In recent weeks, I worked as the Director of Photography (DP) for the Fifth Annual Alliance Latino Youth Leadership Conference. I supervised the interns, camera and light crew for the one-day, multi-cam shoot (currently in post). This event was co-sponsored by Inspimind and took place at Fairleigh Dickinson University in Madison, New Jersey. This year’s theme was “Rompiendo Barreras” (breaking through). The conference was open to high school students of Latino heritage and consisted of workshops about success, overcoming life hurdles, financing college and getting scholarships.
Last year, I worked at Inspimind as an intern in Film Production and Multimedia. In that capacity, I assisted with pre-production, onsite production, and post-production (editing and debrief meetings). Other responsibilities included recording and editing footage, photography, assisting with the planning & scheduling of production shoots, and collaborating with the Content Development team. I connected with Inspimind, not only as an employee, but on a personal level because I value their mission and witnessed firsthand all the amazing work they do in the community as an educational services non-profit. I started out as an intern, but when I received the call to come back this year for a paid freelance opportunity supervising their new 2019 interns at the Alliance Latino Youth Leadership Conference, I jumped at the chance. It was an amazing event! Learn more about Inspimind.
In honor of Memorial Day, I would like to thank all those who gave their lives so that we can live in a country where democracy is the shelter of freedom and peace.
I am pleased to introduce you to The Shades and Heroic Episodes, two short films made with our veterans, community members, advocates and survivors. Over the past few weeks, I’ve been extremely busy working in lockstep with the Director of this project, Lisa Regina. I proudly support our veterans! Thus far, working on this project commissioned by Regina’s non-profit organization, A Write to Heal 501(c)(3) has been an amazing experience where I learned about the personal stories of heroes who served in our armed forces.
From our pre-production meetings and grassroots marketing to location scouting, shot-list development and working to secure quotes from vendors, this was a multifaceted project that pulled from various skillsets. I handled graphic design on the 16-page theater program which is finally off to print and I’ll be handling multi-cam videography and event photography at the premiere on June 2, 2019 at Broadway Theatre in Pitman, NJ. Click here to learn more about the event and buy tickets on Eventbrite.
I hope you enjoyed the holiday season. I wish you all a successful, healthy and prosperous 2019.
In recent weeks, I’ve been going through my interview footage to create a supplemental reel. I filmed a lot of interviews and documentary-style videos, however, I never include it in my reel because I don’t want to blend it with narrative works. This is just my preference … I like a cohesive reel with comparable footage.
Nonetheless, I came across one of the videos I completed over the summer for Jill Lotenberg. I provided her with the footage and won’t repost the interview here but it was an interview with Ryan Serhant from Million Dollar Listing: New York which airs on Bravo. He is a famous real estate agent, also an actor and producer. This interview had so many business gems with the art of sales, and how this can be beneficial for creatives.
As creatives, we work on building and strengthening our craft, expanding offerings and further skill development. With 2019 on the horizon, I also plan to put my best business foot forward. I figured I’d share some of the golden nuggets here, both for myself and for the benefit of others since “sales are sales” and this information is easily transferrable and applicable to various industries.
Ryan Serhant pitched Bravo at least 50 different shows, some of which admittedly weren’t that great, but he continued to try. You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take!
Be consistent, never give up, refine your strategy
Reach out, “put it out there” – send personal emails and constant reminders
Create industry list, maintain contact, offer incentives, adjust rates as needed
Use networking, email solicitation, advertising, social media
Serhant opened up the discussion by stressing the importance of creating a niche and finding what works for YOU.
“Look for clues, find your inspiration”
“Find what works and milk it, exploit it”
Assist with branding, solicit business
Another important item addressed in the interview is GROWTH. Serhant stated he would not be where he is today if he insisted on doing everything by himself. He values a strong team and makes a point to hire type-A people who are better than him.
Research and planning are also important factors. Those who “fail to plan, plan to fail.” Social media activities should be planned out for the week and posted during optimal times based on analytics. For him, around 2pm on weekdays works best.
I know this seems like Deja Vu. No, you aren’t seeing double. Yes, I scored a second internship. I was selected to work as a Photography and Videography intern with award-winning commercial photographer, Jill Lotenberg.
This opportunity is particularly exciting because I’ll be shadowing a female entrepreneur with an established base and carved niche. Personally, I started out in the freelance capacity, and admittedly, I wasn’t very familiar with pricing policies, cancellation policies, scheduling, building a client base etc. So this opportunity will allow me a hands-on intuitive experience where I’ll get to use my on Canon EOS DSLR. I’ll be strengthening my proficiency in CaptureOne and the Adobe Creative Suite.
I won’t have time to spend on the beach this summer, but I’m looking forward to drone shoots, yacht shoots and capturing footage of New York’s movers and shakers in real estate.
Learn more about Jill Photography. Check out a few shots Jill caught of me on-set.
This is my individual “Project 2” edit. Scene utilizing standard coverage including the 180-degree rule for maintaining screen direction, shooting and editing for continuity, and match cutting. Note: Final submission includes complimentary music selection and roll.
Shooting Date: 3/19/18
Location: Rowan University
Role: Pre-visualization, Digital Post-Production, Talent (on-camera)
I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Skyler Lee, a 16 year-old entrepreneur and scholarly fashionista from New Jersey. She is the founder of SKYSTOLEE, a store focused on clothing, accessories, cosmetics, art and novelty items for young ladies. In this video, she gives an inside scoop about her business.
Be sure to bookmark www.SKYSTOLEE.com and visit in Summer 2018 for the official launch.