Film Connection student Steven Deleonardis: branching out from San Diego!
“I’ve gone to Hawaii, I’ve gone to Miami, Oregon, and a couple of other places,” says Film Connection student Steven Deleonardis about his recent assignments. “It’s been great. I get to travel to different parts of the United States. And it’s interesting—it’s like personal development. That’s stuff I’m interested in, so it’s a win-win. I get to work with cameras and get paid for it.”
The work Steven’s been doing is on assignment with EQ Studios in San Diego, California, where he’s been externing under Film Connection mentor Hector Ramos. “[Hector has] taught me a lot about…the business aspect,” he says. “We work together on a lot of stuff. We talk about a lot of business things. So he’s helped me a lot in that, just to deal with clients and all that. And then the main guy, Andrew, is one of my other mentors there. He’s taught me a lot, everything, from shooting and editing.”
Steven’s interest in film work began early on, he says, as he and some other kids in his neighborhood, would remake scenes from Star Wars with his parent’s camcorder. After high school, he started scoping out film schools and decided on the Film Connection because of the hands-on aspect of the program. “It really made a lot of sense to me,” he says, “and it sparked that again for me that I could see that I could actually work at a production studio, and do something I really didn’t know how I would get into in the first place.”
Steven says like many people trying to get into the industry, he started out thinking he might want to direct, but as he began going through the various aspects of filmmaking through the program, he found his interests begin to shift. “What I found is that I enjoy cinematography the most,” says Steven. “I’m really into the technical aspects of camera and lighting.”
As Steven has made himself available at the studio and proven himself with hard work, his mentor has involved him in more and more paid projects, which is what has led to the trips to Miami, Hawaii and so on. Steven is quickly becoming part of the studio life, and even as he works with a friend on some short films on the side, he’s grateful to be getting a paycheck doing what he loves. “It’s been awesome,” he says. “I’ve done so many cool things in the studio I’ve been working with. I’ve had a great experience with Film Connection.”