Let it be known that I’m no expert in filmmaking. I honestly don’t even know if I meet the criteria to be called a filmmaker. There’s some debate on the definition of a filmmaker, but most agree that filmmaking is the art of telling stories on video. Since that is where my heart and passion lies and the representation of most of my finished work, I will settle on calling what I do as filmmaking regardless of debated qualifiers. Done.
In fact, that is the first point in my four-fold philosophy of filmmaking and any creative outlet (graphic design, website design, etc.) for that matter: Get Started. Get over yourself and insecurities. Everyone is at a different skill level, so embrace the level you’re at. Don’t be intimidated by what others are creating. Celebrate their work, accept where you are starting from, and just start creating! It doesn’t matter if all you have is your iPhone, just get going. You can build your gear collection as you go.
Secondly, don’t stop. Always try to improve and be willing to learn.
Embrace the level you’re at, but don’t settle.
I’ve seen many people buy a DSLR and get started in photography or filmmaking, but never study or practice. They’ve been shooting for years and still don’t understand manual settings on the camera. Don’t settle at the same level!
Find inspiration. Keep your eyes open to catch everything around you. Watch commercials on television and browse short films on http://vimeo.com/channels/staffpicks. Watch what others are creating and keep up with current trends.
Lastly, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Connect with those around you who produce video and ask questions no matter what level they are at. Everyone has something to bring to the table, a unique perspective. Get past your insecurities and allow others to critique your work.
Ultimately it’s about celebrating what others have created, getting past your insecurities and start filmmaking! If you can remember these four points, you’re on the right path.
More posts on the practical side of things to come!