*Note: Woman Wednesday is a part of our blog. Each Woman Wednesday post will feature a woman who would like to share information in the hopes of inspiring and motivating other women. Comments are welcome below.
Q and A with Allison, Denver, Colorado
“I believe that if we let ourselves be paralyzed by our fears, we’ll never achieve our full potential.”
Q: What are you passionate about?
A: I’m passionate about documentary filmmaking because of the ability to connect people through stories. I’m currently touring the film festival circuit with a documentary about two elderly, married entomologists. I’ve filmed digital content for clients like National Geographic, the BBC, the Travel Channel, Lonely Planet, NBC, and a host of others.
Steve Jobs famously said, ‘The most powerful person in the world is the storyteller. The storyteller sets the vision, values, and agenda of an entire generation to come.’ I fully believe that! Stories have such incredible power to inspire, to reveal our shared humanity, to bring about positive change, and to create empathy and emotion (humor being one of my favorites).
I’m also really passionate about helping female entrepreneurs acquire the skills to create their own video content from home. With the development of the COVID-19 coronavirus, I think a lot of women will be working from home over the next few months, doing more video conference calls, and trying to incorporate DIY video into their business to bring in clients. I wanted to help other women continue to succeed with their businesses! So, I recently began sharing the knowledge I’ve acquired over the years from big-budget film shoots and digital storytelling content and modifying it to help women create high-quality DIY videos from home. I’m really dedicated to helping them learn to make videoes and storytelling their business ally. I’m passionate about showing them not only learn how to use gear but also how to map out the story arc, messaging, and branding in each of their videos and conference calls with clients; how to develop a strategy before they begin putting up videos; and how to map out the way in which each video plays into the larger story of their business. Once they have that knowledge and skill set, they will have such incredible power to inspire and connect with clients!
Q: What were your younger years like?
A: I was a major introvert as a child. I was very quiet and spent an enormous amount of time reading. I loved stories, and I read everything from Roman mythology to the history of Dorothea Lange, to the latest science fiction novels. At 15, I began taking summer school classes at Stanford, and I later received both my undergraduate and master’s degrees from Stanford. My early fascination with storytelling influenced my decision to become a newspaper reporter after graduation. After a time, I transitioned to telling stories through film and video and incorporated the skills of a print journalist into my approach to documentaries and digital content.
Q: What is something valuable you’d like others to know?
A: When I first picked up a camera, I remember being very intimidated by the technical aspects of it. And I remember being similarly daunted by all of the logistics and crafting of a story arc when I made my first film. But I believe that if we let ourselves be paralyzed by our fears, we’ll never achieve our full potential. I steadily acquired the storytelling and production skills and the knowledge of film gear, and I would love to help other women out with that—especially female entrepreneurs who are working at home and need to incorporate DIY video into their business. I definitely empathize with how video can initially feel very formidable. My message is: Don’t let that fear paralyze you! There are so many ways to DIY it. And I’m more than willing to help anyone out that needs advice. There are many statistics about the power of videos and storytelling, but for me, it all comes down to the ability to connect with others, to inspire and motivate them, and to foster our shared humanity.
Q: What does feminism mean to you?
A: To me, being a modern feminist means supporting those who identify as women, lifting each other up, amplifying our voices, and having the right to personally choose how we live our lives. I also think it’s crucial to consider feminism through an intersectional lens if we want the movement to be truly inclusive and representative of the voices of women of all races, classes, religions, abilities, and orientations.
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