On Thursday, two former students of Florida A&M teamed to host a workshop during the “Grad’s are Back” event.
Music executive Amir Windom, 25, from Atlanta and film director James Bland, 24, held an event called “The Conservation: In the studio and on the Set.”
The event was put together to inspire people to follow their dreams and to give insight on other avenues in the entertainment industry.
After Bland graduated in May 2008, he found himself in Los Angeles two months later with a subleased apartment and just $200 in his pocket to survive on.
Bland had to overcome numerous adversities his first year in L.A. He was forced to sleep on his friend’s floor at one point and was held up and shot in the face with a bb gun over his laptop.
“I fought the men back, because that was all I had to my name and I all of my hard work was in it.”
Even after being shot in the face, Bland says he doesn’t regret the decision to go to L.A.
“I went to L.A. with a dream and a lot of faith,” said Bland.
Bland says he believes in the Law of Attraction that what you put out will come back. He added that FAMU, “prepares us to compete against the best of the best.”
Bland also debuted his short film “Cocoa Love,” a romantic comedy that won Best Comedy at the Atlanta Urban Mediamakers Film Festival.
Windom was the music supervisor for the film. The purpose of the workshop is show students how music and film producing can go hand in hand and how it can open up different opportunities in each field.
“I was sitting in the same seats as everyone in here, I just figured out quickly what I wanted to do,” said Windom.
Windom did not always plan on going into the music industry. While attending FAMU Windom was a public relations student. He said he had to figure out quickly what he wanted to do and chase that dream.
“You have to strive to be more than successful; you have to strive to be significant… make courageous career decisions, and create your own path,” said Windom.
Windom also has some upcoming projects in store for all the music fans out there. He said the long awaited arrival of Lupe Fiasco’s single will be released soon and he is also serving as executive producer to B Rossi’s album, which will be coming out next year.
Amir Windom is a recipient of one of the 40/40 alumni awards. He said he is honored and humbled by the award.
“The award might have my name on it, but… really it’s a pat on the back for everyone who helped me get here.”
Bland has three Upcoming Projects in the works. He’s currently working on developing two sitcoms,
producing the Martin Lee Anderson Story with Vanessa Baden and directing a documentary on a medical
mission trip I took to Swaziland.