Cesar, before we jump into specific questions, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I was born and raised in Cali, Colombia. I grew up in a family of talented musicians that introduced me to the arts from an early age. Although my father was training me to become a bass player like him, I knew that I wanted to make move minds with images. Going to the movies was always one of my favorite things to do and when the time came for me to earn my first camera and start on the path of filmmaking, I realized that I was much better at that than I could ever be at playing the bass.
After starting filmmaking school in Colombia, my brother started pushing me to move to the US, where he was completing his undergraduate studies in music at The University of North Texas in Denton. I visited him and got to talk to the professors and students in the Media Arts program. As an international student, paying out of state tuition was not an option, I knocked some doors and It wasn’t until I had secured a job and offered a scholarship that I was able to make the move. Fast forward to six years later and I’m now graduating from my Master of Arts at the art institute of Dallas. The path has not been easy, but I’ve managed to keep creating as much as possible while keeping up with my studies.
Great, 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?
There have been many challenges. I came to the US to study filmmaking. However, in order to pay tuition costs and living costs, I’ve had to work to the point where there has not been much time to study, it defeats the purpose of coming to study In the first place. It can become a circle where the cure is worse than the sickness. Luckily, I learned early on that life is what you make of it, you can go to school and not learn a thing or you can grab your camera and friends and play it like it is a sport, which it is.
We’d love to hear more about your work.
I am an all-around content creator. I shape light, I capture light in one frame or in 24 frames every second. I’m mostly known for my music and commercial work as a director, director of photography and editor. I’d say that these three aspects are equally strong, although my extensive work as an editor probably brings that skill a little farther than the others since the time I spend editing is usually three times higher than the time I spend shooting.
I am most proud of my work around the music artists and the commercial work I’ve gotten to do around lifestyle. I really don’t know what my particular style is but I’ve had several people say to me that they could recognize my work by looking at it. As far as whar sets me apart from others goes, i’d say its my passion and desire to be better every day, I devote time to learning and improving at every step I take. Moreover, I have been lucky to have found mentors in different areas who saw some talent in me and decided to pass on some of their knowledge. I’m eternally grateful to them, they know who they are. Lastly! having a music background has helped me a lot when it comes to music-related projects I can thank that one to my family.
Do you look back particularly fondly on any memories from childhood?
No particular memory comes to mind. I’d say watching my brother laugh, hugging my dog and the brightness of the theater’s screens all had similar impacts. I look forward to the memories are are yet to be made.
Personal photo: Blair Thomas
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