I found Anna Akana through Ray William Johnson (ironically, I don’t watch him anymore). It was refreshing to see someone in media who looked just like me. Even after she and Ray broke up and she found a new boyfriend, I kept watching her, because by then she had ceased to be just “Ray’s girlfriend” but stay-awesome-Gotham Anna Akana.
I found her vlogs to be very empowering and funny, but always with a message. I could relate to all the trouble she had – compulsive lying, being introverted, being a homebody. I loved her videos because she wouldn’t just complain about her problems- she would teach you how to solve them.
Recurring themes in her videos are working hard in order to excel at what you do. She frequently shares her goals in life. Last year, she started a pledge to do ten short films a year in order to improve her storytelling skills. At first, I was heartbroken because I loved her vlogs. Was this the last I would hear of her stories? I loved her tales about her life (how she worked as a cocktail waitress, got tricked into a date, or even regular stories at the gym etc.)- were those going to stop?
But then Hallucination and Emergency Call came out- and they were absolutely spectacular. True to her word, they kept getting better. I must have watched her most recent short film, Loose Ends, half a dozen times. Her string of short films serves to me as a concrete example of how much someone can really improve just by committing to something.
In most respects, Anna Akana is a figure far removed from me… she’s older, working in a different industry, and on the whole is a way less conservative person. But I like to think that on the inside, we’re on the same wavelength. She constantly inspires me, and her work is symbolic of how hard work and dedication can make a world of difference. Whenever I’m down or feeling demotivated, playing one of her videos will always inspire me- and give me a good laugh. Thanks Anna!