We had the good fortune of connecting with Johnny Brillantes and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Johnny, how do you think about risk?
The connotation of “risk” is so funny because it sounds so much more scary than it can it can really be. My best take away is that old adage, “You don’t know unless you try.” So, in a practical sense, trying and risking is better than inaction. Sometimes risk is the only option to combat the fear of failure or remaining stagnant. Risk can be a great instrument, weapon, or power-up.
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.
An old pal of mine that I met when I lived in the Bay Area had lost his mother. Our kinship was already pretty tight because we both studied and loved filmmaking, but the loss of a parental figure might’ve affirmed us beyond classmates. He’d made a short film that stemmed from the Churchill quote, “If you’re going through hell, keep going.” That “keep going” stays with me even today during this pandemic. Much like small business owners and the healthcare workers, there’s no time to stop. For those with foreclosures or those that see death every 10 minutes, they fuel the professional creative in me. Their challenges are mountains to my molehill. If they can get through their day, I surely can create.
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?
Due to the pandemic: there would be a lot of drive-thru, a lot of delivery and a lot of finding new creative ways to spend time. Hands down, picnic on the front lawn. I am blessed to live in a safe and respectful neighborhood and have a lawn to have picnics on. For that, I would grill, cook or just flat out do a sort of pot-lock situation. Because I live out east, I’d work my way west. Next stop would be either a hike in Eaton Canyon or another picnic, but this time at the Gamble House in Pasadena. The architecture and pop culture linked to this place is something deeply personal but also, that Bungalow Arts and Crafts… that’s just too Southern Californian to pass up. As a best friend, they’d be so close to me that we would visit my family they may or may not have met yet. I’m not a big coffee drinker, but I’m sure we’d talk over some Thai Iced Tea from TeaBrick, or find a spot with Horchata or a large sized Orange Bang. We’d make our way through Glendale, I’d show them my old haunts GameHaus in hopes that re-opening happens safely for them. Maybe swing by Golden Road Brewery if everything is safe there. Haven’t been in so long, plus I’m so much more out east. Sunrise while shooting some hoops over at Bryce Canyon Park then downtown Burbank’s Octopus sushi delivered for lunch, or who knows, maybe see what that downtown Batman statue is all about. If they’re from out of state, I’d so the staples; Lake Hollywood Park or Griffith Observatory with In-N-Out. But really after all that, I would be more interested in the places and food that they might’ve already heard about and safely tailor the visit to feeding their curiosity.Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
For this, I’d have to swing it over to my house-mate Brian Andersen, as an animator and a musician, not only is he a reminder that all creatives have their own process, but also that surrounding yourself by creatives is important because it helps you move forward and experiment with the artistic risks with in my own self. Also, another Brian. He’s almost like family in a way, Brian King. This man juggles both mental physical wellness, first time fatherhood, is a healthcare worker during the craziest time in our lives, a solid husband and one of the most talented cosplayers I have the privilege of being friends with. That man is a marvel!