We had the good fortune of connecting with Diante Singley and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Diante, why did you pursue a creative career?
I pursued an artistic career because I honestly didn’t and still don’t know what I would do with my life otherwise. Life is too short to spend time on things that do not make you happy or provide fulfillment. Though there are a great many number of ways someone like me could go out into the world and make a lot of money, none of them would truly make me happy. In fact, they would more likely than not, cause a great deal of resentment both towards my occupation and myself. So here I am, chasing fools gold with no discernible skills outside of filmmaking. Yet the chase is the blessing. The journey is what truly makes me happy.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Any filmmaker can you tell you that the journey to making it as a creative is a long and arduous one. It is filled to the brim with obstacles that feel impossible to overcome. Those same filmmakers, however, will tell you that every completed project presents a brand new batch of lessons to learn from. Though I haven’t personally reached the creative heights that I wish to reach, I can share a few of these lessons as they have become invaluable to my growth as a director and as an artist. 1.) Study your craft every single day. There is always more to learn, always more to take in. The greatest filmmakers in the world spend more time watching and studying film than anyone else on the planet. This passion fuels them and their knowledge of cinema inspires and informs their work. This is what makes them the best. 2.) Take rejection with a grain of salt. So much of filmmaking is politics. Most of the decisions that are made in relation to you and your work have absolutely nothing to do with you. Never take it personally and always look forward to the next thing. 3.) Put in the chair time. Whether you are a writer, editor, director, composer, graphic designer etc…, there is always something “free” that you can/could be doing to improve your artform and it usually just requires you to sit down at your desk and focus. Don’t shove that responsibility to the side. 4.) Last but most importantly, network network network. Meet as many people as you can and forge meaningful relationships with them. Your peers will not only go onto collaborate with you and improve your work, but they will be the people that provide and offer you opportunities down the line.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I love to eat and I love to watch movies. So pretty much all of my suggestions across the board, fit under one of those two categories.
Favorite Breakfast Spots:
Good Neighbor Restaurant in Universal City
Aroma Cafe in Studio City
Home in Los Feliz
Larchmont Bungalow in Echo Park
Lunch and Dinner:
Cosa Buona in Echo Park
Carney’s in WeHo
Tacos Delta in Silver Lake
Hot Wings Cafe in Hollywood
Best Movie Theaters:
Alamo Draft House in Downtown LA
Laemmle Theater (Any)
Vista Theater in Silverlake
New Bev Cinema in Hollywood
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
The Autobiography of Malcolm X deserves a lot of credit for my story, It is a text that taught me how to navigate through this world. It is a text that taught me that it is okay to change and question the world around you. It taught me that it is never too late to address your past and present as you attempt to reshape your future, And it is a book that taught me to admit when you’re wrong and own up to your mistakes so that they can be used to chisel you.