TRENT CULKIN

Instagram: @trentculkin

Tell us about yourself. Who is Trent?

I’m a creator, and collaborator. At the end of the day, if it’s acting, or doing modeling, or making music, or drawing a show flyer or whatever, I want to look at what is I've had the privilege of being a part of and see my own unique creation in it. My preferred mediums of creativity are acting/modeling and music.

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What is it about modeling that is appealing to you as an artist?

I mean, it’s basically acting. You’re playing a character; you’re using what you’ve been given to facilitate the needs of a team/ individual/ concept you’re working with. I’m enjoying the journey, and having fun seeing where it all leads.

 

A lot of people think modeling is easy. What do you think?

I mean, is standing and having your picture taken, or walking down a runway particularly taxing? No, not especially. I think that’s what people mean when they say it’s easy. And if that were all there were to it, I would agree. The business end, taking meetings, doing tests, having to hustle for your work, enduring rejection sometimes, and having the self-awareness to convey a complex range of emotions is a specialized skill; It's an art, and it’s all part of the job. Just because it doesn’t make you sweat doesn’t mean it’s easy. 

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Do you remember your first audition?

Yeah, my first professional acting audition was for a TV pilot called “The Film Office”. It was a spin-off series of “The Office”. I read for it in Detroit, MI, and I ended up getting a callback audition for it a couple days later.

I was like “wow, I could actually book my first paying thing right now” and I was pumped about it! I went in for the callback and this time instead of just a casting director and a reader, the room had like, 10 people in it: producers, director, camera op, casting director and associates and stuff. I suddenly got really nervous and in my head about it all. It felt like there was so much on the line, like this was going to make me or break me as an actor, and I’m under this microscope now. I wanted to keep it together and maintain an appearance of confidence even though I was sort of freaking out inside, so I went around the room with a big smile introducing myself with a handshake to everyone. Haha. 

If you’re not familiar with casting for film and TV, it’s a big no-no for an actor to initiate any physical contact with a casting director/ anyone in the audition room, so not only did my nerves probably show, but my being so green and new to the professional acting world really showed too. The read went pretty well from there but, needless to say I didn’t book it, haha.

 

What do you usually do to break stereotypes?

I think I probably break stereotypes because I’m not trying to fit into any. I’ve become a person who is comfortable with myself and my personal preferences. If it’s not cool to others, or doesn’t fit into an idea of what you might expect someone of my “type” to be into, then I don’t really care. I really can’t say I give a lot of thought into what my stereotype would even be, or what I could be doing to actively break out of it to be honest. I just do the things I want to do, and stay true to myself, and the people I care about.

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Any advice you can give to any aspiring young artist/model out there?

Try to have a clear vision of what you want/ where you want to land in your creative pursuits, and understand in advance that your path won’t look anything remotely close to what you might expect it to, but having a goal will keep you moving in the right direction. Try and listen to your heart. There’s a lot of people who are happy to offer their opinion as to what you should be doing or how you should be doing it, but if it feels contrary to what your heart is telling you, pay attention to that. It’s tough because in all of this stuff, you only have so much control over the work you book.

If you’re trying to be an actor, especially when you first start out, you’re probably going to take anything that is offered to you, so again, knowing where you want to land is important. Maybe you’re not working on your dream project today, but at least you’re working. Be grateful, and know that it’s just a step in the process to getting where you want to be. That’s another one: gratitude. Realize how lucky you are to being doing what you’re doing. Expressing that to those you owe gratitude to will always be appreciated. Always thank those you owe it to.

 

How do you stay fit?

I stick to a pretty strict fitness routine. Weight training 5 to 6 days a week, yoga once a week, sometimes on the 7th day or use it to replace the 6th training day. I skateboard often as well, which is killer cardio. Also, diet is massively important. I get at least 4 full meals a day. I try to eat exclusively organic, but sometimes have to compromise. Breakfast is usually higher in carbs for me, then the rest of my meals for the day are low carb, high protein, and lots of greens too. 

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How do you balance your time?

It’s tough sometimes. Again, I try to stay on a pretty strict fitness routine which sort of puts other things into place in my weekly routine as well. Of course not every day allows the freedom to do everything you want but to recognize what is good for you overall, and where your priorities are is pivotal to determining what should go where in planning your day or week; Taking care of biz, personal physical, creative, and spiritual health and growth, social interaction. Those are the things I’m most focused on in my life.

 

What do you usually do for fun?

Skateboarding is fun, I’m playing with a punk again after a few years of stepping away from music, and that has been super fun. I’m sort of falling in love with punk music all over again, and yeah.. it’s been one of the funnest creative projects I’ve been a part of in the two years I’ve been in LA; not that there hasn’t been many, I’ve just been enjoying it a lot! Also, the things I’m pursuing professionally are all the most fun things to me as well so, acting, doing print, writing and creating art and music, and just being generally focused on creating is the most fun to me. If I’m stuck doing something not fun, I’m usually pouring thought into the things that are fun to me. I love being out here, and I love the hustle, which is essentially to make fun a more substantial part of every single day until nothing is never not fun anymore, haha. Fun.

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Name one person that you dream to work with.

John Waters.

 

Top 3 movies ever.

Breakfast Club, Terminator 2, Pee Wee’s Big Adventure.

If you were given the opportunity to help a specific charity, what would it be and why?

A couple years ago I volunteered for group called the EMAO in Nicaragua with a friend doing minor earthship home construction projects and sort of odds and ends, whatever they needed. They also had a theatre company we helped with called Cositas Que Brillante. They gave opportunities to young people from all backgrounds to perform in plays and rehearse at their facility. When I’m able to I’ll go back to Nicaragua and offer whatever services I can to them again. Especially the theatre stuff, it was a lot of fun and everyone got so much out of the experience. 

TEAM CREDITS:

Photography: IRVIN RIVERA