Menu Account

Hurlbut Academy Podcast EP. 56 – Filmmaking Relationships

  • February 11, 2020
  • Admin Hurlbut
Hurlbut Academy Podcast EP. 56 – Filmmaking Relationships

After the popularity of the last podcast – Rise of the Podcaster – here’s our latest offering and it’s all about working relationships. Your filmmaking career is going to involve you interacting with countless individuals and it is imperative that you all get on the same page! You all are making the same movie and all want to make something that is going to be great – otherwise why do it?!

Communication Working Relationships Filmmaking Film Working Together Shane Hurlbut Hurlbut Academy

As a cinematographer, you have to lead a team and have to work with the Director, DP, writer etc. It’s your job to communicate, to develop a shared vision and to all strive for the very best together. In this podcast, Lydia and I will take you through how to be positive on set, how to lead with positive instruction and overcome hardships.

Find out how to set yourselves up for success and prove that teamwork truly does make the dream work. Here we go!

Or right-click and download the file HERE

Submit Podcast Questions Here for Shane or Lydia


QUESTION 1: (00:00:20 – 00:18:01) 

I love Hurlbut Academy especially the different series you put out because I really understand a lot when Shane is explaining about light. He does it different than others out there! Thumbs up!

To my question: I’ve got a job where I have to work with a good director, but I’m a more the restrained type of guy. If you just let me do my thing, I deliver, but if I have lots of eyes on me and get direction I get insecure. It has got better over the years, but I still struggle. I think it is because I have not been on big sets that much, mostly small teams where everybody knows each other. I’m unsure if the director gives directions to the talent or if he want me to do it. Does he want me to show him some angles or should he direct me?

What is the best way to know how a director works and to make a good connection that both, he and I have a good feeling about each other. Often I find myself in the situation where the director or 1st AD have a vision for the project in their heads, but can’t tell me how it should look or feel then I don’t know if my camerawork matches to the story or their ideas. Do you have any advice for me?

Marcus from Germany

Question 2: (00:18:10 – 00:30:33)

I’ve been working for a small company for about 6 years as one of their cinematographers. Weirdly enough you worked for them back in the late 80’s as a gaffer. Anyway I want to ask for any advice you could give me about keeping your cool on set and communicating with your team. We’ve all been there when it seems like everything will go wrong. What do you do?

My problem is, I am horrible at communicating to my crew, I’m very introverted and my frustration starts to easily show. I start to get into a panic. I feel my work suffers mainly because of my lack of communication. With schedules tight, budgets lowered, and inexperienced crew, I like to use these reasons as an excuse why I’m not happy with my work. I would like to move on to higher end commercial work and not struggle to pay the bills. I know I’m capable of it. Anytime the company lands a high end spot or a movie rolls through, I’m looked over and someone else is brought in because I think its my flaws in communicating or think negatively. Rightfully so, no-one wants to deal with that.

I would appreciate any advice you may have on keeping a good attitude and talking with your crew and production team.


Question 3: (00:30:37 – 00:37:28)

Hi Shane, hi Lydia!

My Name is Jonathan and I’m an 14 year old Filmmaker from Austria. I have been a DP on multiple award winning short films and I just started my own business doing Commercials (which has been running pretty good lately) but I ALWAYS RUN INTO THE SAME PROBLEM: People don’t treat me with respect based on my skills, they would rather treat me as the little kid from next floor.

So my question is:

Could you think of a way for me to get treated, based on my range of skills and not my age? Btw. I have learned more from the Inner Circle/Hurlbut Academy than from the (I guess in America it would be called a Film High school) that I am attending! Thanks a lot, although most of these things are often a little too professional.

I’d be thankful for a mention in the next podcast, and greetings from Austria,


Submit your podcast questions to Shane and Lydia.

If you liked this – take a look at this to read further:

5 Tips for Growing Your Filmmaking Career

Director and DP Communication

All audio edited on HP Z840 workstations using HP Z24x DreamColor monitors.

  • Cinematography
  • communicate
  • communication
  • family
  • Film
  • filmmaking
  • friendship
  • relationship
  • Relationships