We had the good fortune of connecting with Paige Drysdale and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Paige, what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
I was quite young when I decided I wanted to have an artistic/creative career. As soon as our teachers at school asked us “What do you want to be when you grow up?”, my answers always involved being a writer, photographer, explorer, or actress. All my life I have been mostly surrounded by the creative arts. I began dancing (ballet, contemporary modern, hip hop, etc.) when I was very young, moved into vocal lessons to begin singing when I was a teenager, started modeling & acting classes, then decided to continue to study filmmaking when I was in college. Since then I have worked with a few agencies, production companies, and other creative businesses that have helped me develop my network within the entertainment realm. It was not an easy process and took a lot of courage to conquer insecurities that I had to face. What really helped me along the way was also diving into the fitness community to better my health both mentally and physically. I wanted to feel better as a whole, to be strong enough to pursue my passions. I went to receive my yoga instructor certification and it was really awakening to me how much I needed fitness to balance so I could continue to feel well enough to work towards my goals. It worked out for both my career in production and to connect more to the fitness world. I got to work onset for personal training videos both in front of the camera as a fitness model and behind the scenes working with the production team. Throughout the years I have been discovering what it is that I would like to pursue as my own. I have been modeling for quite some time and have always had a passion with photography which led me to starting my own photography business, Paige Drysdale Photography. I will still continue modeling but I am also very excited to start focusing on developing my photography business and work on other passions I plan to pursue. An artistic career was inevitable for me. Creative expression is how I keep my mind at peace. Whether that through dance, voice, photography, acting, etc., that is what keeps me functioning.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I am creative without a specific niche. I appreciate all types of art and have found it difficult to pursue just one style. The world of creativity is endless and I find myself falling into different types of artistic styles. With my photography I love to do creative/artistic shoots that gear towards message and creative expression usually sticking to moody tones that have a complementing edge. Although I also love to shoot couples, fashion, architecture, nature, lifestyle, street photography, etc.. Finding your artistic style is a process that takes time and throughout life your style will change just as life does. My modeling has been a mixture of different types of styles, working with all types of artists with unique creative directions. Expressing myself through modeling, creating a character that fits the scene, connecting with the audience through the emotions captured by the photographer, its all a very empowering experience to me. I hope to bring that same experience to those who work with me as a photographer or a model. I want those to feel empowered in the moment, confident they are in a safe space where they can express themselves creatively. You would be surprised how many talented artists are out there who when given the right environment, discover how talented they really are. My advice from what I have learned so far on this journey is to not let your insecurities keep you from hesitating to pursue your dreams. Be smart on your decisions and think strategically but do not let the fear of failure keep you from fully dedicating yourself to your passion.
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.
Food: Harumi Sushi in Downtown Phoenix (they are known for their purple rice they make their sushi with) – OSHO Brewery & Eatery in Downtown Gilbert (they are super dog friendly & carry lots of locally crafted beers) – Nandini Indian Cuisine in Tempe for takeout – The Local in Downtown Chandler (great appetizer menu) – Cornish Pasty (there are a couple in the valley) for their famous pasties – Bars: Valley Bar in Downtown Phoenix (the bar has a haunting history to it, the theme of the bar is actually about a local murder story) – The Ostrich in Chandler (must try their ¨Last mango in Mexico¨ drink) – Melinda’s Alley in Downtown Phoenix (known for their changing cocktail menu & its only open about 8 hours a week) – Hanny’s in Downtown Phoenix (known for their really interesting interior features, make sure to check out the basement), Casey Moore’s in Tempe (has a big outdoor space, relaxed environment, and has a haunting history), Stardust in Downtown Phoenix (you have to walk through a pizza shop freezer to enter a David Bowie themed arcade bar) – Local places to visit: Papago Mountain in Tempe for a hike and photo by the ¨Hole in the Rock¨ – The Elvis Presley Memorial Chapel at Superstition Mountain – The Phoenix Art Museum in Downtown Phoenix – First Friday Art Walk in Downtown Phoenix (browse local art, enjoy trendy food trucks, and live music) – Wonderspaces Arizona in the Scottsdale Fashion Square (enjoy a glass of wine or locally crafted beer and browse unique art installations) – Dreamy Draw Recreation Area in Phoenix (the trails are full of quartz)
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 build up of where I am currently has been inspired by many I have met along the way and those who were there since the start. My mother really pushed me in the creative direction growing up by enrolling me in dance classes, vocal lessons, and model/acting coaching. My father pushed me more into fitness with sports. I was involved in volleyball, soccer, swim, softball, and pretty much had a crack at all the basic physical sports. Balancing both was somewhat difficult only because both kept me quite busy with also juggling academics. I am very grateful to have had parents who both pushed me in different types of hobbies because it helped me understand different perspectives and taught me different skill sets I apply to my life today that come together. My vocal coach in Sedona, Gina, really helped me break boundaries with my insecurities of being a creative publicly. I was shy at first and was nervous to sing in front of people, talk about my modeling classes, or getting involved with the creative side of the world. I found my voice not through just singing but to also be open about the passions I was trying to pursue much fearlessly. Immersing myself with other young creatives in model/acting school was a huge relief for me. I wasn’t used to being surrounded by people who were serious about developing their careers in the entertainment industry. That brought my walls down a lot and allowed me to be comfortable in what I was doing. Deciding to continue to study film in college led me to meeting many creatives from all around the world wanting to do the same thing I did. Create art, develop ideas and actually turn them into something. Instead of just learning, everyone was creating. Everyone was inspiring to another, bringing all kinds of projects to the table that we all would work together on. It taught me teamwork and self dedication to completing projects. I am so happy to see many of the friends I made in college out there proactively being apart of the entertainment business. After college I had to reach out to creatives on my own to make new connections. It wasn’t until I was in my mid 20´s that I realized just how many creative artists were also in the valley. Many of the projects I have worked on have been with talented local artists who inspire me to continue creating art.
Photographers of modeling work: @weddingsbyschyler, @n.a.stills Models featured in my photography: @lirycnotlyric, @highly_determined, @lovelesssuicide, @jaideejaideejaidee, @ryliesatran, @zach_jaap