We had the good fortune of connecting with Maddie Steele and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Maddie, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
I decided to pursue an art and creative career in acting and photography because not only has it been a passion of mine that has helped me emotionally but it has been something I have grown up with since I was a kid. My mom was a photographer, so at an early age I learned behind the camera and on camera techniques. As a kid my mom would bring my sister, brother, and I to the studio to practice lighting, modeling, and how to set up a studio! Being introduced to art at an early age taught me how to express myself in a creative way. By pursing art, it has allowed me to be the best version of myself and to make an image in my head come to life for many to see.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
My creative career began with modeling in 2017. I’ve been bullied from elementary school all throughout high school which destroyed self image and the way I perceived myself. I wanted to take back my confidence and the best way of me doing that was through my modeling. I wanted to prove all the people who said I couldn’t do it and the insecurities in my head about myself that they were wrong.
Throughout that journey I learned modeling techniques, fashion, and the business side of photography as well. I learned that being behind the camera was also enjoyable and I felt the same rush I had when I was doing modeling. I explored more of the photography industry and began to take photos of musicians, friends, families, and filmmakers within the Fort Collins community. Taking photos behind the scenes of music videos, award winning short films, feature films, and film events helped me get my foot in the door in the film industry. I then began to dive into acting which I have always wanted to do since I was a kid and recently discovered that I have a massive passion for it. Playing a character and telling their story has been the most therapeutic way of me expressing my past and my emotions. It is also rewarding to see the director’s and crew’s reaction of their image coming to life on screen and if I could help make that image a reality I feel like I have creatively succeeded!
Overall I learned that as long as I am creating whether it’s modeling, photography, or acting that is the best way I can truly be myself and express to others how I see the world. I hope to encourage people who are and were bullied that you can be whoever you want and to go follow your dreams no matter what anyone else says.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I immediately would show them a show at the Lyric in Downtown Fort Collins. I live in Fort Collins and The Lyric is a local venue that hosts live shows, feature films, and local films in the area. The entire venue is covered in sculptures, paintings, and art which makes it a great place for creators and families to visit. I would also want to take someone to Horsetooth Reservoir to go boating, hiking, and show them the graffiti cave which is hidden within the Horsetooth. A place I would recommend for drinks would be Lucky Joe’s, one of my favorite Irish pubs in Colorado and for food I would recommend Crush Pizza and Tap in Denver, CO for great deep dish pizza and wings. In Fort Collins I recommend Music City Hot Chicken for incredible service and amazing chicken.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
There are so many people I could list out that have helped me throughout these 4 years of being in this industry. I want to thank all of the photographers who believed in me and gave me a chance to collaborate with them. Without you all I wouldn’t be where I am now and thank you for all the tips and experiences. Thank you to all the musicians who allowed me to capture their moments on stage and experiencing live concerts again. I can’t wait to see you all grow.
I want to give a major shoutout to the Chords cast and crew which was the first major film project I helped with in Northern Colorado. John Barnhardt, Alex Boyd, Kevin Kirchner, Trent Walker, Ben Kaufman, and many more helped light the spark for me to start pursing the film industry. Thank you everyone for giving the time to teach, be patient, and guide me throughout what making a movie is. I cannot thank you all enough and cannot wait for the next one.
I also want to thank Jakob Rosen, director of the upcoming film “The Perfect Match” premiering in September. Thank you for believing in me and giving me the opportunity to be the female lead in your film. It has been an incredible experience working with you and learning so much about acting and seeing your story come to life. Thank you Mario Mendez Jr. for being an incredible and supportive actor during the filming process. From laughing on camera to intense, emotional scenes we encourage and motivate each other to do better each time. Thank you.
Another shoutout I want to give is to Deven Long who has been patient, loving, and my biggest cheerleader for my creative career. Thank you for teaching me the ropes and pushing me to be my best in this industry. I am so happy to have you beside me throughout this journey and there is many more to come. I love you.
Lastly I want to shoutout the entire film community in Northern Colorado. The film community here is unbelievably creative, encouraging, and all have so much to offer in this industry. I cannot put to words the amount of gratitude I have for everyone’s support and kindness whether it’s on set during production or off set having a great talk and laughs. I wouldn’t be doing this without you all and I love seeing you all grow throughout these months and I cannot thank you all enough for giving me the chance to create with you all.
All photos by: @Maddiesteelephotography, Maddie Steele Photography Concert Photo Band Name: Holdfast. @holdfastbandco Green photo Model: @ann__ugh Bee and Water droplet photos Model: @jazinspace Yellow Photo Model: @jjeess00 Car Photo on set for “The Perfect Match” Film Directed by @jakobnoahrosen Me next to camera ALSO on set for film “The Perfect Match” Interview Photo for @HIFFco Filmmaker in :50 Interview Facetune: Eye Candy Productions @eye.candy.productions