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

Hi Marissa, how do you think about risk?
That’s something that’s been on my mind a lot, actually. I feel like I’ve been kind of a coward lately when it comes to taking risks. But I’m not 21 and invincible anymore. I know what falling feels like. It makes getting back on the bike much scarier, let alone attempting a wheelie. As I’ve gotten older my definition of risk has changed. When I think of a risk now, I think of an indulgent act. No attachment to the outcome. I’ve taken risks before: gone strange places with strange people, driven when I probably shouldn’t have, taken a mystery pill or two… not the best choices but I’m here to tell the tale, so it all probably ended up fine. Most of those risks resulted in a lot of fun and a great story.

Those risks I’ve been shutting myself off to as of late, and I think that’s been a mistake. But more on that in a moment.

What I think “risks” means in terms of this question, I have reframed to call strategy. I’m sure many of us can agree that when it comes to a life path, there is an endless amount of thought that goes into every detail of how to get from where we are to where we want to be. As an actor and creative, the risk (indulgent act) is pursuing the craft at a professional level at all. Going after an art career means that one’s passion outweighs any potential consequences, be it fame, failure, or in my case, eviction. It’s ONE risk. Every decision after that is just a new strategy to reach the goal. Quitting my part-time, saying no to rat-money (just enough cheese to keep you on the wheel), and producing my own work have been some moves in my own game plan. Am I where I want to be yet? Not even close. Am I proud of where I am now? I most certainly am, because like Frankie said, “I did it my way”, and to me, that’s what will make the outcome satisfying no matter how it looks.

To say it plainly, a risk is a shot in the dark, and a strategy is an educated guess. Either way, you don’t know what’s going to happen. If something doesn’t have the intended outcome, you pivot or double down. No one has the answers, there is no real answer. That’s why we should all take the steps we feel are best. That is how I want to live in this big meaningless soap opera we are all a part of. That is Success to me.

Why I’ve been feeling like a coward is because it’s possible to be too calculated and over-think things. I’m picturing the big sand monsters from Inside Out. That was a great representation of too much strategizing. It’s easy to forget the reason for doing all of this when the mind is constantly busy obsessing over the “how”. This is why taking indulgent risks has a place in life too. The rush of adrenaline that comes to me when I’ve made a slightly stupid or possibly dangerous decision is invigorating. Life and inspiration live in these split seconds of “what now” and “oh shit”. Not only do these moments open our minds to new ways of problem-solving, but they are also what keeps us connected to being human.

I’ve been less eager to live risky because I’m not where I want to be and feel that I must “focus”. This is wrong, this is an example of how I need to pivot. Deep down I know that unless I can appreciate where I am now, and live life while I’m here to witness it, I will never get to where I want to be.

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.
My mission as an artist is to remind the world to play. Play isn’t synonymous with happiness, in my work it means freedom to explore new ways of expressing ourselves. It’s a reminder to not take life so seriously and to be honest with ourselves and each other. I want my work to challenge the way people perceive their reality. I want them to see our world is only as small as we make it. Through narrative and non-narrative film, mixed media, painting, sculpture, and performance art, I will continue to expand my universe into a playground of creativity, experimentation, and absurdity. Anyone brave enough to bare their soul is welcome to come and play with me.

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.
A Perfect Sunday in Hollywood

8:00 am – Wake and Bake

9:00 am – Hollywood farmer’s market, order something from every food truck, and buy some Fresh Dates.

11:00 am – 2:00 pm – Figure drawing class at PauHaus

2:30 pm – Gather some books, blankets, blunts, and mancala for a picnic at West Hollywood Park.
*Be sure to stop at Botega Louis for some fresh pastries.

6:30 – Catch a special screening at New Beverly Cinema

9:00 pm – Night Tennis

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?
First of all, shout out to AFG and all my day one homies. Shout out Don’t Be Good Podcast, and the Esoteric Vagabond Society for Creative Misfits and Inter-dimensional Thinkers. I’d like to thank my Mommy and Daddy, for their unwavering support. I’d also like to thank the countless artists, surrealists, romantics, and transcendentalists that have come before me and left behind their work as a guide for my own enlightenment, Especially Richard Bach and his book “Illusions”. Thank you to the artists of today whose work I see now and feel inspired and challenged to go even further with my own art, including FKA Twigs, Tyler the Creator, Solange, David Choe, Vivetta Ponti, Meow Wolf, OmegaMart and so many more. And lastly, I’d like to thank God.

Website: marissaedwards.com

Instagram: instagram.com/iheartyadad

Twitter: twitter.com/iheartyadad

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCjf84U2nGkt60Z__bKFaxRw

Other: Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/iheartyadad?fan_landing=true

Image Credits
– Cover art for single Kojima’s Revenge – Production Image from Knock Twice – Gimp Barbie earring from Toy With Me collection – Dress made by M.E. – Acrylic Painting, CEREMONY 2021 – Story Board from Scrolling… – Image Still from short film Why the Rose Has Thorns – Image still from Scrolling…

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.