My approach to filmmaking is to first synthesize the emotional reality of the characters, their environment, and the factors that contribute to the evolution of the story. It is my goal to photograph these fundamental concepts in such a way that the audience will relinquish all preconceived notions of imagery. Viewers can then be immersed in the narrative that the director wants to tell. It is because of my background that I take such care in this developmental phase of my work.
I grew up in the rich arts and cultural diverse city of Cleveland, Ohio. The live theatrical performances were so engaging that I quickly joined production crews to help create these fascinating staged productions. This was the best training ground for me to learn the quality, texture, and hue, which could be achieved with various lighting units. I continued my formal training of how lighting enhances the story at Otterbein University's department of theatre and dance.
By happenstance, I was invited to my first film set by an accomplished cinematographer from AFI. This was a pivotal point in my career because to me cinematography encapsulated the very strength of storytelling that must be demonstrated through sight. Therefore, I set out to study the craft for three years at Chapman University's Dodge College of Film and Media Arts and completed my Master of Fine Arts. I am very pleased with the quality of my education and to have the opportunity to extract a wealth of knowledge from my professors Bill Dill and Johnny Jensen members of the ASC.
What has inspired me the most as a cinematographer is traveling abroad and interacting with people that have a different perspective than my own. Since "We are the sum total of our experiences....." striving everyday to maximize the positive and stimulating events of life. I know there are infinite possibilities to capture more stories and imagery through the medium of cinematography.
Name: Crystal Kelley
Lives in: Los Angeles, California
Chapman University-University College (Orange, CA)