New filmmakers, here are inspirational words and insights from Patrick Wang, Barbara Kopple, Patrick Reis, Frank Barrera, Damian Horan, H.R. McDonald, Joe Swanberg, and Ryan Pickett.
Pictured above: On set in Portland. Photo by Avel Chuklanov. Follow @chuklanov | www.chuklanov.com
8 Inspiring Pieces of Advice for New Filmmakers
“There is no shortage of people in this business telling you what to do. One of the most useful skills I feel I’ve developed is in learning how to separate the frequent noise from the occasional quality thought. Separate out the noise, and think through what is right for you. And God bless you if you feel compelled to do the thing everyone tells you not to do.”
“If you’re passionate about making a film, find any way you can to make it happen. Don’t walk away if you believe in what you’re doing and don’t lose faith. There were certainly difficult momentsin my career when I almost felt like giving up, but I kept pushing, kept fundraising, kept edging closer to the finish line. Each time I made it and completed a film, I always felt so happyand so incredibly fulfilled. It’s always worth the struggle if you believe in the story you’re telling.”
“My advice to all of the storytellers out there whether they shoot film, video, use a big camera or a small camera is to shoot more. Don’t let technology slow you down. You tell the story, not the tools.”
“To be brutally honest, I usually tell aspiring filmmakers to find a husband, wife or partner who believes in the idea that you are destined to tell stories and there is no other path for you. Oh yeah, and this supportive person needs to have a ‘real’ job with benefits. It’s a long haul to become successful in this business and it is critical that on your way you also have a full life experience that involves family and friends. So go out and find someone. Someone with a job.”
“I don’t have anything original to say, but one of my favorite quotes of all time is: ‘My father says almost the whole world is asleep; everyone you know; everybody you see. Everybody you talk to. He says that only a few people are awake, and they live in a state of constant total amazement.'”
“I guess the best piece of advice I could give to starting filmmakers is to recognize failure as a part of the learning process. It also doesn’t hurt to become passionate about something other than filmmaking.”
“Your best hope is to make something distinctive and honest, that only you could have made, and to keep working and working, slowly building an audience and forming relationships with people.”
“Do it how you want to do it. I really hope others stand strong to their convictions as a filmmaker. Take the entire film into your hands and make sure when it’s done, it’s how you want it to be. Trust people, but always have the final say and do what you feel is right in the end.”
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