We had the good fortune of connecting with Abigail “Joanna” Simpson and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Joanna, what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
Growing up I was the middle child of ten we all had a passion for drawing. I thought I was going to be an Artist like Banksy a world-known street artist or Lady Pink who began tagging at age 15. However, street art and art on paper was no longer a passion for me. I remember as a kid on the weekends we used to buy bootleg movies from the guys selling them on the streets of New York. Watching movies on the weekends in our pj’s from sun up to sun down is one of my greatest memories as a child. As I grew up I remember watching the making of Rush Hour and at that moment I knew I wanted to be a Director. Every time I watched a movie or show I’d sit there and take mental notes on how the camera was angled, how shots were captured, how bad the acting was, etc. I am self-taught in editing and have a degree in graphic and design. I dreamed of making movies and even though life got in the way I was still determined to follow my dreams.
Please tell us more about your business. We’d love to hear what sets you apart from others, what you are most proud of or excited about. How did you get to where you are today business-wise? Was it easy? If not, how did you overcome the challenges? What are the lessons you’ve learned along the way What do you want the world to know about you or your brand and story?
I think I got to where I am business-wise because no matter what I stayed determined and when something didn’t work out I didn’t let that stop me. As you go through life you will hear that you will not make it, you are not enough, you don’t have the skill, you didn’t go to college for that, people will say what they want, people will think what they want but it is about you! What’s your mindset? Do you have what it takes? Do you believe in yourself? Growing up with a challenging childhood or a hard life doesn’t define you. Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me”. Before anything we do at FilmFlex Films we pray and give thanks and meditate to stay grounded. FilmFlex Films is built on the foundation of the three H’s, Honest, Hungry, and Humble. Our team is created with hungry inspiring young filmmakers. As a company, we strive to make honest connections and honest working relationships while remaining humble through success. FilmFlex Films is run by two hungry women with an appetite to be the best. The company also strives to help young filmmakers become the best. We offer both writing and acting classes which set us apart from traditional film production companies.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Being that I’m a New Yorker and if this was New York, it would be so much easier to answer this. However, since I’m planning a trip for my bestie, who was not born in Georgia. Let’s start with Waffle House, we all know when you come to Georgia Waffle house it is the first stop. Pecan waffle is my jam. Then, piedmont park LGBT hangout or centennial park which is known to have concerts. Definitely have to go to the Coca-cola building but that’s just to remember New York. Now people say New York never sleeps but nightlife in Atlanta is poppin. Mansion always has the hottest celebrities. Come to think about it I may have to plan a trip for myself but hey what are besties for. Right?
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I would like to thank Asia Mason but y’all may know her as actress Asia Diamond. She has helped me build FilmFlex Films from the start of nothing. She has been my business partner, my friend, and my supporter. Her ambition and drive helps motivate me. I would like to thank the Copelli’s for believing in me and allowing me to pursue my dream while working for them as a chiropractic assistant. Also, I would like to thank all the people who have donated and believe in us as a company, at FilmFlex Films.
first photo by Mark Ruel Media