James Patrick Butler, aka James Patrice, is a Dublin blogger, presenter, actor, stylist and fashion writer. Last week, he met with our Projects Editor, Aoifé McColgan, to discuss his time in Trinity, his success thus far and his exciting plans for the future.
Having started his blog and Snapchat after being bored due to being out of work sick, and getting shout-outs from well-known people, he started to build a reputation for himself within the blogging community. James went on to start a kids show on RTÉ Jr, “Dig In Diner”, was a fashion adviser for Xposé and did multiple presenting roles and social media projects for RTÉ. This led onto him presenting backstage for “The Rose of Tralee” and then “Dancing with the Stars”, which he claimed was his “dream job”, and now he’s hoping to continue his presenting roles for the future.
Sliding onto a bar chair at Balfes restaurant in the Westbury Hotel, slipping off his sunglasses and picking up an Americano, James gave T-Life the low-down on everything we needed to know about him and his brand.
After only a few minutes of meeting James, it was obvious that he adored his time at Trinity. Having studied French and Drama, societies where he could express his creativity and passion for the arts were what James was drawn towards. “I loved Players, it was amazing,” he gushes. “I did the St Vincent de Paul pantos- those were the two [societies I was involved in] and I loved them.” When asked how important he believed societies were to college life, without hesitation James made it clear that they were a huge part of his experience. “Societies are so important, they really, really are. I was lucky because Drama and French were pretty small classes, so I knew everyone. But everyone should do societies- and the nights out are feckin’ brilliant!”
“College was great for me,” he continues. “I learnt a lot about myself- I came out in second year, which was great- and I did my two-month stint in France, which was my first experience at total freedom and not being at home, and I just came out of my shell.”
On Acting in College: “I was in the Halls musical, Calamity Jane – sure I wasn’t even in Halls!”
He concluded with some words of advice: “College is the time to do stuff you normally would never do and you just go for it! I loved Trinity, they were the best four years of my life.”
Reflecting on how he has changed since his time in college, James states that “Trinity definitely shaped who I am, one hundred percent. It gave me major confidence and made me a little bit fearless. I was always very quiet but then thought, ‘Feck it, who cares!’ Maybe now, I give less of a shit about what people think about me which is so important, and Trinity really lifts people and brings out the best in them- it’s fabulous!”
On Positivity: “Spend less time worrying what other people think about you, because they’re actually not thinking about you!”
When asked what he would tell his Fresher-self, he jokingly commented “don’t wear dubes, because they kill on the cobbles, they’re useless! And I’m from Malahide, so I had no business wearing dubes anyway.”
After pondering over the question for a moment, James thought of some life-advice that any student- or anyone at all- could and should live by. “Don’t do anything differently, because all the things you do are meant to happen. Life is a ripple effect; throw the stone in and see where it goes. And spend less time worrying about what other people think about you, because they’re actually not thinking about you, and as you get older you realise that.”
Speaking of the future, everything is looking exciting and positive:“My dream job is to have my own late night chat show. It would be a mix of having two guests on and then sketches- a few different sketches that we’d have done with the guests, and then a song at the end- very important! And then we’d give my mum a corner- ‘Ask Fron’. So whatever problem you were having, she could answer.”
On following patterns: “I wouldn’t try and follow trends.”
With fashion being one of James’ passions, it was only right that the conversation veered towards his sense of style. “I would definitely say that I have a unique sense of style – for me, once I think I look good, it just makes me feel better, so that’s definitely my mentality for fashion. If I like something I’ll wear it; none of my friends might like it, but feck it, that’s the attitude and how to approach it.”
Q:French or Drama?
Q: Plain or patterns?
Q: What’s the most precious thing in your wardrobe?
A: James points to a ring which is of two drama masks, which was given to him as a present when he received his place in Trinity.
Q: Three words to describe you?
A: “Zero fecks given”
Q: Favourite club in Dublin?
Q: Snapchat or Instagram?