Avant-garde Director of Photography Aakshay Parab The young Los Angeles based Director of Photography and Digital Colorist Aakshay Parab

“Every frame is my Canvas; I paint these with light..”: Avant-garde Director of Photography Aakshay Parab The young Los Angeles based Director of Photography and Digital Colorist Aakshay Parab weaves magical visual narratives by getting the strokes right between realism and a dash of experimental dramatic illusion. The award wining Cineaste describes his passion as, “Every frame is my Canvas; I paint these with light to weave my visuals for the narrative”. His themes largely revolve around the downtrodden and minorities. “They are the indicators of the health of our society” affirms Aakshay. His strong art-house style approach for such thematic visual narratives has won him accolades and nominations from various film festivals. His art has evolved from his passion as an avid storyteller and child artist while growing up in Mumbai, in his home country India. A complete cinephile, Aakshay decided to give his passion for films a professional upgrade. In 2012, he specialized in film producing at the renowned Whistling Woods International in Mumbai. Amongst his initial projects as a budding filmmaker, Projekt Tyler, his first documentary earned him the 2014 nomination at the Mumbai International Film Festival for Best International Documentary Under Forty Minutes and National Academy of Cinema & Television, Bangalore for Best International Documentary. His first large scale production was his producing thesis Ram’ji’bhai. It was nominated for Short of The Month – January in Mumbai, the Official Selection in 2015 Navi Mumbai International Film Festival and also won the Best Student Film in Festival Of Cinematics. The success of these and his other projects propelled him to further enter, survive, and thrive in the competitive world of independent films. It was during this time period that he felt the instinctive urge to specialize in the technical aspect of filming and step up for the next stage. In 2015, he went on to specialize in Cinematography, at the New York Film Academy, New York City. In 2016, Projekt Tyler went on to win the Fame-US Bronze Award at the Fame-US International Film Festival in Hollywood, California. Aakshay states: “As a Director of Photography and Digital Colorist, I prefer contributing to films concerning ‘the insignificant’, whose woes get systematically muffled on a daily basis within our social structure. We need to bring that to the very conscience of our society through art. With art comes responsibility”. Aakshay’s notable works concerning women as central figures to the story has gained recognition in a very short span of time. His goal to touch the conscience of his audience with his message seems to be bearing fruits. The Moment is one such noteworthy woman-centric short for which he was the Director of Photography and Digital Colorist as well. He chose to give a strong Hitchcockian dash to his own stylistic high contrast and low key light design to maintain the overall tension in his film. The Moment went on to win the Award of Recognition for Film Short at The Accolade Global Film Competition in 2016. Another of his women-centric films is The Derelict. He was its Writer- Director and Director of Photography. It screened at the New York Short Film Festival in November 2016 and was also an Official Selection of the Autumn 2016 Creation International Film Festival. Amongst his films to look forward to in 2017, is the urban fictions Grab N’ Go, and 24Hours. He had been the Director of Photography and Digital Colorist for both. Aakshay has seen a steady and purposeful growth in his career not only as a Director and a Director of Photography, but also as a Digital Colorist. “The role of a colorist in completion of the film is exactly that of a painter who paints a canvas” says Aakshay. He has worked on varied themes and color palettes for different projects. One Chance, directed by Joseph E. Austin II, was his most challenging project as a Digital Colorist. Aakshay considers the art of film-making a societal responsibility. This led him to join like-minded cineastes by being the member of the prestigious Film Independent Society, Independent Filmmaker Project and Colorist Society International. He is affirmative about contributing significantly and ceaselessly in his own distinctive and humble ways to the cinema of today. Aakshay aims for positive change in the lives of objectified minorities like women and the LGBT among others. His upcoming projects as a Director of Photography include a rom-com web series, an action feature and a drama adventure web series among others.

Aesthetic Spirit of Director of Photography & Digital Colorist Falguni Thakkar

Aesthetic Spirit of Director of Photography & Digital Colorist Falguni Thakkar

 

 Aesthetic Spirit of Director of Photography & Digital Colorist Falguni Thakkar 2

Falguni Thakkar is an Award Winning Director of Photography (DP) and Digital Colorist based in Los Angeles.

 

Born in Mumbai (India), Falguni’s passion for film came while growing up as a television and movie junkie. She was enthralled with how the camera moved and framed the characters in order to tell their story. All that television might have been bad for most kids, but Falguni turned it into a career.

 

She began her path into film making with a Two Year Diploma Degree in VFX (2012-14) from the Whistling Woods International, Mumbai (India). Driven by the desire to master her technical skills in film, her next stop was New York City, where she earned a Diploma in Cinematography at the New York Film Academy in October 2014, beginning her career as a Director of Photography (DP) and moved her base in Los Angeles in early 2016.

 

Falguni Thakkar feels inclined and passionate towards making films that are slice-of-life based that affects the normal fabric of human society. She successfully and artistically applied her inclinations and talent to her award winning short film You Use, You Lose, for which she was the Director of Photography and Digital Colorist.

 

The film went on to win the following awards, received official selections and was screened in Los Angeles as well as in Mumbai at major Film Festivals.

 

  1. Award of Recognition (Women Filmmakers) – Accolade Global Film Competition
  2. Award of Recognition (Women Filmmakers) – Best Shorts Competition
  3. Competition Finalist (Short Thriller / Horror) – Filmmatic Filmmaker AwardsCategory
  4. Official Selection & Screening – 5th Mumbai Shorts International Film Festival
  5. Official Selection & Screening – Pembroke Taparelli Arts and Film Festival
  6. Official Selection – Oasis Short Film Screening Series
  7. Official Selection – Diamond in the Rough Cut

 

She recently worked on a short film Link St. as a Digital Colorist directed by Rachel Meguerdijian which got nominated and is being screened at Los Angeles IFS Film Fest, 2017.

 

Falguni says that she wants to develop her unique style and have her vision splayed out on the silver screen.

 

Her films in the festival circuit this year as the Director of Photography are Non-staurant of Water Street (Documentary), Lotus and A New Leaf aka Coming Out.

As a Digital Colorist, apart from her short film You Use, You Lose, Link St. (Short), and Freestyle Fiesta (Music video) are the others for this year’s festival slate.

 

She quotes “As a filmmaker, I want to put together character driven film narratives that engage audiences on journeys exploring and tackling important social justice issues.”

She believes that art follows passion and precision, so take from whatever truth you are moved to explore and go for it as best you can.

 

 

Contact and Links:

 

Website: http://falgunithakkar.film

Email: click@falgunithakkar.film

IMDb: http://www.imdb.me/falgunithakkar

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/thakkarfalguni

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/falgunithakkar

Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/falgunithakkar

 

Aesthetic Spirit of Director of Photography & Digital Colorist Falguni Thakkar 1

Interview with Filmmaker Hiroki

Hiroki_Jimbow_Top_Movie_Award

 

Tell readers about your background, where are you from?
Was there a particular event or time that you recognized that filmmaking was 
not just a hobby, but that it would be your life and your living?
I wanted to make great films which would give impact for audiences. It was
because I read novels about Samurai who evolved history of Japan. They
sacrificed themselves just for making their society better. I thought I could make
it better, too, and I found that I could make films which would stimulate
audiences and make them consider about their life. I didn’t have any
experience about making films at that time, so I started to study acting in
Japan. I believed that acting was one of the most important parts for films.
What projects are you currently working on?
Is it harder to get started or to keep going? What was the particular thing that 
you had to conquer to do either?
Now I am working on a story about a husband and wife. It is a drama about life
and identity. They are confronting very harsh situation and have to make a
choice for each others. I am looking for great actors who can live in the very
harsh situation. Also I have to research about medication. Otherwise, the story
cannot be believable. In this film I want to give a question of life to audiences
and let them think what they will choose for their life.
Acting is reacting. That is my favorite phrase and what I really need for this film.
I met many actors, but I haven’t found actors who can play the roles yet
because this story needs very strong emotions.
What advice would you give to someone who wanted to have a life creating 
film?
I want to see their point of views. That will make their films very unique and
special. Actually it is really hard to make unique films, but it is worthy to create
own films, no matter how many audiences saw and how many awards they get.
Even if they could stimulate only one audience, It would be a great film for the
audience. That is why I want them to create their own film which we have never
seen.
What was the most important lesson you had to learn that has had a positive 
effect on one of your films? How did that lesson happen?
There are many techniques to stimulate actors. In one of my films, I had an
actor who couldn’t be free from his self conscious. He was very close to the
role but not close enough to reach the role. I realized that he was thinking
about his appearance and movement, so I gave him direction that got rid of the
self conscious from him. It was an exercise which actors use their imagination.
I asked him to imagine that he would behave as an animal or a vegetable. At
first he couldn’t get rid of the self conscious and reach the role, but finally we
found the specific material which tempted him to the role. He just follow the
sensory of the material and behaved as the role organically. Because of the
technique, I could guide him and see his great acting.
What type of films do you make? What is your favorite film genre?
What makes a film great for you? Are there certain qualities that make a film 
better for you?
I made actions, comedies, thrillers and dramas. I like all of them; however, In
any genre I want to see a great reactions because it is the most important part
of acting for me. Always I put my characters in very harsh situations in order to
see their choice. And only actor’s reaction can make audiences believe the
situation is real. Because of it, I love to see actor’s reactions in any genre.
What films have been the most inspiring or influential to you and why?
My special film is Star Wars. It was the first film that I saw as a American film in
the theater. It was so unique and innovative. It changed the standard of Si-Fi
films. I was just dragged in the story and let me travel in the world. It showed
the world with very beautiful sets, spaceships, creatures, props and
supernatural power. All of the aspects were combined together very elegantly.
Since then I haven’t seen any better Si-Fi. The film taught me that there is a
potential that film can tempt audiences to anywhere which they have never
seen before. I want to make films which drags audiences into the stories.
When you get angry at a movie, what sets you off? Are there common qualities 
in cinema today that you dislike? Is there something you try to subvert or avoid 
or rebel against in your work?
I dislike stories which don’t show strong and believable motivations of roles.
They never bring audiences into the story because no one can believe it.
And another part that I dislike is too much CGI. CGI is a magical tool for film
making, but if it is used, audiences get bored because we can know it it fake.
CGI should be used very carefully, so that we do not notice where it is used.
Sometimes I use CGI, but I try to limit it. In Star Wars, special effects were
used a lot but not CGI. Film makers created the film with their creativity and
great efforts. I can feel their body temperature. That is why I prefer old Star
Wars rather than new one.
What role have film festivals played in your life so far? Why are they 
necessary? How do you get the most out of them?
I have participated film festivals as a competitor. We need to entry films to
sharpen our films each others. That makes our films better.
I am a big believer in the importance of social media in many aspects of the 
film process. Are you on social media and do you use it in your work? Why or 
why not?
I use social media to spread information of my films to many people. It will
make new audiences and give me feed backs from them.
Also I can know films that others create, so I can be inspired by their works.
Do filmmakers have any responsibility to culture? Do you feel that being a 
creative person requires that you give back or tell a particular story or not do 
something else? Why or why not?
I am making films in order to make the society better. That is why I don’t make
films which are anti-society or just shocking or violent. We should make
something which helps audiences who exhausted in their life. I want to
stimulate audiences with my films. I believe that any genre can do it. Just we
need strong core which can effects audience’s hearts.
If there is one or more thing you think would make the film industry better, what 
would it be?
Nowadays, we can see many super hero films, but audiences want to see
dramas in the films more than CGI. We should make stories which require
actor’s emotions rather than CGI.
Thank you for your time and to wrap this up tell readers something personal 
about yourself that they can only learn here. Hobbies, favorite food, pet peeve 
etc…
I love to ride motorcycle. It is a great tool to practice of relaxation for actors on
stages and sets. When actors on the sets, they have to be relaxed and focus
on the situation. In order to do it, they have to control their emotions which are
fear and self conscious. It is same as riding motorcycles because riders have to
relaxed, control fear and feel the circumstances, otherwise they get accidents.
That’s why it is a great exercise for me.

 

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