In 2012 my short documentary film Vemon & Fire was not selected as the Best Picture at the International Documentary Challenge. Considering I wrecked my car, we evaded a tornado, and our team risked our lives filming in a makeshift barn full of venomous snakes just to tell this story, disappointed would be an understatement.
Best Picture was awarded to The Sound Of Vision. The film told the story of a blind blues singer living in New York City. It showed the Big Apple from a point of view that most would never have seen. The film challenged us to use our ears and hearts more than our eyes.
After the awards the filmmakers headed to a post screening happy hour. It was there that the real magic of filmmaking came to life. Producers, directors, editors, and cinematographers mingled and discussed their experience. It was a beautiful display of what a creative community should look like.
Since I’m not competitive and our team was confident that our film was the Best Picture, I had to meet the team who robbed us of our victory!
My adversary’s name was Joe Vele, one of the co-directors for Sound of Vision. I congratulated him and he graciously accepted. We talked film, gear, Point Break and so on. I learned that in addition to running 5spot Media; a New York boutique creative agency, Joe curates an emerging indie music blog based in the Lower East Side of Manhattan and works at the UN (which is some real spy type shit). We actually had more in common than I had expected.
Fast-forward a year later and not only did we keep in touch, but we were collaborating on projects together. Creatives like Joe are a prime example of how good work attracts great people. Whether your submitting to a film festival, industry blog, or tweeting, put your best work forward and don’t be intimidated by the guys who “best you,” they just might become your new Best Resource.