We had the good fortune of connecting with Laura Odermatt and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Laura, what do you attribute your success to?
If you have big plans for your life, you are going to have doubters. Your lofty dreams are discomforting to those with none; people like this will want to yank you back down to their level. It is important to empathize in this situation: understand that this has nothing to do with you, and everything to do with them. They regurgitate what they’ve been taught.
I’ve learned that as a creative, is it absolutely essential that you protect your energy. I feel that when I can’t create, I have nothing else. It is important to give space to consider criticism, however. If you find applicable truth within it, it will make you a stronger artist. But sometimes criticisms are less useful and are more like projected-insecurities. It can be difficult to tell the difference, but if it does not service you, let it go. This is not to say to follow your faith blindly. Not at all. You’ll notice this is happening when it feels like you’re swimming in circles. If you’re not progressing as you’d like to be, you need to take a good, hard look at why that may be. Sometimes things hold you back that can be out of your control, and it is important to understand the difference between when outside forces hold you back and when you hold yourself back. It is imperative to cultivate a strong vision for yourself, and to deploy it with all that you have. This comes with being present and becoming reacquainted with your instincts. So many of us become cut off from ourselves and never even know. We become comfortable. We have to make ourselves uncomfortable— really test your limits, ask yourself if what you’re creating is up to your standards, and always be brutally honest with yourself about this. Knowing that you never fully “arrive,” you must always be striving for better within yourself and your work.
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.
Through my work, I aim to create images that make you feel something. I base a lot of my creative decisions on emotional instinct. Cinematography is very technical, but the technical elements can only get you so far. I have made sense of my own emotions visually since I was very young, through writing poetry. Since then, I’ve always chased that liberating feeling you get from full-bellied and honest expression.
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?
One of my favorite things to do in LA is EAT! Some of my favorite restaurants are Il Cappricio, Versailles, Figaro Bistrot, El Cochinito, and Boran. But when I’m not eating, I usually like to visit Floral Art by Mia, a flower shop off of Melbourne, with my roommates. We like to go to chat with the owner Mia, who is very friendly and knowledgeable, and to search for new houseplant friends to bring home. It is important to remember that we are in a pandemic and you can still support businesses without putting workers in danger by choosing take-out. And if you do go inside a business to show your support never forget your mask and to social distance! I do love to support in any way I can, but I am still extremely cautious during these times.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
There are far too people, places, and things to name that I’ve learned from on this journey— and it’s hardly even started. I’ve had the privilege to learn a lot (technically, stylistically, and general life lessons) from multiple different mentors in the film industry including David Waldman, Philip D. Schwartz, Michael Cioni, Jason Joseffer, Eric Yu, and Daisy Smith. I’ve also found indispensable communities in organizations such as Women in Film LA, and in college through Women in Film Club, CSULB with everyone who was involved. I’ve also received so much valuable support and feedback from my close friends and fellow creatives. Without this community I would be utterly lost. My parents of course, I would have never had the courage to pursue a creative career without their support and love. They have always nourished, encouraged, and helped me to pursue my creativity. And finally, I’d like to recognize director (and my boyfriend) Cristian Mercado, for always inspiring me in the way he fiercely pursues his art and passion. From him, I’ve learned the importance of unwavering from the vision you set for yourself. I’ve learned the absolute dedication this requires— that this road is a long and rocky one, one that demands a lot of energy and consistence. He believes so genuinely in my art, deeply supports me, and gives me necessary hard truths. Thanks for always being a light in my life, love.
Carlos Dupouy Jonathan Salamanca Melissa Baltierra Aerol Abance