Today we’d like to introduce you to Orlett Pearson McCall.
Hi Orlett, so excited to have you on the platform. So before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today?
Born and raised on the Southside of Chicago, Illinois, my parents raised seven children. Growing up, I always dreamt of success or living a life I thought was successful. So when someone would tell me that I could not be a doctor, lawyer, or scientist or that I should consider another career path, I brushed them off. My mother always said that I could be whatever I wanted to be when I grew up, so that concept was embedded in my mind. I have always set goals throughout my life; I’ve grown to learn about my creative and leadership capabilities and make those qualities count for something.
Growing up curious, shy, and creative, it was during this time I picked up my first camera. After college, I continued learning the intricacies of fine art photography and the art of printing. I am marketing my book, ‘I AM A DOCTOR With Grace & Style,’ and my book highlights my Photography. More information on my book is located on www.orlettw.com.
I have traveled extensively throughout the world. Seeing the world has always been one of my dreams, and my travels inspired me to pick up a camera to show my family and friends what I saw throughout the world. I am truly inspired when meeting people from around the world, having the opportunity to experience different cultures, and capturing that moment in an image. This inspiration has led me to where I am today. I’ve photographed architecture, landscapes, beauty, and portraits and just completed my first book that focuses on Black Female Doctors throughout the United States.
I’ve had my challenges with this project, but I thought it very important for others to read. The images and stories highlighted in my book depict how these doctors overcame challenges while in medical school, dental school, or pursuing a Ph.D.
While developing this project, the Doctor informed me that I had heart disease consisting of several blocked arteries. I should have known that something was wrong because I got tired while walking, but I kept going—not knowing. So I had triple bypass surgery, went through rehabilitation, and got better. Then COVID-19 happened, and everyone was affected. We shut down studio time, travel, eating out, and limited our time outdoors. What a time, what a time! After that, things got better, and we could travel by car and later fly; while practicing social distancing, we could continue the Grace & Style Project.
This project is dear to my heart because I want to capture the imagination of our young children by showing them what beauty in Black looks like and be mesmerized by Black Glamour and Intelligence, depicted by the letters after their name. So they can see what could be accomplished—what they could accomplish. These are my hopes, dreams, and vision behind this project. I am passionate about this project and hope that you are too.
Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned? Would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
In hindsight, one may often say it’s been easy; some challenges may have been harder than others, but I made it through the valley. Considering the obstacles and challenges, I’ve faired pretty well — I’m blessed. The obstacle I faced was making sure that people knew I was in the room. Sometimes, you must stand up and fight for your position in certain forums. Folks need to know that you are in the room. I work in a male-dominated field where five percent or less are women. The percentage of African American women makes up one percent or less. So, in most of my meetings, I would not only be the only woman; but, most times, the only Black woman. But, during my career, I held several leadership positions and have learned so much in this environment.
Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us more about your work?
I have two full-time jobs: one in Wireless Communications and the other in Photography. I have two Bachelor’s Degrees and a Master’s Degree and work with a major telecommunications company. In addition, Orlett W. Photography, LLC and Orlett W. Collections were established and gave way to my creativity. My Collections, consisting of silk scarves, are based on the foundation of my Photography. My next step is to excel in fine art printing. But currently, I am marketing my book because it has images and stories of 44 Black Female Doctors, and people need to read their stories. So again, it’s entitled, ‘I AM A DOCTOR, With Grace and Style.’ www.orlettw.com
What matters most to you?
My health, family, and my legacy are important. My health because you break down without a healthy mind, body, and spirit. My family is my heart. They are my driving force, my foundation, and I have stood on their shoulders for strength, comfort, and peace of mind.
- Portrait Collections – Starting from $1195.00