We catch up with cinematographer, filmmaker and storyteller Josh Mudrovcic as he shares his passion for conceptualising videography for the creative, corporate, tourism and fitness industries. For more of his work, visit his website or follow him on Instagram.

How did you become a full-time filmmaker and what other career path might you have taken?

Making videos has been a passion of mine since I was in school – making skateboarding and holiday videos. After school, I went straight to university without a clue as to what I wanted to do with my life. I chose to study architecture and lasted up until halfway through my second year when I decided that it wasn’t for me. I then applied for and got a job at my church as the full-time production manager, where my filmmaking journey really started. I spent a couple of years there before I left and started a creative hub business with a few friends, which I then left after a year to pursue my passion on my own. A year and a half later, things are going better than ever and I am still amazed at some of the things I get to do! My wife has been such an inspiration throughout this journey, encouraging me to chase my dream no matter the risk.

If I didn’t pursue filmmaking and photography, I would have pursued something in the creative industry. Whether that be music, some sort of design or something of that nature, I think I was always bound to do something creative. 

© Josh Mudrovcic

What does a filmmaker do?

So in my field, there are quite a few different avenues that I have I find myself operating in. I shoot weddings, as they are a great way to tell beautiful stories and put together true “films”. I also shoot a lot of corporate content that companies use for online marketing. Another avenue I am trying to get into is the travel and tourism industry, which I have found to be the most challenging. I have also secured my first two documentaries which will be shot in 2020.

Please take us through the process of creating a short film?

When putting a film together, the first point of order is to meet with the client as this allows its parties to gain a better understanding of budget, requirements, look and feel, and more. Next, I will usually go to the location of the shoot to get a general feel for the energy at the location. I will also look for micro-locations and pay attention to how the light works in the area. I will then go back to the office, do some more prep in terms of creative shots and inspiration before proceeding with the shoot, dumping footage, backing up files on three different drives, and starting with the edits. After many hours of editing, I will send the draft off to the client who then approves and the project is brought to a close. 

Which three elements would you say a short video should have to make it captivating?

  1. Firstly, I think every successful and captivating video or film always has an attention-grabbing opening sequence. This is essential in both the planning of the project as well as the execution of the edit. 
  2. The second element that it needs to have is a clear story, allowing the viewer to go on a journey and enjoy an experience. The story is always king, regardless of what sort of video or film one is producing. 
  3. Thirdly, no matter what the project is about (corporate, wedding, documentary, vlog, short film, etc.), I believe that every video or film needs to be of high quality. In other words, beautiful imagery shot and edited to the best of one’s ability is an element that some may overlook. However, I feel that this is essential. 

© Josh Mudrovcic

What goes into making a successful career as a photographer and filmmaker, and what is the most challenging part of your job?

There a few things one needs to take into consideration. Firstly, as is the case in any career, you need to be willing to put in long hours of hard work before reaching any sort of “success”. In a generation of instant reward and instant gratification, having this attitude is fairly rare these days. I am only where I am today because of years of hard work. 

Another aspect is always being open to learning. In the creative industry, individuals are often too proud to take advice and guidance from others; however, this is never beneficial. One also needs to constantly be learning and trying different things, whether it be through YouTube tutorials, short courses, etc. Having an attitude that is hard-working, always keen to learn, and confident in the technicalities of photography and filmmaking will all lead you to your version of success. 

The most challenging part of my job is thinking of new ways to keep growing, reach bigger clients and ultimately get bigger projects. This comes down to the “business” side of things which, as a creative, is more than often the most difficult aspect to navigate. 

If someone is planning to start with cinematography, what equipment is essential to making it work?

In my opinion, I don’t feel that there is one piece of equipment that is the “be all, end all”. However, assuming someone has a decent camera body and lens and is looking to take their work to a new level, I would recommend some form of stabiliser whether it be a tripod, monopod, glidecam or gimbal.

© Josh Mudrovcic

What is in your gear bag and what editing programmes do you use?

At the moment I shoot with two Canon EOS R full-frame mirrorless bodies, which is an incredible camera for hybrid shooters. This paired with some amazing Canon L-series glass has been an amazing tool. I also shoot with the DJI Ronin-S gimbal which helps me get shots that I wouldn’t have been able to otherwise. For aerial shots, I shoot with the DJI Mavic 2 Zoom; a mind-blowing drone which allows for some awesome creativity. I edit in Adobe Premiere Pro and Adobe After Effects for video work. For stills, I use Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom

What marketing avenues do you invest in?

I invest almost all my marketing budget into online marketing. This is social media, as well as websites, etc. The obvious other ones are business cards; essential for any individual in the workplace.