Lisa Valerie Morgan has a background in writing, producing and acting. She started her career acting in indie films, commercials and theater in Los Angeles. She was always reluctant about dabbling into social media but changed her mind for two reasons.
First, the number of Twitter followers one had was becoming a common question when she went to auditions for commercials. Second, a friend that had started a fashion blog persuaded her to start one too and get on social media.
Starting off in Fashion Blogging
Lisa began a fashion blog. Fashion was a natural choice for her.
“I was really always into fashion. I get stopped almost on a daily basis by different people asking what I was wearing and saying they loved the look. So I have a little bit of confidence in that regard. But I didn’t really have any formal training in fashion.”
As a blogger, she connected with other bloggers and websites from all over the world and started studying trends and styles. She soon wanted to merge her passion as a fashion blogger with her background in film. Lisa developed her first script about bloggers.
“It was called the ‘The Exhilarating and Fashionable Life’. We shot a pilot presentation of it five years ago. It starred Carolyn Hennessy (an Emmy award winner), Cara Santana and a couple of other bloggers. I’m still shopping that script around.”
While that project is yet to be actualized, it was the inspiration for the Fashlife project.
The Fashlife Project
Lisa started on the Fashlife project in 2018 and completed the shooting in 2019.
“We actually did not shoot for that many days. It was a lot of prepping. The premise of the show is basically if the designer Racheal Zoe and the actress Lucille Ball had a child. It’s basically the merging of comedy, fashion and influencer lifestyle. And we have some episodes that are straight up fashion. And we have episodes that are about food and cars. And wine.”
The Fashlife project looks to tell the story of the life of creatives and show the work that goes into creating shoots.
“A lot of people think an influencer just puts on a pretty outfit and shoots a photo and they get free stuff. I don’t think people understood that it was a job and that there’s a lot of work that goes into it. There’s a lot of creative decisions. You are running a business. You are working with brands. You are negotiating. There’s a lot of legal things that go on.”
The first series involved about two dozen bloggers and influencers as well as a few actors.
“Most of the cast is made up of real life influencers. With the actors we have created characters who are kind of over-the-top influencers and we throw them into the mix. For example, one of the actors is supposed to be a top influencer but who’s a terrible mom and very demanding. It brings in so much fun comedy.”
Fashlife is not the first show on influencers but the project looks to show creators in a more positive light.
“There are a lot of shows showing influencers but they are always showing them in such a negative light. I wanted to show these incredible passionate influencers that love to share recipes, curate capsule wardrobes etc. One example is Elaine Chaya. She has done a campaign called ‘I woke up this way’ where she wanted to show people what they looked like without make up when they woke up. That not every picture is gorgeous and curated. This is real life. She got Lady Gaga involved. We did a whole episode around that and it was really fun.”
Thoughts on Cancel Culture and Politics in the Influencer Space
While she does acknowledge the good of creators championing certain causes and giving back to society, Lisa is concerned about the push to have political and social causes embedded in all types of creator content.
“People are trying to make everything political and about a cause. And if you think differently from me, I’m not going to follow you anymore. The saddest thing about it is that because of the Internet, we all get different news. So even if you have similar politics to someone, you might be getting completely different news and be unaware of a lot of issues. And it makes people so poorly informed. And you see people take a headline out of context and say, ’If you don’t agree with this, then unfollow me’.”
She calls for more tolerance online and a toning down of the cancel culture.
“We have to try to understand people more. Not everyone was raised the same as you or has the same background as you. People have different ideas on things. It doesn’t mean we should not talk to them or include them.”
It’s for this reason that Lisa says she was intentional about making the Fashlife show nonpolitical.
Future Plans for Lisa Valerie Morgan
She is looking to take Fashlife to a large audience and is talking to distribution.
“We’re still on the festival circuit so we’ll probably be playing at festivals till like next year. We’re hoping to get the show on a bigger platform or sell it and start creating a few more seasons of it which is what I would really hope. There’s so much more of a story to tell. There’s so many amazing creators out there I’d love to feature.”
Lisa Valerie Morgan is an influencer and the creator of Fashlife, a TV show about influencers. Before that, she had acted in multiple indie films, theater and commercials. Lisa has a degree in screenwriting. She has more than 37,000 followers on Instagram. She currently lives in Dallas, Texas.