Kali Bailey: Commercial Director & Writer


My NativeAdVert:

Kali Bailey is a freelance commercial director and writer who specializes in family-friendly narrative storytelling. She bought her first camera at age 13 with money she earned picking up pecans in South Georgia and worked on her first feature film soon after at age 15. Since then she has worked on over 15 feature films and many other branded content campaigns. Currently, she is based in Nashville, TN producing and directing short form commercial content.

My Goal of the Day: Typically, my to-do list includes a rewrite on a project I’m working on and today is no exception. I have a commercial spot I’ll be shooting next weekend and I have to get the revisions out to actors today for rehearsals this weekend. 

My Thought of the Day: There is a Tanzanian proverb that says, “Little by little, a little becomes a lot.” In film, I think this is especially applicable. You don’t think that this little revision or that little edit will do much in the grand scheme of your huge career goals, but it all adds up.   

My Action of the Day: Go to the climbing gym. I try to work in some sort of physical activity every day to get away from a screen and one of my favorite things to do is grab my climbing shoes and go to the indoor gym 3 minutes from my house and finish a few good, hard routes.  

My Deed of the Day: Therapy. This is a non-traditional “deed” but I think the extent to which we help ourselves become healthy broadens our capability to extend help to others. 

My Tip of the Day: Get a real alarm clock so that when you wake up in the morning, you don’t check your phone within five seconds of waking up. Put it in the living room overnight. This will force you to get out of bed faster (because obviously, you’ve got to go check that phone).  

My Pic of the Day: (any additional pic that expresses something special)

Sunsets are my favorite part of my day. I get FOMO if there is a good sunset outside and I’m stuck indoors or can’t see it from a good spot. Fortunately, the top of the hill where I live has a fantastic view of sunset. I try to end my day with a long walk around the neighborhood at sunset, reminding myself to look up and be present in the world. 


A Day in My Life:

What do you love most about Your City?

Nashville is growing so much and so quickly it’s hard to keep up. But even in a growing city, there are so many pockets and local treasures that make Nashville feel small and homey. The people here are very genuine, kind and creative. And obviously, the music scene here is second to none. iF you’re ever in Nashville, I’d highly recommend seeing a show at The Basement for upcoming local artists or The Five Spot for Sunday Night Soul.

Favorite breakfast meal & restaurant?

My favorite local restaurant for breakfast is Frothey Monkey. They have an amazing egg and cheese biscuit and phenomenal coffee.

What are you doing at:

6:00 AM – Sleeping. I’m not a morning person. I tend to get a lot more done when the sun goes down.

10:00 AM – Sitting at a coffee shop trying to work but also trying avoid working. As Stephen Pressfield outlines in “The War of Art,” we creatives are pretty insecure about our work so we are constantly trying to overcome the resistance we feel to doing the work. For example, right now I have a script revision to get to an actor before lunch but I decided to do these questions first and put off overcoming resistance for just a little bit longer. 

12:00 PM - Favorite Lunch spot/meal? 

Bar Taco has a great vibe and incredible tacos not to mention the best margaritas in town.

7:00 PM -  Making salmon and baked asparagus (my specialty) and watching West Wing.

11:00 PM -  Writing my to-do list for the next day. This is something I do every day without fail. It helps me prioritize my following day and sets me up for productivity first thing the next morning. 

What drink do you need to get through the day and at the end (and how many)?

I make a really strong cup of coffee with my percolator first thing in the morning. It jolts me awake and then I do my best to stick to water for the rest of the day. 

Most used App/Favorite Instagram Account?

I use Spotify and/or instagram the most. I have a “John Williams” playlist that I have on constantly for inspiration and motivation. My favorite instagram account is @imsteph, an LGBT wedding/engagement photographer. Her posts are real, raw, beautiful and important. 

What should everyone try at least once?

Skydiving. It was without a doubt one of the most amazing things I have ever done (and much less scary than you’d think). And if you’re able, do it in New Zealand in Queenstown, the adventure capitol of the world. It’s like skydiving into Middle Earth.  

Where do you enjoy getting lost? 

In a good fiction book.