Breonna

Breonna

name: breonna rodriguez

occupation: creative - art director, writer, director... a lot 

age you feel: i'm 34- feel 34

CAREER

GGNYC: let's talk about your 9 to 5 and what you do there

BR: i am the lead digital designer at sesame street, so i'm in charge of how the brand looks online. that includes all web properties, which ranges from the sesame website to pbs and the app... there's a number of things sesame street does digitally and so i art direct, design and oversee those projects

GGNYC: and how did you realize your passion was to be a creative 

BR: i think i've always been that person... when i was growing up you could not keep tape in my house. there was no tape or paper that would last because it would be in my hands and i would be making something. when i was a teen i applied to schools that had a marketing program because i wanted to make the jingles in commercials and then at the last minute my mom told me to check out drexel university and i saw they had a graphic design program. i realized i had been doing graphic design for like five years already... i had been drawing on a computer since i was seven. so it made sense to go for that graphic design degree

GGNYC: tell us about your website, zenfulie

BR: it was around 2013 i had made something at sesame street for work and i got in trouble for it, they were pissed off over i dont know what because i had literally copied the script from the show and made this art piece for it. that night i get home upset about it and the guy i was dating at the time was like well what are you gonna do about it? - i responded with i don't know, but i'm going to figure it out! and so two hours later after doing this online survey zenfulie was born! i just realized that there are two things i can do endlessly - tell beautiful stories and encourage people

GGNYC: talk about the lightbulb going off! now we know you've been working on a documentary... tell us what that's about

BR: the name of the doc is minus the doubt, it started from me turning 34 and realizing i had made some really positive changes over the years and thinking to myself : oh i like this girl! she's dope has confidence and treats people well. i wanted to celebrate that, i felt like i had climbed a mountain in life and i wanted to mirror that. so i set out to climb mountain kilimanjaro. then i wondered how many other women felt the same, how many other women had removed doubt from their life so that they could achieve the things they wanted to accomplish. so that thought process led me to work on this documentary where i'm helping a group of women achieve a big goal. i was seeing a lot of books about leaning in and what not- but i wasn't seeing anything that shows the path to finalizing the actual GOAL... nothing talks about how you wake up at 2 am with your heart beating fast and this little voice telling you- what the fuck are you doing? who do you think you are? you're not gonna pull this off... so minus the doubt focuses on a group of women facing and discussing self-doubt while on a quest to conquer a goal. it's a story of growth... it's authentic, it's relatable, it's real

GGNYC: wow! tell us three challenges that have came up while doing this project that you feel women should hear about, as we often can get discouraged when we are in pursuit of our happiness

BR: the first thing i learned was that getting a sponsorship is not easy! i thought that because this is launching in march for women's history month more brands would be interested... but no. i had a lot of conversations with people but they didn't lead to anything... i went through so many versions of my sponsorship package just to get it right. in the end i did get some sponsorship so that was great! the second thing is i had to be okay with pivoting... because i didn't get sponsorship for kilimanjaro, i had to change the location. i did crowdfunding to take it to utah. i had to cut a lot of things out of the budget that i wanted to do, but i still couldn't get enough money for the trip. so i pivoted again and we made it someplace beautiful- lake placid! the third challenge came in the form of who i asked to be a part of the project. when you're working with a friend it's really hard to tell your girlfriend you're dropping the ball on this thing. so, i love my friends, but! if you have a project that doesn't absolutely need the help of your friend{s} then keep your business separate from your personal

GGNYC: where would you like to take what you're doing in the next few years

BR: i already have three stories lined up to pitch. in 2017 all i want to be doing is telling these stories for other brands

 

STYLE

GGNYC: what's your favorite item in your closet and where did you get it

BR: most recently it's this scarf i got from this woman i've been hanging out with through this volunteer program i'm in. she's 93 and she makes these jokes about rolling out of this life... and so she's always trying to get rid of things. some stuff i just can't ... but! this green scarf that you photographed, i loved ... especially because it comes from someone that reminds me of me

GGNYC: there's a fire in your apartment and you could only save three items- what are they

BR: the black lace bra in the photos, this cashmere theory turtleneck dress that hugs every curve like peanut butter, and my one pair of louboutin shoes

GGNYC: describe your style in one word

BR: americana

GGNYC: what are your top brands to collaborate with

BR: i am in love with chanel, and not in a materialistic way. that brand does so many unique and inspiring things. they do everything with intent... it's not every woman's brand- except in so many ways it is. everything chanel did was so avant-garde for her time, she is fascinating. the second brand would be bergdorf goodman. i love love love those windows during the holidays. they are my favorite thing come christmas time! i already have a story i'd do through an installation... i wont say it though {laughs}

GGNYC: if you could raid anyone's closet, whose would it be

BR: sarah jessica parker

GGNYC: based on fashion which era in the last 100 years would you like to be a part of

BR: part of me wants the 20s but that era was not great for women with ass! it was great for that gumstick body... so i'll say that jackie o' era! i think my ass woulda looked good in the sixties {laughs}

GGNYC: what's something you own that you would pass down to your future child

BR: i'm actually wearing it, it's this watermelon tourmaline crystal which is supposed to help you heal from any heartbreak or trauma... it brings balance and helps you keep it

JUST FOR FUN

GGNYC: which are the top five apps on your phone

BR: everything that helps me with zenfulie! google analytics, gmail, instagram, twitter and my kindle app

GGNYC: favorite cartoon cereal combo as a kid growing up

BR: cookie crisps and merrie melodies, think bugs bunny- that was my jam

GGNYC: you win a trip around the world, who do you take and whats the first stop

BR: whoever i'm sleeping with that's nice to me and we're going to bahia in brazil

GGNYC: if you could have a private dinner with four people who would they be

BR: leonardo dicaprio, diane von furstenberg, karl lagarfeld and rupaul

GGNYC: you find a time traveling machine, where do you go and why

BR: i go back to 2014 and i wouldn't change anything. but i feel like there were some really key moments that i didn't pay attention to and i wouldn't mind reliving them

GGNYC: what's your favorite smell

BR: mens cologne... with some driftwood in it

LETS GET PERSONAL

GGNYC: what's your favorite song to be seduced to

BR: anything by the rolling stones

GGNYC: when was the last time you had a good cry, and what was it about

BR: it was the day after thanksgiving and it was when i realized i couldn't afford to bring the women to utah and had to pivot again

GGNYC: do you have anyone who inspires you to pursue your passions

BR: my sister... she's been a roller skater since she was four and she's 20 now. she's traveled the world and has been top of the country. and she works so hard at this sport while maintaining great grades! she could be jaded because the u.s. doesn't pay it's athletes - which isn't right- but they do pay overseas... all that to say, she has to compete and play within these politics and she still does it. she has shown me what it's like to fight for something you love despite any circumstances

GGNYC: what scares the shit out of you

BR: failing

GGNYC: what makes you feel vulnerable

BR: being my kind of honest... i'm very good at saying the things that i know people need to hear, and how they need to hear it... but when i want to say the honest thing in the way i need to actually express it--- it is a totally different thing

GGNYC: what makes you blush

BR: compliments and love... especially when people compliment all the things i'm working on. i have people at work pulling my aside to talk to me about what they've read on my site and then they want to launch into their problems and want my advice... i have an uncomfortable time receiving love but i'm very comfortable giving it. i think it's because i want it so bad that i'm scared it might... i don't know, i need to work on that and heal that shit up

GGNYC: what do you want your legacy to be

BR: i want my work to change life for the better, for people to be healthier because they've interacted with my work

GGNYC: what's one thing about yourself that you're working on

BR: removing possessiveness from my relationships... and my projects. to let people and things be as they are without judging it... 

GGNYC: name one thing you've made peace with

BR: my skin, some people have great skin and i dont. i had so much anxiety over it in my early 20s, i just had moments that made me break out a lot and so my skin got these little scars from it. now i look at them and i see them as my battle scars! i'm not gonna go get botox or anything crazy- i know i'm a dope ass bitch

GGNYC: what do you love most about yourself

BR: my heart... i have a good heart

GGNYC: finish these sentences - when i'm 82 i hope that ____

BR: i have solid poo

GGNYC: new york is ____

BR: where you go to be born

GGNYC: my girlfriends are ____

BR: my insides

 


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