Natural One – Barger Leadership Institute

Natural One

By Porter Selfridge

What happens when you take the wolf-man of Ann Arbor, Dungeons and
Dragons, and a bunch of students who love filmmaking? You get Natural One.
After writing the script over the summer, putting together an independent
team of artists, and finding the perfect location for our film to be set, BLI
helped us achieve our goal of making the best film possible. We hit the ground
running on September 29th and worked tirelessly to achieve our goal.

As a first time independent director, Natural One was a valuable learning
experience. When I first decided I wanted to put together a team for this film, I
knew I had to go into it with a singular mindset; I wanted to learn. From
working with my amazing team of producers in pre-production to sitting in the
editing bay with our great editor in post, Natural One allowed me to practice
so many habits that the Barger Leadership Institute helps promote. I feel that I
learned to be a better leader throughout this process; honing my
communication and team building skills. Alongside that, I wanted to use this
film as a vehicle for others to gain experience as well, bringing on team
members in roles they had previously wanted to try but hadn’t gained the
experience elsewhere. Because of this I was able to learn alongside them. It
helped to create a welcoming, positive environment, where learning was
promoted for all those involved.

I would be lying if I said we hadn’t run into a few obstacles, but I’m forever
grateful we did, because those same snafu’s became learning opportunities.
After production, we accidentally lost our sound files for the whole shoot;
however, my team was able to adapt to the issue and I think we all became
better figureheads as a result. We immediately established a backup plan while
other team members worked to resurrect the presumably lost sound files.
Eventually, thanks to my team keeping a calm head on our shoulders, we were
able to save the files and everything worked out! But the experience taught me
just how valuable staying calm under intense pressure can be.

I feel that BLI’s habits were instrumental in Natural One’s production process.
Build a Team, Collect, Combine, Create, Always Ask, Build a Team, and
Value Difference were so useful for me and my team.

The Natural One team and I are extremely grateful for the opportunity that
BLI has provided us with. Our team has grown to become better leaders
through this production experience, we can’t express enough gratitude for your

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