Blog, New York

Breakdown of My Course at NYFA


Tamika Doubell New York Film Academy

I really enjoyed my course at the New York Film Academy in Manhattan. They call it “NYFA” for short. I was impressed with all the school has to offer in every aspect of motion picture, film-making + showbiz in general. Aside from their acting courses, they also offer courses in film-making, producing, editing, photography, cinematography, 3D animation, game design, digital editing, screenwriting, broadcast journalism, documentary film-making, musical theatre, music video creation + so much more. We had class daily from 8:30am – 5pm, in which we studied:

  • Text / script analysis
  • Audition Technique
  • Scene Study
  • Monologue Techniques
  • Acting for film
  • Voice and Movement
  • Improvisation
  • Branding & Marketing for the actor

We had these classes with various coaches every day at NYFA campuses across the city. One of our campuses was at a place called “Pearl Studios” + it’s where all the Broadway shows go to rehearse and hold auditions! We had “Jersey Boys”, “Phantom of the Opera”, “Rock of Ages”, “Wicked”, “Newsies” rehearsing + holding auditions for the new season every day. Exciting stuff! What I loved about NYFA is that they coached us in every way possible … we would act, film ourselves acting, watch ourselves + critique ourselves / have our coaches critique us. We did monologues + scenes with scene partners where we got assigned a partner + a scene from an award-winning play or film. We practiced with each other during structured rehearsal blocks in the week. We then filmed it on location with professional equipment + crew. At the end of the course we had material for our showreels which was great. Another awesome part of the course was having industry professionals come in + talk to us. They’d give us coaching advice, which I found invaluable. All our teachers were actively involved in the industry themselves, working either in feature films, sitcoms, television shows or commercials. I loved getting taught by them, trained by them + I especially loved getting their advice. What amazed me most was all the avenues students in acting can branch into. Some of our teachers studied acting for screen + then went on to work on “Saturday Night Live” (NBC) or “30 Rock” which is its own career. I would personally enjoy the experience of working on feature films. I loved the talk we had one evening from the Director of Photography for “World War Z”, Ben Seresin. Below is a picture of my class outside the Union Square campus.

New York Film Academy 8-week acting for film

See more articles about my time in New York:

– Meeting the Rotary Club of Wall Street

– My Experience Eating The Big Apple

– The US Open

 Here We Go: East Village

 Shoot with John Tona

My Short Film

In Class with Someone Famous

– I love Polaroids

– Art Meets Fashion Event in Brooklyn

– A Night out in NYC

– Remembering 9/11

– My Life in New York in Pictures

 Prices in New York

– Quote for the Day

– Photography Thesis

New York Film Academy


New York Film Academy

New York Film Academy

New York Film Academy

New York Film Academy

New York Film Academy

New York Film Academy

New York Film Academy

New York Film Academy

New York Film Academy

New York Film Academy

New York Film Academy

New York Film Academy

New York Film Academy

New York Film Academy

New York Film Academy

❤ My Work, Modelling

What Lies Beneath Shoot with Sarah part 2

1 Comment

Tamika Doubell

The next morning our protagonist wakes up in her hotel room with a red rose and a letter outside her door. It’s from her husband, apologizing for his affair and begging for her forgiveness. He confesses everything, along with the fact that he secretly flew in from his business trip in Vermont just to watch her show. In the letter he tells her how magnificent her performance was and how much he loves her and how sorry he is. He asks, with one single red rose, if she will accept his apology and forgive him. He writes about the dreams and plans for their lives together which they once had. He wants to re-ignite those dreams, as well as the flame between them. Our protagonist reads the letter and is taken back to a time when they were indeed very much in love and shared many dreams. She thinks about their memories and the passionate times they’ve shared together as she decides what she will do.

Tamika Doubell

1. The Rose. Roses are ancient symbols of love and beauty. The red rose was also adopted as a symbol of the blood of the Christian martyrs. Obviously the rose is the perfect symbol of the love between our protagonist and her husband, as well as the beauty of their relationship. The red is associated with blood which is also poignant as blood is connected to life. It is responsible for transporting oxygen and nutrients around our body, as well as playing a role in removing waste from our system. In a way, this symbol represents that he wishes to remove the ‘waste’ that has accumulated in their relationship – culminating in the toxic affair. As blood also plays a role in repair in our bodies, so this symbol serves furthermore to represent his wish to take the first steps toward repairing the life they have together that has been wounded. Again, the red of the rose playing a role as a motif throughout our story. See it’s symbolism HERE

Tamika Doubell

2. Perfume. While she is relieved, she is unsure what to do. She wonders about whether or not she will forgive him as she gets ready. On her dressing table is everything beautiful, delicate, feminine and luxurious. It represents her inner self and the side of herself she is confident in, unlike their relationship which she is unsure of. We have her seated at her dressing table as she remembers all their loving times together. She sprays on her favourite perfume. It’s the same scent she was wearing when they first met, on a romantic rainy evening years ago, and this moment takes her back to that time. The definition of perfume is “A pleasing, agreeable scent or odor”, made up of the word “fuming” – To fill or permeate with fragrance; impart a pleasant odor to. This is symbolic as these memories are like a pleasing fragrance to a troubled mind. She thinks back to their gentle and sensual first kiss.

Tamika Doubell

Dressing Table

3. Music. Finally she makes her decision. She decides to forgive him and give their love another try. Her exuberance in spirit is matched only by her cheeky smile as she realizes that “she’s still got it!“. Her husband has chosen to stay with her over his mistress. There is a sense of triumph mixed with lighthearted relief. Their love is indeed the same beautiful song she’s remembered all along. We have her sitting next to a piano, with her smile at the outcome of her tragedy as the symbolic Crescendo in the musical score that was this story. 

Tamika Doubell

Here are some behind-the-scenes pics:

Tamika Doubell

Tamika Doubell

Tamika Doubell

Tamika Doubell

Tamika Doubell

Creative Inspiration

Keeping a Journal



One thing I really love to do is write. I’m an expressive person by nature with lots of thoughts and ideas that spill into my head at any given time. I realized recently that I have no vehicle through which to do justice to all that. So I took myself to exclusive books and got myself a gorgeous little moleskin book and some nice pens! With the new year having started I’ve decided to journal more. I encourage you to all keep a journal or diary of some kind to keep track and record things. Going to Spain, Portugal and New York this year should see me filling up quite a few pages!  I believe in balancing your life – physical, social, mental and spiritual. Journalism is a great way to achieve that balance. 

After journaling for about a week, I’ve realized a few things: 

  1. I have a better idea of what 2012 was like.
  2. I have a better idea of what I want 2013 to look like.
  3. I take for granted how lucky and blessed I am. 
  4. I much prefer old-fashioned pen and paper to the screen and keyboard!

Do you journal? What do you use it for – to spill your thoughts? To share your fears? Recap your day?

Creative Inspiration

What Your Dreams Say About You


Ever wondered what your dreams say about you? Here’s an awesome article Men’s Health did on dream intepretation:

Mens Health

Dreams are successions of imagesideasemotions, and sensations that occur involuntarily in the mind during certain stages of sleep. The content and purpose of dreams are not definitively understood, though they have been a topic of scientific speculation, as well as a subject of philosophical and religious interest, throughout recorded history.

– http://en.wikipedia.org

While reading up on the ancient history of dreams, I came up with pretty interesting stuff. According to the ancient Mesopotamians, our soul actually moves out from our body and visits the places and persons we see in our sleep. The ancient Chinese believed this too. They even believed that sometimes the god of dreams carried us. Babylonians and Assyrians divided dreams into “good” which were sent by the gods, and “bad” which were sent by demons. And that our dreams could be prophecies; either good or evil.To the ancient Egyptians, people with vivid and significant dreams were thought blessed and were considered special. They wrote down their dreams on papyrus. They  believed that dreams were like oracles, bringing messages from the gods. They thought that the best way to receive divine revelation was through dreaming and thus they would induce (or “incubate”) dreams.

Egyptians would go to sanctuaries and sleep on special dream beds in hope of receiving advice, comfort, or healing from the gods.

– http://en.wikipedia.org

The Greeks and the ancient Hebrews also shared the idea of incubating dreams. The earliest Greek beliefs of dreams was that their gods physically visited the dreamer, where they entered through a keyhole and exited the same way after the divine message was given. The Hebrews, like many other ancient cultures, incubated dreams in order to receive divine revelation.

For instance, the Hebrew prophet Samuel, would lie down and sleep in the temple at Shiloh before the Ark and receive the word of the Lord.

– http://en.wikipedia.org

Mmmm, that got me thinking. If I had to incubate myself while sleeping, What would my ultimate dream bed look like?

What do you think? 🙂 The earliest Christians mostly shared their beliefs with the Hebrews, Greeks and Egyptians and thought that dreams were of the supernatural element because the Old Testament had frequent stories of dreams with divine inspiration. The most famous of these dream stories was Jacob’s dream that stretched from Earth to Heaven. Many Christian men preached that God talked to his people through their dreams. In the Islam faith, dreams play an important role in the history of Islam and the lives of Muslims. Ishtikara or “dream interpretation”, is the only way that Muslims can receive revelations from God after the death of the last Prophet Mohammed.

In today’s modern times – thanks to Freud and Jung – it is generally believed by many that  dreams are simply the expressions of the dreamer’s deepest fears and desires.

C.G. Jung put forth a theory of dreams which is quite popular today.

Following in the footsteps of Sigmund Freud, Jung claimed that dream analysis is the primary way to gain knowledge of the unconscious mind. He says that the dream is a natural phenomenon which we can study, thereby gaining knowledge of the hidden part of our mind. The images are symbolic of conscious and unconscious mental processes.

– http://members.core.com

I’m not sure what I believe, but while having a smoothie the other day I got to thinking about putting together a simple list of “dream meanings” for you. When I was young, my grandfather bought me a dream book from Milan. You can buy it HERE. There are hundreds of entries in this book, each with a very simple explanation next to it. I can’t say that any of the explanations have ever been wrong! So here goes, I’m going to write down a few of the common ones for you to read:

Apple – Temptation. These are considered a good omen, and can be the sign of a new love. You may be led into temptation earlier in the relationship than perhaps you had planned.

Baby – Contentment. At its basic level, dreaming of babies is a sign of contentment & happiness in a relationship.

Bee – Wealth & Prosperity. To dream of bees is a sign that you are going to come into wealth & status, and honey-bees in particular indicate wealth & prosperity.

Biscuits – Disputes. If you dream of eating biscuits then petty arguments could break out in your family.

Boots – Promotion. Well-polished boots indicate there will be a promotion at work. This is particularly true if you dream that you are buying them, which represents an interview.

Bride – Luck. Dreaming of seeing or being a bride is an indication of luck and future happiness. If the bride looks unhappy then someone is displeased with you.

Bridge – A change for the better. You are starting on a new venture & indicates positive action. However if the bridge appears unstable then take it as a warning that you are not ready to make that change.

Cat – Beware another person. Ill-luck & treachery. Seeing them in dreams indicate that another person could be trying to steal your affections and are just toying with your emotions. Be warned.

Cemetery – Prospects. Cemeteries in dreams have different meanings depending on how well the grounds are kept. If the grounds are tidy then there will be happiness and financial rewards in the future. If the grounds look dreary, there may be trouble ahead, though news from friends will bring prosperity, resolving your problems.

Chandelier – Status. Seeing a chandelier in your dreams indicates that you will be given an important role. It brings status & honour and indicates a successful time in both social & career circles.

Chicken – A warning message! Dreaming of chickens is said to be a bad omen, as it brings trouble. In particular the trouble is associated with partners, in both business and relationships. Tread carefully in these areas of your life.

Chocolate – Pleasure seeker. Eating or drinking chocolate is an indication that you are trying to seek pleasure. You are in the mood for finding someone new to light up your life.

Churchyard – Prospects. If there are no graves, you will live away from where you were born.

ColoursBlue: Spiritual well-being & understanding. A good dream for friendship and help from others. Green: Luck & Help in finances. Also fertility and growth in the family. Orange: Promotes health & energy. When orange is seen, changes will take place quickly. Colour of optimism & thus the energy you deliver at the moment will be rewarded in success. Pink: Honour & the honour of being looked up to by others. It is often shown at the start of a new relationship. Purple: Career success & achievement. It represents forthcoming news of promotion or being honoured. Meetings with important people will promote you in some way. Red: Passion. Common in dreams when emotions are high. If you see someone wearing red in your dream it means that want you to notice them.White: Purity & Clearness. It means everything will go well & that the choices you have taken are correct. Yellow: strength of mind & determination. It is the colour of communication so is very good in business dealings & negotiations with others. It is a good colour to see at the start of new ventures.

Crying – Good news. Things will get better.

Death – Regeneration. Death does not literally mean ‘death’ but refers to the closing of one activity and the start of a new one. Often it means there will be a complete change in your life, indicating the death of the past.

Dog – A man’s best friend. Seeing a dog represents a best friend you have in your life, or many good friends. You have someone who is loyal to you and will not question your judgement, sticking by you at all times.

Driving – Take your time. Roads mean journeys and suggest life decisions. If you are the one driving in your dream then you could be trying to push things too fast. If you are the passenger this is good news & career advancement.

Egg – Fertility. Dreaming of eggs is linked with fertility and can indicate gain & prosperity. If you are eating eggs then your body is telling you to consider your diet & nutritional intake.

Electricity – Energy in your life. Represents energy coming into your life. The brightness will dictate how quickly things will take off. Switching electricity on indicates the start of a new project. Switching it off is the end of a project or relationship.

Escape – Obstacles. A common dream telling you that you will encounter obstacles that you must try to overcome. If you are escaping from prison then you are feeling confined & trying to get out of a situation. Escaping from natural disasters means an anxious transformation with a successful outcome.

Explosion – Improvements. You are about to go through an explosive time but the changes made will be for the better.

Eyes – Look around. you. You may not be looking at things in the right way.

Fairies – Granted wishes. You are about to be successful in something you have planned.

Falling – Fear of failure. The type of fall you experience will determine the outcome. A long distance then changes in your life will take a lot of effort to go forward. However, falling a short distance means you will be able to get over the setback quickly. If you are walking & fall over in front of others, then their friendship is not to be trusted.

Fire – Impending trouble. Seeing fire in a dream indicates trouble ahead. Problems will pursue you especially if you are burnt by the fire in your dream. If you manage to put it out then you will be able to deal with the obstacles you face.

Fireworks – Fireworks in your life. A celebration or passion in a new relationship.

Forest – Obstacles & Opportunities.  If you are alone in the forest then someone will let you down. Hiding or being lost in the forest indicates obstacles you must accept & face to be able to proceed. You may have to undertake a long journey to resolve the issue. On the other hand, if you feel you are enjoying the forest walk then it indicates that you will gain status & fame.

Gold – Fame & Fortune.

Goat – A warning about business involvements.

Gun – Distress and worries. A time of severe stress and worry is coming, relating to external pressures of people’s opinions of you.

Hands – Creativity. If you see hands doing things in a dream (working, painting etc.) then this indicates that you will be using your skills in a work opportunity that will provide long-term rewards for you. If they are grubby hands, you must watch how you present yourself to others. Old hands represent the easing of a financial burden. If you dream of the left hand it indicates romantic involvement that will fall apart due to deceit. The right hand denotes falling prey to the deception of others.

Helmet – Problems. To see someone wearing a helmet in a dream indicates that someone else is hiding their true motives from you.

Horizon – Success. The horizon represents the future & your personal ambitions. To see a new horizon means that you will achieve success and peace.

Horse – Speed, power & status. If you are riding a horse & are in control of it in your dream, status awaits. If you are riding an uncontrollable horse, then the dream literally means you are being taken for a ride: look at relationships very closely. If you are riding a horse that constantly bucks, it could indicate you have a back or joint problem: your body is reminding you to take care of your health. To see a horseshoe is a lucky symbol, some luck is about to come your way. A stallion indicates success and someone with a powerful personality will help you.

Ice – Warning, You need to pay close attention to your finances or you could get into trouble. To see an icicle, however, indicates that given time your dreams & aspirations will come to fruition.

Isolation – Worries. If you dream you are isolated it means that you have complex personal issues on your mind that you are having difficulties explaining to others.

Jade – Intuition. If you see the green stone Jade in your dreams, it means that you should trust your inner intuition. Your gut feelings will guide you the right way.

Jewellery – A good omen. Amulets are symbols of protection. Earrings mean you need to listen carefully to what is happening to enable you to take advantage of situations around you. However, it is also a warning to be careful of repeating something you heard to others. Necklaces are good for romance providing the necklace doesn’t break, which represents quarrels. Bracelets stand for long-term friendships and relationships. If you have just met a new partner and dream of a bracelet, this dream foretells that your engagement is in the near future. Rings stand for commitment in long-term relationships. They do not have a beginning or end and stand for the eternity of a relationship.

Keys – Solutions. They represent solutions to problems. Unlocking a door with a key can indicate that a new opportunity will present itself  indicates sexual involvement with someone.

Killing – A period of misfortune or stress. If you dream of killing someone, on purpose or by accident, it means you need to curb your temper. This type of dream indicates that you may be facing a period of emotional stress. There is a need to make sure you are not overreacting with people and it could mean that you have an anger control problem.

Leopard – Dangerous rivals. A leopard attacking you in a dream signifies opposition. So be careful where you place your confidences. To kill the leopard means you will outwit your rivals.

Lift – Success. To dream of going up in a lift indicates swift promotion and career opportunities; expect to hear news soon of career enhancement. If the lift is on its way down, then it indicates a time for rethinking your career plans.

Lightning – A bolt from the blue. Dreaming of lightning indicates that you will soon find yourself in the middle of some unexpected events. However, just as everything feels fresher after a thunderstorm, so your dream represents renewed vigour and continuation of some old projects as well as the start of some new ones.

Lizard – An insincere acquaintance. It represents untrustworthy foes that you need to be on the guard against.

Lost – Find a new direction. If you are lost in your dream then it indicates that you feel you have lost your way in life.

Mask – To dream of someone in a mask means that you are being deceived. In real life, you may feel that this is true but do not know who the person is. When in a dream state, concentrate on seeing the person behind the mask.

Meat – If the meat is raw then it signifies you will not fulfil your life’s ambitions. But if you dream of cooking meat or cooked meat, then you will accomplish a lot in life. Changes in the near future will help you on your way financially and you will do well.

Milk – Good health. Dreaming of milk is a general dream indicating good health. The more milk you see, the better your health & joy will be.

Moon – Emotions. A moon shrouded in mists or clouds represents a relationship which you cannot get through to on an emotional level. If the moon is waxing, it indicates success in starting new projects & relationships. If the moon is waning, it represents the ending of relationships or the solution of problems. A bright, full moon indicates success & happiness in relationships. A bright, moonlit night also heightens sexual sensitivity & indicates happiness & contentment in a relationship.

Numbers – Prediction of your destiny & are often considered the key to the future.

1= New beginnings

2= Intuition & Balance

3= Activity, fertility & growth

4= Order & Structure

5= Resourcefulness & drive

6= Harmony & love

7= Investigation & contemplation

8= Authority & executive decisions

9= Re-assessment & planning

Omelette – A false friend. This is a warning dream about false friends who are about to let you down. You might find that they seem to praise & elevate you, but this is just a ploy on their part to take advantage of you.

Onions – Envy from others towards you.

Orange – A choice of lovers. If you dream of eating oranges then it indicates that you are in a situation where you may have to choose between a number of suitors who are after your affection. At the moment you are undecided but you will be forced to choose between them in the near future.

Palace – To see a palace means that you will soon be honoured by those around you.

Pastry – Decisions. If you dream of pastry then you will be faced with some crucial decisions. You will also have to be on your guard to watch out for someone who is trying to deceive you.

Penguins – A message to relax. You are behaving in an authoritarian manner with others. Although you may be acting with the best of intentions, others may feel you are restricting them.

Photography – Deception. It indicates the deception of others in dreams. Take a good look at who is taking the photograph of you.

Planets – An indication of feelings. The planet you see will give you an indication of the area of your life that is affected. Mercury=Represents travel & is an indicator of news & communications. Venus=Planet of love. Brings relationship into focus & is also believed to bring luck in financial issues. Mars= Heralds arguments as well as action & activity. Jupiter= Promotion & status. Saturn= Indication of time & age. Uranus= Computers & ideas. Neptune= Mystical side of life. Pluto= The restrictions we place upon ourselves.

Potatoes – Good luck all around.

Rabbit – Fertility.

Race – Perseverance against time. This dream indicates you need to adapt to new circumstances; you may need to review your life and prepare to make the necessary changes.

Road – Paths of direction. Travelling up a road, either walking or driving, indicates you will be making changes in your life. The straighter the road, the easier the changes. The bumpier the road, the more obstacles there will be to hinder your progress.

Robbery – Oddly enough, if you dream of losing something of value it indicates unexpected gains are soon coming your way.

Rose – Romance. Should it appear in your dreams, you can take it as a sign that love will soon blossom. You should be feeling very confident & happy at the moment as the relationship is shown to be one of dedication & love.

Sadness – Worries will be over soon.

School – Looking to the past. Dreaming you are at school suggests you are not letting go of the past. This is causing problems for you as you are unable to move on fully until you lay the past to rest.

Shoes – Opportunities. Well-polished shoes indicate that there is going to be an opportunity at work. This is particularly true if you dream that you are buying them, as it represents the possibility of an interview. If the shoes are neat but well-used it shows that you are going to be wealthy in life. If you lose your shoes it indicates that you are wasting your efforts on something that is not going to work out.

Shooting – Shooting someone in your dream indicates that you have a dispute with them. You need to curb your temper.

Silk – Luxury. It shows a forthcoming time of luxury.

Sleeping – Exhaustion. This is an indication that you have been burning the candles at both ends. You need to rest before it seriously affects your health.

Snow – A positive omen. Contentment in a relationship & bodes well for the future. If the snow is heavy you will be rewarded greatly for the efforts you have put in. If the snow is light then it is a good time to look at business investments.

Spider – The web of life. Spiders are thought of generally as lucky. Only exception is if you dream of a tarantula, which means a medical check-up is in order.

Stars – Success. Stars in a dream bring success. If you just see one star, this indicates that success will come in the form of the companionship of a prospective partner. A multitude of stars means success through the help of many others and also means that you will be admired by others. For those with aspirations of stardom, this dream could herald a burst of activity that might end with the realization of your goals. Prepare to work to your full potential!

Tea – Popularity. It indicates that you will do well socially over the next few weeks.

Teeth – A reflection of your emotional state. Teeth that are white & pristine indicate things are going well. Stained teeth suggest difficulties building up through negligence. Teeth falling out indicate a phase of growth into new spheres of activities & social circles. The upper teeth represent male family members & the lower teeth represent the female family members. The eye or canine top teeth represent the father while the lower canines are the mother. Damage to the particular tooth could indicate damage – physical or emotional – to the corresponding family member. If your teeth are suddenly longer it foretells of a forthcoming legal issue. If your teeth are knocked out by someone then it indicates financial problems brought about by that person. Prominent or buck teeth indicate travel opportunities are nearby. Going to the dentist in a dream is actually good news, indicating you are sorting things out for the better. A set of false teeth signifies unexpected help from another person. Having fillings mean you are going to get help from another source. Having root filling work indicates you should dig deep into your resources & be more careful with financial speculations in the future. Brushing your teeth indicates that you will have obstacles to overcome. Picking your teeth means your friends will let you down.

Tiger – A struggle, but you win.

Time – If you dream of time in a very obvious way (a clock, a watch etc.) then it is an indication that you need to get on with things straight away rather than putting them off.

Toad – Toads indicate success. Expect success & luck in the future.

Tree – Lucky in love but not in work.

Umbrella – Something to fall back on. You are protected from the problems with which you are faced at the time.

Uniform – Status. A man dreaming of a uniform indicates a rise in status. For females this dream means a new relationship opportunity will arise; also a promotional opportunity.

Vine – Success. If the vine looks healthy it indicates that any business or other projects you start now will bring more success than your wildest dreams.

Wind – Ideas. The wind brings learning and ideas to the meaning of dreams. A gentle wind means good & steady progress. But if the wind is gusty then it can mean that your ideas keep stalling. If the wind is very strong then it may be a hard job for you to succeed.

Wine – Celebration. Drinking wine indicates a celebration in the near future. A young person drinking wine means they are soon to have a relationship with a wealthy person.

I’ve just included some of the most common ones here, but if you have a question about a dream you’ve had, feel free to tweet & ask me at @TamikaDoubell