Where did you grow up?
I was born in Guatemala and emigrated to the US at the age of 11. My formative years were spent in the Pilsen neighborhood of Chicago.
What are your responsibilities or roles in your department? I am a Key Costumer - The Key Costumer tends to be a sort of all around costumer. We help the Supervisor and work closely with the Designer. It's a very busy job, ia lot of responsibility, but it can also be lots of fun.
Are there any films that inspired you to start working in television and film?
Sleeping Beauty (1959) and Mary Poppins (1964). Honestly, I started out wanting to be a
fashion designer. Barbie and a seamstress aunt
may be responsible for that. I attended Columbia
College Chicago and completed the BFA program
with a Fashion Design concentration. I then
I moved to LA, for my last semester at Columbia,
a five week Costuming intensive program
What has been your favorite project to work on?
They're all great in their own way. You learn something from every single job you ever take. My current favorite, however, is Hocus Pocus 2. I have loved the original movie for ages. To get to work on the sequel with those amazing ladies and a super talented Costume Designer? That's going to be a tough one to beat.
How did you begin working in the industry? I went to a panel discussion, sponsored by women in Film, with five of the top Costume Designers at the time. I spoke to a couple of them afterward. They were all very kind and gracious.
I introduced myself and asked if I could send them my resumé, for advice. I did not ask for a job, just advice. One of them called me a couple of weeks later to ask if I would be interested in interviewing for the PA position for her next movie. I said I would and I was so lucky to be the person they chose to hire. That was my entry into the industry and I will be forever grateful.
What advice would you give someone starting out in this industry? As we've all heard so often, success comes from being prepared when opportunity knocks. So prepare yourself. You don't have a to have a college degree to work as a costumer or as a designer, but education always helps. Proper typing skills, color theory, some costume history and fashion knowledge, and basic computer skills. Also, knowing the industry goes a very long way. Familiarize yourself with Film and Television Costume Designer’s bodies of work. Familiarize yourself with popular TV/shows and
films, over time, so you have a good frame of reference.