We had the good fortune of connecting with Maya Piata and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Maya, have there been any changes in how you think about work-life balance?
Pretty drastically. Even in the pandemic, I’m striving and struggling to find that new balance- hey, if I get sponsored I wouldn’t be mad:) Balance is a pull/throw, give/receive, almost constant and revolving motion like dance. We’ve all had to adjust to a new lifestyle, adapt to a new form of normal – we’re all aware of the restrictions and requirements, But before the pandemic, I was adjusting to life as a full time artist fresh out of corporate world and business school which was huge. Another way was transitioning into a whole independent adult which comes with maintenance, constant income, paying rent and bills, cleanliness, maintaining a social life and your personal circles, we can get into how the spiritual life can impact our daily and overall balance. There are so many factors that can act like spinning plates on poles that we’re trying to keep up, they may be like falling raindrops that build until your paddling and that inner strength to adjust to the changing circumstances ~ that is where balance lives. So for me personally, I am focused on surviving. I am thankful for feeling happy despite the critical state I may be in – because once upon a time, I was not this free. Now in this freedom, as restricted as it may be, I am finding my balance by staying alive and happy as well as creative and giving. We’re in a pandemic, where it’s important to be secure and safe – not stingy. To all the artists who may come across this piece, I implore you! Give more, give what you’ve got! This is the time to give life, to light up the dark with your shine. I believe in a volcanic eruption of creation post-pandemic, a sort of Renaissance type high art emergence. I bring this point up now for the sake of balance, the law of attraction says that what you give you get. Well, it is my experience that what you give you get back ten, even a hundred-fold. Seek balance by appreciating the present and dishing out the same good energy throughout your interactions w others, your work, and how well you take care of yourself. When you do this, you are sewing even more seeds for so much greatness. Maybe beyond balance, there is abundance.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
My truest love is performance on the stage, first and foremost singing accompanied by live music, then dance, and I am a huge appreciator of the theatre- which is something a lot of people may not know about me. I was also a paint instructor over the summers through senior high and college at a local joint called Sip N Doodle- getting paid to paint and drink wine was an awesome way to make some quick, fun cash. That’s something I’m really getting back into, I have a little passion project I’m working on right now – a series I’m calling “Grinder Girls” that highlights the female form and experience. I’m collaborating with Brooklani Beauty, a young local sister with her own line, to bring more products to life and to the market, incorporating the paintings into articles of clothing so that they wear like a living exhibit as well as selling prints as well as maybe auctioning the originals one day. I love representing the female perspective this way, and this project is interesting because it is essentially raceless yet culturally and entirely colorful! Another way I engage artistically and professionally in the female community has been by doing natural hair and extensions since my days on the dance teams. I cut my perm off right before prom in high school and have been learning how to care for my God-given crown since – it was a labor of love and still is, I love the transformation a woman can go through with a fresh ‘do. It’s another great way to make money for a skill I already have and love to do, also a way to deepen my contribution and value to my community and the lives in it. I’m constructing my page for @GETKNOTTYhaircare now, so if anyone is open to being a hair model at a discounted rate – DM with the quickness.
Any great local spots you’d like to shoutout?
Yhh — I tend to bring close friends and new comers to my spot The Freeman in Deep Ellum. As a New Orleans native it’s nice to represent a little, and it’s one of the only places left playing live music- there’s a whole thriving community there! I would go down saying this spot is the heart of Deep Ellum , you can eat, drink, be merry. Wear your mask and dance, and get that Dallas sound and join in during open mic nights too – the stage is large enough to social distance. Did I mention Chicken Tenders & Sweet Potato Fries? Another place that I fancy and is particularly in style now is the Botanical Gardens especially since its all outdoors and spacious. It’s good for a nice afternoon read or photoshoot around golden hour.
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?
I would dedicate my shoutout to Jemarcus Bridges. Musical genius, community gatherer & supporter, band head, composer, multi-instrumentalist, newly-wed husband, positive inspirational leader, and my current producer.
Nominate someone: ShoutoutDFW is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.