A great place to eat there is Craig’s. You cant be here and not visit Malibu, especially with the hidden beaches there. The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
If I could choose anybody at all to recognize for being in my corner, backing me up through thick & thin, and all the difficulties that come with life, it would be my mother, undoubtedly. Although I work in an Industry and have a profession where nothing is guaranteed, and you have to absolutely grit & grind for everything, she has shown a tremendous amount of support since I decided I was going to move to LA to pursue my dreams. With my mom coming from the medical industry, where she has been a highly decorated and renowned Anesthesiologist for over 30+ years, it certainly was challenge for her at first having a child that didn’t want to follow in her footsteps with a career as a physician, but that just goes to show how great of a mother she truly is, being able to adapt and understand that my path was going to be very different from hers, but ultimately and most importantly, allowing me to do what it is that I want to do with my life, and do so without regrets. Secondly, I would like to give a shoutout to my grandparents in Ohio! Literally since day one, they’ve instilled me the morals, virtues and values that i carry myself with to this day. Would not be the man that I am today if it were not for them. Lastly, I would like to thank all of my creative individual, actor, and artist friends that I have had the pleasure of encountering and sharing this incredible journey with in Los Angeles & in the Entertainment industry, you all know who you are. As we all very much so know, nothing is a given in this town. Its truly a dog-eat-dog world, absolutely nothing is a given in this industry, and any day can be your last honestly. But, with continued support and help from eachother, the boundaries are limitless, and anything is possible!
Spencer Selover Reymark Palcon Leo Geon