My name is KarynRose Bruyning and I’m the July in Christmas in July 1982 productions. It’s my mission in life to make dope art that makes you feel something.
What inspired you to become a film director?
I fell in love with Spike Lee’s work in the 5th grade. I snuck and watched it (lol). Then Boyz N the Hood and Poetic Justice and there were these conversations about John Singleton and the more I heard the more I wanted to know. This idea that I could be the one that made movies stayed with me as I started directing theater in high school.
How did you learn the craft of directing? What skills are needed to be a great director (in your opinion)?
My mentor was a theater director. When I was 13/14 she would let me sit next to her in rehearsals, ask questions, and make suggestions. I learned that a great director has vision and the ability to bring out the best in their cast.
Do you think it’s necessary that a director know the basics of the camera in order to be a successful/well rounded director?
Knowing the camera makes your life easier as a film director. When I first started, I relied far too much on my partner/ director of photography, Artemus Jenkins, to know what I wanted. I was obnoxious and he was gracious though he inevitably made me start shooting every once in a while.
How do you earn a living and sustain a career doing what you love?
I count myself as lucky to be able to make my living as an artist. Whether it’s work for hire or teaching classes with a nonprofit organization, I live my life as an artist.
What do you look for when looking for a project?
I most recently directed a piece written by Ebony Blanding and it was smart with so much style! I guess that’s what I look for.
How would you describe your process working with the actors?
I study people and have learned how to get the best from the people that I work with. That may be a byproduct of teaching.
Can you describe the process casting and working with your actors?
I always know what I’m looking for when it comes to casting. I also work with a lot of the same people because the vibe on set is important to me.
How has your style evolved?
The art is the place where I’ve always been most honest and most confident. The art is the place where I’ve always spoken from the soul. In this way, my style has been consistent.
What’s next for you?
I have a few shorts and another Web series I’m working in the new year.
How can we keep in touch with you?
Shivawn Hill, is a writer, director and a storyteller at heart. She’s currently in production with her short documentary film. She believes that one day soon she’ll form the ultimate group of Storytellers who will travel the world to share the stories of creative peculiar people. Come hang out with her on Instagram.