Monday, August 24, 2009

The Emmy Press Conference

Thursday was a very FUN day! Set-up began at 7:30am for the Emmy Press Conference. As most of you know, The Emmy's are in September. The Governor's Ball which is the dinner that follows the Emmy's is the LARGEST FORMAL SIT-DOWN DINNER IN THE NATION. In order to create additional "buzz" around the event, the vendors did a "mock" set-up for the press. Luckily, one of my companies, Images by Lighting is a vendor. I got to help out setting up on Wednesday, then set-up and attend on Thursday.

Only in LA at 9am can the press sample specialty martinis, beer, wine, gourmet appetizers, fillet Mignon, stuffed ravioli, and other food prepared by Patina catering that will be served at the Governor's Ball. FYI: The food is VERY good! Yes I had a steak and salad at 10 am while drinking "von" water.... quite the breakfast!!! As you can tell, the event will be over the top! L.A. Premier is doing the flowers and an estimated 9,000 Orchids will be used, as well as over 20,000 roses. There will be 28 or 38 of the colorful columns (sorry I forgot the number). The theme is very colorful this year, with various shades of linens, and purple lounge furniture.

I absolutely LOVE this picture of the LED lit Column!!! Thanks Ray!

Hope you enjoyed a "sneak" peek of the Emmy Press Conference!!!!

Korean Karoke

On Tuesday, I had 2 "firsts"!! Went to my first all you can eat Korean restaurant with roommate Elizabeth and our Neighbors. It was SOOOOO good! We cooked our own beef right on the table! Then I tagged along with Elizabeth to a friend's Birthday party! It was at a Korean karaoke club. The set-up was so neat. Basically, you could rent a room with your own (2) TV screens, remote control, two microphones, and even a waiter. You could get drinks, appetizers, entrees, etc. Perfect set-up for a group of friends. (Or in my case even Family would enjoy it)! The room had a wrap around booth so everyone was included in the sing-a-long...
A few songs of the evening included....Sweet Home Alabama, Backstreet Boys "I want it that way," "I will Survive," Madonna, Beyonce, and plenty others : ) Birthdays are So much fun!!!!

Favorite Quotes So Far...

I have absolutely been blessed by getting to know all of my co-workers. They are so friendly and constantly keep me laughing!!! As "funny things" for me to remember, I am keeping up with quotes (don't tell...shhhh) You probably won't think they are funny- cause you would just have to be there, BUT one reason I am doing this blog is t0 help me remember the experience!!!

J: Have you ever been to Hawaii???
Me: No
J: Ahhhh YOU have to go. But only if, go with friends- a really fun group, or two, go romantically head over heals in love! ..................... Never pissed off...ruins the experience.

R.S.: Girrrlll, you'll go from front desk to housekeeping just like that (w/ a snap) !

R.T.: Your Mom called, she said you're broke!!!

T: If all southern people are like you, I'm on the next flight south!

Those are just a few that made my day : ) More posts to come!!!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Hi!!! From Santa Monica...

After a busy week, I was ready to be lazy!!! Sunday, after sleeping in, I headed out for Lunch at Houston's! It is a chain restaurant that I love to eat at in Memphis, Tennessee, and to my surprise I found one in Santa Monica.

After "Pigging out" on dips (literally.... I went through 2 bowls of chips by myself with Spinach dip and salsa, then my food came : ) I walked down to the beach to lay out. It was so nice outside, and I used this time to catch up on phone calls since it is against the law to talk on the phone while driving. Just as I was dosing off I heard this.....
...and a lifeguard telling everyone to watch out. I looked up from my towel and discovered I was surrounded by two of these lovely trucks (this one 2 ft. from me). Then I noticed about 20 feet in front of me, a man could not stand up and kept collapsing. I thought he was dehydrated. One of the lifeguards walked by and I offered him my un-opened bottle of water. He informed me that I could keep my water because the guy was "messed up on something"(drugs) and the police were on there way. The man and his friend began stumbling off. Then two police 4-wheelers chased them down, followed by a police truck and car. All on the sand. Needless to say, I was wide awake then and figured it was time to call it a day. However, it was a great reminder to me that crazy people are out there and to be extremely careful! As I was watching all of this, my inner "kid" self made this...

Hope Everyone Has A Wonderful Week! Hi from Santa Monica Beach!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Lots to Learn

I have SOOOO much to learn when it comes to lighting. However, by working at 3 on-site events Friday and Saturday, I learned a few "beginner" lessons. All events happened to be weddings this weekend, two at hotels in Beverly Hills, and one in Pasadena. Friday night, I learned that no matter how "blue," "pink," or "orange" a room is, after a while, your eyes adjust and take on a "white" tint of the room. In other words, the room might not look as "blue," "pink," or "orange" but look white. In order for it to look the actual color, you might need to walk out of the room then back in. Trust me this happens!!!! I also learned about "saturating" lights, LED lights, how huge productions occur, working hand-in-hand with other vendors, and patience that sometimes is required to make clients happy. Saturday was a busy day as well, I learned more specific lessons. How to color/gel free-standing lights. What "gobo's" into Leko's produce, and how to shutter the Leko's to diminish the area of light projected. As well as LED (light emitted diode), PSU (power supply unit), color saturation again, Parnell's, attaching pin lights into air walls, spot-lighting table arrangements, and zip ties can solve anything : ) !!! A few examples are pictured below:

The "Dream Grill" Gobo : ) is shown above! Followed by a "lavender" ballroom, which after a while might look white to you, when you stare at it for a while.

Beautiful, very saturated, Turquoise LED lights that Images By Lighting can implement at events.....

Some Color Gelled lights mixed with LED lights...

Pin spotting Table arrangements is a fun idea too....Personally, I think it looks great and adds a LOT to the overall appearance of a ballroom! We also tested to make sure none of the guests would be blinding by the spotlights. I was a "table" hopper : )

Hopefully, through me, some of you might learn a little bit about lighting, and the importance it has in events. It is a very cool aspect of the event industry and extremely popular! Plus with technology it will just get better and better!!! Hope you enjoyed reading about my week/weekend!

Images By Lighting

Wednesday August 12, was my first "official" full day with Images by Lighting ( I was able to attend a vendor/coordinating meeting, and plan out the rest of the week with them. I was pleased to find out that my first day on-site would be Thursday. Thursday, I had the privilege to go to a residence house to assist in setting up for a birthday party. One of my bosses, Ray who started IBL over 20+ years ago, encouraged me to take pictures to put in my internship portfolio.

Thursday's lesson: Learn how a "Truss" is put together!!! Note: my terminology is still rusty, forgive me.
Step 1: Lay out the truss, pull on fabric covers- if there are any (silver for this event), then assemble some of the parts (yes, I even helped screw some bolts and washers in.. HA)

Step 2: Lift up the main frames and connect one of the inside cross bars to stable the truss.
Step 3: Connect the 2nd bar (which we needed in the center of the truss to hang mirrored disco balls over the dance floor)

Step 4: Connect the last overhead bar

And TaDa...the Truss is complete to hang lights, rings, disco balls, ribbon, anything you can think of! This was a very fun event to work! Sorry there aren't any pictures of the finished product.
I left early to meet up with the AOO Events gang at Lucky Strike Bowling Alley for a "team building" bowling night!!! Which was SOOO much fun! Plus, I beat a few of them bowling (thanks to taking the UA Bowling 1 hour elective...shhh don't tell)....haha sorry guys!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Trip to the Flower Market

Monday and Tuesday of this week, I had the opportunity to work with TFS Studio! Tuesday morning, I met Clifford and Brandon at the office early to go to the Los Angeles "Flower Market!" Above is a picture of a mural outside the main warehouse, inside the vendors have all types of fun flowers! It was so much fun getting to see the variety of flowers! There were so many tropical flowers that I didn't even know existed! Below is a view of one part of the warehouse. I also loved the orchids, which were fabulous. One of the reasons we went to the flower market was to get gerber daisy's for a client. We got 3 different types of Gerber Daisy's for the arrangement. You do not get the full "gerber daisy" effect from the picture...just so you know!
Here is a closer look at them...

By the way...this was the first arrangement that I got to do!!!! Hope you like it : ) Hopefully the client will love it for her birthday!!! Later in the day, we went to the Fabric Market!!! Lets just say, I could go crazy in there!!! So many warehouses full of spools of fabric....I'm ready to learn how to upholster...Leah get ready : )

Sunday 8/8/09...a Day to Remember!!! Post 2

As you probably can tell from reading "Sunday 8/8/09 Post 1" (below on the before you continue on this post! So you can catch up.) I was ready to go to the "Summer Under the Stars Concert" at the LA Greek Theatre! I found out about this concert listening to Country 105.1 (the only LA Country Radio Station) on my way to work. It sounded like fun, so I bought a ticket Saturday to see The Eli Young Band, Jack Ingram, and Rodney Atkins in Concert. I LOVE concerts, especially outdoor ones, so I was very excited I could fit this in my schedule. When I first got to the Greek theatre, I knew I liked LA concerts right away. I treated myself to this yummy "Maui Sunset" Strawberry/Raspberry Smoothie w/ a kick. haha Isn't it cute? They even put umbrellas in them!
Next, I listened to the "Pre-Concert" Band which happened to be Team Rodeo, featuring Dean Brody (sings the song "Brothers"). It was so nice and relaxing, and the best thing was... I felt right at home : ) After the long day, this was exactly what I needed! But it gets better...
After they played, Dean Brody was signing autographs and taking pictures at the Country 105.1 tent. I figured I might as well get in line while I was waiting for the concert...I mean why not? Right? The guy behind me in line said he would take a picture for me when we got closer, then suggested I get a picture with the guy who was playing the guitar. So I did...and started talking to Trey who is originally from JONESBORO, ARKANSAS!!! (Side note: I have family that lives there & my parents are from there) He was my new best friend : ) lol While we were chatting, one of the radio co-host asked if anyone around the tent was from Arkansas. I of course raised my hand and gave him my name....and was the WINNER of FLOOR TICKETS!!!!!!!!! I was SO excited, I never win anything!!! My Day was officially SO MUCH Better!!! Here is me with the Radio Co-hosts getting my tickets....
Here is me with Dean Brody (left) and Trey (right)! Such sweet Southern Boys : ) who sounded wonderful too...
The Eli Young Band.....Jack Ingram....
Mr. Rodney Atkins....This was by far one of my most memorable concerts and days. It is one that I will always remember and treasure. It had ups and downs, stressful and exciting moments, and was one that I can look back on and smile about (yes even the car breaking down I can laugh at now). After the 4 hour concert, it was time to call it a night!!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

A Peak into Where I'm at...

My living arrangement : ) It's pretty cozy! Excuse the multi-functional desk...haha it is part shoe closet and dresser, but works for me! Ohhhh...if you look to the right of the desk, in the black crate, you can kind of see the Colin Cowie dishes I got on my first day : )

Meet Owen, Elizabeth's puppy dog! He is so sweet and loves to play catch around the apartment. He is pretty good at it too! AND will play as long as you kick/throw the tennis ball. I woke up the other morning, and rolled over to find 5 tennis balls lining the edge of my bed and Owen starring at me...: )
This is just a sneak peak...

Sunday 8/8/09 A Day to Remember...Post 1

Welcome to one of the most interesting days of my life... I promise you will want to read this : )

Sunday Morning, Elizabeth and I headed to Pasadena for the ROSE BOWL FLEA MARKET !!!! I love flea markets, and was thrilled to find out about this one! It occurs the 2nd Sunday of every month, and over 2500 vendors are placed around the Rose Bowl Stadium.

It was definitely an experience! Whenever I "grow up" and get a house, I might have to save up and come get furniture and decor from here, no matter where I am located! Friends & Family this is in the "5 yr" plan, so start saving and come with me! : ) There were so many fun pieces!!! Some people even had U-hauls! Of course I found a few exciting bargains, some jewelry and a vase!! After walking around the entire flea market, Elizabeth and I took a peak inside the stadium!!! I loved being able to see inside this historic "Bowl" stadium!!! If only there were a football game going on.... : )

After we the flea market, Elizabeth took me to downtown Pasadena to show me around. Here's where the day gets interesting....

While stopped at a Red light on a Colorado Blvd. (downtown), my car died. As in really died! Won't Start at ALL! I keep trying to crank it, and put my emergency lights on...don't worry people are honking, cussing, yelling, and speeding past me...while an entire Italian restaurant is watching-not moving just watching! Finally, my car loosened up enough to shift into Neutral, and I recruited a man and his son to help Elizabeth and I get it out of the middle of the street, and into the fire lane. Then, called the lovely "Hyundai Roadside Assistance" for a tow truck. Thankfully I wasn't by myself, Elizabeth was so helpful! 50 minutes later the Tow truck arrived. I asked the man to "jump" it, to see if the battery was the problem...which it was and jumping it worked. He then informed me- not to turn my car off and go straight to "Pepboys" to test my battery.

I get to Pepboys, and the manager was not very nice. After waiting 15 minutes (car still running), I finally got someone to help me. He tested the is suppose to come in at 600 and mine was 160...basically completely dead...maybe an hour of driving left in it. I was informed that the 10 minute process of changing the battery was going to take 1 1/2 hours at the least, because there were 5 cars in front of me. Lets just say by this point, I am wanting to download instructions on how to change a battery from my iphone and do it myself (not really, but kind of). He was impressed I knew it only took 10-15 minutes to change a battery, asked where I was from, and told me to go inside, buy the battery, bring it out there and someone would change if for me. 10 minutes later, I left with a new battery in my car!!! Thankfully it was just that I needed a new battery! He tested everything else, and I was good to go! I had to hurry home to get ready for the "Summer Under the Stars" Concert that was at 6:30........(Post 2 coming!)

Pink's Hot Dogs

When I was packing to move out west, my uncle, Duane told me about "Pink's." He had seen a special on the "original" hot dog joint on Food Network. He told me I HAD to try it. Well Friday afternoon on my way home from work, I passed "Pink's" and the line was reasonably short with only about 20 people in line. Earlier in the week, I had passed Pink's and the line went around the block. Needless to say I pulled over and stopped for a Hot Dog and Fries. It was SOOOO good! If you're ever in LA, you should try this old fashioned hot dog joint! Thanks Duane for your recommendation!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

A Few Favorites : )

Day 1:
At Images...I was asked if I liked Country Music???....If you know me well, you know that I LOVE Country Music. Two of the Ladies there are big fans and often go to concerts around the city! They were so excited to find out it was my favorite too!

Day 2:
At an Event Meeting that 2 of my companies participated in...I got to tour the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Downtown LA! I even got to go up to the top and look over the city. Up there is a Garden and several art sculptures. A funny story about this building is that originally, the shiny outside layer was so reflective, that the curtains in the apartments across the street had holes burnt in them from the sun! Thankfully they coated the exterior to reduce this problem. Isn't this building fantastic!?!Day 3:
I worked at AOO Events all day today and for lunch....A few of my co-workers introduced me to FAT BURGER (according to them: the BEST burger place in LA)! I must say it was delicious! I got the "Medium Burger" and "FAT Fries." Excellent lunch suggestion and wonderful company! Thanks Tom and Nick!

Start of Something Great...

Hey everyone!!! So the first 3 days of my internship have been super busy! I have already learned so much about the event industry. As I mentioned in an earlier post, I am interning with AOO Events (check out their blog:, TFS Studio ( and Images by Lighting ( in Los Angeles, California. My first day was Tuesday August 4, 2009. Tuesday was an orientation day for me to get to know each company as well as the employees.

I started the day meeting with Mark Shelton at AOO Events. Mark is the master behind developing this shared internship opportunity for me. He wanted to ensure that I received quality experience and an overall understanding of the ins-and-outs of the industry. As well as, making sure that the joint internship would be worth me traveling across the country. He is a wonderful man who enjoys helping others along the way. I really won the lottery when I got connected with him. As soon as I arrived at AOO I was greeted by so many wonderful people! I met AOO's Founder, David Merrell, then the rest of the producers and designers. I absolutely love all of the guys there! They are so friendly and SO much fun to be around, constantly making me laugh! After a quick orientation at AOO I was on my way to TFS Studio!

Suprise....Guess What???....The owner of TFS Studio, Clifford Miller is from DeQueen, ARKANSAS!!! It really is such a small world! There Clifford and Brandon Dunn showed me around. They really wanted to get an idea of what I wanted out of this internship. Both of them are extremely kind and will be tremendous role models for me. We then went to lunch at Urth Cafe (excellent) and worked on a few floral photo ops at the studio. Clifford and Brandon actually have 3 businesses: The Flower Shop, TFS Studio, and Clifford & Brandon(an interior design company). Luckily they have 2 California weddings (in Santa Barbara and Orange County) that I will get to assist at while I am here.

After leaving TFS, I headed to Images by Lighting. I will be the first intern for Images by Lighting, so I am hoping to make a positive impact on them : ) I most likely will get the most hands-on experience with Images. They have numerous events while I am in town. This really excites me because dramatic lighting is one of the new "innovative" aspects of events. It is also an aspect that I have the least amount of experience in. The owners, Ray Thompson and Curt Stahl are very well known and respected in the industry. They have a wonderful team and I am so excited to work with them! They even spoiled me on day one with Starbucks Coffee, Colin Cowie dishes, decorative vases, and other fun items! (Side note: The employees were able to go through some of Colin's extra decor/tableware that was cleared out of his warehouse behind Images, and they let me get some too!!! So sweet!!!) Next thing I knew, it was 5:30 and time to call it a day, a pretty successful day at that!!!

I am in a very unique position being an intern for 3 companies, all who are in the same industry. One huge factor in this equation is flexibility. Everyone is so flexible with the schedule and all want me to get the most valuable experience. As an intern, I could not ask for three better companies to work for. The variety of knowledge and experience of the individuals that I will be working with will enhance my career far greater than I could have ever expected. As a beginner in the industry, I have lots to learn, but I assure you, I am learning from the best "top of the mountain" leaders!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

One of my top things that I want to do while I am to go Bike Riding down the Boardwalk along the Pacific Coast. Sunday morning, I accomplished that! Elizabeth and I rented bikes at the Santa Monica Pier and rode along the beach towards Malibu. Then we stopped for Lunch on the beach and road back! It was SO much fun and the weather was perfect! My goal before I started work was to be a tourist, since it is my first time in LA. Soooooooo I have had the opportunity to explore several areas: Culver City, Hollywood Blvd.(the good side, not the one by Popeye's lol), Melrose Ave. (shopping of course), the Hollywood Stars tour, driving down the Pacific Coast Highway at Sunset, and seeing Pepperdine University on the top of Malibu looking over the ocean!!!! (picture above)
If you can't tell, I am Loving California! And this is all before my internship starts!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Roadtrip to LA

Well after driving 24+ hours on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, my Dad and I made it to Los Angeles, California!!! The drive was so much fun and VERY beautiful! My favorite moments included:

Badland's Burgers in Grant, NM (exit 81 in NM if you are ever in the area...STOP HERE)
Detour to Las Vegas where we won enough money to pay for our hotel stay,

seeing the Hoover Dam...
and stopping in Shawnee, OK (at Wal-mart) to Load up on Snacks!!!

We arrived in LA around 2pm on Friday. We found where two of my offices are located, then ventured onto Hollywood Blvd. and saw some of the "stars." We also ate at a "Popeye's Chicken!" Story time: We didn't plan on eating at Popeye's however our car was being "looked" at by street walkers. It had a cargo carrier on top and we weren't in the best area to stop for lunch! So we unloaded the cargo carrier (yes on the side of Hollywood Blvd.) then went to Popeye's. Next, we headed down to Culver City to move into my apartment. I met Elizabeth (who I got connected with through Kappa, and who is Super Sweet!), her puppy Owen, and saw my new room!
Culver City is a wonderful neighborhood (pictures to come)! I really got lucky how everything turned out! The Kirk Douglas Theater and Sony Studio's are right down the road from me. Plus within walking distance is about 20-30 resturants that have patios outside! (I love eating on patios!! Reminds me of Italy) Friday night, my Dad, Elizabeth, and I ate dinner at Ford's Fillers (Harrison Ford's Son's resturant in Culver City).
Saturday, My Dad and I went to Venice Beach and walked to the Santa Monica pier. Then hit up Rodeo Dr. and Sunset Blvd. We got lunch at Bristol Farms then headed to LAX to send Daddy home! This is where reality hit me that I was actually living in LA for 2 months and officially "on my own." Scary...but SO Exciting at the same time! Stay tuned for how my first week in LA went...