In a community like ours, we are lucky to witness all kinds of dynamic change: new faces coming in, others heading out; business growth and pivots, from names to specializations to total one-eighties; babies, weddings, new friendships, and everything in between. Perhaps these transitions are amplified in a House filled with creatives, as it feels to me that we tend to be more 'in motion' than most: travel, transition and evolution are the norm.
Regan is no exception, and I've loved getting to know her in those times 'in between' that she's been in the House with us. She'll be off again soon on a new adventure; but, before she goes, here's a peek at the story of how she got started with her business and the passions that drive her forward.
What are you drinking?
I drink a lot of water.
Current mood in less than 3 words:
Ready for Sunday.
How did you discover that cinematography was what you wanted to do?
I think that I've just been doing it for so long. It started when I was a kid; my brother and I would make funny home videos, which grew into a hobby and eventually became my passion.
How'd you take the leap from passion to full time job?
I actually made the decision when I was backpacking on the Appalachian trail for a week. I was with my brother and dad, and did a lot of thinking while hiking 10 miles a day. It had come to a point when I realized that I could make a better living and have a better lifestyle with the freedom to create my own schedule by producing videos.
What's your favorite part about what you do?
I have so much freedom, not just for my schedule but for creativity and improvement. Monotony is my worst nightmare, so I really am able to thrive being in a field where I am able to try something new and figure out ways to make my films better. Plus, being able to take time off more than two weeks a year whenever I want is a definite perk.
How has Social House helped you with the way you do business?
By keeping me sane. It's provided me a space outside of my home to be able to work and meet like-minded people. The camaraderie is huge for someone that needs to spend hours on end editing in front of a computer, so I joined for the social aspects as well as an opportunity to grow business from within.
Any productivity tips or secrets?
I try to do the things I like the least while I'm on my coffee high in the morning. I force myself to get through that work and save the more creative projects for when I am better focused. Then towards the end of the day when I'm tired I can do the monotonous tasks that don't require much inspiration.
Any tips for other creatives looking to start their own business?
Just start. I would say price yourself inexpensively at first just to gain a lot of experience. As your knowledge and skills grow, so do your prices — because your work becomes more valuable. Also, talk to a lot to people doing it. Shadow them and learn from them, which will be just as valuable as any degree or class.
Your ah-ha moment:
On the trail ^
What's the most challenging part of owning your own business?
The most challenging part is the video industry is constantly changing, so it's difficult trying to keep up with the different equipment and technology that is rapidly improving the quality of films. The spectrum between amateur and professional film is so wide. You've got YouTube bloggers on one end, and Hollywood movies on the other.
And the most rewarding part?
There's no medium that is able to tell a story with more emotion than a film can. So I love when I am able to really impact someone with something I've created — whether it's a non-profit story or wedding film.
What's the most rewarding part of your week:
There is a moment during my editing process where everything just matches up - when the music and moment and light are perfectly paired. I get goosebumps every time this happens.
Something that has happened while owning your own business that you never could have planned for or expected:
Well, I didn't plan on having to change my business name. When I started I was Regan Kramer Media, but now that I just got married, it feels weird to keep using that. So I'm transitioning to my first and middle name and focusing in on film only, changing the business name to Regan Elizabeth Films.
What do you wish more people knew about you?
That my faith in Jesus Christ is really the compass of my life. Through Him, I have been inspired to care deeply about people, especially those who are overlooked or forgotten. That's the heartbeat behind my work. It's more than just making films that look awesome, it’s developing the skills to tell stories that really need to be heard.
Your dream job:
If professional surfing is out of the picture, then I would love to be able to travel around the world with a non-profit to tell the stories of people the world's forgotten. So I guess documentaries with an aim to raise awareness and resources would be my ultimate aim.
Your favorite piece of work:
Two things: I just shot a couple in Big Sur (this past week), which provided an amazing backdrop with natural light on the gorgeous Pacific Coast, very different from where I normally shoot. Also, last year my brother and I were in Nepal, where we shot and produced a 25-minute film to raise money for a pastor we know who is building an orphanage there. Through that "passion project" we were able to help them get the funding to build the orphanage. People are willing to help these causes—they just need to hear the story.