We had the good fortune of connecting with Thea Madeline Porter and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Thea Madeline, any advice for those thinking about whether to keep going or to give up?
I’ve almost given up quite a few times. With my life, my passions, my art. There were days I would say to myself “What are you doing? Does any of this make sense, does any of this matter? Am I actually helping anyone?” Then, I would get an email or DM, or text from someone that says “Thank you for sharing that” or “Your blog post really helped me the other day” or “That picture made me laugh” and “It was exactly what I needed.” I’m always so humbled by these responses. Honestly if I’m just touching at least one person through my art and creative endeavors, then it’s worth it. My hope is that my forms of expression can cause a ripple effect, spreading continuous motion of people helping people become more creative and bring out the best aspects of themselves in the hope to heal. I have not had an easy path. I’ve struggled with changing mental states that were exacerbated with overexposure on social media, physical assault and a variety of trauma. For so long I was wallowing in shame, guilt, embarrassment & self-loathing but I kept pushing on. I didn’t want to be another tragic story, I wanted to make a difference. A close friend recently told me at a gathering of creative minds that the reason people are comfortable around me is that I have seen the darkest aspects of life and have survived. Not much fazes me. I’m able to look at things non-judgmentally and try to help as much as I can. My objective is for everyone to follow their life purpose. I truly believe we all came here with unique gifts but we can get lost. The suicide rate is too high. There has always been human suffering but there is also human connection. One leads to isolation and destruction, the other leads to seeing the big picture. We actually aren’t unique within our suffering, self-inflicted or otherwise. We must remind ourselves that everything is connected, created from the same space dust, get past thinking our suffering is ours alone to bear. I had to stop fighting within myself, release the shame and accept this would as it is. We cannot keep being consumed with our anxieties, the Universe isn’t out to get us. Our creativity doesn’t have to feed on internal misery & pain. Don’t take life too seriously; act like it’s a game of mysteries to unlock our highest potential. My goal is to help other like-minded individuals free themselves from getting caught in a lower vibration for too long. Life can be easy or at least you don’t have to be up against yourself as well as the injustices we are facing now. What do we have to lose? I will continue on my creative journey If it makes me feel alive and gives me a purpose, I’m all in. I don’t want to get lost in a mundane life or think that as the only true reality. I want to inspire others to continue on their creative endeavors and not get lost in their suffering without reaching out. Your voice does matter and you should share it with the world however it makes you feel the best. Just be your authentic self. Keep pushing forward one day at a time, living in the moment. We have gotten this far, this is not the time to give up.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I’m a Multi-Hyphenated Creative. Content Creator, Production Designer, Collage-Maker, Mini Set Designer, Writer/Blogger & Website Designer. With experiences in studio media, set design, interior design and designs in the entertainment, agency and fashion industries. I’m well-rounded and understand concepts quickly. I have eidetic memory-total recall and can pull information from varying areas and combine them all for a broader concept from a collage to a set design. It’s hard for me to say what I’m the most proud of. I put a lot of energy into every project I have and I’m proud of everything (The Big Bang Theory set researcher, indie films, commercials, window displays, digital content creating, photo shoot prop creation etc.) I’ve been lucky enough to work on. I’m excited for completing my first poetry book that I will be self publishing in a few months. I made sure before I graduated college to sit down with a professor who was a set designer in the past to learn what the best steps were but there wasn’t a really direct answer. Also things have changed in the entertainment industry since the 80’s/90’s. I did a lot of networking in the beginning, really put myself out there in some nerve racking situations. Went to mixers, joined associations and volunteered a lot. I had one good connection to get my foot in the door and kept going from there. It wasn’t easy though. Being multi-hyphenated means that there isn’t one path to go on and not many people you can emulate. It’s very much forge your own path with an art degree in any form, work hard and hope it works out. I’ve had bad bosses, make mistakes but later realized I learned something from each misstep and overcame some doubts and low self-esteem issues. I try to learn something from each job/gig I have and absorb information like a sponge. But I learned to speak up quickly when I saw something that needed fixed and to be more sure of myself. When I followed my gut and not second-guess myself it seemed to work out. As a story-teller my style is fluid. I can create any perspective/aesthetic needed for a creative project. I’m a Jill-of-all-trades with many tools in my tool belt. I’ve seen some darker aspects of this world and understand the balance of light and dark, hard and soft, bright and muted, the importance of color theory to present in the most eye catching manner.
Any great local spots you’d like to shoutout?
This is all hypothetical due to the Covid-19. There is no certainty what the future will look like or if anything will be “normal” again, not that anything was normal before. I wouldn’t want too much exposure on places, some of my favorite spots I learned from research and my readings. I think it’s more fun to find unique places to go to and activities to do with people. It also depends what my friend’s interests are and what we have in common. I have a variety of friends with multifaceted mutual interests. Some places and areas that would be under consideration: Descanso Gardens and hiking locations, art shows/museums, antique malls/thrift shopping, Music venues-for example see a friend’s band, favorite breweries and places to get good food & drinks, catch a Dodgers game, see a movie at a historical theatre in LA, tea rooms etc. The most interesting people to me are the ones who are born and raised here. The people and families who created the fabric of this city and keep weaving to make it all possible. The most fun and excitement I have with people are the ones who are the most authentically themselves and real. The best places to check out are the hole-in-the-wall places or ones my friends and I are mutually excited to try out, make it our own adventure or day trip.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Shoutout to my family & friends, the many loves in my life who inspire and encourage me and bring joy each and every day. Also, to the healing powers of the moon ceremony collective.