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Hey mes petits dreamers,

A few weeks ago I met a very chilled Parisian. Julie Duval. She was kind enough to share her story of getting lost in the right direction with me as well as some other important tips and advice to help me on my new adventure..

“Have you ever been lost in the right direction?”

The story of my life.  I had an A-level in Literature and specialized in Drama (ten out of ten in that subject – I was so glad).  I wanted to go to drama school but my parents thought it wasn’t a real job to be an actress: how would I be able to live, eat, pay my bills?  Plus the fact that those schools are super expensive…. So I enrolled in a computer language university (but I’ve never really been into maths), tried an English university after that (but I always have my head in the clouds so I missed the date of the exams), and finally threw myself into an information and communications technologies Master’s degree!  And tadaa, I finally graduated and started to work in some Parisian advertising agencies – only to find that I wasn’t enjoying it that much.

I was still thinking about being an actress, but I also thought it was too hard, too late, and impossible after all.  Of course I was wrong, because it’s never too late, too hard, or impossible to do what you really want to do. No matter what.

My godmother convinced me to send some pictures to a beauty contest in a magazine, and the famous photographer Gilles-Marie Zimmermann chose me to be the “muse” of the Miss France hair-stylist, Saint-Algue. I could not believe it.  I started to feel that my dream may come true if I gave it a chance – so I left my job.

After that, I worked as a model for Bourjois Paris, Une Beauty, and Make Up For Ever.  I performed in two plays last year, worked with an Academy Award nominated American director in the worldwide advertisements for the launch of Xbox One – across from Zachary Quinto – and was recently filmed as the lead actress in a British short film.

I won’t say it’s easy to live the life you dream of.  Of course I had some rough times, we all do, but I would never choose to turn back.  I love every little piece of my life now. I’ve grown up so much to become who I really am, day after day, step after step.  So I won’t say it’s easy to live the life you dream of, but it’s worth it.

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“Where is your favourite place to get lost in Paris?”

I love to get lost in Parisian streets. I often jump out of the subway train on an impulse and start walking, not heading somewhere in particular, just wandering and letting myself drift away. To me, this is the best way to get to know Paris’s soul and to find the best hidden, secrets spots.

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“What is your biggest fear”?

To miss out on my dreams and the little things that make life worth living, and to not spend enough time with the people I love. Sometimes we’re so busy (dealing with stupid things that take all our time and energy), we don’t even notice that time goes by so fast.

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“Tell me a secret…”

Aaaah, okay. I must admit I have some white hairs (genetics…). Only a few, but enough to have to dye my hair (with organic natural dye only!) so I can keep on being the brunette I’m proud to be! A blessing in disguise, actually, since natural dyes make the hair shinier and stronger!

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“Why should I marry a French Man?”

FRENCH KISS, DARLING!

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 “What is your biggest motivation?”

Happiness, freedom, and love – okay, that’s three 🙂

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“If you had to sum up French women in 2 words, what would they be?”

Classy and cultivated.

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 “In 3 tips, how I can pretend to be more ‘Parisian’?”

Opt for basics and impose your own style. Eat organic food. Check out art exhibitions in town.

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 “What are your favourite words to live by?”

There are a lot of quotes I cherish. It depends on my mood and the difficulties I’m encountering at the moment. Lately, I’ve been thinking about this one: “Don’t be afraid to fail. Be afraid not to try.”

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Merci beaucoup Julie for sharing your story.

Bisous, Anna

What to know more about Julie? 

Instagram : @juliconoclaste – Facebook : Julie Duval – Blog : formally-informal.com – Twitter : @Juliconoclaste  – website : julieduval.fr