We had the good fortune of connecting with Meryl Nicole Taylor and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Meryl Nicole, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
I would say it chose me hence no regrets. My upbringing was very eclectic, rich and colorful which has given me much to work and play with. I’m never at a loss for material or inspiration and I love the power of creating. It’s very fulfilling and satisfying especially when a character or piece is completed and one can stand back and admire the process and beauty of it. With art one can get away with saying something that otherwise might not be heard or acknowledged. It’s magical and transformative.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I’m excited to share in this pandemic year I’ve self produced a web series aptly titled “Bambie from Purgatory gives Quarantine Advice”. She’s based on a character in “The Dead Sullivan Show”. She offers redemption and is the ‘Hostess with the Mostess’. She’s my alter ego and raven haired, is flirtatious and flamboyant, exciting and enticing, alluring and glamorous and always in love with love. Her message is to be yourself and be authentic. She’s lived life and understands the unexpected ride with its twists and turns but acknowledges her feelings and has her own story to tell. It’s a story of love and hope, friendship and family and making the most of a fun and exciting Purgatory.
I’m most proud of “being an artist” and staying the path. Being inspired and giving life to one’s idea by making the world more beautiful and interesting is the gold and the rainbow. Living the artist’s way is not carved out nor is it “connect the dots”. Often it’s being an outlaw because one can be thought of as different and fortuitous but it’s my nature to observe, integrate and capitalize lived experience.
What sets me apart creatively is that I’m multidisciplinary as I’m a fine artist and a dancer as well. You’ll see in my photos that I paint, draw and collage and juggling the three within the three is a way of life. Even in art school I was Jill in “Equus” because at the time I was performing in a local dance troupe and invited to audition. Being multidisciplinary is like braiding as each section holds its integrity but once together it’s stronger. It is an honor and privilege to be an artist.
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.
When I’m at the Hollywood Bowl I’m home. There’s no place I’d rather be than sitting under the stars, relaxing to great music and performers. It’s a beautiful outdoor venue and it’s history speaks for itself. Also, no matter your height and if you’re petite like me you can see very well from anywhere.
The Grove and outdoor farmers market is fun because of it’s nostalgia and hustle and bustle. LACMA is nearby and has great visiting shows and I was lucky enough to attend the Marc Chagall show twice. He’s always been a favorite because of his commitment to fantasy, love, romance and family. Ray’s and Stark Bar has tasty food and completes the museum experience.
The Huntington Library, Museum and Botanical Gardens is a must and, if you’re an art and nature lover it’s Heaven. On the way home treat yourself to a late lunch or early dinner at the Alcove in Los Feliz. They have great desserts and drinks to celebrate.
I enjoy the intimacy of the Hammer Museum as it packs a punch with its up and coming artists, programs, and exhibitions.
The Getty Museum and The Getty Villa are beautiful with their scenic grounds and in 2018 I attended the Sally Mann retrospective. Her art is incredible and so ethereal, haunting, angelic, and otherworldly. There’s nothing like seeing an artist’s work in person as opposed to in a book because it’s much more powerful and impressive.
Growing up in the Northwest I tend to feel at home around the water with the beaches, hiking and biking. Temescal Canyon Loop in Pacific Palisades is a sweet hike with a beautiful view of the coastline. Riding bikes and people watching in Venice and later stopping at Urth Cafe for a coffee or light meal is perfect. Also, The Huntley Rooftop Bar has a spectacular view and if one is so inclined for dessert Sweet Lady Jane on Montana is nearby. Because of year round LA sunshine I will never tire of its outdoor venues, entertainment, cafes and restaurants.
Last but not least is field trip day to Catalina Island and being completely spontaneous and adventurous!
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?
I’m grateful for the generous teachers I’ve had and that of passing on their knowledge and awareness of fostering a supportive and nurturing environment. “Great teachers foster greatness” and often know the direction one needs to follow before the student and it’s usually the right path. I’d like to mention my improv teacher Bill Applebaum of Actors Improv Studio. He’s generous with his direction and guidance so one can capitalize on one’s strength instead of perceived cleverness.
Howard Fine of Howard Fine Acting Studio is another great leader and unselfish of spirit making one feel special in a sea of 30.
Lynn Knell-Jones was a fantastic high school art teacher and so subtle and gracious and genuine. In art school Nationally known artist Terry Gloeckler was on point with a keen awareness of each student’s style and process and to embrace it instead of the status quo.
Also, I volunteer as a book reader in the schools and I adore the kids. It’s rewarding and fulfilling beyond reason because they give me success through their pure joy and excitement.