SoCal Spotlight: Ivana De Maria’s StoryPlace

SoCal Spotlight: Ivana De Maria’s StoryPlace

Contributing Editors: Anthony Stafford and Joshua Pinkay

In Los Angeles, it’s no secret that millions of people move into the city to pursue their dreams of entering the world of entertainment. Little does everyone know, those who reach their success still have other dreams like the rest of us! Ivana De Maria is one of those successful individuals who grew up with an attraction to the entertainment industry, moved to Los Angeles to pursue that dream, and continued dreaming — pursuing an uncommon endeavor: an entry into the tech world using parts of what she already learned. Ivana saw an opportunity in something that each of us has – our stories. We sat down with her to find out more about her background, and to learn about her new dream to take the entertainment world by storm in the way aspiring dreamers will find new projects. Here’s a peak into how your stories, our stories, and the world’s stories will be revealed.

Q: What inspired you to enter the entertainment industry?

A: Since I was a little girl I was always very attracted to the entertainment industry. My great grandfather founded the first Radio and TV station in Mexico and my two oldest brothers have a production company as well. One of them is a producer and the other one a director. Growing up, I spent a lot of time on set with them, helping them in any way I could. I was always very enchanted by the magic behind creating a film.  I always knew I wanted to eventually work in the entertainment industry, specifically as an actress. However, I also had many intellectual curiosities, which I wanted to explore before focusing on my long-term career. I studied high school in Switzerland and after graduating I moved to Boston for College. I attended Boston University where I completed a bachelor’s degree in Business and Law, always knowing that upon graduating I would focus on acting full time. Over the course of those four years, during summers while all my classmates would look for finance internships, I would attend acting school in NY and LA, and then during the school year I would enjoy learning the theoretical aspects of business and law, skills I felt would come in handy no matter what I did. Upon graduating I immediately moved to LA to pursue acting full time.

Q: What has been the biggest challenge you face working as an actor and producer in Los Angeles?

As soon as I got to LA, I starting the casting/rejection/waiting process, and the more I learned about it the more frustrated I got by the system. I hated the idea that my results would depend on so many factors that were not in my hands. I called my brothers and asked for advice. Their answer was “make your own short film”. I had no clue how to do this, but my frustration with the industry was bigger than my fear of the unknown. I began writing my own characters, which then turned into my own stories, then my own projects and finally my own productions. I wrote, produced and acted in two short films, which to my surprise had great success in the festival circuit.

As an actor you accept a life of instability and this is the hardest part of it. Financial instability, physical instability and emotional instability. Because it is so volatile, one day you have a job and the next its back to square one. You have to be available at all times which makes planning anything very difficult. I found that my personality required a bit more structure that what acting offered, and so I decided to find other ways to make a living that would let me be selective with my acting jobs.

Q: You recently took on the tech world with the upcoming launch of your app StoryPlace? How did your background in entertainment influence your decision to start this business?

When I began creating my own content I learned everything about the process of telling a story. From writing, to producing, acting, editing, the business… and I fell in love with all of it. I realized that my generation had an opportunity: the industry was changing and the power was now in the hands of the creative. There was a new currency going around: STORIES. If you had a good story and knew how to tell it, you had a big opportunity. By looking closer at the story culture around the world, I realized that this demand for stories was not exclusive to the entertainment industry. Every industry, product or brand is founded on a story.

A couple of years ago I started developing projects based on real life stories and quickly became enchanted by the idea of finding these stories and bringing them to life, giving them a voice. I found a beautiful combination in social responsibility and film, and decided I would create entertainment content based on true stories, specifically those with messages, stories and voices that needed to be heard today. As I embarked on this journey to find extraordinary stories, I found that everyone’s story had a lesson for me in some way. This led to a thought and an actual dream that that kept me up at night: “How many stories go unheard in the world?” I could not stop thinking of all the lost learning opportunities and decided I would do something about it. I wanted to create a place for these stories. Taking into account technology and generation trends, I decided to create a platform that would inspire people to connect through story sharing, to realize the importance of sharing and listening to stories. That is why I created StoryPlace, an egoless social platform that promotes empathy by connecting people through sharing and reading real life stories.

Q: Why is Southern California the perfect place to launch and grow your business?

Southern California is the hub of startups! It is a place that promotes entrepreneurship and Los Angeles is a city that is truly designed for the self-employed. Every street has cute café’s and working spaces that help young entrepreneurs have a working environment without the need for a formal office. In terms of StoryPlace specifically, SoCal culture is very open and friendly, everyone is always open and excited to share his or her story!

Q: What advice do you have for someone looking to break into the entertainment or tech industries — two highly competitive fields?

I am a true believer that as an artist, it all starts with creating your own content, and therefore you own opportunities, so believe in your vision and don’t be afraid to tell your own stories. Don’t be afraid to fail and don’t try to please anyone but yourself.Let your goal be making your own self proud, and then things will start happening. Furthermore, when they start happening don’t question your “luck”.Many times I would feel insecure or question myself when something went right and I got “lucky”, but luck is where preparation and opportunity meet. So give yourself the credit for being prepared when that opportunity comes along. And most importantly, enjoy the path! 

Q: Where do you see StoryPlace going in the next few years?

Hopefully many places! I’ve learned that in the app world you never know what you’re going to get. It can have 1 user for the first week or a billion users in one day. The entire team has been working hard on making sure that do everything we can in order to get those billion users, and most importantly we are ready to scale at any given moment.

My hopes with StoryPlace are that it becomes a leader of empathy in the world. Hopefully other industries will follow and people will be able to appreciate the power of empathy and storytelling. I would love for StoryPlace to eventually expand into more than just an app, a community, a festival, a book, a non-profit… who knows! The possibilities are endless.

Q: Do you have any local LA or SoCal spots that inspire you in your work?

I like to explore SoCal any chance I get and every time I do so I find new places that inspire me. What inspires me the most is meeting someone with a great story, and there are many of those in California!

I recently stumbled upon a small hotel called Moonlight Inn, which is in Moonlight beach. My boyfriend and I were driving and started getting tired so we decided to find a place to spend the night. Never did we imagine that this place would be an absolute oasis. It is a “WELL” hotel, which we learned meant that everything about it, from the design to the service, was tailored to promote wellbeing. This is just one example of all the incredible places I have found in SoCal. Every place you go has a story as well, its just a matter of listening.

Q: Anything else you want Angelenos to know about you or your company?

I’m always happy to hear stories and eager to discover new places! Contact me through my social media @ivanamaria and tell me your stories. More importantly, if you have a story to tell (which I know you do), download our app and StoryPlaceIT!

Taste of sbe Launches Successfully in LA

Taste of sbe Launches Successfully in LA

Photos / Story Contributions by Anthony C. Stafford & Joshua Pinkay

Let the Festivities Begin

The Grand Weekend of Taste of sbe kicked off on Saturday, with a Veuve Clicquot Rose and Whispering Angel Brunch at Cleo Third Street — a first for Los Angeles! Brunch at Cleo was followed by one-of-a-kind activities and events that included a private shopping experience with Harry Winston on Rodeo Drive, a cooking class and a Farewell Brunch at Doheny Room. A percentage of proceeds from all ticket sales benefited the local Make-A-Wish Chapter where sbe will grant the wish of a vacation for a few winning families to the Bahamas for an incredible experience at the new SLS Baha Mar resort. Lincoln also escorted VIPS all weekend in their luxury fleet of vehicles.

Our Taste of Cleo Third Street

Brunch at Cleo’s is arguably a treat that everyone needs! Often times, many are faced with the question of “what to eat?” and are seemingly forced to choose from “the usuals”. However, Cleo achieves what many restaurants have a hard time mastering, and that achievement is American favorites with a Mediterranean twist. Brunch began with a choice of numerous cocktails and Pure Leaf teas. If there was one word to describe the featured cocktails from Ketel One, that word would be “impeccable”. Ketel One offers a special type of spirit: made using the natural oils of the fruits listed in the ingredients, sugar-free (and no artificial sweeteners or flavors), no carbs, and extremely light — at just 73 calories per cocktail!

Light and refreshing are the go-to words at one sip, and the flavors of the Cucumber and Mint; Peach and Orange Blossom; and Grapefruit and Rose cocktails are comparable to drinking an icy, crisp Badoit with a hint bitters, and fruity, herbal flavors. Simply put, these cocktails taste just as good as they look, and are not your everyday spirit!

After our variety of palate-awakening beverages, an assortment of mezzes were presented, including a “masabacha” style hummus made with chickpeas, cumin and lemon; babaganoush, containing smoked eggplant, sumac, and pepper; a delicious lebaneh of feta, za’atar, and extra virgin olive oil; and finally a beautifully plated watermelon and feta salad decorated with mint leaves and shaved cucumber. This appetizing assortment brought vinegary bitterness, blended smoothness, and natural sweetness all into quick succession as one taste was followed by another. For us, the authenticity of these dishes brought on vibrant memories of Italy’s countryside, just outside of Venice, where life is slower and like the dishes before us, prominent in flavor and culture.

As we were pulled deeper into the ever-boldening tastes of our entrees, it was also time to welcome some familiarities. At a glance, an easily identifiable plate: 3 eggs and bacon — but with a twist. Soft, scrambled eggs and thick-cut bacon had a new happy family of twice cooked potatoes, roasted green tomatoes, and tzatziki and toast. And the Wagyu Cali Burger sounding all too familiar, yet presenting a new look and taste, topped with cheddar, thick-cut bacon, avocado, tzatziki, sauerkraut, a fried egg, and a side of fries. Cleo served heaven on plates, and the menu went on to include other amazing entrees, like Red Shakshouka, Smoked Salmon Benedict, Avocado Toast Benedict, and a Quinoa Breakfast Bowl. Finally, the Chef’s Selection for dessert surprised us with baklava, panacotta, sticky taffy pudding, mandeleine cookies, pâte de fruit, crescent cookies, and melt-in-your-mouth sour cream-glazed donuts.

Dinner and a… Show

Taste of sbe: Grand Dinner at Skybar at Mondrian Los Angeles with Rolling Stone
to benefit Make A Wish

Rudy Mancuso, Maia Mitchell, Trey Songz, Emile Hirsch, Sara Sampaio, James Kennedy, and his girlfriend, Raquel Viss — just a few big names who partied with sbe this past weekend at the Mondrian Los Angeles. Other attendees of this special weekend event included, but was not limited to, Fred Durst, Lady Victoria Harvey,  Emmy nominees Kelly Jenrette and Melvin Jackson Jr.; Bianca Blanco and John Savage — along with sbe nightlife leaders Frankie Delgado, Dean May, Nick Montealegre, Josh Richmond; and sbe’s Disruptive Group COO Sebastien Silvestri.

This long list of names, and more, celebrated Taste of sbe’s Grand Dinner at Skybar at Mondrian Los Angeles — one of sbe’s international award-winning venues and mainstay destinations. The evening served a purpose beyond partying, and benefitted the Make A Wish Foundation, in partnership with Rolling Stone Magazine, Lincoln Motors, Evian, Fever-Tree, and Diageo.

With 100 guests in attendance at the epicurean showcase, each enjoyed 7 delicious courses courtesy of sbe’s incredible restaurant roster, including Cleo, Katsuya, Carna, Umami Burger, Diez y Seis, Makoto, SLS, and Fi’lia. With sbe’s renowned chefs on hand from all over the world, bellies were bound to be full. Chefs Martin Heierling, Katsuya Uechi, Danny Elmaleh, Makoto Okuwa, Jose Icardi, Yoshi Migita, Diego di Lao, Renata Ferraro, all were in attendance, and brought down the house with their featured courses. The extravagant plates included Otoro Tuna Tartar with Imperial Caviar & 24 Karat Gold, Hand Folded Tortelloni with Celery Root And Black Truffle, Wagyu Gyoza, and ‘The Frenchie’ burger by Chef Daniel Boulud. Guests at the Grand Dinner sipped on a bevy of signature cocktails courtesy of Diageo, as well as Dauo Vineyards. Chief Operating Officer of sbe’s Disruptive Group, Sebastien Silvestri; and Mike Kallhoff, President of Make-A-Wish, completed the evening with a toast for the group at the end of dinner. Following the Grand Dinner, New York Yankees outfielder Giancarlo Stanton joined the guests and headed to HYDE Sunset for an epic after party hosted by Trey Songz.

The Party Continues

Heading across the country to Miami, the second Grand Weekend runs October 25-28, starting with Celebrity Taste at SLS South Beach on Thursday evening. Guests can expect participation from The Bazaar by José Andrés, Leynia, Katsuya, Fi’lia by Michael Schwartz, Makoto, and K Ramen.Burger.Beer. Saturday’s temptations include an interactive Sushi Making Class and lunch at Katsuya South Beach followed by a Grand Dinner inDelano’s iconic lobby complete with special live performances. The weekend concludes in style with a Farewell Brunch at Diez y Seis.

The final Grand Weekend takes place on the private beaches of SLS Baha Mar resort in The Bahamas, from November 15-18, where the coveted ticket on Friday night provides access to a one-of-a-kind tasting event at Bungalow Pool. Chefs in attendance will include Dario Cecchini, Michael Schwartz and Danny Elmaleh — topping off
with an after-party at Bond Nightclub and a special guest performance. On Saturday, guests will experience a Grand Dinner White Party, held on the private Baha Mar Pier. A Farewell Brunch at Cleo Mediterráneo on Sunday brings the memorable weekend, and three-weekend event to a close.

Join The Festivities

Individual tickets are available for each event throughout all three weekends, ranging from $55 to $500, as well as all-access packages. The weekends are presented by Rolling Stone, Heineken, Lincoln, Fever Tree, Diageo, Moet Hennessy, The Patron Company (Bahamas only), Pepsi and Red Bull.

For further information visit www.sbe.com/tasteofsbe and follow #tasteofsbe, #worldofsbe and #thisisbeyond to unlock your passport for the finest experiences that sbe has to offer.

Up For the Picking, National Watermelon Day Done Right

Up For the Picking, National Watermelon Day Done Right

August 3rd is officially deemed National Watermelon Day, and it just so happens to be my personal favorite fruit of all time. I’ve legitimately been anticipating this day all year long, and now that it’s here, I just can’t contain myself.  For SoCal Mag, I wanted to come up with ideas on how to celebrate this day and share my own personal love for nature’s juiciest, sweetest delight. Here’s a curated list from our editors on some fun recipes, watermelon infused products, and locations that Southern Californians can enjoy all weekend.

1.First up, if you’re in Beverly Hills and want a refreshing treat, order the “One In a Melon” cocktail from Citizen Beverly Hills. This cocktail treat is mixed with Vodka, St. Germain, Lime, Fresh Watermelon, Cucumber, Petite Cane Syrup,  & Soda. If you’re dining in, start off with their delicious Watermelon Salad paired with Cucumber, Heirloom Tomato, Chili,  & Lime.


2. The Bamboo Face Scrub from GOLDEN DOOR is infused with Watermelon Fruit Extract. This delightfully aromatic facial scrub effectively exfoliates dead skin cells leaving a deeply cleansed, smooth, even-toned complexion. Retail value $48.


3.  How about a game you can enjoy with the whole family? Word-A-Melon is the new family-fun word search game grown by BANANAGRAMS! Players take turns rolling the die, flipping the letter chips and creating words with the overturned letters. The unused letters get flipped back over so players must be sure to use their melon to remember where they are! The player with the most chips wins the game! Retail Value $20


4.  If you want a beach day, take this Super Chill Cooler Bag from ban.do and go in style for the occasion. Their watermelon bag is officially a national obsession, so join the party! Retail Value $32


5.  One of my absolute favorite drinks is WTRMLN WTR, and there are so many options with this refreshing drink. Check out their Five Facts You Didn’t Know About Watermelon.

  • Beyoncé has her own ‘Watermelon Water’: As a partner in the popular drink, WTRMLN WTR,  she launched her own LMN-ade flavor timed to the Lemonade album. The LMN-ade flavor is WTRMLN WTR’s Vitamin C Superstar and is packed with watermelon flesh, watermelon rind and Vitamin C, which supports health and happiness.*Since Beyoncé’s investment into the company, WTRMLN WTR has accomplished to be in over 15,000 stores nationwide and in all 50 states – giving Americans a healthier choice. 
  • They’re called watermelon for a reason: They’re 92 percent water, making them a perfect refresher for those hot summer months and is an ideal hydration solution.
  • Watermelon is what your skin is craving:Watermelon is packed with antioxidants and free radical fighting lycopene, meaning the delicious fruit is really good for your skin, too. It also is rich in beta carotene which will give the body protection from UV light this summer!
  • 6 Billion Pounds of Watermelon are Considered ‘Ugly’:Billions of pounds of watermelons go to waste each year in the U.S. simply because they are they are blemished, dented or discolored. Brands like WTRMLN WTR are using these cosmetically challenged watermelons and turning them into health fuel.  In 2017 alone, WTRMLN WTR is predicted to save over 50 million melons that would otherwise be discarded.
  • Watermelon is full of Vitamin A:Vitamin A helps to promote healthy eyes and can be attributed to better eyesight. It also maintains healthy skin and teeth!

 


6.  If you’re in San Diego, Check out Café 21 in the Gaslamp District. The cocktails were created by Owner and Chef Leyla Javadov in collaboration with Greenbar Distillery. The Sandia Beach $14 is crafted with IXA Reposado Tequila, watermelon, lime and chili salt. 

Also in S.D. is Madison on ParkBar Manager Danny Kuehner has crafted the Motor Bike $10 with El Jimador Blanco Tequila, local watermelon, aperol, ginger and lime. Paired perfectly with the Watermelon Stack, made with local watermelon, radish, jalapeño, grilled halloumi cheese, avocado, mint and lime, $12.


7.  American Heirloom has a great maple Watermelon Cutting Board perfect for today and any other occasion. Retail $30


8.  Courtesy of Minibar Delivery, here are two delicious watermelon cocktail recipes for any party.

Watermelon Margarita:  2 oz tequila; ½ oz lime juice; 2 oz fresh watermelon juice; 1 oz cointreau; Watermelon balls to garnish.

Combine all ingredients into a shaker filled with ice. Shake until chilled and pour into glass. Garnish with Watermelon balls and enjoy.

Frozen Watermelon Cucumber Cooler:  ½ a watermelon cubed; Cucumber slices; 2 oz Vodka; 1 oz triple sec; 1 oz lime juice; Ice.

Combine all ingredients in a blender. Blend until well combined. Pour into glass and garnish with watermelon slices.


7.  There’s something for everybody today, and for the cannabis enthusiasts, there’s the Watermelon/Peach flavored CannaSmack’s “Coral Kiss” tinted lip balm. This lip balm offers a pop of moisturizing coral-pink pigment to match your summer tan – apply lightly for a more subdued tint, or achieve a much bolder lipstick-like appearance by layering. The formula is infused with premium Hemp Seed Oil, providing the highest plant-based source of Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, as well as vitamins A, B, D, E, for an uber-moisturized, kissable pout. It’s also cruelty-free, paraben-, sulfate- and gluten-free and Made in the USA.


8.  For the Fashionistas in your life, California-based KAYU has an option. Available exclusively at J. Crew, this hand-woven watermelon clutch is made from raffia and features embroidery and shell embellishments, with a fun pom pom accent and removable crossbody chain. The bag retails for $84 at J. Crew.


9.  Let’s also sport a fresh face today. What better way to celebrate in this summer heat than waking up with the refreshing Bliss What A Melon Reviving & Destressing Overnight MaskWhat a Melon creates a nutrient veil to remove dead cells and toxins for a dewy complexion, all while boosting the skin’s defenses against stress and the environment. The mask calms and rehydrates as it tops off moisture levels and electrolytes to plump and soften. Just smooth on a layer, let it soak in, sleep on it and wake up to vibrant, supple skin. The cruelty-free (recently PETA certified) mask is available at Ulta and BlissWorld.com ($16) and is Blissfully free of Parabens, Phthalates, SLS/SLES and more.

     


10.  And for the whole body, there’s Shea Nilotik’ Oil (KALAHARI MELON)100% Natural, multi-use organic oil for the whole body, even hair. Silky smooth skin and lustrous, soft hair can be achieved in only minutes a day with this easy to use spreadable form of “shea”. Help decrease the appearance of stretch marks, help improve skin tone and texture, help give skin a healthy glow, and more. Condition and help improve hair growth with this fractionated shea butter oil. Use for massage or even to soften bath oil. Contains Kalahari melon oil and scented with natural watermelon extract. Retails for $18.

Groom + Beauty: Keeping Your Hair with SeroVital Hair Regeneres

Groom + Beauty: Keeping Your Hair with SeroVital Hair Regeneres

I’m still on a very specific search for the best products and regimens relating to hair thinning/loss prevention. Within my own personal circles, I’ve come across other men my age struggling with the same concerns about hair loss, so I felt like I could find something of value in my search not only for myself, but for my peers and the thousands of people across America looking for a solution that works best for them.

Launching this Summer is SeroVital Hair Regeneres, a combination treatment of supplemental capsules through their Hair & Scalp Revitalizing Corrector and the topical Advanced Hair Thickening Serum comprising of SeroVital’s trademarked proprietary compound called Chromaviv. The two-step system features a dietary ingredient that delivers melanin to the hair roots and a topical serum that impacts the scalp environment with external bioactives. I’ll be undergoing a trial using this product to see just how much my personal hair thinning decreases. I’m personally very excited to see any results and share SeroVital Hair Regeneres with our readers as a solution.

This is a unisex product that also works on the reversal of graying hair. SeroVital Hair Regeneres will be available online in July retailing at $99 for a 30-day supply, with a full release to national retailers August 2018. Check out more at www.SeroVitalHair.com

Groom + Beauty: The Kiehl’s Man Fuels Up

Groom + Beauty: The Kiehl’s Man Fuels Up

     

Summer is well underway, and men, I’ve seen the glory as it pertains to products for retaining youthful, well-moisturized skin this season. Kiehl’s partnered with Equinox in Century City to provide a media preview to two of their latest products within their Facial Fuel & Body Fuel Lines.

  • Eye Fuel – Due to its thin, fragile skin, the eye contour is often the first area of the face to show signs of
    fatigue. Kiehl’s instantly cooling under-eye formula provides weightless hydration and refreshing
    relief for tired-looking eyes. With continued use, the formula with Caffeine and Vitamin B3 helps
    reduce the appearance of puffiness and dark circles. Fuel up after a long flight or a long night.
  • Body Fuel Antiperspirant & Deodorant – Kiehl’s delivers on its first ever global roll-on antiperspirant deodorant and provides 48-hour protection against sweat and odor. The quick-dry formula with Caffeine, Vitamin C and Zinc glides on easily without sticking.

So far, I can attest that both product samples we received are holding up to the standard of Kiehls’ brand quality that they’ve maintained for years. To further that claim, both are the perfect additions to these lines as the rest of the Facial & Body Fuel collection is particularly pleasing, with my favorite items being the No-Shine Moisturizing Lip Balm, the Energizing Face Wash, and the Facial Fuel Energizing Moisture Treatment.

What Kiehl’s is doing is starting a movement with their products and you can follow it on social via their #FindYourFuel hashtag.

Additionally, make sure to check out our media preview’s supporting partners who treated us so well during the product introduction before and after our Athletic Conditioning session at Equinox Century City.

    

            

Shirts by lululemon; athletic socks by Bombas; water bottles by Takeya; catering by SweetGreen; iced coffee by La Colombe; beverages from Beaming & Dirty Lemon, and health bars by Nutshell.

Make sure to follow Kiehl’s on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, SnapChat, and YouTube, and shop the whole collection HERE.

      

This edition of Groom + Beauty review courtesy of @jPinNotes and @MrScott10

The Eyes of Cannabis: Q&A with Cannapreneur, Sarah McDaniel

The Eyes of Cannabis: Q&A with Cannapreneur, Sarah McDaniel

With cannabis now legal in Southern California, there’s no question the industry is booming and a new wave off entrepreneurs are emerging. We sat down with “cannapreneur” Sarah McDaniel to discuss her CBD- based skincare line Walagoot, which was born from from her own struggle with clear skin as a working model and actor. We also spoke to her about her upcoming on camera roles and stop animation projects she is producing. Check out the full Q&A below! 

Q:  You’re a California local, correct? Tell us how you got your start in modeling and acting. 

A: Yes, I was born in Northern California then lived in San Diego and Calabasas and now near Oxnard. I actually got discovered as model through Instagram. When I was seventeen, I began posting modeling type shots to Instagram and this was before “influencers” was really a big thing yet. I started to build a following and caught the attention of photographer and videographer

I’ve always had a passion for filmmaking and recently acted in a psychological thriller, Perfect, alongside Abbie Cornish and Leonardo Nam which premiered at the 2018 SXSW Festival in Austin, TX. The film will also be premiering here in Los Angeles this fall.

Q: California is among the first states to legalize marijuana. The cannabis industry has since taken off. Tell us about your interest in Cannabis and your upcoming skincare line. 

A: Growing up, I used to struggle with acne and eczema.It just makes you feel so conscious of your skin. Worrying if people notice I would even lose modeling and acne jobs because of my skin and it took a lot of my confidence away. After trying Accutane, over-the-counter medication and every fad on the market with no results, I knew there had to be something else. At the time, I was aware of cannabis recreationally and knew it had some medical applications. I began doing research and eventually contacted a friend in Colorado who recommended isolate which is CBD in a crystal form. It had some positive affects but I wanted something stronger so I began experimenting with the full spectrum of CBD oils along with coconut, jojoba and other oils. Eventually I found the right blend and my skincare line, Walagoot, was born!

Q: What has been the biggest challenges you face in your business so far? 

A: I’m a young female in the cannabis and entertainment industry which brings a unique set of challenges.  To be able to pose in lingerie or act in a horror film while also having a huge passion for behind the scenes business and creating its hard to command authority in two polar opposite worlds. A lot of what you say gets overlooked and its hard to be heard but theres always a way to find sucess if you’re committed enough.

Q: You also work behind the camera as a content creator. Tell us about your latest projects. 

A: I’ve recently been working in stop-motion animation. I created a rabbit character known as “The Professor” which was produced in partnership with Movie Mountain Studios. We are now working on a cyclops character for our next short. I was originally considering creating the cyclops for a comic book but I’ve found through my work as an influencer that people engage better with video content. Stop motion is a very expensive and time consuming way to make a film but I really love it and hope to continue working in this medium.

I also put out a variety of video and photography content on my Instagram. You can follow me @krotchy.

Q: And what are your long-term goals with your cannabis line? 

A: For my CBD line, I’d eventually like to expand from topicals to more medicinal tinctures for things like bone density, migraines, and eventually herbal chemo. I’d really like to use my knowledge of CBD oil to help people medically, and work toward creating cancer preventatives.

Q: Please share with us your SoCal Must Haves

Fav Restaurant:  FACE restaurant is the best in Ojai 

Fav Spot to Create Content:  Favorite place to create content is in my bathtub
Fav Area of this City:  Favorite area of the city is my friends house in Malibu canyon