Daphne Maxwell Reid [Interview]


I am so excited to share today’s interview with you all! Today we have some amazing words from an absolutely LEGEND! And I do not use that word lightly. Daphne Maxwell Reid has an amazing career as a multi-faceted creator of so many things. You will instantly recognize her as everyone’s favorite auntie, Aunt Viv, from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. But, as I have come to learn, There are so many more layers to what Mrs. Reid can accomplish. Photography. Style. Writing. Producing. The list just goes on and on. She is a very multi-faceted human being, and has accomplished so much in her lifetime and should be absolutely proud of it all.

We are truly honored that Daphne was willing to be a part of our digital pages, and we are so very honored to share her words with you today. Also, big shout out to past interviewee and friend of the blog, David Gborie, for chiming in on the questions. The Fresh Prince seems to pop up on one of his podcasts, All Fantasy Everything (featuring another old pal, Sean Jordan) quite frequently. So, when I was awarded the opportunity to chat with Daphne, I thought I would see what he had to say.

So Ladies and Gentlemen, please enjoy some amazing words from the legendary Daphne Maxwell Reid!

You are a renowned actress, producer, writer, photographer, and more, and have excelled at them all! So, where did this passion to create come from? Did you know from a very young age that you wanted to create art and perform for a living?

Not at all. I was born graced with many gifts. I was encouraged to use my brain instead of my hands, but was guided on a journey that allowed me to express myself using both.

A few years ago we spoke with your former television daughter, the great Karyn Parsons, and she had amazing things to say about being a part of a TV family. So, how was your experience playing a TV mom, the leader of the household if you will, for the seasons you portrayed the beloved Aunt Viv?

The experience of working with a cast that had so much talent and humanity was an awesome one. The relationships engendered were lifelong ones. Truely a wonderful blessing. I felt very much at home when in character or not.

I asked a fine young comedian that I am a huge fan of, David Gborie, who I know was a huge fan of Fresh Prince, what he would like to ask you, and he was curious to know what it was like working with Quincy Jones? Would he pop in onto the set every now and again?

We didn’t get to see him often on set, but he was always warm and proud of the production when we did see him.

And speaking of comedians, I have noticed in your credits that you were an Executive Producer for Paul Mooney’s special Analyzing White America. I am curious as to how you may have linked up with the legendary Mr. Mooney to help bring this project to the world? How did you come to work on this project?

My husband is Tim Reid, who began as a stand up comedian and has known Paul Mooney since The Richard Pryor Show in the ‘70s. Tim and I built a studio in virginia and Tim did a lot of independent productions there. he and Paul created the concept and shot the show. my credit was only because I co-owned the studio and did the paperwork involved with the production.

You have done some amazing work in the world of fine art photography, with 5 books and 5 calendars already published. How did you find yourself in this world? And what is it that you adore about the world of photography?

I have possessed a camera since I was 8 years old. My father was an amateur photographer and constantly photographed our growing up. I found that I have the gift of seeing details that others may miss and I found myself wanting to share my visions with close friends and relatives. At the age of 60, I was challenged by my friends to mount a gallery show of my work, and my professional journey began. It has grown into a little cottage industry that I have been proud to have created. I love the journeys of learning that come with taking a chance on a new venture. it has been fulfilling.

 Another talent you have brought to the world comes in the form of fashion with your custom clothing line called Daphne Style. Where did this passion stem from? What sort of pieces have you been putting out there?

I have been sewing for myself since childhood and found peace and joy working with fabric. I was especially inspired by chinese silk brocade and found a personal style of coat/jacket that people had a strong reaction to. my dear husband encouraged me to comply with folks wishes to make a coat for them. that is how my line of custom made wearable art came to be the journey that i am traveling now.

 You have yet ANOTHER venture you have gotten into in publishing, with a cookbook entitled Grace + Soul Motherwit. Can you tell us a bit about this project? What inspired you to create a cookbook?

The cookbook is a “finally” published version of recipes i have gathered from friends and family over the years. when I finally decided to publish it, i felt it was a great vehicle for a memoir of my life. So, I combined the two ideas.

What else does the future hold for you? Anything else you would like to share with our readers?

I am anxious to find out!

What was the last thing that made you smile?

the kiss from my husband on his way out of the door.

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About rontrembathiii
write. write. write.

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