We had the good fortune of connecting with Shawna Lazymills and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Shawna, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
I remember feeling like I wanted to feel bigger than the corporations I’ve worked for allowed me to feel. Coming to the conclusion that even if the big boss gave me the title or wage I deserved, I would still feel empty of the satisfaction I feel when I build my own ideas up. I’ve always wanted to disconnect from the industry grid, so I knew that the first step was to officially claim my own business entity. It was tough switching my brain to the business side, but as they say, “a girls gotta do what a girl has gotta do.” As soon as I started my business, I felt a constant stream of progress permeate in. I knew from then on, that having my own platform with my own creations would keep me fulfilled and purposeful.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I am a creator of action/ adventure stories and I develop shows for a living in the animation industry. It’s not like I started out aware of what sort of impact I have in this industry. I simply wanted to create amazing things from all of the crap swimming around my noggin. That there are people who would want to pay me to do it and embrace me for it, has been a dream come true.
Now I am proud to say that I am a well sought out think-tank in my field and while I can not mention all of the huge news on my schedule, I will say I was correct in all of my choices leading up to now. I have no regrets and I’m the most amazing person I know. I say this humbly.
That said, I want everyone to feel the same about themselves, because no it is not easy to stick to your guns when everyone is telling you you are wrong. I’ve done a lot solo, so the hardest part for me has been letting other people lend a hand to aid me or follow my lead. After talking to people who know a lot more about maneuvering our industry, I’ve learned to fill my space with people whose skills scare me and inspire me.
I want the world to know that there will be a wave of amazing content coming and it will make you want more. You are about to be blown away.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Honestly… I’ve been liking it at home. It sounds boring, but LA has been a place I learned to relax and slow down. I’m originally from NYC so it took me some time to appreciate the pace of LA. That said, I’ve come to really love all of the crannies I see in LA. from hiking in the Malibu trails to copping an amazing view from the Hollywood Hills. I also love the strange events found around the city on any given day. The food here is also amazing if you know what you want. Daves Hot Chicken is a spot my house craves often. Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Special shout out to my pals and peers, whom I’ve been honored to work with.
Wynton Redmond is a dope artist and colleague in this crazy animation world. One of the dopest. https://www.instagram.
Sidney Clifton is an amazing producer and Creator in the animation world. She knows a hell of a lot about the inner workings and her experience as a black woman in this industry is unique. https://www.instagram.
Onyi Udeh is a talented creator who is coming up in the animation industry but who has been producing legit work for his original stories and concepts. https://www.
Images credited to Shawna Mills