I love to explore what truly inspires us from a deeper soul level. I like to look more deeply into the human condition, reflect upon how I show up in the world, and learn from my mistakes and my wins. I also feel that in exploring the human condition on a regular basis, I strengthen my skills as an actor, because ultimately acting is just being a human. I figure that in approaching life as somewhat of a social anthropologist but from a more spiritual place, I nurture my creative side as well. In the end, it’s all an outlet for better understanding storytelling.’
Scottie Thompson is an American actor. She has worked in films, television, and theatre productions. Growing up, Scottie harbored a passion for ballet and performed professionally with the Richmond Ballet. She went on to study for a degree in Performance Studies and Literature at Harvard University, where she turned toward acting and began her tryst with the art form. Some of her notable television projects include ‘12 Monkeys’, ‘Brotherhood’, ‘NCIS’, ‘Graceland’, ‘MacGyver’, and ‘The Blacklist’. Some of her film credits include ‘Crown Vic’, ‘Skyline’ and ‘The Lookalike’. Since connecting with this inspiring artist, we also uncovered part of her soul story and discovered that she is a forceful advocate for healthy living and the environment. Scottie’s professionalism, contagious energy and radiant spirit allow her to remain a consistent and unstoppable force in an ever-changing industry; which she moves through with integrity, heart and soul.
Did you know from an early age that you wanted to work in the arts?
I knew from a very young age that I wanted to perform. I loved doing plays with my girlfriends for our families growing up; though I can’t say our families always loved it! I have always had a very active imagination, and thankfully that was encouraged by my parents from a young age. My creative side has always sought a space for expression.
How did you foster your creative talents?
Even though I enjoyed all kinds of arts growing up, I really honed my creative talent through ballet. While ballet is very disciplined art form and not as fluid as some other forms – in spite of the grace of dance itself – studying it and performing allowed me to invest myself in character through movement. I loved being on stage more than anything. It was – and still is – a magical place to escape into other worlds.
Where did you first discover your love for acting?
I really didn’t find my way to acting until college. It was a somewhat natural transition from dance, as I had never been a master technician, but I always thrived the most on stage. At school, I discovered they a plethora of theater opportunities and I dove in fully. All of my free time – and honestly most of my time that might have been intended for study – was occupied by theater, whether acting, doing load in with crew, choreographing dance pieces or developing.
How has your work in other mediums influenced one another?
I think dance provided an excellent entryway into acting, which offered the perfect marriage of my love of movement with the added layer of intellectual exploration of character on a deeper level. Being in tune with my body, I often find my way into a role through movement. Dance knowledge also comes in with remembering actions in a sequence, which is vital on set, from nuanced gestures to remembering which arm I lifted my coffee cup with on the first take which helps with editing. I have also pursued writing over the years, and in a much more focused capacity recently. It is a very effective way of better understanding character, structure and storytelling. While I struggle sitting so long, I love the chance to bring worlds onto the page, and feel the process positively influences my acting.
You often use your social media platform to share thoughts and stories about manifestation, social justice, environmental activism, women-empowerment, and other things that are important to you—almost as an open journal or blog—how important is it for you to use your platform in that way?
Social media is such a strange other world, and one that I struggle with, in that it can really be a time and energy suck, as well as a source of feeding insecurity, so I do my best to focus on framing it as a tool for affecting positive change. I never know how or if it impacts people, but figure if I am going to take the time to dance in that world, I might as well use it to share causes that are important to me. I know that when I encounter such things on social media, I am often affected, and hope that my posting about such matter allows for a tiny little drop in the ocean of awareness.
How do you consider yourself an activist?
I consider myself an activist through my involvement with certain causes, both in terms of time and financial investment, as well as sharing information. I know that there is always room for expansion, and I hope to streamline my activism and dive into more tangible outlets moving forward. Over the years I’ve worked with organizations like BuildOn, getting down in the dirt to build schools in other countries, and Trailblazer Foundation in Cambodia that promotes clean water. Currently I am working with ARTISTS FOR AMAZONIA, a collective of brilliant environmentalists and activists working to protect the Amazon Rainforest, and the indigenous communities that live there, from the devastating destruction occurring there due to development.
What is your soul story and how are you enriching this exploration in your everyday?
Oh, I can’t give away my secret soul mission ;) Kidding. Though my soul story, like everyone’s, is far too complex and stretches across too many lifetimes to encapsulate on the page. But in general, I’d say that I love to explore what truly inspires us from a deeper soul level. I often struggle to discern my purpose among the myriad activities I pursue and the many failures I have encountered along the way. So, I like to look more deeply into the human condition, reflect upon how I show up in the world, and learn from my mistakes and my wins. I also feel that in exploring the human condition on a regular basis, I strengthen my skills as an actor, because ultimately acting is just being a human. I figure that in approaching life as somewhat of a social anthropologist but from a more spiritual place, I nurture my creative side as well. In the end, it’s all an outlet for better understanding storytelling.
On a more holistic level, how do you practice mindfulness and sustainability in your own home?
I meditate every day, usually for about an hour in the morning. I aspire to end my days in meditation, but that goal is still in the making… And of course, after my morning meditation, I often end up running out the door late to whatever my next order of business is (sometimes yoga, ironically). I’m typically scrambling to get back to my Zen place, but as I get older and listen more to that voice that wishes to slow down, I am better able to maintain a sense of balance. As a freelancer never sure of when the next opportunity will arise nor where it will take me, I struggle to stay centered, and find my meditation practice vital. Nature is always a source of healing and grounding for me, so I make a point to find my way to her as often as possible. Also, I recently moved into a new home, and that has provided necessary roots for me, and a way to simplify my routine. In terms of sustainability, I do have a large carbon footprint with my frequent traveling, but do my best to recycle, shop sustainable brands, and, living by the beach, I try to ride my bike or walk whenever I can. Perhaps someday I’ll get around to growing a garden.
What is a mantra you live by?
That’s a good one. Honestly, it depends on where I am in my journey. I’ve always loved a quote my Mom used to say: Dive in and take a risk. And lately, the very overused but for powerful simple statement: Be Here Now has been calling me. To keep me present and grateful whenever I spin out into the future or dwell upon a past mistake.
Your life has many different and celebrated facets. Please tell us what you are doing now and what sets your heart on fire?
I am definitely pulled in many directions, and streamlining my life is currently capturing my soul’s attention. At the moment, I am working on developing and pitching several writing projects, helping oversee (from a distance) post-production on a film I produced earlier this year, settling in to my new home, and searching for my next acting opportunity. I recently participated in a Staged Reading of a new play by the Oscar, Pulitzer and Tony Award winning playwright John Patrick Shanley, and just wrapped on a wonderful independent film called START WITHOUT ME. Being on stage lights my heart ablaze, as does being on set, both for different reasons. It’s always such a gift to collaborate with talented artists and crew. I am also really loving writing, and while the discipline of sitting down and doing it is challenging, I love exploring my imagination and finding a new way of storytelling. In terms of movement, my latest obsession is aerial silks, which is, at this point, seemingly impossible, but I am thrilled by the chance to learn a new skill, especially one that keeps my mind and body very attuned.
How and why did you gravitate to EE?
I found you all through another of your EE Women, Olesya Rulin, and became obsessed with your elegant, beautiful pieces. Everything I saw on your Instagram page seemed like a dream to me. So when we connected, I was thrilled. And that was before I found out your story, which moved me immensely. I love that you are a family-owned and operated, and that you have such a wonderful sustainable approach to your business while using the highest quality materials. You all represent all that I admire in a clothing company today.
How does wearing EE make you feel?
Light and graceful and lovely. Your clothing is such high-quality material, and I can really feel the love put into each piece. Which in turn makes me feel soooo good wearing it. It feels good not only physically, but energetically as well. Honestly, it makes me feel like dancing.
What is your favourite EE style?
The style I chose for the photoshoot! Easy, breezy beachy with a fun flair and all kinds of class. All that you all make, really, I adore. But the elegant loungewear is probably my favorite, as I get the most wear of out those items. Also, the fact that I can through my day in your clothing is magic.