Cheryl

1) Why did you decide to get into this industry?

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I came in through a side door, I had a career as a designer and art director, with installation art as a side passion. Film brought all of my experience and art together- it was a revelation. Now, almost a decade into it, I can’t imagine doing anything else.

Photo Cred: @lindsiefeathers

 

2) What’s a defining moment in your life?

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So many! But the ones that have changed me the most are the losses. Losing a family member to gun violence has informed my decisions and my storytelling. There’s often a hint of grief in my narrative work.  And because of my situation involved a very specific type of violence that women experience (and I have years of my own experiences to draw on), I also tend to center society’s invisible women. This frame is from BLiP, my film about a grieving homeless woman.

Frame:Laura Long @lauralaynelong as Georgia

 

3) What is your biggest concern with the future?

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I’m concerned about my kids world- climate change and rising authoritarianism. It feels like we’re at a tipping point. All around us, we see environmental problems resulting in harm to the most vulnerable. My film, The Fetch, explored the effects of water scarcity on women and girls.

Frame: Kathleen Wilhoite @realkathleenw as Daleand Daniel Hugh Kelly as Hem

 

4) What is a successful moment in your career so far?

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Just getting any narrative film completed feels like a success! And every time I screen one of the films I’ve directed for a real audience, it’s extremely gratifying. I’ve also had some great moments when my branded content for companies like Waymo get really positive press. And I produced a web series that won multiple awards and was nominated for a Gotham. Sorry – that’s more than one : )

Frame: Branded spot featuring@tashelldesiree

 

5) What advice do you have for other women in the industry?

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Don’t fall into the trap of feeling like you’ve made it because you’re the only woman in the room or on set. The patriarchy wins when we’re the special exception. Other women are your allies and we can do amazing work together. I’ve been proactively hiring, mentoring and working with more women the last few years and it’s been incredible. This frame is from Safety Work, my current film and collaboration with actor/producer Alyssa Kompelien.

Frame: Alyssa Kompelien @alyssakompelien as Lily

 

6) What, if anything, do you collect?

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People. Film is family.

I do have a coffee obsession that has lead to a collection of indie coffee shop diner mugs.  I even created my own “Lady Lincoln” mugs as our studio swag. You can never have too many mugs, right?

Photo cred: @brymiller808 Lady Lincoln illustration @foreign.gardens

 

7) What are you working on next? In addition, if people want to find out more about you, where can they find you on social media?

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We’re wrapping post on the latest short film I directed and will be submitting to festivals soon. Safety Work is centered on the invisible woman of the #metoo environment. I’ve got a feature script in the works and am working on new commercial projects with my production company, Lincoln Street Studios.

Cherylisaacson.com, lincolnstreetstudios.com

IG: @Cherylisaacson

Twitter: Cherylisaacson

Photo cred: @tina.ratliff

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