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Meet Jeremy Bolden

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jeremy Bolden.

Jeremy, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I grew up in a small town(population under 5,000), in rural eastern Tennessee, where everyone does 1 of 4 things….works in a factory, works in a pharmacy, goes to college(only to come back to the same small town), or they do nothing at all.

In 2007 while I was enrolled in community college, seeking a degree in Computer Aided Drafting, I began wondering what my life would look like, should I continue on that path. I didn’t really like the outcomes that I were seeing from others who were on a similar path, so I decided to take a chance, to pursue something I knew absolutely nothing about because I could always come back and pick up where I was.

So, off I went to film school.

I got my BFA in Film Production from Watkins College of Art in Nashville, TN and going in, I knew nothing more than I liked movies, specifically Jurassic Park. While at Watkins, I fell in love with the production process but more specifically working with light. To me, light is emotion; light is everything to an image maker. While at Watkins, I met some wonderfully talented people, and worked a ton on projects that I love, and still think about to this day.

After I graduated from Watkins College of Art, I enrolled in Florida State University’s College of Motion Picture Arts in pursuit of a Master’s Degree. Again, I was lucky enough to meet some incredibly talented people that I am proud to call my peers, and still be working with today.

While in Florida, I was forced actually think about what I’d do after school. FSU Film Program has quite the extensive network in Los Angeles, New York, and Atlanta, so I had options. Ultimately, we(my partner and I) decided that we’d love to see what life outside the south was like, so off to Los Angeles we went.

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?
Early on, it was definitely not even knowing how to begin the process of going to college, how to actually prepare to do this seemingly giant and overwhelming thing.

Whoever thinks that their road is smooth? Everyone encounters challenges. Some of my personal challenges were/have been/ and continue to be: 1 – I’m very introverted, so reaching out, making new contacts, being social is something that I constantly struggle with, yet I know it’s a huge part of working in the film/tv industry…you’ve got to get out and meet as many people as you can. 2 – balancing work and home life…as a freelancer, are you ever truly not working? If I’m not on set, my brain is occupied with thoughts of ‘you’re not working’ and ‘how can I get on set tomorrow’ ‘where’s the next job going to come from and what can I do to get it here quicker?’

We’d love to hear more about your work and what you are currently focused on. What else should we know?
As a cinematographer, I like to think I specialize in bringing a director’s vision to life…As far as what I’m most proud of, I don’t know – maybe the fact that I have been blessed enough to financially support myself doing something that I actually enjoy or that it’s allowed me to see and meet so many wonderfully great and talented individuals, as well as meeting some personal heroes along the way.

Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
I show up and I do the work. I work for myself, so I have the ability to say ‘no’ to a job. So, if whatever job I’m working on, I put all of my effort into it.

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