Introduce yourself yo the world
Hey I’m Phillip Jackson, a cinematographer from the DMV area now living in Los Angeles. I’ve been a freelance filmmaker for the last 7 years.
1. When it comes to storytelling, where do you get your inspiration from?
I draw a lot of inspiration form creators and mediums from all over. Growing up with the internet still being very new I spent a lot of time on all different kinds of art forums and creative communities. I love how I could see so many different kinds of artists and creators from my computer screen where I didn’t really have that kind of access in person.I always felt like the more I got to absorb creatively the more interesting things I ended up creating. Connecting ideas and concepts from all over and making new creations has turned into some of my most favorite works of mine.
2. What is the toughest challenge you’ve faced so far?
Time management is the toughest part when it comes to the creative side of my work. Getting work and paying bills in Los Angeles isn’t easy but that gets easier with time and as your network grows. But time management never gets easier. There’s just a lot of distractions out there you know? No one’s going to make you put in the time for your own projects. So I’ve been trying to put aside time weekly to reflect on my work and what I want to do next.
3. What kind of world do you want to see now that “Rideshade” is made? We know that there is a message you as a filmmaker are conveying to your audience, what is that message?
A lot of the reasons I made “Rideshade” was to highlight the power dynamics black women face on a daily basis. I’m really excited by the recent trend of the questioning and dismantling of the traditional gender power structure. However, I feel that on a broad sense this trend is shaped by white women’s perspective. That leaves out so many others who are going through the same and so much more. I want to see a world where intersectionality is the norm. When we fight together for justice we win.
4. As a filmmaker, what are some key lessons learned so far? What do you know today that you wish you knew when you began your journey as a filmmaker?
Keeping an open mind and questioning approach to your work is key. It’s very easy to create works that are “trendy” or what is expected. But stepping back and looking at something from a new angle usually leads to more interesting choices.Outside of just practical knowledge, I think what I wish I knew starting out was to make sure you keep creating on the side. There were stints where I wasn’t shooting as much as I wanted and just crewing on other people’s projects for work. It really started to make a negative effect on my well being. Almost like a creative constipation in a way.
5. What would you say is your unique responsibility as a filmmaker?
A big responsibility I think that goes unmentioned is to acknowledge the privileges and power that comes with being a filmmaker. Being able to create works that can influence people isn’t something to be taken lightly in an age where we consume so much media on a daily basis. When you’re really start to put some work behind a project, we all should be asking ourselves what will this add to the world at large and am I doing the work justice?
How can others reach out to you and/or stay informed about your upcoming projects?
Folks can find me on Twitter @phil_jackson or Instagram @philjackson