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Learning to crawl

Filmmaking is tough.

I spend a lot of time talking with filmmakers about how we hone our craft, overcome challenges, and stay sane while getting our films made.

There’s so much to learn. Every success comes with new challenges (“new level, new devil” as they say). It’s totally overwhelming to balance our roles in earning a living, passion projects, and being a good member of our family. The game’s always changing, too.

That’s why I’ve found so much inspiration in watching my daughter, Samantha, learn to crawl. It’s been fascinating and frustrating. I can’t help but think of all the similarities in filmmaking.

From day one, she was working towards this goal of crawling. It’s been an amazing journey over the last six months. I’m so proud of her.

First, we gave her “tummy time” so she could learn to be on her belly. Then she learned to lift her head. Eventually, she could push up with her arms. Recently she started planking and getting on her knees. She’s been this close to crawling for months. None of these steps were easy on her, and she showed her frustration.

But the determination of this little girl is incredible. I’m in awe of her strength and fearlessness. She’s kept at it, no matter how tough it got or how far she had to go. (Sure, part of that is instinct for a baby but it’s still not easy.)

Every day, she took the time to practice.

Every day, she fell flat (literally) and got really frustrated.

Every day, she started over again.

I find myself so inspired by her attempts to learn to crawl. I feel like I should step up my game as a filmmaker to keep pounding the pavement, put in the hours, and hustle towards that goal. That’s because the old saying is so true.

PERSISTANCE PAYS.

She’ll be crawling soon. It’s taken her months to get here, making the tiniest little advancements every day. They’re so small that they can go unnoticed but they all add up.

The same is true in film and video making. Keep honing your craft. Make progress. Stay persistent.

We’re all trying to figure out a way forward. We’re not in competition with one another. We’re competing against ourselves to become better and better storytellers every day.

Keep at it.

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