We had the good fortune of connecting with Laura Santoyo and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Laura, other than deciding to work for yourself, what else do you think played a pivotal role in your story?
I would say the most important decision has two parts, first one is working with people that I admire and the second one is to choose projects that I believe in. I have been very fortunate to work with other successful production designers that were so generous sharing their knowledge and experience with me as well as working with very talented directors, producers, cinematographers, costume designers that inspired me and taught me so much and who challenge me all the time to be more creative. The decision of working in projects that are meaningful to me is also crucial because when I believe in the story we are telling I want to portray it in the best way possible. I think those are my two biggest motivations in my work, it’s what pushes me to be better every day.
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 am very passionate about my job, once I’m part of a project I become extremely dedicated to it. I listen to the subtleties of the story, I am very in tune with character and the emotional arc. I make sure that every decision I make is extremely informed. So I come to the project with everything prepared, I have strong instincts and know what I am after, but I am always also completely open to conversation and developing ideas in concert with the team. It hasn’t been easy, so every day I get to work I am very grateful. The way I overcome challenges is by keep working, trusting my instincts and don’t give up.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
The thing I love the most about LA is all the possibilities it offers! I would take my friend to a museum, I love going to LACMA or the Getty. When I go to LACMA I like to go eat after to Little Ethiopia. We would walk in downtown, LA Conservancy offers some really interesting walking tours where you learn about the history of the city and the architecture, they’re great! While in downtown we would visit The Last Bookstore, we could eat in Little Tokyo. I also like to hike in Griffith Park, so many great trails where you can see the whole city. And we would of course spend a day at the beach. 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?
The first thing that comes to my mind when reading this question is the African proverb “It takes a village to raise a child” in this case the child is my career. My job is all about collaboration, I make movies and music videos and it’s a team of so many people working together. Also of course my friends and family have been so important in building my success always cheering me and sharing their love and support as well as encouraging me and giving me the strength to keep going at times when it hasn’t been easy.
1st Photo by Sofia Astrom