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Filmmakers Academy Podcast
28 minutes | Dec 28, 2019
EP 45 – EXECUTING THE SHOT
What I’ve learned over the last 25+ years is to be “flexible” because each shoot is going to be different. I’ve had shoots that are easy and shoots that could not have been more complex. It’s taught me the importance of always being ready and to at least be prepared with the essentials on each shoot. Today, Lydia and I are going to talk about some of the things you’ll need to consider as you get further into your career. We hope you enjoy!
36 minutes | Nov 30, 2019
EP 43 – WORKING FOR IT
Throughout my career, I’ve been blessed with some of the best crews, mentors, and leaders in my day-to-day. Working in the film industry is no easy task, but when you surround yourself by people that want to elevate you, that’s when creation enters the unique stage of growth and evolution. Today, Lydia and I are here to talk about some of the rigors that we’ve faced over the last 30 years. Whether it’s from financial decisions like buying equipment or the next step in my career…. We want to pave the road and shine a light on the other end of the tunnel. Enjoy!
59 minutes | Nov 15, 2019
EP 42 – DEVELOPING YOUR CREATIVE VOICE
Being a filmmaker can be demanding creatively, logistically, and personally. Throughout the years, Lydia and I have always tried to stay true to ourselves and our needs. It’s never easy staying on top of projects, our home life, staying in touch with friends and family, keeping up with movies, etc… What keeps us grounded, creative, and passionate is prioritizing the essentials (i.e. family, friends, and our relationship) and acknowledging everything else is supplementary. By doing this, we’ve taken control of our lives, moved onwards and upwards in our careers and somehow managed to stay grounded! In this podcast, Lydia and I share ways you can push yourself forward with positivity and creativity in the demanding world of filmmaking while maintaining the personal life that you need to fuel your passion.
51 minutes | Nov 2, 2019
EP 41 – FOLLOWING YOUR INTUITION
The end of each year is always a time to reflect on what you have accomplished, what has changed, and where you are hopefully going. For Lydia and myself, it’s been a crazy year with another feature in the books, an ever-changing schedule, and the unknown of what lies ahead. While it is never easy, it’s fun and worth the ride to be doing what I love. In this podcast, Lydia and I want to wrap up the year and spread as much knowledge to help give you a jumpstart in the new year. We wish you a Happy Holiday Season and a Happy New Year! Warm wishes, Shane and Lydia
54 minutes | Oct 19, 2019
EP 40 – TRUSTING YOUR INSTINCT
What’s beautiful about this industry is that everyone has their own unique approach to handling creative situations and business choices. Over the course of my career, I’ve enjoyed the opportunity of learning from the greats that have paved the path for us today. Whether it be a cinematographer, director, producer, grip, etc… Everyone carries something you can learn and it’s important to soak in that knowledge. With this podcast, Lydia and I want to share some pearls of wisdom for on and off set, how I’ve handle certain lighting situations on set and ways Lydia and I have handle our family life outside of the set. We hope you enjoy our methods and can apply them to your own craft!
65 minutes | Oct 5, 2019
EP 39 – THE HOLLYWOOD CHANGE
Women in the film industry make up a big part of our most creative voices and storytellers. We have filmmakers like Jane Campion, Reed Morano, Patty Jenkins, Lynne Ramsay, Kathryn Bigelow, Sofia Coppola, Kelly Reichart, Agnes Varda, Andres Arnold, and so many more. Right now, we are seeing the male-run industry flip on its head and more female filmmakers are getting the chance to create and express themselves. Lydia and I are here to talk about what this means to us and how we are seeing a new style of filmmaking enter the forefronts; characters with a different perspectives, writing with a different heart, and cinema that takes on new meanings. Enjoy this podcast as we discuss this topical situation, plus much more!
59 minutes | Sep 21, 2019
EP 38 – USHERING IN A NEW ERA
Women in the film industry make up a big part of our most creative voices and storytellers. We have filmmakers like Jane Campion, Reed Morano, Patty Jenkins, Lynne Ramsay, Kathryn Bigelow, Sofia Coppola, Kelly Reichart, Agnes Varda, Andres Arnold, and so many more. Right now, we are seeing the male-run industry flip on it’s head and more female filmmakers are getting the chance to create and express themselves. Lydia and I are here to talk about what this means to us and how we are seeing a new style of filmmaking enter the forefronts; characters with a different perspective, writing with a different heart, and cinema that takes on new meanings. Enjoy this podcast as we discuss this topical situation, plus much more!
59 minutes | Sep 7, 2019
EP 37 – UNDERSTANDING YOUR CINEMATIC GOALS
Your reel in the film industry is the one constant you are always going to have to face. This is your identity, your style, your passion, and those that don’t know you need to be able to tell that by the end of it. Throughout you career your are going to make a lot of decisions that, for better or for worse, will sculpt the outcome on how your shoots go, and your career, and how your life goes. What I want to help with is guiding you not only on your career, but how to stay healthy when it feels like most of your time is taken up by work, how to balance appointments while still being creative, how to keep your mind clear to make the right choices, and to not compromise your ultimate vision of what you want your career to be. For this podcast, I hope to help you keep that confidence in your work but being aware that you will falter at times, and when you do, we will be here to help you get back up and to make sure that you don’t make the same mistake again.
60 minutes | Aug 24, 2019
EP 36 – THE ART IN BUSINESS
When you begin your career as a filmmaker, you tend to only consider shots, the art behind the craft, and all of the creatives choices you are ready to make. Time and time again, it can be a rude awakening for those that enter into the industry and that don’t consider the business aspect of the process. YES – being creative is a big part of our game but that is maybe 40% of the job at the most. Everyday as filmmakers we deal with budgets, lists, meetings, treatments, pitches, producers, and countless logistical issues that most wouldn’t imagine outside of the film industry. We are a business and a lot of people can forget about everything else outside of the art. While it can be tumultuous, you have to remember that there is an artform in business. As a filmmakers, we have to deliver out on the job and when we are trying to pitch/land our next project. We are freelance workers and are consistently on the prowl for what’s next. To get those big and good jobs, you need to know the art of how to maneuver the industry. This month, Lydia and I discuss the trials and tribulations on what you will face in the industry. Not only that, we also discuss the complex labyrinth that you will have to weave in the real world. No matter if you are just starting out or already at the top — you need to be prepared for the roads in which you will embark.
62 minutes | Aug 10, 2019
EP 35 – LIGHT PLACEMENT – ON SET EFFICIENCY
As a cinematographer, I have always been influenced and inspired by light. To me, light makes my job fresh, new, and exciting. Not everything about lighting has to deal with the quality it emits and which fixture you are going to pick. To really be a wizard at lighting, you need to understand the light itself, how it runs, and ultimately its limitations when out in the field. Time and time again, I see filmmakers boning themself when they ask for big sources and have no clue what is necessary to power one of those lights. This is where power distribution, generator etiquette, and set execution comes in! In this podcast, I go full circle in answering your questions on lighting, best applications, and how to avoid rookie mistakes on set.
58 minutes | Jul 27, 2019
EP 34 – LIGHT QUALITY & SPECTRUM
As a cinematographer, I’ve always been fascinated by light! It’s extremely easy these days to get caught up by the ever-evolving tech out there and what’s hot. But at the end of the day, your bread and butter is always going to be the lights you choose to tell that story. Whether you go for strictly practicals or the big guns like 18K’s, you are making a choice for why you go down that route. Just like choosing a lens or a type of film stock, you need to choose why this light works for you. Today I’m going to discuss what some of the best lights in the market are, how to use different techniques to get the most out of your image, and how our roles as filmmakers could change with the VR boom.
66 minutes | Jul 12, 2019
EP 33 – UNDERSTANDING YOUR FILMMAKING TOOLS
When prepping for your next production there are a lot of things to consider. What gear you want to use to tell your story, how you want to collaborate with your director and/or cinematographer, and what shots your want to get the best coverage for the script. With technology and shooting styles changing constantly, it can be hard to keep up with what’s new, what’s in, and how to apply it to your craft. For this month’s podcast, Lydia and I take you through the process of breaking down your script with the team to get the best coverage, understanding what gear will enhance your vision, and how important color is in the digital world of an image. Come along as I take you through my process as a DP and to be a leader to those you collaborate with.
58 minutes | Jun 29, 2019
EP 32 – YOUR FIRST STEPS IN PRE-PRODUCTION
A lot of young cinematographers start out fixated on equipment and the creativity of the filmmaking process. While that is a big portion of what we do, it isn’t the only thing we do. To make your sets run effectively and efficiently, you want to have pre-production in the bag. While pre-production might not be your favorite part of the process, it is undoubtedly the most important part to unleashing your ideas. This month Lydia and I discuss how we cope with the rigors of leading into a shoot and how to manage whatever is thrown at you!
68 minutes | Jun 15, 2019
EP 31 – COMMUNICATION IS KEY
Great filmmaking is more than just the newest and coolest gear, it’s also about teamwork, working with all types of personalities, and leadership. This month Lydia and I sit down to answer your questions about how to deal with difficult people on set while maintaining professionalism, how to ensure your crew hold their work to a high standard, as well as what to learn first when you’re starting out, gear for solo/indie work, and when to rely on “go to” looks.
63 minutes | May 31, 2019
EP 30 – LIGHTING YOUR PATH TO SUCCESS
A camera can only take you so far as you make your way along your cinematic story. There’s a whole other element that is both native and dependent to a professional-looking image — lighting. Applying lights is the key to creating multiple dimensions. Good lighting will give your work that specific tone you’re looking for on the screen. You see, understanding the significance of cinematic lighting is the other half of the battle. A lot of times you will see aspiring filmmakers pick up a camera and think they can just shoot their scene devoid of decent lighting and consider the rest of the image as an afterthought, or there’s the detrimental line, “We’ll fix it in post!” No, how about let’s fix it now by lighting the scene correctly? When you have the know-how and appreciate the balance between camera and lighting, there is no limit to your creativity! So join Lydia and me as we sit down on the mic and share insight on lighting setups, figuring out what lights work best in certain scenarios, and manipulating light to get the most out of your image in this podcast.
68 minutes | May 18, 2019
EP 29 – CARVING YOUR PATH
It’s tough breaking into the industry and knowing whether you are making the right decisions, or not. Should you dive-in straight as a DP or go up the ladder from the bottom? Are you scared to make the leap into a freelance lifestyle? It’s a lot to wrap your mind around when first starting out in the business. Lydia and I discuss my path to becoming a DP and how having someone to lean on in tough times is key!
61 minutes | May 4, 2019
EP 28 – GETTING TO KNOW YOUR CAMERA
This month’s podcast covers how to put your camera through the ringer and get the most out of it. Shane discusses how it’s one thing to own a camera, but it’s another to understand its full potential. Camera tests are key when it comes to knowing when and where to apply your camera, as well as when and where not to. Shane takes you step by step on how to understand the soul of your sensor.
67 minutes | Apr 20, 2019
EP 27 – COMPOSURE ON SET
This month’s podcast covers how to stay on the ball and figure out what works best for you to successfully manage your career and personal life. Lydia discusses what has worked for her and shares her tips to help you figure out your schedule, how to manage the storm, all while keeping calm and staying strong.
65 minutes | Apr 6, 2019
EP 26 – SETTING UP YOUR LIGHTING
This month’s podcast covers your questions on setting up your lighting. Shane discusses lighting backgrounds first, set ups and ratios as they pertain to moods, white balancing the night, lighting tips to create a darker mood, lighting for different skin tones, and smoke and hazers.
69 minutes | Mar 23, 2019
EP 25 – PLANNING YOUR COVERAGE
This month’s podcast covers your questions on planning coverage and when to roll. Shane discusses rolling during rehearsals, coverage and storyboarding, color grading, aspect ratios, and more.
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