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Meet Michael Vaughn Hernandez

Today we’d like to introduce you to Michael Vaughn Hernandez.

Hi Michael Vaughn, thanks for sharing your story with us. To start, maybe you can tell our readers some of your backstory.
I was first introduced to film through my high school as an alternate end of term art elective, and as the final we had to make a film. Though I immensely enjoyed the experience, I initially opted for a traditional career path and went on to college for medicine. After graduation, recurring opportunities to film led me to making the decision to take it seriously by shooting any projects I could find or create. From that point, I kept shooting in Miami until finally moving over to Los Angeles, and have been working in film since.

We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
I believe every coin has two sides. There is the smooth road where it’s easy to stay busy in a city as active as Los Angeles where you are surrounded by like-minded creatives, beautiful locations, and opportunities to always be creating. However, there is the bumpy road of finding one’s place in such a large city and being productive in that, not getting lost going after everything at once and accomplishing little as a result. What helps is finding one’s artistic niche, your tribe that complements your art and personal life, all while earning a living. There were many years of burning the candles on both ends to find the balance.

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you’re currently focused on?
I’m very passionate about telling morally challenging character-driven stories, and through others my work has been described as intimate, grounded, and conflicting. Many collaborators know one of my top priorities in any project is establishing tone from nuanced characters and complementing cinematography. Personally, I’m most proud of the color I’ve been able to achieve over my career. I’ve always been a fan of color and appreciated the textures of a great film, and as I’ve grown in this art, I feel my incorporation of growing color knowledge into my works has made each project stronger than the last.

Do you have any advice for those just starting out?
I feel the two main concepts I always say to anyone who asks is to figure out early what your artistic end goal is. Television sitcom directing? Abstract indie film writer? Deep drama actor? That way you focus on what matters most to get there. The second thing is to start heading in that direction. We sometimes are sidelined with doubt or distractions to do many other things besides our passion. While there’s always the necessity to put food on the table, we should always keep the eye on the prize and do what we can to keep the momentum going that leads to our goals.

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Creative Duet Media LLC

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