Equipped with an extensive skill set, passion for the Arts and an unrelenting desire to inspire positive change, Sensei, the self-proclaimed “Master Teacher” has made it a mission to serve as a liaison to the success of artists and entrepreneurs seeking ways to turn dreams into reality.
A pioneer and visionary, along with various other services provided, she has managed to utilize her skill set and network of “Master Teachers” to devise an unorthodox talent development program offering invaluable information and experience.
After briefly studying film at Wayne State University, Terri “Sensei” Stewart started doing freelance video services. Her first professional client was Daishawn Franklin, founder of the “WALK Fashion Show”, which led to other opportunities with various outlets & affiliates like the Urban Fashion Awards, The African World Fest, Black Women Rock and other fashion events. From 2010 to 2016, Sensei has produced music and promo videos for 200 Records, M-City JR of Yacht Club Social Network, Cr8ive Minds, Natasha Miller of The Artists Inn, Mississippi Mud Erotic Art Show, Block Saviour, red carpet coverage for “Destined” actor, Robert Christopher Riley (of VH1’s Hit the Floor), concert coverage of Erykah Badu and Nas at Chene Park and several other small events and artist/company promotions.
Over the next 10 years or so, she would acquire a wide network of valuable industry connections and gain invaluable knowledge that she ultimately wanted to share with others and so, Sensei Session LLC was formed (formerly known as DojoLife). Her efforts would be two-fold as she serves as a consultant and strategist for clients behind the scenes while simultaneously maintaining an image as a fashion model and influencer. She wanted to create something where she could offer resources and training to help fine-tune skills and stimulate clients – mind, body, and soul. From that desire, The Master Teacher, Master Plan Program was born, a series of workshops and “Sensei Sessions” offered by Sensei and industry leaders & executives.
What is a Sensei Session?
SENSEI: In a “Session”, we offer clients an environment of self-awareness and discovery through a series of one-on-one consultations, weekly seminars, workshops, and untapped resources. A team of Master Teachers and I ultimately aim to not only help clients achieve wholeness as artists and entrepreneurs but also enhance their overall outlook on life.
Where’d the name Sensei come from?
SENSEI: I usually just offer a little chuckle when people ask me about my name because it’s usually always followed up with “Do you know karate?”
”No, I don’t know martial arts, I’m not that kind of Sensei”
Truth is, it’s a multi-dimensional answer and in a nutshell, it was Erykah Badu’s song “Master Teacher” from her New Amerykah Part 1 album that first sparked the name inspiration. The hook went, “What if there were no Ni**as, Only Master Teachers…I stay woke” and it resonated so much that I instantly changed my social media handles to “Master Teacher” and further inspired by previous studies of Japanese language and culture, I eventually adopted the name, “Sensei” and it instantly stood out and has stuck with me since 2015.
How did you transition from being behind the camera, to in front of the camera as a fashion model?
SENSEI: Long story short, my partner at the time was a fashion stylist here in Detroit and she’d been telling me for months that I should model because I had the look and body for it. Secretly, it was something I always wanted to do but didn’t know where to start, so I let her take full creative control. The day before the shoot, she dropped a huge bomb on me that not only did she want me to cut my head bald, but she also wanted my very first look to be, me naked in the street.
I was mortified at first but the moment I stepped out into the middle of that busy side street and removed the robe from around my fully exposed, naked body, it was like a fire was lit inside! All the fear and anxiety just dissipated and I just went with what I felt, and the results were amazing. That day forever changed my life to the point where random people in the street would recognize me from seeing my photos online. It was such a surreal feeling and I’ll be forever grateful for that moment.
How do you set yourself apart in a time where everyone is a “consultant”, how are you different?
SENSEI: I always say, the one thing I know that adds value to my entity is my ability to stand out and move in any room. From the “Dope Boys” to Multi-Millions, I have a way of understanding people and what they need. I get a thrill out of being a “Success Liaison”, connecting dots and resources for people to succeed, that’s my superpower. In a nutshell, I’d say it’s my absolute selflessness and passion for my clients that sets me apart from any other “consultant” or workshop, because my success is dependent upon helping others reach their desired level of success!
Currently a writer and editor for the urban lifestyle magazine, “Street Credibility Magazine”, and actively scouting talent for upcoming projects while working as an independent model, consultant, and director (film/video), Sensei is proactively connecting and building with her native city of Detroit and across the country as she gears up to release her debut book and several visual productions.
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