In a city so uniquely famous for its creative and artistic aura, it’s not surprising to find that Austin has some of the most talented people in the industry. Wardrobe Stylist Penelope “Penny” Arth is no exception. She has made a name for herself here at Fueld Films, and beyond, as being one of the best and brightest to work with!
The youngest of six children, this once small town girl from upper Marboro, MD had big dreams that took her from little sleepy town to the starry eyed “City of Angles,” were her journey all began! In appreciation for all her hard work and pure awesomeness we’ve decided to feature her in this week's Q&A on the blog - we couldn’t be more thrilled.
Take a minute to peer into the day and life of this wardrobe extraordinaire with these 20 fun facts about one of Fueld’s most favorite gals!
University of Oregon - “I’m a Duck!”
1.How did you get started as a Wardrobe Stylist and what attracted you to it?
When I moved to LA the second job I had there was with a very successful still photographer, Jay Silverman. I started out as his office manager in a staff position. His staff coordinator was also the stylist for all of his shoots. When she resigned he was going to start looking for someone to replace her and he wanted someone who could coordinate but also do the styling - this is not uncommon in the still photography world. Anyway, the coordinator was the one to suggest me for the position. She saw something in me that I didn’t even know that I had a skill for.
2. How did you meet the Fueled team?
I believe that Summer thought of me one day for a project. This was before she was a partner at Fueld. She and I had known one another from doing production work in Austin through the years.
3. Can you describe a little bit about what goes into your position? What's your day-to- day work life like?
Once booked on a project: Receive scripts, storyboards and calendar for the project. Read through everything and start breaking down the characters and prioritizing what you need to start sourcing first. In this business you are constantly looking for what you think might be RED FLAGS. These would be items that look like they need to be ordered or manufactured. That means factoring those acquisitions into the calendar and trying to get decisions right away. Usually, once you read through all of the paperwork you get on the phone with the director or meet in person to go over his/her vision. Maybe they give you tear sheets (inspiration for the look of the overall project, i.e. lighting, texture, tone) or they ask you to provide them so he/she knows you are on the same page aesthetically speaking. Once talent is booked you have to call them all and make sure their sizing is correct. From there, you shop and source. That could be anywhere from hitting the mall, boutiques, or designing looks to be pulled from all kinds of resources. No two projects are ever the same - even if they seem so at first. You have talent fittings and hopefully all goes well and you shoot. This can happen within days - it’s very hit and run.
4. What’s the coolest project you have ever worked on?
Whatever is the current project I’m on.
5. What do you love about your job?
6. Best moment of your career so far?
Being requested again.
7. You have worked on some pretty big projects from commercial spots like Chobani to music videos with The Black Keys. If you could choose, what would be your dream project?
Any project where I had a dozen assistants, weeks of prep and a bottomless budget. And we were shooting on a beautiful secluded beach!
8. You often team up with your husband on projects. How do you juggle having your personal life in with your work life?
That is really easy for us. When we work together its great - laughs and hard work. And when we don’t, we understand what each other is going through on their job. Couldn’t have imagined a better situation. No juggling. Some personal time sacrifices but we try to make up for that time when we are together. We’ve had some really great trips in and out of the country.
9. Who would you love to work with in the future?
The Coen Brothers - do you think they’d have me?
10. Favorite film and why?
The Graduate. Ann Bancroft was just incredible. The script is amazing.
11. Who inspires you and why?
My mother is at the top of the list. She never took “no” for an answer and still doesn’t. But I’m inspired by so many people around me - my husband inspires me everyday with his day to day work ethic and creativity. My siblings are all amazing in the way they have structured their careers along with raising their children. Everyone is amazing really.
12.What is most challenging about what you do?
I think managing expectations, delivering the creative vision and coming in on budget.
13. Where do you derive your creative energy?
From everything and everyone around me.
14. What do you do to relieve stress?
Yoga, running, red wine!
15. What part of your own personal style do you feel defines you?
16. What is the one thing you can’t live without?
17. What is your astrological sign?
Taurus all the way!
18. What advice would you give someone starting out in your craft?
Have a thick skin
19. Looking back, knowing what you know now, what would you do differently?
I don’t look back
20. If you weren’t a wardrobe stylist, what would you do?