What was that period like in New York, before you decided to follow your passion?
I truly respect my team and the people I worked with at Above. But I realized then that while my head can take almost anything, my body just cannot. I could not sit at a desk all day, I could not be inside all day. It’s like I get an allergic reaction to being in an office. I get back pain, headaches, bad skin. And the second I go out and work with horses, I work so much harder, but I have no problems and I’m so happy.
There were just too many arrows pointing in one direction to not follow them.
Since that time, what were the most significant things that had to happen to get where you are today?
I think it was important for me to work at Above magazine because I got to work with amazing people on the international creative. And after the transitional phase, freelancing, I got hired as a rider at Piaffe Performance, which is the highest performing dressage barn in New York. I was riding some of the top horses in the world. And I knew then that I was gonna do that forever.
I was given horses worth amounts that are just completely crazy – many millions [of dollars] per horse. It’s such fine-tuned riding there, so high level – and I felt that I was totally in the right place. I worked harder than I have ever done in my life, and I was so happy.. That part was really important.
You didn’t doubt yourself at all?
I didn’t. Because I’ve always had a solid foundation of knowing that I have a lot to give. And if I’m in a place where people don’t appreciate that, then I’m in the wrong place. I’m gonna give it all, and if it doesn’t work, then I’m gonna find someplace else.
Did you feel that you already had all the skills to teach these multimillion dollar horses?
I did not feel that I was skilled enough as a rider, but I felt that I had a talent that should be trained. And I was given training every day when I was there.
Did it feel like a huge financial risk leaving Above to work with horses?
Yes and no. Because when I had a good salary, I just spent all the money on things I didn’t care about. And when I was a freelancer, I was in a financial risk anyway. So when I started to work with horses, I just thought that if I do what I love, and I believe in my talent, then I’m going to produce quite expensive products. So I’ll be fine.
In general, if you produce something with the best quality in every little detail, and you take the time to do it well, and you have the experience needed to execute it, then it becomes an expensive product. Some people produce bags, I produce horses. And I give it my all.