You have portrayed the sexy paralegal, Rachel Zane on SUITS for over four years — what other acting roles would you love to explore in your career?
My last hiatus I shot an independent feature in Budapest, which was gritty and cool and will be released this fall. I would love to do more things like that, as well as more comedy roles. I've always loved watching the careers of TV actresses who have success with a series and then begin a film career with romantic comedies and fun roles (Jennifer Garner and Jennifer Aniston both come to mind).
What type of acting role scares you?
A very physically demanding role scares me a bit. I did a couple episodes of the TV show "Fringe" many years ago, and did a month of gun training as well as training to kick down doors and move like a Junior FBI agent – and it was, truth be told, amazing to feel like such a badass! But with that said, that was just a couple months. I can only imagine what it must be like to take on a role like that full time, and be physically exhausted all the time... in addition to learning copious amounts of lines.
You were born in Los Angeles but now live in Toronto — how has living in Canada influenced you over the years?
I love LA – that will always be my home, but in the past few years Toronto has been so good to me; I do feel like an honorary Canadian. The people are so kind and lovely, the food is great, and Toronto is only an hour and a half flight from NY, so it has allowed me to spend much more time in Manhattan than I did when I was based on the West Coast. I may have been known to start saying "eh" as well – so yes, Canada is even sneaking its way into my vernacular.
Beach or Lake?
Beach. Always beach. My friends call me a little mermaid because you literally have to drag me out of the ocean. And as a matter of fact, one of my favorite quotes is from an Anais Niin book called, "The Four Chambered Heart"– "I must be a mermaid, Rango. I have no fear of depths, but a great fear of shallow living."
You create all of the content for The TIG, including writing all the stories and taking 90% of the images — how do you balance this project while filming a 20+ episode television show?
The show is actually 16 episodes a season, and we film 9 months out of the year. What's nice about being part of an ensemble show is that we all carry the weight of the episodes so there will be some days (like yesterday) where I was in every single scene and working a 16 hour day, and then days like today where I have some time in my trailer or in hair and makeup and can work on editing photos, writing stories, or doing interviews (like this one) between scenes.
You recently attended NYFW — what key essentials did you keep on-hand while running around NYC?
The usual suspects: wallet, phone, Rayban aviators, TATCHA oil blotting papers, and Tarte lipgloss in Park Avenue Princess (a color my makeup artist, Daniel Martin, swears by as a clean neutral gloss – and Daniel is always right).
The TIG features many influential figures on the site including world-renowned chef Tom Sellers, Wes Gordon, Emmy Rossum, Serena Williams — who has been the most exciting to interview thus far?
Most of the interviews are with friends, so that makes them fun and also very easy because they are people who are supportive of this venture I have started. The most exciting was with Ivanka Trump because I have been inspired by her classiness and grace for as long as I can remember. She was even lovelier than I could have imagined.
It appears you are quite a foodie — do you intend to take your love of cooking beyond The TIG?
Food is a huge part of my life and I absolutely love to cook. The TIG is a great way for me to share that passion right now, but I think it's a pretty safe bet to say I will be guest judging on some food competition shows one day soon and likely releasing a cookbook down the road. My friend, Chef Tom Sellers, and I have often talked about having a food show together where we travel and eat our way through a country, much like Gwyneth Paltrow and Mario Batali did for PBS with "Spain: On The Road Again." It would be so much fun, so we will see if our schedules allow us to make it happen.
Does your love of cooking and food interfere with your career and the demand to maintain a certain physique? How do you stay in shape?
Nope. I enjoy good food and beautiful wine. If I go away on vacation, I am not going to deprive myself of enjoying the local food because, for me, that is part of taking in the full experience. It's all a balance – if I indulge a lot, then maybe I will eat vegan for a few days, or just eat very clean with green juices and fish & veggies for a couple days. But at the end of the day, I feel fortunate to be able to enjoy it all. And it helps that I love being active – running and hot yoga are my favorite workouts.
What is your advice to staying happy and healthy while juggling two jobs, travel and personal life?
Be kind to yourself. It's what I reminded people to do in a TIG story I wrote for my birthday. Nothing is ever perfect, and if you can find the beauty in that, forgive yourself for any hiccups along the way, and try to make every day special in some small way – well, then I think you are well on your way. I also try to check in with myself and imagine what my 15 year old self would say about what I'm doing or what my 50 year old self would say – it's usually a good barometer if what you're doing is cool.