Amy Woodside, Founder of OKREAL
We are so excited to introduce you to Amy Woodside, the founder of OKREAL. A distillation of wisdom from real people, OKREAL tells the stories of women and how they figure out their lives - which should help you figure out yours. Amy originally hails from New Zealand, but is now living the dream in New York City. We couldn't be prouder that she's shared some of her wisdom with us.
What do you do?
I’m the founder of OKREAL: a platform that helps women figure out their lives by sharing the stories of others.
Do you have a maxim that you live and work by?
Get on with it.
What are the three milestones that have led you to where you stand?
1). My mum
2). Writing, illustrating, photocopying and binding a ‘newspaper’ about my life at 4-years-old and distributing it to family members
3). Moving to New York City
What is your dream project?
Currently living the dream!
What projects do you have in the pipeline?
We have some really exciting collaborations coming up for our workshops and live interviews. I’m also going to be offering a mentoring service through the site in the next few months, and there’s some top secret stuff I can’t disclose!
If you could choose to hear any female contemporary present at Make Nice, who would it be and why?
She’s not quite my contemporary, but I think Elizabeth Gilbert is a brilliant role model for creatives. I’m a big fan of her ‘take yourself less seriously’ position.
What is the best advice you’ve been given, or wish you had been told sooner?
To just start. To know that everything will change anyway. To stop wasting time being scared.
Do you have a supportive female network in your field? Was it always this way?
I do. I’m constantly surrounded by radical, smart, gutsy women and it makes me beyond stoked. I think it’s so important to surround yourself with people who you admire and who you can learn from. Prior to OKREAL, I was lucky enough to have great female bosses. I never saw them as ‘female bosses’ though—they were just great leadership figures.
What are you listening to, reading, watching of late, that is inspiring or entertaining you?
I just read Nora Ephron’s I Feel Bad About My Neck. How hilarious is she?!
What is one facet of your field that you want to see change?
There’s a huge stigma around money in the creative field, fueled by a multitude of false beliefs: creative work is hard to measure and therefore hard to put a price on; that it’s ‘fun’ and therefore ‘not a real job’, and therefore not worthy of a ‘real paycheck’; that you should be grateful to work for exposure; that if you’ve been a struggling artist for years, then collaborate with a corporate brand, you’re suddenly a ‘sell-out’. What does that even mean? That you have to be broke to be credible? There is so much ridiculous drama around money in this industry. I think creatives deserve be paid more, at all levels. You shouldn’t have to be some major creative director or a famous musician to get a decent pay check. In an industry filled with some of the greatest, most innovative and wonderful human beings of our time, it’s a major bummer that money is so weird.