Hey y’all, it’s been awhile…

Life got really busy, and I’ve neglected my posting. Instead of featuring a giant catch up post, I’ll try to post short updates now and then. I’ve just been more active on my Official Facebook Page, Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr, I apologize!

Anyway, I’m very proud to share that I was cast as a lead in a science-fiction audio drama podcast series called The Strange Case of Starship Iris created and written by Jessica Best, and under the umbrella Podcast collective, Procyon Podcast Network. They’ve got two more series coming, and have been running a Kickstarter that ends Friday if you want to sponsor all of us so you have more creative audio dramas to listen to! These series are great because the artists involved are focused on diverse storytelling, with a broad range of characters and representation. They are extremely inclusive of the LGBTQ community which is near and dear to my heart as I have so many friends who don’t fall into any sort of heterosexual gender binary system, and they are also inclusive of minorities. There’s even a purple alien character in Starship Iris named Krejjh who goes by they/their pronouns! How cool and progressive is that! To check out more info on Starship Iris, check out the Tumblr page. (Starship Iris¬†is also available on Google Play and the Apple Podcast app.)

For other acting updates, I recently appeared as a potentially recurring character on the MacGyver reboot’s crossover episode with Hawaii Five-0. MacGyver has just announced they’ve been picked up for a second season, so fingers crossed I get to return, too. Peter Lenkov, the executive producer on MacGyver, mentioned he always saw the two worlds existing together, and hopes for more crossover episodes, so let’s hope he means it! I played a scientist named Mayumi and along with some other scientists, we were stuck in a building after an earthquake and MacGyver has to come to our rescue. I volunteer to use a real-life skill I have in the episode. ūüėČ Also very exciting to me was the fact this crossover episode had an epic amount of Asian American talent, yay!

Before this, I made it into an episode of Fox’s New Girl late last year! Check this clip out:

Cindy Chu in FOX’s New Girl S6.E05 “Jaipur Aviv” Reel Clip from Cindy Chu on Vimeo.

I’ll leave it at that for now, and if you want more regular updates, just follow my official FB page, Tumblr or Twitter where I’m much more active!

Love,

Cindy

CHU16344 2

Enjoying the poppies superbloom outside of LA 

 

Asian Beauty: Amarte Skincare

amarte skincare, hydrolift, eyeconic, asian beauty, asian skincare, korean beauty, korean skincare

My two favorite products from Amarte Skincare so far, Hydrolift and Eyeconic!

“Wow, how do you have such nice skin? What do you use?” I’m going to let you in on two of my beauty secrets below…

“Are you Korean?” is a question I hear a lot. I recently found out through my 23andme test that yes, I am in fact part Korean! Anyway, if you’re into skincare and beauty, you know that Koreans have advanced skincare products so much in the past few years, being the first to come out with beauty products like BB creams, for example. So when I was in search of a particular product with certain qualities, I started searching online and I don’t even remember where I came upon it, but I read about Amarte, and how they use natural botanicals that work WITH the skin, and advanced technology to create great anti-aging beauty products.

I’m a bit of a beauty junkie, and will keep trying products until I find my absolute favorites. Because I have Asian skin which is a bit different than Caucasian or Black skin types, I wanted to see if using skincare products targeted more for Asian skin types would make a difference. I’d been using some different store-bought lotions and creams for my face, and I wasn’t satisfied with the results. I felt like they didn’t sink in, and were slightly greasy, and left my skin still drier than I wanted. I was in search of a facial serum with retinol for anti-aging, and also a moisturizing eye cream. So I started searching and read about Amarte!

I decided to start with Eyeconic and Hydrolift from Amarte, and see how well they worked. All I can tell you is, wow. The difference was immediate! The skin on my face had been a bit greasy but also flaky, and the skin around my eyes had seemed papery and dry. Since adding these two products to my regimen, I have noticed much softer, hydrated skin, without the flakiness or greasiness. In fact, I feel that they sink right in and absorb quickly, and my skin immediately feels plumper and softer. I also realized they are a great primer, as when I was filming on one of the hotter days in LA recently, my makeup held up really well! It didn’t melt off.

amarte, amarte skincare, hydrolift, eyeconic

See? Over 100* and it lasted through the shoot. Go Amarte as my base layer!

Someone on Twitter asked me what I had used that day on my face, and I listed everything, and Amarte reached out to me and wanted to let me try some other products as well. I’ve added in the BB Cream for days I don’t want to do full makeup, and here are some pics of me with¬†Amarte¬†products on: Hydrolift, Eyeconic, and the BB Cream.

amarte, amarte skincare, asian beauty, korean beauty, korean skincare, asian skincare

Just Amarte’s Hydrolift, Eyeconic, and BB Cream for a light and natural look with some light coverage.

hydrolift, eyeconic, amarte, amarte skincare, asian skincare, asian beauty, korean skincare, korean beauty

A natural but enhanced makeup look for going out, base of Hydrolift and Eyeconic before makeup

amarte, amarte skincare, asian beauty, asian skincare, korean beauty, korean skincare

I also used Amarte before makeup here, which helped create this flawless look for an audition.

I have yet to start implementing the Brightening line, but am looking forward to adding it to my beauty routine and will post another update after having used those particular products for a time, too.

I’ve even been told by friends that my skin is so nice when all I’ve had on was Hydrolift and Eyeconic and no makeup! Well, now you know the secret and can try it out yourself.

What are some of your favorite beauty tricks/products? What beauty questions do you have?

Subscribe to my blog so you can be notified of updates and as always, feel free to leave any comments or questions!

***I am not being paid by Amarte, although I did receive some products to try, which I will give an honest review about. I will be posting another article about more of my beauty must have’s very soon, so stay tuned!

amarte, amarte skincare, asian skincare, asian beauty, Korean skincare, korean beauty

I can’t wait to start using all of my Amarte products and see how much their Brightening line will brighten my face. ūüôā

Don’t Make a Mountain Out Of a Molehill

You feel out of breath going up a flight of stairs. You strain and pull on your pants that are feeling just a tad bit too tight. You look in the mirror and pinch your rolls, and think to yourself, “It’s impossible. This is the body I have, and this is just the size it wants to be.”

Before I learned about nutritional eating and now, with healthy diet and exercise regimen

Before I learned about nutritional eating and now, with healthy diet and exercise regimen

The very FIRST STEP you need to take on your path towards health and wellness is to realize it won’t happen overnight. It’s going to take time and effort, and a lot of changes in habits. Probably one of the biggest things you can do for yourself first, is to learn to eat right. Some people like to start working out, but they don’t fix their bad eating habits, and oftentimes overeat their gains in the gym, not realizing they were already eating a surplus of calories and they probably don’t need to eat more.

When I first started my transformation, I only altered my eating habits. While I’ve got to credit the miles I’d walk while at work at my serving job that I had started again when I was starting my health changes for burning a lot of calories, changing my eating habits was the number one factor that helped in bringing my surplus of fat down to a healthier level. What led to my weight gain involved several factors. These included:

  1. Sedentary job: I switched from waiting tables which is quite an active and physically demanding job to film production work, oftentimes working at my computer at a desk for 12-15 hours a day.
  2. Unlimited access to “junk food”: Film jobs/production jobs like to feed their crew because they tend to keep them for ungodly amounts of hours. The cheapest and easiest way to feed them is to send a PA to Costco to buy large boxes of cookies, chips, peanut butter filled pretzels, fruit snacks, and so on and so forth. Fresh fruit and veggies go bad quickly, but you can buy enough snacks to stock the craft services table for weeks without throwing away food if you buy processed carb-based snacks such as those I listed.
  3. Ordering out for lunch every day: This probably doesn’t apply to everyone but for me, ordering out was always such a treat because I grew up on home cooked food, always very light and healthy, and so any time I got to order out or eat out, I viewed it as a splurge. But when your office feeds you every day, you can’t always get the tastiest and fattiest meal every time! Especially when you’re stuck behind a desk only moving your fingers and you don’t need those calories. They’ll go unburned, and our efficient calorie-storing bodies will immediately convert those unused calories into fat! Make picking something healthy your “most of the time” habit, so that then when you treat yourself, you’re consciously making that decision instead of doing it all the time with no thought behind it.

So what kind of physical health goals do you have? Write them down. Really think about them and the steps that you need to take to achieve them. I promise you it’s doable. You just have to start by changing some habits, one at a time. Don’t worry about overhauling everything at once, because then it will seem impossible. Start by giving yourself some concrete goals like:

  • Calculate your daily caloric needs using MyFitnessPal or some other caloric calculator
  • Start taking the stairs instead of the elevator when possible
  • Start thinking about the food you are eating and why you’re eating it, are you really hungry or are you just bored?
  • What realistic size do you want to get to?
  • What are some physical health goals you’d like to achieve? To be able to do 10 full pushups? To do a real pull-up?

Pick one of those goals and start working on it for a month. I started with nutritional changes. Losing a lot of my extra weight made it a little easier to get started on a fitness routine, but for some people it may work better the other way around. The key is to pick what will work for you.

"Skinny Fat" after weight loss from nutritional changes only, to now with a focus on strength training with HIIT

“Skinny Fat” after weight loss from nutritional changes only, to now with a focus on strength training with HIIT

Subscribe to my blog for more updates! I’m dishing it out in bite-sized portions so you have time to implement changes and so it’s less overwhelming! If you have specific questions, feel free to comment here or TWEET at me!

 

 

 

 

cindy chu under the table

5 Things You Can Do For Your Acting Career

Yesterday was a great day, I had a meeting with my new manager that left me feeling inspired and empowered, and then my friend had a one-woman show at the Comedy Central Stage in Hollywood. I went to it only knowing it was a dark comedy about wanting to die¬†and I left, moved to tears, heart aching, stones in my throat. Another inspiring moment. From the sound of that, you might think, “Wow, actors have it easy in LA!” But let’s clear up some misconceptions. The reason I had a meeting was because my former manager switched career tracks and is doing something else now, and that left me in a weird space where maybe I was still with the same company but with no attachment to one particular manager, which meant I’d feel like I was just that kid who hung around a party wanting to be invited in but not knowing if I was welcome. So I asked for things to be clarified with my new contact and he set up a meeting to get to know me and see about working together. We meshed well and know more about one another now and I’m really excited to move forward with the company now, knowing he knows where I’m at and I know where they are in this whole process.

Michaela Myers' stage setup for her one-woman show I Am Vertical, performed at the Comedy Central Stage in Hollywood

Michaela Myers’ stage setup for her one-woman show I Am Vertical, performed at the Comedy Central Stage in Hollywood

Actress Michaela Myers

Regarding my friend’s show, her name is Michaela Myers, she’s incredibly smart, funny, gorgeous, and wow, is she talented! I actually just made her acquaintance recently, in the last few months. I had gotten into the improv comedy scene this year and ended up joining a bunch of different Facebook groups for comedy in LA. On one of them, I saw a request for submissions for a new comedic web series, starring women, & written and directed by women, which is what we need more of in this industry! There wasn’t that much information but I submitted and they got back to me and told me they wanted me to read for a particular character, and asked for a self-tape first. After that, they asked me to come in for a callback in person, and I did, and they ended up wanting to book me for the part. Now, most of you already know a lot of these web series are deferred payment. So you have to decide for yourself whether or not it will be a good project to be a part of, or not. I asked for other projects they’d worked on and they sent me some clips, which got me really excited because they were well-produced and funny, so I signed on. Through that whole process, I met so many incredible people, movers and shakers, and good people to know. I added to my tribe. I learned a lot. I got to be a lead on a show, and have that experience, AND make all sorts of new connections. (Read about our webseries.)

A behind the scenes shot from Under the Table web series. Ashaki Ayoka adjusting a light as DP Nathan Krauss scopes out his shot

A behind the scenes shot from Under the Table web series. Ashaki Ayoka adjusting a light as DP Nathan Krauss scopes out his shot

cindy chu under the table

My co-star on Under the Table, Maggie Monk, took this shot of me massaging Pam with my feet while we were hurrying up and waiting for our next scene

But let’s get back to Michaela. She’s been in the comedy scene. She decided to do a one-woman show and through her network she was able to work with an incredible director to help her put her show together. She made the crowd laugh until our ribs hurt, and then she took us into her deep hole of despair and cry with her, and brought us back to the light of love and laughter. But you know what? She wasn’t even SAG when I started working with her on our web series. Through doing the show (and the producer doing the paperwork PROPERLY) she’s now SAG-Eligible. And she has no representation, but I think after last night, people will be knocking on her door. She has talent. She can write. She can act. She can do comedy, and drama, and dramedy. Even though she didn’t have representation, she was still making her own content and producing for herself, and going out for projects like our webseries, because it’s all part of the experience and process, and all of that can help you become a better artist, a better actor.

Cindy Chu, Michaela Myers, Maggie Monk with their cash on set of Under the Table

Cindy Chu, Michaela Myers, Maggie Monk with their cash on set of Under the Table

So with all of that being said, let’s get back to it. Many aspiring actors take off and move to Los Angeles or New York to make it big and go for their dreams. Many of us don’t have a good network in place or we may not even know what to do when we get there. Here are some important tips that I’ve learned through trial and error and I’m here to share them with you. Here are 5 things you can implement right now.

1) DON’T JUST WAIT FOR OPPORTUNITIES, MAKE YOUR OWN, & BUILD YOUR TRIBE
You’re going to hear this over and over again. Produce your own content. Write. Film. Put it on Vine or YouTube! You can use your actor friends to collaborate with! Consumer cameras and technology have grown so much that you can self-produce professional looking videos pretty easily. Don’t worry if it’s not great to begin with, the more you do it, the better you’ll get.

2) MAKE SURE YOUR REELS/HEADSHOTS/PROFILES ARE UP TO DATE
Take some time to make sure your various casting site profiles are up to date and if you have new footage you can use for your reels, get those reels cut and updated! Did you perhaps fill out your profile with a bunch of skills you don’t actually have? Go through and make sure you didn’t say you can polka if you can’t actually do it! Don’t put stuff on there just to fill your profile up. Keep it clean and concise and true. I’ve heard so many stories of actors being hired for a “special skill” they listed and they show up to set and aren’t able to perform. They not only make themselves look unprofessional but in turn it looks bad for the casting directors, too. You definitely don’t want to burn bridges that way.
Check out my IMDB page to view my recently updated reels.

3) ARE YOU ON THE RIGHT SITES?
For Los Angeles, if you’re doing commercial and theatrical work, you should have profiles on LACasting, Actors Access, and Casting Frontier. Lesser used ones would be NowCasting and Backstage. If you’re self-submitting, I recommend you pay for a year of Showfax rather than paying submission by submission, it’ll save you money to pay for the subscription and be able to self-submit as much as you want.

4) RESEARCH PROJECTS YOU’RE GOING IN FOR
Are you self-submitting? Are you getting audition appointments from your reps? Know who you’re going in for. What genre is the show? What else have they cast before? For those newer to the game, are these people legitimate or is it going to be a crap shoot? If you watch projects the producing/directing team has made before, and they’re indie, do they look like good projects to be a part of? Your time is like money, and you want to make sure you invest it wisely.

5) PREPARATION PREPARATION PREPARATION
Are you preparing as well as you should for your audition? Do you know the story you’re going to tell in the room? Do you know what your character perspective is? Practice with your actor friends and not your dog or boyfriend or girlfriend (unless they’re an actor, hehe) so that when you go in, you’re ready. If you’re bad at improv, get into an improv class (UCB, Nerdist, iOWest, Groundlings, Second City) and start a practice group outside of class. Do some indie shows. If you’re not in an ongoing acting class, get into one. It’s a bad idea to come here counting on making it overnight, because it takes a lot of hard work and talent and acting is just like any other art. You wouldn’t expect an architect to build a solid house on his/her first try, or a photographer to be able to shoot like Mario Testino right away, you’ve got to hone your skills before you can become a master of your craft.

These are just some basic things you can start with, and I’ll be posting more about other facets of the acting industry as a fellow up-and-coming actor. My hope is that I can save some of you time and money and a headache by giving you some real advice that maybe I learned the hard way, so it’ll be easier for you.

We didn’t pick an easy industry, but we’re doing it for whatever reason, so let’s do it well!

What other topics would you like to hear about? If you have any questions or comments, please comment below!

~Cindy

cindy chu, under the table

After our last shoot day on Under The Table, all the wonderful cast and crew there that day! I feel so lucky to know them all! Top Row L to R: Jessie Hixenbaugh, Andra Whipple, Reed Burkett, Denise Valentine, Gabriela Varley. Seated on Sofa L to R: Lauren Davis, Cindy Chu, Maggie Monk, Nathan Krauss. Seated on floor L to R: Grace Earley, Michaela Myers, Hanna Bowens, and Pam (also featured in portrait above sofa)

Let’s Talk About Habits

There’s a great book titled “Train Your Mind, Change Your Brain” by Sharon Begley.¬†Humans like to form habits. We like to say, “But that’s how it’s always been done.” or “I’ve always done it this way!” There’s another quote I’d like you to think about too, “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”

Well, if you’re anything like me, sometimes (a lot of times) you fall into a lazy slump. You’re not motivated to workout and you let yourself eat all your favorite junky foods 24/7. Maybe once in awhile you make a halfhearted attempt at going to the gym, like in January when everyone makes their New Year’s Resolutions they forget about two weeks later. But do you want to know what one of the number one reasons people fail at losing weight is? They fail to sustain their healthy habits. They let one cheat meal pull them off the wagon and they go on a long bender again.

It can take just three weeks to form a new habit. Three weeks. But are you ready to commit fully? Are you ready to make healthy changes in your life permanent and a part of your routine? 

Cindy Chu's fitness progress after just one month of HIIT workouts and some strength training at home

Cindy Chu’s fitness progress after just one month of HIIT workouts and some strength training at home

I’ve been on this journey most of my life but it wasn’t until the last few years that I’ve learned how and why people should eat healthy most of the time. I’ve read numerous books on nutrition and healthy eating, and even completed a certificate course in nutrition. Now that I’m armed with more personal knowledge about why I should eat a certain way, I’m able to implement it into my life as a WAY of life.¬†Do I still eat “unhealthy” foods sometimes? Absolutely. I encourage you to, as well, but the key is to make that kind of meal a deliberate choice, a “cheat meal”, a treat, and not an every day occurrence. The rest of the time, I make pretty boring eating decisions. Cereal with some fruit for breakfast, with nut milk. Lunch of eggs and veggies, maybe some chips and salsa or hummus. Dinner? Salad or veggies and a veggie burger patty. I have “cheat meals” a few times a week, maybe donuts or french toast one morning on the weekend, a slice of pizza for dinner on Tuesday nights, but I don’t keep this kind of food around at home, nor do I let myself eat that way all the time. I do keep healthy snacks around, though. Protein bars made with a base of nut butter, jars of raw nuts, fresh fruit, carrots, etc.

At my uppermost threshold before I learned how to eat right and eat well and now, after adding exercise

At my uppermost threshold before I learned how to eat right and eat well and now, after adding exercise

If you want to lose weight, the first thing you should do is fix your diet. Change the WAY you eat. Erase what you’ve been doing and start over and build from a healthy base. Eat nutritionally dense foods, basically the closer to nature it is, the healthier, rather than processed food. Make spaghetti squash with sauce instead of having white spaghetti, eliminate all that white bread you eat daily, get rid of the sugary drinks and sodas (maybe swap for something like La Croix if you love your fizzy water), eat more veggies, cut the butter and dairy, cut the desserts except for a couple times a week at most.

When I initially started on this most recent and effective leg of my journey to health, honestly I initially lost much of my weight through diet alone. I learned how to eat better and eat well, using some very simple concepts, and within a couple months most of my extra weight had been utilized by my body and burned away. I didn’t have much muscle mass then as when I was heavier, I hated exercising, so I didn’t really, and¬†I became what I call “skinny-fat”. I had dropped several sizes, but I felt like my skin was loose and jiggly, and everything was too soft for my tastes. About a year after I’d dropped the weight I had moved to Los Angeles from Ann Arbor, MI. Everyone here was so active, and I felt like I had no more excuses. I had to make exercise part of my life. And so I’ve been working on finding what works for me, and I’m starting to see results. But I’ll save that for another post.

Learning to eat well & regular exercise & weight training have huge effects on your health

Learning to eat well & regular exercise & weight training have huge effects on your health

Will you join me in pledging that you will work on making healthy changes in your life so that you can honor your one body you have for this life? Will you join me in adapting your habits and picking up newer, healthier ones?

A sample meal plan:

Breakfast:

One serving bran cereal with nut milk
Two clementines
Coffee, black, or with splash of nut milk

Snack:

Carrots with a dollop of hummus

Lunch:

Eggs with sautéed veggies
Lentils or black beans

Snack:

Corn tortilla chips & salsa, portioned

Dinner:

Salmon fillet, or burger patty, or veg patty, or chicken breast
Sauteed veggies
Side of butternut squash

Cindy Chu diet

Tuna on salad with an almond milk latte make a great lunch/dinner option

Look for more posts on health, exercise and nutrition from me soon! I’m also doing some Periscopes on all of that as well, if you want to follow me:
Cindy Chu’s Periscope

If you have any questions, please ask and I will address them in later posts. This is more of an introductory post to get you excited to join me in your own journey to health. I’ll be posting about my workout routine and what I’m specifically doing at home, with very little equipment, to help get you started with your own exercise routine.

All the best to you,

Cindy

“Dear Fat People” Response

2010 to 2015, Cindy Chu

 

I’ve been wanting to write something re: the whole “Dear¬†Fat People” hateful rant video and here I am…

So I used to be a little heavier. The pic on the left is from 2010. I was still happy then, too. The only big difference was I wasn’t making time for myself to keep health a priority. I was always tired and a flight of stairs made me winded. I always ate what I craved, and also mindlessly snacked at work on production jobs where I had to sit for 12-15 hours a day.

“a flight of stairs made me winded”


It wasn’t until 2012 when I saw a good friend change his habits and drop 40 pounds I didn’t know he had to lose that I even thought it was possible for me to get to a healthier place, too.

It’s not easy to keep myself on a workout routine or to choose healthier meals when I’m out, because life is short and sometimes we want to be lazy or eat delicious, rich food.

But I decided in 2012 that it was possible to lose weight, and then in 2013 I decided it was possible to get in better physical shape so that I can run up and down stairs without feeling like I couldn’t breathe, and to feel healthier and stronger and in control of my body.

I did have to make a lot of changes in my habits to get to where I’m at today and I’m still not done. I have goals like “do a pull-up from a dead hang” or “do a one-armed push-up”, etc, and build a better core. But the key here is I’m doing it for me. I’m doing this because it’s what I want. It makes me feel stronger and healthier.

But at the end of the day, humans come in all shapes and sizes! And that is OK! There are people bigger than me or with a higher BMI who are stronger and fitter than me. I know friends who some may say are fuller-figured who can run marathons around me and I wouldn’t be able to keep up at all. And you’re all beautiful.

If you aren’t feeling your healthiest, you can make changes. If you feel awesome and are happy where you’re at, don’t change or crumble because some terrible person judged you who doesn’t even know you. Be the best you for yourself and others, and don’t worry about the rest.

Being skinny isn’t some amazing feat to brag about, and nor is making people who are different than you feel less than.

****************************************************************

This above post was taken word for word from a Facebook post I made recently. I have decided to start blogging about health and beauty and will be posting updates about what exactly I do to stay in shape now. You can get a sneak peek from my first Periscope post:

Cindy Chu Periscope Post re: “Dear Fat People”

You never know people’s stories, so don’t make assumptions about their laziness or think they don’t have feelings about their bodies. We all have body hangups, and negativity doesn’t help. Be encouraging, be helpful, be positive. It’ll go a lot farther than a mean video, and I’m not talking about views.

 

Let’s all love our bodies!

Summertime Sadness

Just kidding, there’s no time to be sad! This year, 2014, has been off to a decent start with a booking as a rock climber for a health brochure that I mentioned a few blog posts ago, and then my first commercial booking in LA where I got to hold this adorable Asian baby! I got a lot of compliments on how naturally maternal I looked, and I’ve got to thank all the influences I had growing up and babysitting/nannying for so many amazing children. You never know what jobs you’ve had, or skills you’ve picked up will be useful in your auditions. My last job incorporated rock climbing which I do as a hobby sport, I never would have guessed I’d get a job out of it!

Cindy Chu baby

Cindy Chu holding a cute Asian baby at a commercial shoot

While I heard a warning that summertime is really slow for auditions, it seems the last few weeks have been quite full of auditions for a lot of commercials and indie projects. ¬†I’m part of the slew of actors who really dresses for the part, because why wouldn’t you? I want to deliver myself as the full package, ready to work, and fit the image they may have of the character. This means I sometimes buy clothing just for auditions, and keep other pieces around that maybe aren’t my IRL style but may be useful for certain audition looks. ¬†This one was for a hip girl, stylish, thrift shop, etc. I wore my glasses just to make myself stand out a little more because they’re a very flattering pair, and my last booking, I had worn them in the callback even though they had me remove them for the tape, they still remembered me for them. ¬†If anyone is interested in where I got them, they were from SEE Eyewear. ¬†They probably still have a similar style for sale, although I think mine were from 2012. Outfit Details:

  • Top: Forever 21 (used to be a L/S but I ripped it while trying to do a handstand so I chopped the sleeves off.
  • Dress: Love 21 (offshoot of Forever 21)
  • Belt: Urban Outfitters
  • Boots: Jeffrey Campbell for Free People (I love these boots! Very versatile look.)
  • Thigh high socks: Free People
Cindy Chu

Cindy Chu in a grunge/lady/nerdy look for an audition

Here we have a steampunk inspired outfit for an audition.

Cindy Chu Audition

Cindy Chu in a Steampunk Outfit for Audition

It’s hard to tell from this angle, but I had a pretty nifty undo where most of my hair was in a high ponytail and I curled half of it and teased it, then braided the other half, with a baby french braid from the nape up and around the ponytail base with curls framing the face. I used a 3/4″ curling iron, like this one here. ¬† My favorite hairspray right now is by Bumble & Bumble, the blue can.

B&B Hairspray

Cindy Chu’s current favorite hairspray

Outfit Details:

  • Dress: Love 21
  • Tights: Target (? old pair I had, don’t remember)
  • Boots: Same as above
Cindy Chu

Cindy Chu thinking steampunk thoughts

Cindy Chu makeup

Steampunk makeup look

Makeup Look:

Along with hair, makeup, and wardrobe choices, I’ve also got to stay on top of my physical game. I follow this fit chick Nicole Mejia on Instagram. The reason I follow her is because she has an atypical body type compared to most models you see in catalogs and on runways. She’s petite, and has a natural pear shape with thick thighs. Following fitness girls who have body types that seem more real for me to achieve helps me stay inspired and positive. I also follow some supermodels because they post fun photos, but I know no matter how much I workout, I will never be a lanky 5’10” model type. She has been doing a “Fit & Thick” North American tour, teaching workout classes in different cities across the US, and this photo below was from her early session at the David Barton gym in LA. (It was a super nice gym, btw…) It didn’t seem that hard of a workout during, but man oh man, today and yesterday I got really stiff and sore, and it hurt to walk and to move, period. It was the DOMS, delayed onset muscle soreness, which meant I ripped a bunch of fibers and they are rebuilding. We did a lot of plyo type moves, jump squats, sumo squats, deadlifts, etc. I did get pretty sweaty!

Cindy Chu Nicole Mejia

Cindy Chu and Nicole Mejia at a Fit & Thick tour event

A year ago today, I started my membership at the Bar Method-Marina Del Rey. I signed up with the first month special and then continued on the monthly. While it’s more expensive than a gym membership to Gold’s or Equinox would be, I liked the class aspect, almost like having a personal trainer, and having that made it easier for me to make myself go workout. I didn’t have to think about or plan out what I would need to work on, I just go in and listen to the great instructors. Here I am, a year into Bar Method, feeling pretty fit but hungry for more improvement!

Cindy Chu Bar Method Bikini Body

Cindy Chu celebrating a year of Bar Method under her belt!

Here’s a 4 year progression comparison photo.

Cindy Chu health diet bar method before and after

Cindy Chu’s health transformation over the past 4 years.

And the photo below here, shows a row of pics from before I started Bar Method (top) to now, one year later, comparing front, side and back. Not a huge weight differential here, but you can see I toned up and slimmed a bit around the torso and thighs especially. I didn’t even really realize how much everything had lifted and toned compared to before, so I’m really glad that I took progress photos to document it not only for myself, but to help put more info out there for others who are looking for ways to shape up and get healthier.

Cindy Chu  Bar Method Results Before and After

Cindy Chu’s transformation from starting Bar Method a year ago to today.

After I had my audition today, I stopped for a quick lunch at one of my new favorites, Huckleberry Cafe in Santa Monica. They use a lot of locally sourced ingredients and make their own fresh almond milk, so they have the best almond milk lattes I’ve found so far in LA. I paired it with a long-line caught tuna salad. Portion control is something I’ve worked on for health reasons in the last couple years, and this salad was pretty big. If I eat until I feel full, then I’ve usually overeaten and then feel bloated. Now I try to stop after I’m satisfied, and then just eat again when I feel hungry. This salad here was in a pretty big bowl, so I ate half and took the rest home.

Cindy Chu diet huckleberry cafe

Cindy Chu enjoyed this healthy meal from Huckleberry Cafe in Santa Monica, CA. Line caught tuna salad and a fresh almond milk latte.

Oh, today I finally saw my old co-star Kate Boyer while at my audition, she was at the same place for a different audition. She was just as gorgeous and nice as always. She’s got a film coming out soon, Hollidaysburg, which I actually auditioned for one of the parts in. Look her up! She’s so lovely, inside and out. She told me her mom reads my blog, so shoutout to Kate’s mom! ¬†You did a wonderful job raising an amazing gal. Here’s Kate’s¬†Instagram feed.

Kate Boyer

The Lovely Kate Boyer, Actress and Stunt Woman Extraordinaire

Well, my summertime goal is to find a theatrical agent or a manager so that I can actually start auditioning for all the jobs that I don’t have access to for TV/Features. I’ve had postcards made for mailings, and some cute mini business cards from Moo (click the link to get 10% off, if you need some biz cards or postcards!). What do you think? Hopefully I’ll have a good update for you soon regarding representation!

Cindy Chu

Cindy Chu’s Moo Postcard

Thanks for reading, and hope you all have a wonderful 4th!!!

xo,

Cindy

Spring Growth

Spring is officially in full bloom, well, at least here in sunny Southern California! Even the tulips are blooming in the colder states like Michigan. My career is also starting to bloom, or so I hope! In the time since my last post, my episode of Those Who Kill finally aired on A&E, although the series was pulled after the first two episodes. It will now return on Lifetime instead. ¬†My featured role as a Model in Limo on abc’s Mixology also aired recently. Here are some screen caps of my appearances:

Cindy Chu, Those Who Kill

Cindy Chu on ‘Those Who Kill’

Cindy Chu, abc, Mixology

Cindy Chu on ‘Mixology’

I also booked my first commercial job in LA, appearing as a rock climber in a print ad.  Here I am with my fellow models.

Cindy Chu, rock climbing, stronghold, la

Rock Climbing print ad at Stronghold Gym in downtown LA

This week I started a 4-week audition technique intensive class at the ever popular Margie Haber Studio. ¬†I’m studying under Courtney Burr and our first session went great! ¬†Can’t wait to go back tonight and learn more.

I’ve been attending workshops and manager meetings, and I hope to sign with either a manager or theatrical agent in the next few months. ¬†Hollywood is a tough egg to crack. ¬†Self-esteem and confidence are always good things to work on in this industry, especially, and I am feeling more of both after working on a photo shoot recently…

My photographer friend Mioara Dragan (who works between Detroit and LA) was in¬†town for LA Fashion Week last month, and we found this contest for Free People, where they would select a photographer, stylist, and model to come to NY for a photo shoot, and we wanted to do something for it. ¬†We decided in some of her spare time we would style some shots and I would play the model. ¬†I was stunned with the results! ¬†She captured me in the way I imagine myself at my best, not knowing I could ever appear that way in real life. ¬†Here are the images, I hope you enjoy them as much as I do. ¬†Maybe I’ll stop scoffing now when people ask me if I model. ¬†ūüėČ ¬†Oh, and if you’re in need of some head shots, or a wedding photographer, or whatever your needs are, she is incredibly talented and I highly recommend her.

Alright, those are my big updates for now!  My Macbook is about to die so until next time.

xoxo

~c

Entering the Year of the Horse

A happy belated 2014 to all of you, my dear readers!  I hope you have all been having an exciting year so far, although I know much of the US is suffering through one of the most terrible winters in decades, and definitely in my lifetime.  I am thankful every day that I moved to LA before this winter, as I really hate being cold.

ACTING STUFF

Anyway, I’m still on the hunt for a theatrical agent or manager in Los Angeles, which is proving difficult. ¬†I’d prefer not sending out thousands of postcards, and am reaching out to people I know who may be able to put me in touch with their connections. ¬†I know I can do the work, but it’s a matter of finding people who believe in me.

Recently I did a great agent showcase with Actor’s Advantage, run and organized by Shane Russeck. ¬†It was an interesting experience. ¬†All the actors checked in and got their time slots, and then the five agents were in the room, and when it was your turn, you went in, performed, and walked out and you were done. ¬†I haven’t heard anything but I know that sometimes these lead to work for some actors. ¬†Here’s the website if you want to check out an event. ¬†If you go, tell them I sent you!
Actor’s Advantage Showcase

In other acting news, there’s a great new trailer out for Those Who Kill, in which I played Nancy Yuan for the premiere episode. ¬†You can click through to the really scary trailer here. ¬†My friends Kate Boyer and Jordan Trovillion, both actresses I’ve written about before, can be seen in the creepy trailer. ¬†Kate is the one running away from the serial killer and tied up in a chair, and Jordan is dead in a dumpster in a quick flash. ¬†The show will premiere on A&E on March 3!

My shoulder was featured (body doubling) for a split second on the premiere episode of Rake, starring Greg Kinnear. ¬†When I went in for doubling, they had me working some lines with the actors and Sam Raimi, who directed that episode, very kindly upgraded me to cast for my work. ¬†I wish I could have auditioned for the actual role, but my turn will come. ¬†Anyway, I am incredibly thankful to Mr. Raimi for his kindness. ¬†That is the second time I’ve worked in a “background” role and been upgraded, which is very lucky indeed! ¬†When I worked on Red Dawn, I agreed to go in as background with a very high likelihood of being upgraded, and it went through so I became that police station screamer. ¬†(BTW, you can view Red Dawn on Netflix!) ¬†ūüôā

I’m still very much enjoying my classes at the Ruskin School of Acting in Santa Monica, and we are moving from emotional prep to scenes with emotional prep, which we will be performing as our one year graduation showcase.

HEALTH & BEAUTY

I was recently googling myself as I am wont to do now and then, (purely for career reasons!!!) and saw a photo of mine that was posted on the Bar Method blog by none other than Burr Leonard, the creator of The Bar Method!  That was pretty neat and also made me feel more inspired to go to my Bar classes to get even more results.

Burr Leonard, bar method

Burr Leonard demonstrating moves at the bar

Cindy Chu Actress/Blogger

Since the holidays have come and gone, I had also gotten really into rock climbing to the detriment of my Bar routine, but it was still exercise!

Cindy Chu, climbing

Cleaning up leads and anchor, then rappelling in Red Rock Canyon outside Las Vegas, NV

But then, I used the holidays as an excuse to eat a lot more than I normally do, and after the new year, I wanted to rededicate myself to my health and fitness, and so not only did I restart my habit of going to Bar a few times a week at minimum, along with walking and cycling, and other activities like paddle ball or hiking, but I also signed up for a 30 Day Challenge through DailyHiit!¬†They have a lot of great routines you can do at home with just a few simple exercise tools, and the workouts are High Intensity Interval Training (hence the HIIT) so are more efficient than spending an hour at the gym doing random exercises, meaning the workout videos they’ve been sending have been just 12 minutes! ¬†Here’s a photo of my halfway point progress:

day15, cindy chu

Day 15 progress photo of 30 Day Challenge from Daily Hiit

As you can see, the differences are very subtle.  What I notice the most is a more defined linea alba  which is that center line down the stomach, a tendinous stretch on the abdomen splitting the two sides of muscles.  I hope there will be even more change come Day 30!

I know I posted about my hair care awhile back, too, and the Shiseido Tsubaki shampoo/conditioner is still working wonders and my hair is so much softer than before, which is helped also by the Aquasana carbon shower head filter I installed. ¬†Since I often do need to style my hair for auditions, I’ve got some great recommendations on styling tools, too. ¬†I received an amazing blow dryer for Christmas and it dries my hair so quickly, and keeps it very smooth, and I can adjust it to no-heat, as well. ¬†It’s the Elchim Ionic and is a pro level tool.

Elchim ionic hair dryer

Elchim Ionic

I also am extremely satisfied with the Hot Tools curling iron I bought last year. ¬†The 1″ size is perfect for creating beachy and classic waves, although, the 1″1/2 might be nice for softer waves. ¬†I got the 1″. ¬†I usually spray some of the Bumble and Bumble Does It All styling spray in for heat protection.

BB does it all styling spray

Hot Tools Ceramic Marcel Curling Iron

Cindy Chu

Styled using the Hot Tools 1″ Ceramic Marcel Curling Iron

I had a lot of fun last night self-taping myself for some roles, and did a quick change in between, and I’ll leave you with this funny image of me. ¬†Signing off until next time! ¬†And please make sure to watch Those Who Kill when it comes out March 3!!!!

Cindy Chu

Double duty

xox,

Cindy