An artist’s struggle can only be compared to that of an individual who slams his or her head against a door so much that ultimately the door breaks open. And Flavia Borges knows the struggle well.
“You endure because it’s art we’re talking about and it’s the only thing that will heal your broken soul,” she said.
Borges was born in Brazil and left her native town of Ipatinga at age 19. She now resides in Chicago, where she has thrived as a writer, actress and filmmaker.
But her artistic inclinations came long before. “My father is a painter. I think certain things are printed on your DNA,” said Borges.
Her interests were absorbed through television, though. Once, she realized people on her screen were real, she said she never wanted to do anything else.
Although she admitted to having been interested in TV for egotistical reasons, she understands that everyone has a bit of ego involved in their art. But she said she discovered her motivations went far beyond her ego when she started dealing with constant rejection.
“Waiting for the phone to ring wasn’t an option anymore. I had to do something in order to continue living,” she said. After experiencing depression first-hand, Borges decided to put all her energy into a creative career.
She found a love for acting because she said it let her be free. “It’s an exploratory, researched-based craft which I find fascinating,” she added. The same could be said about her writing.
Borges is a freelance writer for publications in the US and Brazil and runs a lifestyle blog. But, her love of the written word has taken a new life, as she has started writing, shooting and producing her own films.
She recalled going to auditions and criticizing the scripts she was asked to read. “I thought ‘I might be delusional but I really think I can do better than this.’ I had to try it,” she said.
She tried and succeeded with the creation of Frutti Hats Films, a production company that, she said, allows her to choose the projects she is passionate about to move her work forward.
One of the causes close to her heart is women in film. “If you meet me for five minutes you’ll know that giving voice to women in this industry is something I’m passionate about,” she said.
And her latest work Ladylike proves it. The web series is based on the experience of being a woman in the 21st century, that also seeks to nurture local female talent in the film industry.
Borges’ journey has been long and transformative. “Every step in my career so far has been pivotal, especially the mistakes because they guided me where I stand today,” she said.
After slamming on the door for many years, she has broken it open. “All lightbulb moments I’ve experienced as an artist originated from a place of struggle,” she said. Borges now feels comfortable to be herself, to tell stories she is compelled by and to take her work to new heights, like her latest feature film “Half.”
But, Borges is not half of anything now. “Be yourself and trust that it’s enough“, she said.
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