THE IMPORTANCE OF COLLABORATING

BACK TO BASICS

When I first got into filmmaking it was a one man army. I would shoot/direct and edit everything I produced. It's funny when you tell people you do everything they look at you crazy like "Isn't that hard to do everything yourself?". I think we forget how many roles we actually played in production when we first started out. It's a real hustle and definitely disciplines you as a filmmaker and creative. The whole idea behind VSZN was to add people to my collective that had the skills I was having to do on top of shooting/directing. Adding the essential people (Director/DP(Me/ and lighting guys) to this team meant I can just focus 100% of my energy on one thing, rather then trying to put 100% into each role. The quality of content has definitely increased and I think it's almost necessary to at least have 1-2 extra crew members on set  

WORKFLOW

We've all been there. 10 hour shoot with just us and the client. You are in charge of making sure everything comes together from the direction and aesthetic of the video or film. The whole production is in your hands and time is not on your side. This is the main example of where adding people or bringing on another creative can save time and energy. I've been on sets with 20+ crew members and yes if you are shooting a $500,000 film that would work but for a music video it's a little overkill. I like having my essential people + PA's on set. That way no one is wasting time standing around and everyone has a job. This is the most efficient way to work. It speeds up the pace of production and also gives you time to focus on your main craft. Rather that is directing or shooting, you have someone else there holding down another role that is going to make the production that much better.

BUDGET

So let's say you are just now starting out and are making $100 for a video or maybe just doing it for free. Clearly there isn't really a "budget" there to recruit or bring on anyone but there are substitutes for this, A big thing is food. Food is by far the 2nd best payment method and it keeps people happy and moving. Obviously you aren't going to be able to afford JJ Abrams to direct your video or have Roger Deakins shoot it, but this is a great time to find people in your area who are creatives or if you are in school finding a film club that meets up and makes content consecutively. Networking with filmmakers and using them on your projects and vice versa is one of the best things you can do. It teaches how to work with others and both learn/build at the same time.

WHY THIS MATTERS

In the end what matters is that you make a quality product that not only will get you more work and $$ to fund bigger projects but will also build your catalogue of connections of people who will hire you for jobs and make even more connections. Collaboration is such a big thing in filmmaking and just the creative world in general, without it you just have 1 mind doing 1,000 things and crossing your fingers you didn't mess up. If you haven't work with someone before try just bringing on a friend to your next shoot to carry gear or help setup. You'd be surpised how the littliest things can make a production run so much smoother.

Parker FosterComment