More Than You See 1: 5.01 Embracing Failure & Social Justice Work as a Creative with Jesse Lipscombe 

 February 7, 2024

By  Deborah Lee Smith

Welcome to Season 5 of the More Than You See Podcast!

In this episode, host Deborah Lee Smith talks to creative artist Jesse Lipscomb about their mental health journeys. Jesse Lipscomb, a versatile artist who is an actor, author, visual artist, motivational speaker, and athlete shares his life experiences. He goes into detail about how his past experiences of growing up as a person of color have influenced his current work, including his social justice movement, Make It Awkward.

He also discusses his career balance, dealing with failure, finding joy, and the importance of self-awareness in maintaining mental health. The emphasis of their conversation highlights being courageously yourself and pushing outside societal expectations, moving beyond labels and embracing identity.

00:49 Changes and Updates for the New Season

03:32 Introducing Guest: Jesse Lipscomb

05:45 Starting the Interview with Jesse

06:16 Discussing Mental Health and Personal Experiences

11:37 Exploring Jesse's Childhood and Upbringing

16:30 Jesse's Approach to Parenting and Mental Health

20:15 The 'Make it Awkward' Movement

28:11 Balancing Acting and Social Justice Work

33:29 Embracing Passion and Creativity

34:15 The Power of Giving and Connecting

34:32 Finding Fuel in Passion

35:36 Impact of the SAG AFTRA Strike

37:24 Balancing Personal and Professional Life

39:07 Embracing Failure and Challenges

43:00 Rapid Fire Questions

44:37 The Art of Asking for Help

45:56 The Make It Awkward Movement

49:22 Unveiling Masks and Being Courageously Yourself

About Jesse:

Jesse Lipscombe is an actor, producer, entrepreneur and activist.
Jesse started his acting career at age 14 alongside Sidney Poitier in the Calgary-shot film Children of the Dust. He has gone on to act and produce in over 40 films and television shows.

Currently, he can be seen on Netflix’s hit series My Life With The Walter Boys and Black Summer. With multiple national nominations from the Canadian Screen Awards and the Rockies for Best Comedy Series. In addition to Best Actor (It’s Not My Fault and I Don't Care Anyway) and Best Comedy Series (Tiny Plastic Men) from the AMPIA’s in 2017/18. 

At 18, he received a full track-and-field scholarship to Martin Luther King Jr.’s alma mater, Morehouse College, in Atlanta, Georgia. Recently, Jesse was the recipient of the Obsidian Award for Top Business Leader in Western Canada, he was named Community Man of the Year by Diversity Magazine and was selected as one of Edmonton’s Top 30 under 40 by Avenue Magazine.

Through it all, Jesse’s top priority has been giving back to his community, which he’s done through multiple annual fundraisers and partnerships with Edmonton charities such as WIN House and iHuman. In September, Jesse and his wife Julia launched the #MakeItAwkward campaign to combat racism, misogyny, homophobia and hatred of all kinds.

Jesse's Links:


Other Links

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New here? Every Wednesday join me, Deborah Lee Smith (actor, filmmaker, and mental health advocate) for a conversation with creatives about their mental health journeys. We discuss the highs, lows and in betweens of a creative career and the tools they use to get through it all. Our hope is that you will resonate with their journey, pick up some tip and tricks for your own mental health, and most importantly, feel a little less alone. Because we’re all More Than You See.

Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/more-than-you-see/message

Deborah Lee Smith

Hi there! I'm an actor, producer, and writer who is devoted to storytelling and mental health awareness. After struggling through my own mental health, I found that non-traditional resources, like the ones we explore on More Than You See, helped me immensely get through my dark times. Thus, this website and podcast were born! I look forward to helping you gain agency over your mental health journey as you build your own toolkit of resources, tips, and ideas. Because you never know what might help pull you out of the darkness, and we are all More Than You See.   

Deborah Lee Smith

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