Voyage LA

Rising Stars: Meet Emmanuel Williams

6/21/20214 min read

Today we’d like to introduce you to Emmanuel Williams.

Hi Emmanuel, thanks for sharing your story with us. To start, maybe you can tell our readers some of your backstory.
When I was a kid, I always had these ideas and visual stories constantly playing in my head. I think most of my imagination was inspired by Saturday morning cartoons, anime, and a bunch of movies. I would always draw and doodle telling people I wanted to be an artist when I grew up.

Fast-forward to high school and those ideas begin to shift towards more realistic expectations of my family; focus on getting a more secure job in the medical field or corporate America. That idea was starting to become more reinforced as some of the common belief was that most artists were people that “lived in their mother’s basement, constantly broke.” I started to pursue the medical field as the main focus but always played around with my creativity on the side, hoping one day it would take off or be recognized.

When I was binging YouTube videos, watching the OG content creators such as TimothyDeLeGhetto, Kain Carter, & SpokenReasons, I remember this girl I used to have a massive crush on left me heart-broken, which instantly sparked a fire in me. I remember saying “Imma make a bunch of funny YouTube videos like the OGs, get famous, and show her where she messed up!” lol.

So I shifted my artistic side and imagination to creating videos. I didn’t know how to edit or shoot a video, but a friend let me borrow his FlipHD cam and I watched a bunch of YouTube tutorials and figured out how to edit. After four days of experimenting, learning, and writing, I shot my first YouTube video in my room and posted it.

The content in the video was politically incorrect, however, most of my friends and high school acquaintances thought it was hilarious and encouraged me to do more! Most of my family, on the other hand, thought differently and told me if I continued going in this direction, I would fail; they believed I was killing my chances with working with corporate companies and wouldn’t amount to my higher potential like some of my other supposedly “successful” relatives. This caused my fire to burn even more.

I kept experimenting with creating my funny videos, collaborating with others, creating skits, and eventually branching out to filming short films and music videos. By late 2017, I ended up co-founding BLK Team, a team that consisted of videographers and content creators who provided freelance work for clients and their needs. As our reputation grew after releasing a short film that sold out two local screenings, I ended up moving to Los Angeles in late 2019 to pursue more filmmaking opportunities.

Currently, I’m in the process of creating my funny skits, producing educational cannabis review content, and collaborating with numerous brands as a full-time content creator. I’m writing a 10-episode series that I plan on filming sometime within the next two years and just focusing on developing my creative craft and collaboration skills.

Being doubted by relatives and told to go against my better judgment inspired me to pursue my path and creative passions. I’ve inspired others, created awesome projects, and even worked with celebrities, doing things I never imagined if I had continued following others’ expectations.

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle-free, but so far would you say the journey has been a fairly smooth road?
A wise man once said, “The road conditions aren’t always gonna be perfect. The lights aren’t always gonna be green, the traffic is gonna be tragic, and sometimes you gotta take detours to get where you’re going.”

It hasn’t been easy trying to figure it out. A lot of it has been trial and error and constant learning from past failures. Covid-19 made it harder when I first got to Los Angeles. Trying to figure out my grounding, and financial state, and not being able to film made it quite challenging. I had to sit down with myself and write down plans on how to overcome these obstacles.

Can I still film in my room? Can I learn how to use social media better? What resources can I use to my advantage? How can I increase my finances and knowledge? Once I thought it out and reflected on the past hardships I’ve overcome, I was able to make it work for me. There are always still struggles and challenges, but I guess after dealing with so many, it just becomes a little easier to navigate and believe in oneself.

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you’re currently focused on?
I create visually appealing content to increase online traffic and engagement for influencers, business clients, and brand ambassadors. I find out what you need, create it through videography or photography, and maximize the viewership and comments through social media marketing. At the same time, I create my projects and skits to entertain my audience.

I do the work I do because I love it. I love perfecting my craft and experimenting. I like the industry. I like to talk shop. I love meeting new people and creating long-term business relationships!

Can you talk to us a bit about the role of luck?
My luck has been very random throughout this journey! The number of crazy dummy missions and epics fails I went through, to finally having some things go right. One of the qualities I learned to rely on is my personality and communication skills to get me where I want to go. Attending events, talking to people, and finding ways I can provide value towards their goals with my skills.

At the end of the day, believing in myself, focusing on my craft, and just being my authentic self has always created some type of luck in many situations. If I help somebody and don’t expect anything in return, good things tend to usually find their way to me, especially when practicing the “law of averages”, haha.