We had the good fortune of connecting with Fabiana Fonseca and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Fabiana, how do you think about risk?
To me, risk-taking is one of the most important and impactful things someone can do in their life. It’s one of the best teachers because you can never really know the boundaries and limitations of what’s possible and what you can achieve until you try it. I’ve never been one to shy away from things considered difficult. I mean just pursuing an art career is a risk in itself. And I believe it’s extraordinarily important for someone to take those leaps of faith because if they work out, amazing! Your life is that much richer because of it! And if they don’t, okay no worries! Your life is still that much richer because now you’ve learned something you didn’t know before. There’s no growth without change. There’s no development of character without trial and error. And there’s no layers to life without a variety of experiences. And yeah, of course, it’s going to be scary. I moved to Switzerland when I was 18 and I broke my ankle in a foreign country by myself. That was TERRIFYING. But I got through it with the help of a great school staff and some amazing lifelong friends. And I know that I am who I am today because of that experience. Do I sometimes wish that I went around the black ice or walked in a different direction all together? Of course. But I don’t regret it for a second. I’m honestly extraordinarily proud of myself for thriving through a seemingly impossible situation and I have so much more faith in who I am as a person and what I can achieve because of it. All it took was the courage to apply to a school halfway around the world. Fear and change are inevitable, but I’ll leave it with these quotes who word it much better than I could: “Never let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game” Babe Ruth “Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the assessment that something else is more important than fear” Franklin D Roosevelt
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
So my official degree is in Digital Media and I would consider myself an experimental artist and designer, who’s really trying to break into the Themed Entertainment world. Storytelling is at the heart of what I do. I like to elicit emotion and create large scale experiences for people to get lost in. And while I don’t often get to work on these types of projects (yet) and I don’t always have the resources to achieve my vision, I am most proud of the designs that I have been able to create and the ones I’ve conceptualized. One particular project comes to mind, called Tangibility which was a holographic exploration into the futility of life. It was achieved through a classic technique called a Pepper’s Ghost and featured a dancer surrounded by bold, hard-lined graphics. The heart of the project rested in the juxtaposing nature of life. The intangibility versus the tangibility. The beauty versus the hardship. And thus the hard graphic animation against the fluidity of the dancer to reiterate the idea of balance. The yin makes the yang. The yang makes the yin. Because that’s what life is about. Balance. That project was one of my favorites because I got to be super creative but also an engineer, but also a storyteller and it was incredible. I think I’m something unique. I‘m a creative who loves math and technology. I want to impact lives in the way that I have been by the most amazing immersive art. I want to say something so loudly that people feel it in their soul. I’m ambitious, I’m creative, and I’m determined. However, like most of us, I’ve struggled during this pandemic. I have been blessed with the gift of time but not resources. I’ve started a passion project Etsy shop with my family called Dell & Nel (shameless plug: https://www.etsy.com/shop/dellandnel). I’ve grown my black and white film photography love and created an at-home dark room. And I have recently started an internship with the AttractionPros podcast who have introduced me to some amazing industry professionals both young and experienced and have actually featured us to be a voice of young professionals on the podcast itself(check out the episode here! http://attractionpros.com/ep181/) Life’s never easy and it’s of course a global pandemic, but I am extraordinarily excited for the future. I love what I do and I love the themed entertainment industry and I can’t wait to keep moving forward.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Oh my goodness, how fun! I know it’s not in San Diego, but I would start with a day at Disneyland, 100%. For the rest of the week, we would definitely need a full beach day. I’d probably go with La Jolla to go kayaking, surfing, and snorkeling, though I do love a morning hike at Torrey Pines. We’d have to do a Balboa day of course and just explore it all, and end the day with reservations at Cucina Urbana. Saturday morning, we’d hit the farmers market in Little Italy, have brunch at Snooze, pastries at Le Parfait Paris (maybe a giant chocolate croissant). And since we’re downtown, end with a Murder Mystery Dinner Party experience. We’d of course have to have In-N-Out at least twice during the week, go shopping in Seaport Village, eat at Mendocino Farms and Tacos El Gordo and all of the best food San Diego has to offer. And definately drive up PCH in my red convertible bug.
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?
Oh yes. A lot of people for sure. I credit all my success, my future successes, and just who I am as a person to some pretty influential people. Firstly, to my grandmother, Judi, for teaching me that fun and whimsy are strengths. To my parents, who fostered my eccentricities and allowed me to be my truest self growing up. To my giant family, for teaching me that love comes in all shapes and sizes. To my fourth grade teacher, Mrs. Taylor, for prizing both the artistic and mathematical sides of my brain. To Phillip Pullman’s The Golden Compass, all of the Harry Potter books, and anything Agatha Christie or Nancy Drew, thank you for offering new perspectives, teaching me the value of kindness, and never failing to get my analytical brain running. To Walt and the entire Disney Corporation, for filling my soul with magic. To Otis College of Art and Design’s Digital Media Department for dealing with all of my crazy requests and random whims. To Groupworks Mission Trips for the hands-on experience of changing lives. To my friends and loved ones for always having my back and reminding me that I can do anything. And finally (I told you it was a long list) to some pretty awful people that I have had to deal with, for teaching me how to stand up for myself and the value of advocating for my own rights.
Other: Pinterest: https://br.pinterest.com/fabianafonsecaart/_created/ Etsy: https://www.etsy.com/shop/dellandnel AttractionPros Podcast feature: http://attractionpros.com/ep181/