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Meet Stephen Tringali

Today we’d like to introduce you to Stephen Tringali.

Every artist has a unique story. Can you briefly walk us through yours?
My mom insisted I find a summer job following the eighth grade. Not totally understanding that this was an order, I said I wasn’t interested. Working at a theme park seemed like a waste of time. I just wanted to focus on reading books and writing.

Normally this kind of behavior would have frustrated her, but she seemed determined to both satisfy my interests and get me out of the house and working. She called up our local newspaper, The Hershey Chronicle, and told them her son wanted an internship.

I don’t know exactly what she said or how she convinced them to meet with me, but a few days later, I went into their office with some writing samples. The editor seemed pretty confused by my age—I was 14 at the time—but liked my writing. He said I could come by a few times a week and cover local news stories. Once I had gotten the hang of those pieces, he asked me what I really wanted to write about. I told him I loved movies. Could I write movie reviews for the paper? One hundred plus movie reviews later, I went off to college to study film. And now I work as a cinematographer.

Please tell us about your art.
I work as a cinematographer, primarily in narrative. In my spare time, I make documentary films with my wife, Maria Bissell, and take photos.

I first gravitated toward the technical side of filmmaking, which led to cinematography. Based on the projects I’ve shot thus far, it’s easy to see I’m primarily interested in working on personal stories, stories that have some kernel of real-life experience behind them, stories that blur the lines between documentary and fiction. Maybe that interest originated from first working as a journalist.

And I think my style as a cinematographer reflects that. I try to keep my lighting and camera work simple and grounded. There’s something incredibly elegant in the pursuit of simplicity.

As an artist, how do you define success and what quality or characteristic do you feel is essential to success as an artist?
The successful artists, I admire are eternally positive and never complacent. I aspire to hold those attributes every day.

How or where can people see your work? How can people support your work?
We the Coyotes, a feature film I was the cinematographer on, premiered earlier this year at the Cannes Film Festival and will be showing theatrically in France starting December 12. The directors, Hanna Ladoul and Marco La Via, are really incredible filmmakers and great friends.

And Corridor Four, a documentary feature that my wife and I made together, will be released on VOD in mid 2019 and on TV around the same time. I don’t think I’m allowed to say where it’s being broadcast just yet.

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Image Credit:
Stephen Tringali

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