Meet Art Montana Competing Filmmaker and Scientist Caitlin Bailey

February 9, 2015

 Who are you and what’s your filmmaking background?

My name is Caitlin Bailey and I am a scientist turned filmmaker. I am a Master’s of Fine Arts candidate at Montana State University’s Science and Natural History Filmmaking program. I have been in the film industry for three years now and have done projects for NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Montana PBS, Montana University System, The Value of the Wild and other freelance opportunities. I enjoy cinematography, especially live broadcast, but I am also proficient at producing and editing.

 What are you working on right now?

I am currently working on my thesis film, which is an experimental conservation film about the poaching of elephants and rhinos through the use of unicorns. My goal is to give a fresh face to conservation films.

What are you promoting?

I am promoting my film Deep Roots Montana for the Montana Art Competition. This film highlights a photographer from Butte, Montana who is connecting the past with the present through her photography.

Screen Shot 2015-01-30 at 11.47.29 AM

still from “Deep Roots Montana”

What do you want the audience to take away from your films?

I want to ignite a spark of momentum that influences change in my audience. For example, after watching Deep Roots Montana, I want my audience to be inspired to talk with their family members about their history and to potentially record it for future generations.

 What’s your favorite story from filmmaking?

I was filming with a couple of friends in Yellowstone National Park and we needed to go through some very thick snow. I had never put snowshoes on before, but I thought I had secured them tightly enough. I got about halfway through the trek when both of my snowshoes fell off and I found myself in thigh-deep snow. I couldn’t stop laughing, especially because my boots were so deep in the snow that they kept slipping off when I tried to pull my legs out. I had to hand my camera and tripod off to my friend so I could wade out of the cold powder. To be honest with you, I’m still not sure how to put snowshoes on.

 What are your wildest dreams for your filmmaking career?

I hope to eventually get my feet wet in underwater filmmaking, pun intended. I want to explore different parts of the world with my camera as my companion and share new discoveries. My dreams are full of adventure and wonder.

What is something bizarre about you?

I’m making a conservation film about unicorns. That’s pretty bizarre.

 What currently inspires you?

My inspiration comes from my passion for wildlife and the natural world. This passion has led me my entire life and has now brought me to filmmaking, which I adore. I may not have many wildlife films in my repertoire, but it still remains the base of my being.

What’s your best advice for an aspiring filmmaker?

I believe that, when you’re starting out, it’s important to make films about things you know because you’re a good candidate to tell that story. Gym Germs: From Rags to Petri Dishes was my first film and, really, at the root of it, I basically recorded a science experiment and its results. I knew how to do the experiment because I had done it while getting my science degree. However, you should also branch out to other topics that you may not know anything about. One of my favorite things about filmmaking is how much freedom it offers. In science, you have to pick one research topic and stick with it most of your life. Through filmmaking, though, I have been able to make films about space weather and materials science, areas that I would never have been able to touch if I had stayed a researcher. Filmmaking is a great learning tool not only for your audience, but for you as well.

Follow Caitlin Bailiey’s career at The Audience Awards where you can view and support her Art Montana competing film Deep Roots Montana.

Visit her  website at www.cbfilmandphoto.com

The Audience Awards is film’s social network connecting audiences to films, filmmakers, film schools and film festivals. The Audience Awards hosts short film competitions where the audience chooses the best films. 

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