Alright – so today we’ve got the honor of introducing you to Neftali Hernandez. We think you’ll enjoy our conversation, we’ve shared it below.
Alright, Neftali thanks for taking the time to share your stories and insights with us today. Learning the craft is often a unique journey from every creative – we’d love to hear about your journey and if knowing what you know now, you would have done anything differently to speed up the learning process.
Practice, practice, and more practice! To function in any profession at a high level, you must put in years of work and consistency with your craft. There’s just no way around it. I started off taking classes and learning the craft. That evolved into short films, which then evolved into bigger productions on Television.
If I had the chance to speed up my learning process, I would have taken more classes and I would have been more intentional about connecting with other actors who were further along in their careers than I was in mine and learning from them.
Persistence, consistency, and patience have been the most important things that I think were most essential in experiencing continued success in this industry. That is not to say that those things should replace hard work and constantly working on one’s craft, however, there is a level of resilience required to make it in this industry.
As always, we appreciate you sharing your insights and we’ve got a few more questions for you, but before we get to all of that can you take a minute to introduce yourself and give our readers some of your back background and context?
My name is Neftali Hernandez and I am a working actor with over 30 television and film credits. My job is to effectively tell stories and transport people to other worlds via those stories. I first stumbled into the industry out of curiosity when I saw a casting call to be an extra for a film and decided to go for it. The following day they notified me that I was selected. The course of my life changed when I had arrived to set. I was absolutely fascinated by the intricacies of the set and the transformation of actors as they immersed themselves in their respective roles. I realized that these actors were real people with real lives. With their gift of acting, they were able to captivate and entertain. This realization stuck with me and I was filled with a desire to be like them. From that point forward I decided to pursue acting.
What do you think is the goal or mission that drives your creative journey?
My ultimate mission is to inspire others towards self reflection and action through the roles that I play. For example, telling stories that inspire life change. Playing characters in circumstances where other people can relate to the situations and be inspired towards action in their own life. As an example, I could play the role of an alcoholic father who loses everything due to alcoholism. This could inspire someone who is dealing with alcoholism in their personal life to enact positive life changes as a result of watching me in my role.
Can you share a story from your journey that illustrates your resilience?
To choose a singular experience/story that illustrates resilience in this industry would be very difficult. This is an industry full of rejection and an industry that lacks a clear path or ‘next steps’ like you may see in the corporate world. It is an industry that requires patience, persistence, confidence, positivity, creativity, and a thick skin. There are countless reasons why you may not book a role: Too tall, too short, too in shape, too out of shape, hair color, too much acting, not enough acting, etc. In this profession, it is highly important to recognize the differences between things that you can control and things you cannot. All you can do is focus on the things you can control. These include: Your craft, materials, classes, and your brand. At the end of the day, you are running your own business, and YOU are the product. The moment you start focusing your attention and energy towards things you cannot control, then self-doubt begins to creep in. Self-doubt eventually leads to a spiraling of negative emotions which can ultimately lead an actor into quitting the profession.
PATIENCE and CONSISTENCY have been two of my biggest weapons. Most of the A-list actors that you know of did not become stars overnight. They worked tirelessly for years and even decades before they got to where they are at now. When I first started my acting career, I didn’t have any credits, I didn’t know any casting directors (and they didn’t know me), and I hadn’t had the chance to build a name for myself. I’ve been working now consistently for more than seven years and have built wonderful relationships with others in the industry, as well as accumulated over 30 Television/Film credits as of this interview date. This doesn’t even include big projects where I’ve been informed that I have been a finalist for a role. You have to understand, there are thousands of other actors that are competing for the same role. Not booking a role but knowing it all came down to you and one other actor (from thousands of submissions) is a victory on its own. Sometimes it’s important to quantify some of the work that you do so that you can see the progress that you’ve made. I’ve gotten to a stage in my career where I feel like the years of consistency and patience are starting to pay off and the momentum of my career has really taken off.
- Website: https://www.neftali-hernandez.com/
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/neftalihernandez
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NeftaliHernandezOfficial
- Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/neftali-hernandez/
- Other: IMDB- http://www.imdb.me/neftalihernandez