If there’s one thing filmmaking is not, it’s not a solo act. Sure, every once in a while you can go off on your own and create something beautiful; but for anyone who’s wanting to make a career of their craft, collaborating is nonnegotiable. You’re going to end up working with a crew. You’re going to end up working with actors. We’ve talked with dozens of filmmakers over the past year of the Community, and one topic that almost always comes up is collaboration. As you’ll see, it cuts both ways. While collaboration can be frustrating at times, it’s also almost guaranteed to improve your creative game.
At first, Joe Simon learned things the hard way—on his own. After getting his start shooting extreme sports with a camera he bought at Best Buy, Joe started shooting weddings to make some extra cash. Now, more than a decade later, Joe has turned wedding videography into an art form all its own—treating each wedding like an independent film. He is also the owner/director of The Delivery Men, a production company that offers services from film conception to delivery. But while Joe may have started out on his own, he didn’t stay that way. In fact, finding a creative community he loved was part of what helped him turn things around.
One question that always comes up when we’re talking to filmmakers is how they got started making films. We love hearing about the first time someone picked up a camera, the first time they attempted to tell a story, the first time they saw their ideas come to life. There’s something important about remembering those early days. As the years go on and your hobby becomes your career, it’s easy to lose sight of what drew you to this work in the first place.