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

Hi Jesse, is there a quote or affirmation that’s meaningful to you?
My favorite quote comes from the movie Rocky Balboa. In the scene, Rocky tells his son, “The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a very mean and nasty place and I don’t care how tough you are it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard ya hit. It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done! Now if you know what you’re worth then go out and get what you’re worth. But ya gotta be willing to take the hits, and not pointing fingers saying you ain’t where you wanna be because of him, or her, or anybody! Cowards do that and that ain’t you! You’re better than that! When I decided to leave my career of teaching 4th grade bilingual to pursue acting, I knew it wasn’t going to be easy. I’d be moving away from the place I was born & raised in, away from my family & friends, to pursue a career where there were no guarantees, no matter how hard I worked at it or how much I hoped for the best. I knew/know that I had the talent, but how much would I be willing to take? How many times could I be rejected or not get a chance to showcase my abilities? I could blame a number of factors. LA is very expensive to live in & I was living paycheck to paycheck. Some months were tough. So I picked up photography, started shooting friends to build a portfolio and eventually did headshots and portraits as a side hustle to help supplement my income. Now I’m trying to make that a full time gig. But in the meantime, it’s helped keep me in LA pursuing acting. And about not getting opportunities in Hollywood? I wanted to be proactive and started writing and producing my own short films. Everything I’ve done, everything I’ve endured, every sacrifice, every moment of doubt, every rejection… and I haven’t quit. I haven’t given up on the dream! That is what the quote means to me.

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.
I’ve learned the best way to live your life is to be yourself and not worry about what other people think or say about you. Not everyone will be a fan of yours and that’s ok. Just be yourself. Don’t be afraid to put your heart on display. It’s the philosophy I apply to my work, be it through my photography, writing or acting, and hopefully that is able to move and inspire people. You never know if the art you put out in the world is what someone might’ve been looking for to laugh, cry, reminisce or just escape their day for a few moments.

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.
Assuming Covid-19 doesn’t exist or quarantine is over? Haha… I’d say we gotta check out the Venice boardwalk just to people watch, go hiking, boogie boarding, attend a show at The Comedy Store, visit the Getty museum, drive down the PCH, go to a Dodgers game, visit Disney, take a train to San Diego, catch a live music show at one the many cool venues and take a tour of the movie studios.

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?
My family for their love & support, especially my parents, who raised me to work hard, to have integrity and to treat people with kindness and respect… … to every acting coach & mentor I’ve had (Deke Anderson, Sebastian Ligarde, Aaron Speiser, Susan Rumor, Rob Adler and Anthony Gilardi) for helping me develop the skills needed and for pushing me when I doubted my self… … to Jason Bagley (boss) at Ride Circuit, who has provided a job that has kept me steadily employed in LA for the last 10 years and has always allowed me to leave for auditions and filming… … to friends that have been like my family away from home (Mike Powery, Stephanie Ortega, Andrew Hunt, Jody Millard, Regina Saldivar, Christian Moldes, Anto Boghokian, Michaela Salvatore, Rob Santi, Rick Buchholz, Noah & Erica Baron, Elizabeth Haley, Adam Rennie, Jason & Amelia Rosenwach)… … to Tony Woo Joun, for his friendship & for whom most of my scripts would have never come to life without his directing, producing, editing and DP Jedi skills… … to Lance Treviño, for being my amigo and for his composing mastery, providing musical scores to my projects… … to Theatre Suburbia and Theatre Southwest, community theatres in Houston where I developed my love of acting… and to the directors there that gave me a chance to get started on a dream (David Holloway, Jay Menchaca, Eric Dunlap, Brett Hubbard, Elvin Moriarty, Doris Merten, John Mitsakis & Mimi Holloway)… … and to Sylvester Stallone, for creating Rocky Balboa, a character that has inspired me and many others, to keep pushing forward, to keep getting up whenever we get knocked down.

Website: www.JesseBainbridge.com
Instagram: @JesseBainbridgePhotography and @JesseBainbridge

Image Credits
Mike Powery. Jesse Bainbridge (me).

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