We had the good fortune of connecting with Chelsi Stancil and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Chelsi, have you ever found yourself in a spot where you had to decide whether to give up or keep going? How did you make the choice?
“There’s still breathe in your body, right? Ok, keep going!” – Chelsi Stancil This quote derived during my time in graduate school. If you’ve ever attended any graduate school, you would know that there are a million “I want to give up” moments. It’s inevitable! Though, I am proud to say that I completed graduate school, summa cum laude. As artist, we find ourselves in the wavering mindset more than often. Especially with the ever-present thought of, “When is my next gig coming?” It’s a recurring reality for us. Then, when you add a pandemic on top of all of that- this uncertainty can/did cause a lot of people to pack up their artist bags and run for the hills. When I chose to become a full-time artist, I knew there would be a ton of challenges and uncertainties, but I also knew that there was not any other career that would feed my passion. When you find your passion, you must go after it with everything in your being. When I chose to take the leap and move to Los Angeles, I knew that my faith had to outweigh my fear in every part of my life. Even in the times where I had no idea where my rent would come from or after not booking any roles for months, I still had to constantly remind myself that God placed this talent and ability in me for a reason. Every time I thought I wouldn’t make it, God always had a way to show me he’s still here and he’s been making ways and opportunities for me consistently since. So even in the times where there is uncertainty, I find ways to keep going. If I can’t keep going in one area, I find ways to create in other areas. I find that with God, I can do all things, and as long as he allows me to be here, I am going to keep going. So should you!
Please tell us more about your work. We’d love to hear what sets you apart from others, what you are most proud of or excited about. How did you get to where you are today professionally. Was it easy? If not, how did you overcome the challenges? What are the lessons you’ve learned along the way. What do you want the world to know about you or your brand and story?
As an actress we get the “what sets you apart from others?” question quite often. For me it’s simple, I’M ME! There’s literally only one Chelsi Lucille Stancil in this world. I bring my gifts, my energy, my creativity, and commitment to the table, which for me, is enough! I am most proud of my tenacity to keep going through all the challenge’s life has thrown my way. As a black woman in Hollywood, nothing is easy. Especially when there are a ton of people here going after the same opportunities as you. The thing that has helped me remain focused and content is my belief in “What is meant for me, is for ME!” This mindset has prevented me from comparing or daring to compete and instead, I cheer on and support my fellow artist. I’ve learned that if you want the results, you must put in the work. You can’t expect to lose 10 pounds by eating horribly and not exercising regularly, the same applies to your craft. I can’t expect to book any roles with old headshots and an outdated reel. I train myself to stay on top of the craft. If there is new information available, I need to read on it. A new acting class available, I need to sign up. If I’m not booking roles, I need to create my own content. Once I started making opportunities for myself, I found a freedom like no other. I started creating traveling vlogs, recoding book reviews, and sharing stories about my adventures here in Los Angeles. It has given me the strength and confidence that I needed during the waiting season. Make opportunities for yourself! Don’t wait around for people to give you an opportunity. If you have a phone and some good lighting, take advantage of it. If you like to travel, vlog about it. If you like to write, keep writing. I want the world to know that as an artist we need you! We need you to continue support the arts. If you see someone’s work you like, shout them out and share their work. If you have an opportunity physically go and support an artist, do it. Make the time to support the people who helped make 2020 more entertaining for the world!
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
When I have friends in town, I typically show them all the touristy attractions. You can’t go wrong with people watching at Santa Monica Pier, Venice Beach, Malibu Beach, admiring the art at the Getty Museum, or catching the views at the Griffith Observatory. To get the most entertainment we typically venture down Hollywood Boulevard, Beverly Hills, and the Fashion District. If they’re not afraid of heights, we take a hike at Runyon Canyon or to the Hollywood sign. For Food, I keep it simple to avoid any unusual reactions. I take them to a nice brunch at Mama’s Shelter in Hollywood or The Saddle Ranch on Sunset. Dinner is typically somewhere in Hollywood to be able to catch the nightlife bars right after. A non-negotiable, I make sure they try at least 2-3 taco trucks before leaving LA. You cannot come to LA and not try at least one taco truck!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I would like to dedicate this shoutout to my tribe. My friends and family are truly Godsent! Thank you all for being a part of this journey. From sharing my bookings, to reposting my content, to helping emotionally, spiritually, and financially. They help me prepare for roles, motivate me to keep going, and pray for me during trying times. They are THE BEST! They’ve witnessed my growth in so many ways and have cheered me on through it all. Thank you all for your unconditional love and support. I am forever grateful!
Alex Urbina and Alonzo Wilkins