Ana Monaco: By day, I’m a Film Student (attending the top Art School in the world!) media entrepreneur, writer/director, photographer and founder of the Latina Lifestyle Bloggers Collective (#LLBLOG) and creative director for the First Annual #LLBLOGNOTACONF Blogger Getaway.
Check out Her Shortie of the Week : Meet Kenny.
WORDS OF ADVICE FOR WOMEN PURSUING FILM
Regardless of what you see and read in the media, this is probably the most exciting time to be a female filmmaker – and to be a woman of color to boot!
Just look around you: we’re right at the cusp of Hollywood paying attention to something that needed to be done a long time ago – including women in the mix.
The voices of women of color are unique and yet inspire greatness. Women can make great films – and everyone, begrudgingly as it may seem – is ready to see what we do…and as female filmmakers, we’re ready to show the world what we CAN do.
That being said, it’s never too early or too late to pursue a passion. I for one, applied to Film School school after more than 15 years working in PR/Marketing and Social Media. Because the passion in film, as you probably have already figured out, is not something that goes away when you get a stable job after college.
If you’re like me, don’t be afraid to go back and pursue your passion. I, for one, have already discovered that life experience coupled with a unique voice and point of view, will make you stand out from everyone else. And, as scary and sometimes lonely as it may seem, it’s actually a good thing.
So do whatever it is that you need to do to discover YOU. That might mean taking a job after college – in a non-related film industry – traveling the world, and of course doing the things that will make you a better filmmaker: Take part in the arts (painting, photography, etc.), read (scripts and books – everyday!), watch good and bad films, old and new; and have a life. A REAL life. Because unless you’re writing about a world that doesn’t exist, you need to connect to the people you’re writing about – and for. Do all of this until your heart is so full and so ready to do something, that like it happened to me, someone will tell you that it’s time to pursue your passion. And they will. Listen to those signs.
Going into filmmaking, know that regardless of what you want to say or share, filmmaking is a collaborative industry that largely depends on its history – so you can’t learn by just doing, you learn by getting inspired by the work of others. You HAVE TO work with others. Men and women. Gay and Straight. People of color and of course, the largely white male fraternity that has run Hollywood for years. So while it will help you get ahead to be you, you also have to learn to play the game. THAT, is probably the hardest thing to do when you decide to pursue your filmmaking dreams.
Lastly, while sometimes you discover who YOU are by working on your own film projects, there’s something to be said about attending Film School and having the collective feedback of some of the best folks in the industry and others just as passionate about storytelling as you are; and, able to make mistakes in a safe setting versus striking it out on your own. Film School also helps you refine your unique voice in such a way that you begin to learn where you want to be and what you want to work on.
Yes, Film School is expensive and it’s INCREDIBLY hard to get accepted into the top schools – so if you can’t do it now, collaborate with students attending those schools and learn from them. We’re always looking for crew and we’re always ready to share our knowledge.
As they say in Hollywood: See you on set!
MEET KENNY CREDITS
Lydia Hunter Britt
Ursa Gifted Major Kenny
Mary Dallas Nicki
Maria Richwine Jan
Kevin Duarte Editor
Carrie Hesse Production Design
Ana Lydia Monaco Wardrobe Styling
Stephen Adler Cinematography / Director of Photography
Frank Duncanson Catering
Andrey Bailey Camera 2 + Sound Supervisor
Vicki Jo Costanzo Script Supervisor
Cathy Guzman Location Manager
Mimi Guzman-Duncanson Production Assistant