Meta Quest 2's “Untethered” (spec spot)

Taylor Ellis

Unaffiliated

 

What was your first professionally directed work and when was it? 
I’ve directed a lot more projects for free than I’ve been paid to direct, but I got my first paid directing gig toward the end of 2019 with a series of branded content videos for The Home Depot.

How did you get into directing? 
I’ve been making films in one form or another since I was a kid. Professionally, I make a living mainly as an editor and cinematographer, but the pursuit of this craft has been innate for as long as I can remember. I’m always trying to create opportunities to make the next thing, whatever that may be.

What is your most recent project? 
This spec commercial “Unthetered” is my most recent completed work, but I always have at least a couple other projects in the works!

What is the best part of being a director? 
Getting to see the miracle of collaboration reveal something that’s actually watchable is both extremely exciting as well as mind boggling. It’s so fulfilling to lead a group of creatives to come together and make a piece of work that is bigger than themselves.

What is the worst part of being a director? 
It’s really difficult to practice this craft. Every project you do you want to be better than the last, and when you are working on spec or on personal projects, it can take some time to save up the money to make that next thing.

What is your current career focus: commercials and branded content, television, movies? Do you plan to specialize in a particular genre--comedy, drama, visual effects, etc.? 
I’m currently focused on getting more work in the commercial and branded content space, but I’m always developing some long-form scripted projects in the background. I’m at a point in my career where I’m ready for some bigger challenges, so I’m excited to see what doors open up.

Tell us about your background (i.e., where did you grow up? Past jobs?) 
The goal for me has always been to make films. I’ve been making films since I was a kid, so because

How has the pandemic impacted your career, art, craft, shaped your attitudes and reflections on life which in turn may influence your work, approach, spirit, mindset?
Although my spec commercial was made somewhat after things opened back up, the pandemic made it really difficult to make anything. It was nearly impossible to gather a team, not to mention the financial turmoil that many freelancers were thrust into. I used all the free time I had to teach myself how to animate, and I used my skills and a director, cinematographer, and editor to put together a piece that didn’t require a huge budget or a large team.

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