Chance Encounters: The People of Matrix Destination 2016

Connecting with people, well, you can say that’s “our thing” here at Industrie. Finding out more about other people’s lives, their dreams, their livelihood and what makes them unique, it drives us. It’s the discovery process and the human elements that really make going on the road a true adventure. When we attend an event or show, we walk the floor, look for interesting people, and throw some various questions their way. We had the opportunity to connect with the people of Matrix Destination 2016.

Here’s a handful of who we met and what they had to say:

Location: By Show Registration
People: Trey Sands & Christopher Wright

Are you guys models for the show?

[Both laughing] Yes.

Where are you guys from?

Daytona Beach, Florida, born and raised. Trey Sands

Miami Beach and Fort Lauderdale. Christopher Wright

How long have you been modeling?

I’ve been modeling and acting for about three years now. TS

I’m just shy of three years. TS

Are you guys friends? Do you know each other or did you meet here? You guys are kind of alike!

[Both laughing] It’s crazy! We workout alike, we eat alike. It’s whack! He’s my brother from another mother. TS

So this is the first time you guys have ever met and worked with each other?? Here? This weekend?

[Both laughing] Yeah, it’s crazy! We’re like peas and carrots. CW

Okay, this is weird. Trey, what’s your backstory?

I’m a hardworking guy who loves the industry. I’m living my dream and I like to take it one step at a time and give everything I have. I graduated from University of Central Florida with a degree in Psychology. You have to know how to read people in work, and in personal life you have to know how to read people. The psychology of that is very important.

Your look, how would you describe it in only three words?

Casual, Contemporary, Me

How do you define beauty and substance?

Beauty and substance is something you have to feel physically and emotionally—it’s the whole connection. It’s not just about the look. It’s about the energy.

Okay Chris, it’s your turn. What’s your backstory?

I was born and raised in Fort Lauderdale. One of the most intriguing things about me is I’ve been an entertainer my whole life. I started dancing when I was 14 or 15 and I used to play football. I played college football. Played pro football. Got drafted to the All American Football League as a wide receiver. Then I blew out my knee, and I had to figure out something else I wanted to do, and I didn’t want to be regular and work a nine to five job. I’m not a nine to five guy. A friend suggested I go into modeling so I made the jump for it.

Your look, how would you describe it in only three words?

Unique, Different and Bold.

How do you define beauty and substance?

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. It’s more internal for me. It’s your aura, your energy. I look at substance in terms of value. How a person carries themself and how they treat others.


Location: A Quiet Hotel Hallway
Person: Kristen Hanson

Excuse us, do you have a second? We’d like to know more about you and your style.

Sorry, I have like two seconds.

Where are you from and what do you do?

I’m from Minneapolis, Minnesota and I’ve been a hairdresser for 18 years—14 of those years I’ve been in sales with Matrix. I actually started with them doing education.

How would you describe your style using only three words?

It would be Fun, Energetic & Bright.


Location: Opening Night After Party
Person: Maryam Posada & 2 Hats Man

We have to ask, why is he wearing two hats?

We’re waiting for our friend.


Location: Opening Night After Party
People: Deana Ormsby & Patrick Cassidy

I know you’re trying to enjoy some sushi, but could you describe tonight’s opening presentation using only three words please?

[Simultaneous laughing] Ummmm…let’s see…Inspirational, Future and Fantasy! Yeah, fantasy!


Location:  Opening Night After Party
Person: John Fager*

How many times have you been stopped and been asked about your beard?

Oh, geez, [laughs] um, that’s hard to say.

10 times?


20 times?

[Laughs] More.

50 times?!

[Laughs] Like 45. 45 times probably.

Well then this probably makes 46.

*Please note, John was one of our favorite people from the weekend and we only refer to him in-house as “Beard.”


Location:  Opening Night After-Party
People: Kyle Gould (gold shoes) & Lisa Sanders (heels)

We’re not weird, we just want to take pictures of your shoes.

Who are you?

We’re from Industrie.

Okay, sure!


Location: Opening Night After Party
Person: Matt Ditullio

We need to talk about this suit of yours.

I love comic books and I wanted to wear something that really stood out. It’s custom made from a site called I figured it’s time to start a new trend in dinner wear.


Location: Opening Night After Party
Person: Jodi McKenzie

Out of all the tattoos you have, which one is your absolute favorite and why?

It would have to be my sunflowers because they represent happiness to me.


Location: Opening Night After Party
Person: Jennifer Moran

How would you describe tonight’s opening performance?

It was trend-driven and inspiring. I couldn’t get enough.


Location: Production Room
Person: Jacob Serlen

You’ve been sitting here all day and night editing video and you’re wearing a purple blazer. Why?

This is my Joker jacket. I usually don’t wear stuff this pimp. I’m hoping to go out tonight.


Location: Escalator (after running in heels back UP the down escalator to answer our question)
Person: Olivia Bowman-Jackson

You and your husband choreographed the opening presentation. What was the most challenging thing you had to overcome this weekend?

The most challenging thing was just getting everything together, but it all worked out perfectly. It was because we had mature, experienced, open-hearted dancers who were ready for anything.


Location: Outside Grand Ballroom
Person: Nancy Tarantola, Vice President Shows & Events, US

Nancy, now that the opening presentation is officially over, tell us what the inspiration was.

The inspiration for tonight’s show was that we first wanted to ultimately wow everyone and open up their imagination and inspire them in ways they have never been inspired before. We wanted the experience to be different; different from any other show and event ever attended. The place where this all originated from was a Broadway show in New York City called “Queen of the Night.” It is an immersive show where it plays out and happens all around you. You are completely involved. This concept is VERY Matrix because we like to wrap our arms around you.

The overall theme for this entire weekend is “Imagine All You Can Be,” so what we wanted to do was open up the event and celebrate the three days we’ll all be here, together, and have people open up their minds, open up their inspiration and imagine the possibilities.

If you don’t close your eyes and imagine, you’ll never be all that you can be.


Location: Backstage
Person: Colleen McCann

We know you’re super busy and have a ton of models to fit. Give us your quick background.

My name is Colleen McCann, and I work as a fashion stylist in New York. L’Oreal has been my client for 10+ years and I provide work for their brands. I also consult and style a lot of female VPs, work on music videos and ad campaigns.

One more quick question before you get back to work. With you having to dress so many people, what about you? What’s your personal style?

All black, because that’s what I have to wear on set and I’m usually gone one to two months at a time when I’m traveling with L’Oreal so I need to wear what works. I’m in basic black every day because black goes with black and goes with black.


Location: Backstage
Person: Raynalto

Do you work for Matrix or were you hired just for this event?

I was hired by Matrix. They asked me to design part of the costumes for the opening presentation.

Where are you located?

I am based in New York City.

This piece here is beautiful. Can you tell us more about it?

It’s called “Wild Beauty,” so the inspiration was to make an Elizabethan collar with a more modern look. I know someone who makes jewelry who soldered all this together. Because of all the metalwork, the whole creation process for this piece took about a week to create.

What other types of work do you do when you’re back in NYC?

I’m developing a ready-to-wear line and continuing costume design. I went out on my own two years ago, and 2015 is when everything started changing for me. There’s a lot that has happened in the last six months.


Location: Backstage
People: Danielle & Heather Donahue

Hello lovely makeup artists backstage. Do you have time for a couple questions?


How long have you both been working with Matrix?

I’ve been working with Matrix for five years now. I’m based in Utah and I’m a freelance makeup artist. I primarily work on feature films and commercials, and then I travel with Matrix doing their editorial and runway work along with some campaign stuff. I work alongside Chrystofer Benson a lot, who is also from Utah. That’s how we met, and we travel with him often. Danielle Donahue

This is my third year working with Matrix. I also work at Lunatic Fringe in Salt Lake City, Utah, the one on Parleys Way. Heather Donahue

Danielle, how would you describe your style using two to three words?

I call it “Idiot Chic.”

Heather, how would describe your style using two or three words?

Umm…hmmm…I don’t know. That’s it? Three words—I, don’t, know. [Laughs] I’m really all over the board. I’m “Classy, Current and Sassy.” The biggest is the latter.

Heather, tell us more about your background.

I’ve been an artist my whole life. I do more hair than makeup, but I love to be able to do both. I’m in the salon full-time doing both cut and color and on my “days off” I’m busy doing makeup.

Okay, you mentioned you do art, tell us more about that.

Actually, we both do art, but she [points to Danielle] more so than me. My artwork is more so in the hair I create. It’s another type of medium for me—a three-dimensional surface to play with.

Danielle, spill the beans on your art background.

I do a lot of watercolors and charcoal. A lot of dark portrait kind of things. A few months back, Flea and Anthony Kiedis from Red Hot Chili Peppers were hosting a benefit for their music school called Silverlake Conservatory of Music that provides free music education for underprivileged individuals. One of the curators for the benefit, who is an artist herself, had seen my work on my boyfriend’s Instagram. She reached out to me asking if I’d like to donate a piece for this benefit. It was a private event and dinner for only 250 people, $2500 a plate to get in. I sent them this charcoal and watercolor piece and it ended up selling for $10K.


Location: Outside Backstage Area
Person: Khalia Campbell

Pardon, but are you in the opening presentation tonight? Are you performing in the show?

Yes, I’m one of the dancers.

Are you from the area? Do you live in Florida?

I’m actually from New York.

Are you with a troupe or by yourself?

There’s 12 of us dancers here that were all brought together by Abdur-Rahim Jackson, the choreographer.

Have you worked with Abdur before?

I’ve never worked with him, but I know him because I’ve worked with his wife Olivia Bowman-Jackson before.

How long have you and the other dancers been practicing and working on this routine?

It’s been about a week that we’ve been learning the moves and rehearsing and practicing.

Tell me more about you. What’s your backstory?

I’m from the Bronx. I’m 22 years old and I’ve been dancing since I was 4 years old. I’ve trained in ballet, tap, jazz, modern, African, hip-hop. I do everything.

What’s your favorite?

Ooooh, that’s tough! It would have to be contemporary.

What do you love most about the look that’s been created on you today?

It would have to be my hair and the highlighting that’s been done on my face. It’s really, “BOOM!”

Do you think you can recreate this look on yourself?

I think I can because I was paying attention. [Laughs] I love makeup.

How would you define beauty and substance?

Beauty is within for me. It’s about if you’re a good person and if you’re caring. That’s what beauty is to me. The substance is the meaning. I’m not about the physical. Everything is mental for me; it starts in the head and in the mind. Spirituality is substance for me. When I dance, I dance for God because he is the one who gave me my gift.


Location: Model Prep
Person: Miska Sykora

Tell us about yourself.

I’m a local designer, stylist and model from Fort Meyers, Florida. I went to school in New York and got involved with Matrix locally.

Is this your first show with Matrix?

Yes, it’s been a great experience so far. Really out of the box for me. This is my first hair show.

Even though it’s the beginning of the weekend, think you’ll do another hair show?

Oh, absolutely.

Would you like to come back as a model or as a worker?

If I had to pick, I would come back as a model. You get to be a different character and dress up like you normally wouldn’t. My style is normally commercial and editorial and this is more avant garde, which I love.

You mentioned you went to school in New York, what did you go for?

I went to school for Fashion Design at Pratt Institute.

If you’re doing more modeling these days, how are you keeping your background in fashion going?

I am a stylist and I also make jewelry.

If you had to choose a career in modeling or a career in fashion for the rest of your life, which would you choose?

I feel like they are actually one in the same. I think the fashion industry is revolving and it’s turning into how many things can you do. More people are more multifaceted. Not only do I model for Chico’s clothing, but I’m also a stylist there. And I also model for my own fashion and jewelry. I can do it all from handling the business to wearing the clothes and doing the styling.

Location: Outside Logics Party
People: Simonsons Salon & Spa

Are you all together?


Where are you from?

Simonsons Salon & Spa in Maple Grove, Minnesota.

Okay everyone, you have to work together as a group and come up with three words to describe last night’s opening presentation.

(After a five minute discussion) Transformational, Inspiring and Grateful.


Location: Cocktail Party
Person: Jacque Stoddard

What’s this we hear that you used to work in a factory before you became a hairdresser? Do tell.

Yeah, I’ve been doing hair since 1987 and didn’t go to beauty school until I was 21, and before that I worked in a factory. My job at the factory was to put the coating on computer chips. They came off a big machine that was highly heated. It was dangerous and by no means a fulfilling job. I went from working in a factory to now being a guest at this cocktail party and being interviewed by y’all. Holy cow!

Want to see some other people we met at Matrix Destination? Check out our Instagram, HERE.


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