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Art & Life with Tom Cole

Today we’d like to introduce you to Tom Cole.

Tom, please kick things off for us by telling us about yourself and your journey so far.
I’m originally from London in the UK and have been out in Los Angeles for 10 years now. But it wasn’t an easy move. It took me several years to lock in a work visa and green card, but I’ve always wanted to live and work in Los Angeles, so I was determined to make it happen. There’s an amazing passion in the air in LA, plus the whole, you know sun thing. That never hurts.

I’ve been making films since I was 11 years old, which began with me playing around with my grandparents’ VHS camcorder. What started as a hobby with my brother and sister, quickly evolved into something more. When I was 13 I joined the Children’s Film Unit in London, which is where I learned how to make films on 16mm. One day, Kenneth Branagh came in to talk to us and I begged him to let me visit while he finished post-production on ‘Love Labour’s Lost’ at Pinewood Studios. I ended up coming back every day until he finished the movie. By the time I was 16 and could ride a scooter, I started working on features and TV shows in the UK, including ‘Derren Brown: Mind Control’ in which I filmed the title sequence. From there, I went on to the University of Westminster to earn a degree. During the Summer break, I edited Robbie Williams’ Greatest Hits EPK and promos. I moved to LA as soon as I finished school, with a mission to make the City of Angels my permanent home. I currently live in Silverlake with my fiancé, Lauren, and our dog, Archie.

Can you give our readers some background on your art?
I direct music videos for DECA and make promos for ABC. I like to make very stylized and energetic work, which hopefully takes the audience on a little journey. My goal is to always reflect on the screen, all the passion and energy that went into each project.

I like music videos and promos because of the challenges of the medium. You have a short amount of time to get across an idea, emotion, or feeling. I see it as an opportunity to get creative.

Recently, I made a music video for a track called “Thinking of You” by PLYA, which won BEST MUSIC VIDEO at 4 film festivals. I’ve also been directing promos for ABC, including the launch promo for American Idol and a retrospective for SCANDAL. I’ve also been lucky enough to have worked with some very talented artists, like K.Flay, JTR and Steve Aoki. I love getting to be creative constantly and still can’t believe my childhood dream is what I get to wake up to every day.

Do you have any advice for other artists? Any lessons you wished you learned earlier?
My advice is to take things slowly. Don’t beat yourself up for not achieving stuff as quickly as you think you should. I think once in a while it’s nice for an artist to hear “Stop, you did good, enjoy this.” But then, you also need that horrible beating drive to achieve anything. So I don’t know. Don’t listen to me.

Also, find supporters. I wouldn’t be where I am without my friends, partner, and family. Listen to that. And thank you for listening. Please feel free to reach out on Instagram.

What’s the best way for someone to check out your work and provide support?
The best place to see my work is on my website – www.tomcole.tv, and Instagram @tomcolefilmmaker.

Contact Info:

  • Website: www.tomcole.tv
  • Email: info@tomcole.tv
  • Instagram: tomcolefilmmaker
  • Twitter: tomcolefilmmaker


Image Credit:
David Solorzano – Personal Photo
Photo – stills from PLYA “Thinking of You”

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