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Conversations with Zach Cavender

Today we’d like to introduce you to Zach Cavender.

Hi Zach, we’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
I got started with photography at a summer camp in middle school and discovered my love for creative/visual arts from there. As the technology changed, adding video features to more consumer DSLR/mirrorless cameras, videography was a natural progression for me. That led me toward a career in filmmaking, and I’ve worked as a PA, camera operator, and editor for several television shows and businesses across the country. Another subject I started getting into was audio production – mainly for film/dialogue, but music has always held a special place in my heart. As I’ve expanded and refined my skills and made more connections with creative minds, I’ve been lucky enough to work on countless projects from music videos to podcasts – even building out my own studio.

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
In retrospect, I’d say the road has been relatively smooth, but no road is without its flaws. I’ve never had any major setbacks due to health or money, I realize I am very lucky in that regard. There have been plenty of times when I’ve felt the creep of Imposter Syndrome or had to sell some old gear to cover rent while I wait for a Net 45 payout for a job completed a month and a half prior. I think you face certain challenges when you consciously try to maintain your integrity, especially in a time when people largely only care about numbers and sales and followers. Doubly so in media careers.

As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about what you do?
I’ve never been one to wear just one hat, so my time is generally split between multiple projects. Most of the week I am focusing on my day job, which varies between filming, editing, building websites, designing shirts, and organizing social media campaigns. Evenings and weekends, I am filming a weekly wrestling show, shooting creative portraits, producing podcasts, and directing music videos. I am proud of the Cover Stories Podcast – which is a music podcast where my buddy Erik interviews musicians and music lovers about their favorite cover songs, with performances by the artists. Producing Cover Stories led me to designing a studio to record in, which was a fun DIY project. I am extremely grateful to Bobby and Cooper Greenberg – from Favorite Son Woodshop – for building a beautiful custom table for the recording studio.

Risk taking is a topic that people have widely differing views on – we’d love to hear your thoughts.
I believe everyone is taking risks, just at different levels. I take a risk when I decide to drive on the highway, I just don’t think about it. If we take more and more risks, we become more comfortable taking larger ones. I’ve always been kind of a “let’s do it and see what happens” kind of guy, and I’d say it has worked out pretty well. I’d like to say it’s obvious, but you have to calculate the risks you’re willing to take. Saying yes to a big job that’s outside your comfort zone – fairly safe bet you can handle it, and the world won’t end if something goes wrong. Trying to drive your car full of gear through a flood to get to a birthday party, probably not worth financial ruin. Also, definitely have insurance.

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Image Credits:

Photo with camera: Credit to John Casares
Photo with city behind me: Credit to Gabriela Campos

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