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A wrap on "Big Man" - Wildsummr completes first film under 2024 slate

Updated: Mar 30

a note from Carlos

BTS Image from the film "Big Man", Actress: Erinn Jones

Creating a short film is a labor of love, but it's also a journey fraught with challenges. As a writer, producer, and cinematographer, each role brings its own set of hurdles to overcome. Let's delve into the behind-the-scenes of my latest short film "Big Man" and explore the unique challenges faced by wearing multiple hats in the production process.

Balancing Creativity with Practicality

As a director, your primary focus is bringing your vision to life on screen. However, as the producer, you're tasked with managing budgets, schedules, and logistics. This balancing act can be incredibly challenging, as you strive to maintain the artistic integrity of your project while adhering to practical constraints.

Limited Resources

Short films often operate on shoestring budgets, which means you'll need to get creative with your resources. Whether it's securing locations, sourcing props and costumes, or hiring talent, stretching every dollar requires careful planning and negotiation. As the producer, you'll need to find cost-effective solutions without sacrificing quality.

BTS Image from the film "Big Man", (Right) DP Carlos Bradley, SCC, (Left) Cam Operator Michael Noir, SCC

Time Management

Time is of the essence in filmmaking, and every minute counts. As the director, you're responsible for orchestrating the shoot and ensuring that each scene is captured efficiently. Meanwhile, as the cinematographer, you must consider lighting, framing, and camera movement to achieve the desired aesthetic. Balancing these responsibilities while staying on schedule can be a daunting task.

Technical Challenges

Capturing the perfect shot requires technical expertise and precision. Whether it's mastering complex camera techniques, coordinating with the lighting team, or troubleshooting equipment malfunctions, the role of the cinematographer is rife with technical challenges. As the creative, you must also ensure that the creative vision translates seamlessly to the screen, overcoming any technical hurdles along the way.

Collaborative Efforts

Filmmaking is a collaborative endeavor, requiring coordination and communication among various departments. As the director, producer, and cinematographer, you'll need to foster a collaborative environment where ideas can flourish and everyone feels valued. This involves effective delegation, clear communication, and the ability to inspire and motivate your team. This is the reason I brought on a director Edward Varnie instead of trying to direct myself. I wanted a strong voice and creative mind to lead all of us in the process.

BTS Image from the film "Big Man", (Left) Linden Gonzales, AC and (Right) Edward Varnie, Director

BTS Image from the film "Big Man", (Left) Actor: Karlton Ross and (Right) Actor: Sam Salary

Creative Decision-Making

Throughout the production process, you'll encounter countless creative decisions that shape the final outcome of your film. As the director, you'll need to make bold choices regarding casting, performance, and visual style. Meanwhile, as the producer, you'll need to weigh the artistic vision against practical considerations such as budget and scheduling. Striking the right balance between creative freedom and logistical constraints is essential.

In conclusion, completing a short film as a writer, producer, and cinematographer is no small feat. It requires a combination of creativity, resourcefulness, and perseverance. Despite the challenges, the opportunity to bring a story to life on screen is a rewarding experience that makes every obstacle worth overcoming. So roll up your sleeves, embrace the journey, and let your passion for filmmaking shine through.

Huge thanks to God and to my crew for bringing talent and great energy to set.

"All glory to God and peace on your filmmaking journey"

Carlos Bradley is an Atlanta based filmmaker, and the founder and President of the Society for Cinematographers of Color. His work can be seen on network digital platforms, and in various publications. Be sure to follow him on Twitter and Instagram and reach out — "I love meeting new filmmakers!"


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