Be Inspired | Meet the Filmmaker - Nessi Benarroch
Today we speak to family filmmaker and FilmingLifer member Nessi Benarroch about how she got started in films and what motivates her to keep creating…
Tell us a bit about yourself
I am a half French, half Spanish living in the south of Spain, with my two daughters, Olivia and Elia, and my husband Sergio. I was a graphic designer for almost a decade but then 4 years ago I stepped into video almost accidentally and felt in love with it but it was only last year when I decided to change the path of my career and becoming a professional filmmaker, making this new but deeply passion of mine a dream job.
Tell us about the kind of photography & films you create (style/genre/pro or hobby)…
In the beginning, I was creating films purely for my family. Every trip we made, small or big, it was an excuse to pick up my camera and start filming. I discovered that I needed to start thinking about it at a more deeper level if I wanted to make a living out of it, so I started to learn the craft online as much as possible. Among others, I stumbled upon Courtney Holmes, at the very beginning of the FilmingLife Academy, and I am still learning from her and the amazing community.
What made you decide to learn video? What was your motivation?
Becoming a mother, having my first child and seeing that photography wasn't enough to tell the story I had in front of my eyes. I remember seeing a YouTube video of a family called The Michalaks, and I was hooked! They were creating a legacy through video for their kid that was fascinating to me.
My mum passed away 10 years ago, and I would have given up everything to have that kind of memories with her, to treasure it forever! I felt the urge to start creating those memories for my children too! So I just grabbed my camera and started recording!
What was your biggest challenge when you first started learning video and how did you overcome it?
My first challenge at the time was that I started comparing myself to people who were so so far away from me in their filmmaking journey. I was watching people who were in the industry for many years, and I started feeling bad, really bad. I assume that all of us feel that way at some point, but pretty quickly I began to understood that only by doing a huge amount of work would I be able to get better than I was yesterday and that is the only parameter that matters!
I remember watching a film called “THE GAP” (Ira Glass) that helped me a lot while I was trying to deal with those feelings! https://vimeo.com/frohlocke/thegap
Now, I want to create evocative films and work harder at the storytelling side of it! I love audio so much! It’s such a powerful tool that helps you tell a compelling story. My goal is to use less and less music and work more on the feelings that audio arouses in us... (voices, narratives, etc.)
Tell us about your favourite film and why it's special to you
Oh no! This is hard I have so many... but I will choose this last personal one I did, thanks to the #6filmchallange on the theme Together. It is so special to me because while I was pregnant with my second daughter I used to imagine the relationship between them and I dreamt about it so much! They have such a beautiful connection... tender, playful, protective, and that makes my heart so full and happy.
Did you find it a challenge to educate clients on the value of films, how were they first received by clients?
Yes, absolutely. It is challenging, but not impossible. The “product” is received so so well. When people take a look at my site, they love this idea of a “family film” and they love what they see. But photography was there first and they have this idea that being in a picture is easier than being on video. They usually don’t like themselves on camera, or the husband doesn’t want to collaborate... but once they understand the value it represents for them and their kids, something changes.
They have to see your work many many times before they can book a session. They are not going to buy compulsively from you... This is where it becomes difficult!
What is your best piece of advice for those just getting started with films?
Start recording as soon as possible without being afraid of your lack of skills or poor equipment. Use your mobile, whatever free editing software you have and go out and make videos. You will improve your skills just by recording and then you can educate yourself online, and get some more sophisticated equipment over time.