I first met Camille Walker, our interviewee, in middle school & we were fast friends. She was always into fashion back then – so, it wasn’t too much of a mental jump for me to see her in the field she’s in now. There is nuance to her story and motivations, so I look forward to sharing that with you all today in her Black Perspective.
Introducing: Camille Walker
SSD: Jumping right in, tell me a bit about yourself and what you do.
CW: I’m a wife and a mother. I’m a Christian, a lover of good food and good music. I work in the costume department for films and TV shows. Currently, I am what’s called an Office Costumer. My main job is inside the costume office, making sure all the costumes needed for the next day of shooting make it to set and any special requests from the design team are relayed.
SSD: You don’t hear that every day! What inspired you to get into costuming as a profession?
CW: It all happened by accident. I wanted to be a stylist, which I was for a hot second. Then I met a costume designer, interned with her and she liked me a lot – so, she referred me to other designers, and I kept getting jobs from there.
SSD: Is your field heavily reliant on networking and reputation (in terms of working on projects), or is that not as big a deal because of collaborative work deals with unions and guilds? Can you explain the typical process one goes through to get on a project (assuming there is a “typical process”)?
CW: This industry is like no other I know of, it’s all about networking and connections. Nepotism is encouraged, there is no set way to get in, and it’s all on-the-job training. Once you find a way to get in, do your absolute best and keep up with all your contacts. Unions exist but, at least in GA, they aren’t hiring unions so you are responsible for finding your jobs.
SSD: What’s a tip that you’d give someone who sees you, is inspired, and wants to follow in your footsteps?
CW: Keep putting yourself out there, be persistent and resourceful. Build a good reputation and a solid network, that’s how you will keep getting calls.