About Tanya Du'Shay
Writer, Producer, Director, Image Maker & Publisher
A warm, unaffected, ambitious "people person" is how you would describe Tanya Du'Shay. A triple career woman whose accomplishments in the last decade have surpassed a lifetime of achievements for most people. Her career accomplishments expands from being a print and runway model, a top sought after makeup artist, casting director for 90% of the top hip hop & rap music videos & urban films in the 90's, talent & music manager, record label executive, music video director & producer, concerts & special events producer, working behind the scenes in film & television, to negotiating multiple million dollar publishing and recording contracts, to the leadership and direction of one of the world's top urban music magazines & websites - Rap Pages Magazine and currently she is the writer and Executive Producer of the music magazine television show Rap Pages TV.
Tanya Du'Shay was born and raised on the south side of Chicago to a father who was a mechanical engineer and a young mother who was an aspiring designer. Growing up as a child Tanya was surrounded by rolls and rolls of fabric and the constant hum of sewing machines and the radio playing all of the Motown Artists such as Marvin Gaye, The Temptations and the Jackson Five. By the age of 5, Tanya and her younger sister started modeling in local church fashion shows. In order to get her and her sister to walk down the long runway, they would position Tanya's grandfather at the end of the runway to take pictures, so she would hold her sister's hand real tight and walk straight to him. Tanya's mother was an extremely active mom, who loved to entertain and throw elaborate dinner parties. It was normal for her mother to sneak Tanya and her siblings into the skating rink once or twice on a school night. Her mother would make a palette under a refreshment table for Tanya and her siblings and there is where they would sleep until the skating session was over.
It had become popular in the late 70's for Midwestern's to head west where there were many more opportunities happening in entertainment on the west coast. The television show 'Soul Train' and its producer Don Cornelius moved west, Berry Gordy the founder of Motown Records and their complete roster of artists including the Jackson Five had all moved west. Years later after an ugly breakup between her parents, Tanya's mother, now a single mother followed the trend and packed up her 4 kids and in their yellow station wagon with all of their belongings drove the 2,000 miles by herself and headed west in order to make a better life for Tanya and her siblings. A better life indeed it was for Tanya and her siblings, now living in Los Angeles, California, Tanya finished middle & high school, and then immediately she was off to college, where she attended Harbor College, Cerritos College, Long Beach City College, Mesa Jr. College, Long Beach State and the University of San Diego.
After college, Tanya decided it was time to pursue her love of fashion and become a 'professional' model, she moved to New York City, to make a go for it as a fashion and runway model. It did not take long before Tanya began to grace the pages of Essence Magazine, Harpers, US Today, JET and Ebony Magazine, along with several popular hair publications. After only 10 months of working in New York City as a model, Tanya auditioned for the prestigious opportunity to be on tour as a Fashion Fair Model. Tanya had to audition against 3000 beautiful African American models for the coveted position and after several auditions and call backs, Tanya made the cut and was honored to become 1 of 7 selected Ebony Fashion Fair models. Fashion Fair took Tanya to over 170 cities in the U.S., Canada and several of the Caribbean Islands, performing for an audience of over 1/2 million. It was truly a honor and a life-time experience to have worked with one of the most respected and wealthiest man in the country, Mr. John Johnson and his wife Eunice, owners of Ebony Magazine, Fashion Fair cosmetics, radio station WGCI and Jet Magazine. During her time with Johnson Publishing, Tanya grew from a quite to-herself young lady to a confident and take charge woman.
When the Fashion Fair tour was over, Tanya wanted to continue her career as a runway and fashion model and she decide to expand her horizons. Tanya worked as an in-house fashion model for designers such as Halston, Adolfo, Willie Smith, Carol Little and Bob Mackie, just to name a few. Tanya also started working as a hair model for hair publications such as, Blacktress Magazine, Black Hair Care Magazine, Essence, Clairol, Revlon, Palmers and Soft Sheen and winning 3 gold medals as an International Hair Model for the US Olympic Hair Team that was held in Cannes, France. On Tanya's last hair competition trip, she decided to stay in Europe to continue her quest of being a fashion model and she traveled to Paris, London and Rome to find work. It became difficult for her to find modeling jobs because of not having an agent and the various language barriers, as a result, Tanya decided to return to New York City and continue her career as a model on US soil.
After returning back home to New York City during the slow winter months, Tanya wanted to expand more into film and television, so she took small bit parts in soap operas and films, such as, 'Falling In Love', starring Meryl Streep & Robert Denario; Ghostbusters II and Karate Kid, directed by Ivan Reitman. Tanya was also featured on the Essence Magazine Television morning show and she has been featured in several R&B and Rap music videos. Tanya decided to become bi-coastal by keeping her place in NYC and also setting up a place in Los Angeles. Tanya wanted to showcase her talents in Hollywood and she booked the role as a stunt woman in an episode of the Warner Bros. drama series 'China Beach' directed by Starsky & Hutch David Klien, she also played a Bailiff for the show 'Equal Justice', starring Sarah Jessica Parker.
Tanya began to travel back and forth between NYC and Los Angeles, she received a call from one of BET's producers to come on as a field correspondent for BET's weekly segmented show 'This Week In Black Entertainment' and 'Video LP', under the direction of Billy Woodruff. During those hosting years for BET, Tanya was also appointed as Assistant Editor of Blacktress Magazine and Black Hair Care, where she became responsible for selecting celebrities for covers & features, hiring crew, producing photo shoots, creating and writing 'how to' articles, interviewing celebrities, location scouting, and managing production budgets and being interviewed herself from time to time in the hair magazines.
Tanya never lost sight of her dream, by working and being involved with some of the most creative people from around the world and it gave her enough experience and 'know how' to launch her very own successful company, Creative Image which had offices both in New York City and Los Angeles. This ex-model turned her company into the authority on behind the scenes in the film, television and the music industry. Tanya has connected some of the best behind the scenes professionals with some of the entertainment industries top performers such as: Chaka Khan, Prince, LL Cool J, Garth Brooks, TLC, BBD, Tupac, Boys II Men, Guy, Coolio, Kirk Franklin, Ice Cube, Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Public Enemy, Keith Sweat, Bobby Brown and the late Whitney Houston. Her company, Creative Image, also handled extra casting for movies such as: Harlem Nights, Poetic Justice, House Party 1 & 2, New York Undercover and the Oscar-Nominated film, Boys N the Hood,directed by John Singleton. To date, Tanya and her company Creative Image has been hired to work on over 1500 music videos, commercials and films.
In 1997, Tanya was hired by FM Rocks to be the exclusive Casting Director for MTV's #1 Best Music Video of the Year 'Waterfalls' performed by TLC and directed by F. Gary Gray. With her experience in front of the camera and her educational prowess, she has been contracted as a consultant by several fortune 500 companies such as: Walt Disney, Motown Records, A&M Records, Flynt Publications, Harris Publications, Columbia Pictures, March of Dimes, Educating Young Minds, The Milken Foundation, The Mandela Foundation and BET. Tanya Du'Shay and her management team have also been instrumental in the negotiations of recording and publishing contracts of over $2 Million Dollars for artist and songwriters with record labels and publishing companies such as: Rondor, Motown, Island, Ruffhouse/Columbia, BMG, Yab Yum, and Sony/Universal Records.
In 2007, Tanya Du'Shay, structured and negotiated a six-figured publishing deal for the Grammy Award winning rapper Krayzie Bone, lead member and producer of the rap group Bone, Thugs & Harmony with Rondor/Sony Music Publishing Group.
Earning the respect and admiration of Flynt Publications, Tanya was offered the opportunity to take up the reigns and leadership to continue the legendary west coast publication Rap Pages Magazine. Currently, Tanya is the Writer and Executive Producer of the show Rap Pages TV (RPTV) .
The Hollywood Reporter has been quoted as saying that Tanya Du'Shay is definitely one of Hollywood's'People on the Move'.