Documentary Filmmaker - Associate Producer

"My next project is a moving target, but I love the challenge and I never get bored of the chase. I’m part journalist and part storyteller. I use art, film and digital media skills to portray struggles common to humanity. My team focuses on short stories for web distribution mostly, but I enjoy building short films that shake up the conversation. Most recently I’ve been working on a social justice project profiling stories of homeless men living with addiction with the hope of instigating intentional conversation about human rights, access to services, and the impact of trauma. I’ve run pitch meetings, coordinated interviews, steered editorial content, scouted shoot locations, and I’ve become more familiar with pre-production duties than I want to admit. My work includes media relations and engaging the public through screening events, showcases and film festivals. I interface with all kinds of funders including government agencies, art organizations and philanthropic citizens and institutions. I’m involved with sponsorship and grant writing and work across platforms to bring our pieces to light. My background in psychology gave me a platform for understanding people, and I think this shows in my work. Documentaries give us the opportunity to get deep into the life of a person or into the root of an issue. I take pride in finding the stories that need to be told."

Salary Range:

$52,000 - $76,000

The Tip

Creativity is key to everything – find ways to express yourself through art, music, or food; shake things up by trying new things; and keep your thinking fresh by reading books and listening to a wide variety of podcasts.

Priority Knowledge & Skills
Evidence-based Decision Making
  • Evaluate products, options and opinions

  • Synthesize opposing points of view into a collaborative project


Advanced Research & Analysis Skills
  • Strong project management skills

  • Analyze and manage production budgets, talent and resources

 

Knowledge of Human Behaviour
  • Able to motivate team members, actors and personnel

  • Understanding of motivation, learning and behaviour

Understanding of empathy, compassion and shared humanity

Advanced Communication Skills
  • Strong verbal skills and visual skills

  • Strong writing skills

  • Communicate clearly and succinctly

  • Confident in grant-writing, fundraising and public speaking

  • Excellent marketing skills, social media skills an asset

 

Inter-personal Skills
  • Direct teams and individuals

  • Delegate work and inspire others to action

  • Work with diverse groups

 

Intra-personal Skills
  • Enthusiastic, arts-focused, driven to create

  • Able to tell a good story; set a mood using photos and video; engage audience members in dialogue

  • Strong visual and spatial skills

 

Additional Skills
  • Reliable, self-directed, able to meet deadlines

  • Work well under pressure

Creative mindset, open-minded, curious

Building Block Experiences
Education & Learning:
  • Bachelor of Arts (Psychology)

  • Post-degree studies in creative writing

  • Some experience as a stage actor

 

In addition to an undergraduate degree in psychology In addition to my undergraduate degree in psychology, I took some acting classes and joined a summer theatre group. In a small company we were able to get a glimpse of all production roles including set production, advertising, directing and producing. It was a great introduction to the industry.

Employment Experiences:
  • Film editor

  • Junior film director

  • Co-producer of short films

  • Web designer and community liaison

  • Extra (acting positions) for TV

 

Most of my positions have been artistic and creative. I honed my ability to visualize a finished product, to accept artistic, psychological and emotional risks, and to weather the long hours it takes to see a project through to the end.

Community Experiences:
  • Took acting classes

  • Joined magic guild in junior high school and participated in stage performances through several seasons

 

I continue to be involved with some theatre productions now, but only at the Elementary School level! As my kids get more involved, I find I do too. First it was set-up and take down, then prop-construction, and now I’m directing 10-year olds in a play about citizenship! I think I’m having more fun than they are.

Contextual Experiences:
  • I value the experience of great entertainment of all kinds: film, live theatre, music and performance art

 

I was never a very good actor myself, but I loved the experience of trying! I admire those who have the natural talent and the crafted skills to engage an audience in an experience of imagination. As a director I hold my subjects in high regard and see them as essential collaborators to bring my vision to light.

Relationships:
  • Relationships are key to all creations in the art world. Art without relationships is empty, for art is meant to move the thoughts and emotions of another being.

 

They say it takes all kinds… and it’s true. I’ve learned to relate to all kinds of temperaments and types. I think I’m hard on people sometimes and I’ve had to work on being a little less intense in some of my communications. I’m learning to let small things go—but it’s hard when you’re an artistic perfectionist! I’m a work in progress.