Filmmaker and YouTuber Daisy Cornejo on Cinematography, Culture, Hot Cheetos, and All Things Spooky


Daisy Cornejo, better known as “HotCheetoMami” on YouTube and Instagram, is an ambitious and talented 17 year-old. Her films and YouTube videos have amounted to more than 200,000 views with a following of more than 20,000 loyal subscribers. She continues to gain a following due to a unique style and way about life. Daisy continues to progress in the art of filmmaking, drawing and painting, her sense of style, and a passion for music. Daisy is a great friend of Lithium writer Jada Moore who interviewed Daisy via phone. Jada talked with Daisy about her films, sense of style, and her inspirations and aspirations in life.

Lithium Magazine: Okay first things first, for those that don't know, why did you choose the name “HotCheetoMami”?
Daisy Cornejo: I really love Hot Cheetos and I thought it was a silly name! Having my name on social media as just Daisy was too boring for me, and I don't flow like that!

Lithium Magazine: When did you know you wanted to be a filmmaker?
Daisy Cornejo: I got into film when I was in 3rd grade. Wallace and Gromit and Tim Burton really inspired me, so I made stop motions with my toys! It wasn't till I was in 8th grade when I realized I could make this hobby a career, so I applied to an arts high school and here I am three years later working hard and trying to make it a reality.



Daisy at work directing a film.

Lithium Magazine: What or who really inspired the horror filmmaker in you?
Daisy Cornejo: Psychology and horror films I had watched inspired me. I've only made one horror film, but they have really influenced me as I enjoy making darker films and don't really prefer lighthearted stories.



“Inferno”, a film by Daisy Cornejo.

Lithium Magazine: What's your favorite scary movie you've seen?
Daisy Cornejo: I don’t get scared by horror movies, but the only horror film I have seen that actually scared me was Insidious.

Lithium Magazine: Who in your family has inspired you the most to be the person you are today?
Daisy Cornejo: My mom. She’s the strongest, most hard-working person I know, and I just love and admire her so much.



A young Daisy and her mother

Lithium Magazine: Growing up in a Mexican household, what are the best memories you hold dearly with your family and culture?
Daisy Cornejo: My family and I are very close, and the best memories I have are from our family vacations. Most recently, we went to Coachella (not the music festival), and stayed in a vacation home there. It’s just refreshing to spend time together. Sometimes, we play lotería*, too!

Lithium Magazine: Has art always been another passion of yours?
Daisy Cornejo: Yes! My mom has told me I’ve been drawing ever since she could remember. I’ve never had lessons. In fact, it’s something I enjoy doing as it helps me relax and settle down. I have so many sketchbooks from when I was a little girl and it’s so funny to look back then and mock how bad I was!

Lithium Magazine: Who are some musicians and artists that have really inspired you on the path you are on today?
Daisy Cornejo: I really appreciate Selena Quintanilla and Jesse Rutherford. Selena has really inspired me to embrace my culture, and Jesse is just so passionate about what he does. He is so fashion forward, and that’s what I aspire to be. Additionally, the Neighbourhood’s music has really influenced my work as a filmmaker.

Lithium Magazine: In the future, do you plan on becoming a professional filmmaker or do you have another passion you'd like to fulfill?
Daisy Cornejo: The future is kind of scary to me, and although I have a passion for filmmaking and fashion, there’s a little part of me that doubts I will be successful in that since both are such risky businesses/industries. I want to be an editor/director in the future, especially as a Latina; I want to help represent my culture and other PoC. If I couldn’t be an editor/director, I’d want to be a stylist or be involved in the fashion industry in some way. It’s definitely hard to pick one since I adore fashion and filmmaking so much, but if I could be a stylist by day and editor by night, I would! Actually, that’s why I started my YouTube channel: to combine two of my passions.

Lithium Magazine: Lastly, how do you want to be remembered in this life?
Daisy Cornejo: Wow! I really needed to think about this one. I believe we’re all forgotten at a certain point in time, but as of now, if I were to die, I think I’d just be remembered as that “HotCheeto” girl. Like influential philosophers in history of some sort, I want people to remember what I believe regarding personal confidence and embracing your style or who you are. It sounds cliche, but I feel that it’s important to be fearlessly yourself because that can have an effect on other aspects in your life besides what you wear. In other words, I’d want to be remembered as that girl that helped someone realize it’s okay to be or wear what you want as long as you're happy and feel confident. People have told me I have done that through my YouTube channel, and it’s the best feeling.


*Lotería - A Mexican card game played similary to bingo

8 comments

  1. very inspiring! i love this interview!

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    1. Thank you so much! I really worked hard on this piece and had so much fun!

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  2. probably the most theme-oriented interview i've seen here on lithium. i'm definitely checking out daisy's work.

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  3. Thank you so much! I loved working on this piece, and as Daisy's a great friend of mine I thought I'd share some of her work with you all!

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  4. Daisy, I'm so proud of you, keep it up...

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