By Kevin Alfaro-Ortiz
After writing and having my script selected by M-Agination films, my producers and I decided to film in northern Michigan to help establish the vibe of the story we were all trying to tell. We ended up staying in a producer’s cabin which resided right next to lake Michigan. When we arrived, we all went out for dinner to bond as a cast and crew. After that, we hit the ground running, knowing we had to use our time wisely with only a limited amount of time up there.
As the director, I learned how to communicate what I needed from my actors as well as my crew. I honed my communication and leadership skills throughout the entire experience (preproduction, shoot days, and post-production). While we did encounter unforeseen obstacles (rainy weather and problems with the lights) we all quickly adapted and pivoted. For many people on set, this was their first experience on a student film set, which allowed all of us to learn from each other, sharpening our leadership skills in the process.
After the whole experience, I sat and reflected on all of the things I learned from the experience, including the many BLI habits that my team and I utilized. Work to Learn, Value Difference, Build A Team, Always Ask, and Collect, Combine, Create. These were just some of the habits that we ended up implementing. We used Build a Team and Value Difference when selecting our cast and crew. The more inexperienced people on the set used Always Ask and Work to Learn when we first arrived on set.
My teams and I are extraordinarily grateful to the BLI and the support they offered us with our student film. Their support allowed us all to learn and grow as leaders through this production experience!