The world lost a very special person today - Elizabeth Taylor. She always handled herself with grace and dignity, and was a wonderful role model for all of us who were fortunate enough to grow up watching her on the silver screen. As a board member of the USA Film Festival, I've learned never to form an opinion about someone until I meet them in person, and sadly Ms. Taylor is one that I would have given anything to meet but it wasn't meant to be.
Denise Vivaldo - who is one of my favorite writers as well as being my role model in the styling world just posted a story in the Huffington Post about her encounter with Ms. Taylor. It makes me love Denise and Ms. Taylor even more. The title of the story is Elizabeth Taylor: Good Manners Never Go Out of Style and I couldn't agree more.
This weekend I was working with photographer Lisa Stewart LifeStyling Savor Dallas- a special food and wine event that I enjoy attending every year. To make the shots Lifestylist® Designed, I take my own glasses, plates, and styling utensils and try to get at least 50 great food and wine shots in about a 2 hour time frame - and did I mention we do this while the event is going on and we have to work around 2,000 -3,000 attendees? It's quite a juggling act. What struck me the most about this year's event was the lack of courtesy shown to the chefs and wine makers by the attendees. The whole point of an event like this is to educate people about your food and your wines, and hopefully they will come to your restaurant or buy your wines after the event is over. You would have thought some of these people were trying to win a million dollars by snagging the most to eat and drink -we were literally getting pushed and stepped on when we were trying to set up our shots, and people were taking the food that I styled right off of the plate (my plate) before we got get it photographed. The wine makers didn't have a chance to tell about their wines, because someone else was already putting out their empty glass to be filled.
Good manners never go out of style, and I'm actually appreciating the manners that my parents drilled into me at an early age. I never want to be the one pushing for a glass of wine or a dime sized piece of cheese - I want to remain a Lifestylist® and savor every moment and experience that I get to indulge in. Thanks Denise for this wonderful memory I will now have of Ms. Taylor and the reminder to live our lives with the dignity that others have shown us.