We had the good fortune of connecting with Genevieve Kertesz and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Genevieve, do you have a favorite quote or affirmation?

Yes and I have shared it with many friends and family alike.

One day on a YouTube deep dive / procrastination cycle I stumbled upon the great Brene Brown and her TED Talk on Vulnerability. Now intrigued I started to stalk all things “Brene Brown” I found her referencing a Teddy Roosevelt speech called “The Man in the Arena”. I read the speech and instantly I felt a tug in my chest as if someone had taken hold of me.

“It’s not the critic that counts” is the very first line. The speech at its core talks about how taking action is the most important thing and f*ck the noise and the haters. Just be proud of getting in the ring.

In my low moments, I have even taken to reading the speech out loud and changing the pronouns to my own (she/her) and man to “woman”.

It’s pinned on my wall to this day.

The less eloquent version that I sometimes use to get myself started is telling myself to “do the sh*t version”. Because a half-written, badly phrased sentence is better than none. You can’t improve on something you haven’t started.

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.
Well firstly, I am a director of films, commercials and hopefully soon television as well.

I feel I will always lean towards directing stories about women. In particular, characters going on journeys to a more authentic self. I want to be part of encouraging women to question what society has told them and what they have internalized to believe about themselves. I think it’s not always about big changes but the important small steps that lead you down a better path.

I aim not to alienate men in my approach but hopefully rather give them breadcrumbs to stimulate questions they quietly ask themselves afterward.

I honestly just want to make art that connects. That gives you pause.

I can still remember moments in tv or film that I watched where I felt like I stopped breathing. You’ve got to earn those moments with an audience by telling a well-crafted authentic and engaging story.

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?
I am ashamed to say that as non-native living in LA that I haven’t explored all the nooks and crannies I would like. However, there are a few recommendations that I can confidently say I would drag my friends to if they came to LA.

First food-wise, one of my favorite lunches is “Leo’s Taco Truck” – It’s cheap, absolutely delicious (you have to get the al pastor), and always packed. Secondly, restaurant-wise my top choice is “Bacari” which had one of the best atmospheres and food I have experienced in LA. I would also give some honorable mentions to “Perch” and “Home” depending on your budget.

When I think of places to go – there are the main big ones, the Hollywood sign hike, the Chinese Theatre, and the new Academy Museum. Those are all very geared to tourists and filmmakers.

One of the most peaceful places I’ve been to is a small beach called “La Piedra”. If you walk to the end you’ll find a beautiful cave you can crawl into connecting to the El Matador State Beach.

While my heart is back with the golden Australian beaches, this quelled my hunger for the ocean.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I have been very lucky in my life and have a fairly long list of family, friends, teachers, and mentors who have helped and guided me along the way. Instead of naming each and every one (I’ll save that for the oscar speech) I want to talk about something common I have found in pretty much each person.

Each person makes me feel like I can be myself – it sounds simple but I have come to value that in an industry where you have to wear a lot of different hats and be different things to different people.

With these special people in my life, they make me feel like the best version of me and that I have something to offer. They encourage and support me in the tough times but also make me laugh, take a step back and nourish my soul.

It’s so important to surround yourself with people who embrace the weird wonderful unique things about you. They are the people who you must cherish and hold close.

Website: https://www.gkertesz.com

Instagram: @gkertesz_

Image Credits
Headshot: @urcavaphoto Image 1: @mateonikolav Image 2: @olicohen Image 3: @mateonikolav Image 4: @olicohen Image 5 (Film Still): @bencotgrove Image 6 (Film Still): @dirt_mangurt

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutLA is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.