The Producer Problem: Thoughts Following My Directorial Debut

I haven’t written something personal in so long, that I’m feeling quite nervous writing this out. I feel like I’ve been so focused on producing lately, that it’s kind of all I want to do. I love creating, and if we’re being really really real, maybe the escapism of it all is what makes it so appealing.

I find myself “putting on a voice” when I try to write a journal post. I’ve been a creator my whole life, so I naturally fall into a narrative style even when discussing my own life. I think that’s why I like film so much. There’s no “voice” I can put on that my body language won’t immediately invalidate.

I’ve started paying attention to peoples body language, and it actually switched the whole game up. Even on those “scripted” reality TV shows, the body tells the truth. Like, you can see that Kim is actually pissed because her lips curl back to show her teeth – an archaic, yet prominent display of actual anger. Of course, on the other side of things, you can tell when someone is “putting on their voice” as well, and when they break out of this by flickering their eye to the camera, bad acting, or intentionally maintaining a steady tone for example… wait… how did we get here.

Oh, yeah, film. What I was trying to get at is that I would prefer to express my real me through film rather than words. I love watching footage of myself where I didn’t know I was being taped, or I got comfortable enough in front of the camera to not notice its presence. Have you ever experienced that? It’s cool seeing all the ways your face and body move without you “giving it permission” to. It’s interesting to observe the body as its own entity – connected to, yet completely autonomous from the mind.

I shared this with my girlfriend and she’s been really into the idea of doing vlogs. I think that would be cool as shit. Honestly, I’ve already had the idea to do like a reality show… but real? I would hire someone to just tape me and my life for a few months and then edit it into a series. But that’s one thought out of a literal million that I have in my head.

Whenever people ask me how I got into film, I always get a little shook because I really wasn’t. I just really loved movies, and had a connection with them especially through my girl Sarah who has such a passion for them as well. I’ve always loved watching but I never considered myself capable of creating. I just had an idea last summer to do interviews of people telling their heartbreak story which is where Black Hearts Break, Too came from. From there, I unexpectedly did HARD TO LOVE, a documentary short.

HARD TO LOVE has already changed my life. The entire experience of creating that movie is completely indescribable. I believe I was placed on this earth to be a creator of many things, and being able to create art fills me with purest joy. Editing the film was the best part. I couldn’t believe I was actually doing it. Bitch, I had no idea I could edit! Having the visuals there, and being able to bring that down to the very millisecond… bliss.

Then there was the film premiere. I was making the film and planning the event at the same damn time. My to-do list was packed every day since end of May, and I loved everything about it.

This is what I want to be tired for. This is what I want to spend sleepless nights on. This is what I want to sacrifice for. My life's dream is to create film every day. To create documentaries, television shows, music videos, movies, short films. To grow Glass Project Films into its own production company. To hire people who are conscious and passionate about the work they are creating. To support my artist community. This is what I’m striving for.

See, the issue here is that I love it so much that I want to be it. I can’t externalize myself from this dream, and therefore suffer in my real life because when there is a natural break or pause in these endeavors, I am suddenly empty.

I have fallen in such deep love with my passion, that it has completely taken precedent in my life. I sleep it, I eat it, I dream it. There is not a minute that goes by that I am not thinking, doing, talking about, or creating it. I’d die for it.

Now, part of me (who I refer to simply as “The Artist”) sees absolutely nothing wrong with that. My love, what is there in this life without art?! Without creation! Everything is art! Use it, use it all! It makes complete sense.

But there’s another part that just can’t drop the whole “escapism” thing. This part of me observes as I thrive, bloom and flourish when I am in the throes of creating. How passionate I get, how I protect my art and grow it inside of me until I can birth it into the material world. But it also sees how I stack my “victories” and close the door, smelling the air for a new one. It sees the codependency that I have built.

… And then there’s another side of me that is proud as shit! Bitch you pulled what off in what amount of time?! What one side of me sees as codependency, this side of me views it as complete productivity, self-control and organization. And just what the fuck is wrong with that?

I hope to eventually find a balance though, because although HARD TO LOVE went so well, I found myself in such a slump immediately after. I was no longer nurturing it and growing it. It was “gone” now. It was out and in the world, and I had nothing more to work for. It seems dramatic to say that I felt that I had less to live for as well.

This worries me because as my success as a producer grows, so will my range and opportunity. And then how will the “come-down” feel in the wake of projects that get bigger and bigger?