When I was growing up, I never would have guessed that someone would want to ask me questions about what I did, so they could tell other people. I’m not saying it happens often, and I’m definitely not saying I’m famous, which is why I guess I still find it wonderful and odd when anyone contacts me and says “I’m doing an article and I’d like to interview you.”
I guess what I’m trying to say in a weird way is thank you. Thank you for letting me be one of the lucky ones that gets to do what he really loves to do.
I was thinking about it the other day. I was in a hammock, in the Peruvian rainforest, drinking a cold Cusqueña beer, and strangely feeling, for the first time, successful. All my life I’ve always had this feeling of “I need to be somewhere else” or “well this won’t last”. Swaying back and forth, listening to the Howler Monkeys bark at each other, and being paid to experience all this, I felt for the first time a calmness that I can only say was success. I didn’t want anything else, anything more, anything different. I was just really happy how it all turned out.
I’m lucky. I’m lucky I had great parents, great teachers and great friends. I’m lucky I had the time and the drive to follow a dream, and I’m lucky that people gave me a chance to do that dream for them.
So thank you.
That’s all, just a little moment of gratitude from a very not famous person who is very happy to do what he does. Below is the interview from Constructed By which is a cool site that spotlights creative people. Check it out and hopefully be inspired.
Who are you, and what do you do?
My name is Roberto Serrini and I do perhaps too many things. Mainly I am a director, usually for commercials or branded narratives. I work with brands like Lincoln, Guinness, Victoria’s Secret, Starbucks, big fun global brands. I’m a partner at a creative production company called No-Frames, where we conceptualize and execute film and commercial production.
I also am an avid drone pilot. I’ve been lucky to fly my camera in several countries around the world, capturing some beautiful footage. Besides that I do a bit of travel writing and photography for various magazines and blogs, allowing me to see the world, and experience the best of foreign cultures. Strangely I think all these passions feed into one another and make them independently stronger.
What forms of media have influenced you the most?
In the beginning, movies, hands down. I studied Film Theory which meant a lot of reading and watching of films and not a lot of making them. It was torture at first, especially for someone who only wanted to make something, but I can see now that being forced to really study the medium before attempting it made a huge impact on how I work now. We used to watch entire films with our ears, meaning, no visuals. It was like being trained as a Navy Seal for film. Once you start looking at your art in a different way, deconstructing it, I think it gives you the ability to truly control it.
Now though, I have to say that online digital media influences me a lot. There was a time that independent film was taking chances and doing things that were far and beyond the norm, pushing boundaries, breaking conventions, etc. Now you find that online, and it happens daily, immediately. There is always something new and fantastic happening, and the ability to share it at any moment with an audience to get feedback is a dream come true.
What hardware / software do you use?
Cameras, lots of cameras. I own 5D’s, FS700s’s, Arri’s, old Bolex’s, you name it. Lights and sound gear. Sliders and tripods. More glass then I will ever need. If you make films you end up collecting gear along the way, like scars from a war. Anything I don’t personally have we rent. As for software I stick mainly with Adobe these days; I used to be a FCP jockey but ever since they dumped it for X I went over to Premiere full time. Lot’s of After Effects, Photoshop and Lightroom. I started as an editor with a lust for motion graphics, so as a Director I still love to edit my own work, and clients like it too because it keeps the projects streamlined and fluid.
Don’t forget the good ol pen and paper. I write. A lot. Everyday. The old ways are the best some times.
What would be your dream creative setup?
It depends on what I’m doing. If its writing or editing, I have to be alone and usually with an internet connection. The internet has become a piece of my memory where I’ll say, “What was that video I saw with the guy in the green screen suit?” Then I can Google it and see it and incorporate that idea into mine. It’s invaluable. And being alone while working is a necessity because you have to dig a bit of a hole to dive into so you can juggle all these puzzle pieces and make something. Creation a lot of the time is the balance between solidarity and communion.
Otherwise, if we’re being creative, or directing on set, I like lots and lots of movement. I like an active set, where people are working their best. Where ideas are coming and we’re dealing with them in real time. Where problems are arising and we’re solving them as they come. Sure, quiet sets are fine too, and the work gets done, but personally, at the end of the day we’ve made something brilliant and it was chaos to do so, it’s extremely rewarding.