It is always exciting to listen to filmmakers speak about their experiences, inspirations, and future. In this article, we will be speaking to Titus Cole, a filmmaker based in London, United Kingdom. Titus has several years of experience with freelance filmmaking. Titus is also a cinematographer, proving his understanding of the field more thoroughly by studying the various aspects of the art. He has been working on his personal projects and collaborative works since 2014. He also worked at Lord of the Mics.
NY Art Life: Thank you so much for being our guest. It is fascinating speaking to an incredible filmmaker like you. To start this off, can you tell us what drew you into filmmaking?
Titus Cole: Thank you for having me, it is always a pleasure speaking about the arts. I was always intrigued by movies and film of various genres. I love watching film, but from an early time I enjoyed thinking about the different elements of film. There are so many things that make a movie happen, lighting, cinematography, music, theme, characters, and so on. It is always nice watching film, but I wanted to be part of the storytelling side of it too. That is why I pursued film.
NY Art Life: That is wonderful, thank you for showing us your viewpoint. Could you also tell us about one of your projects?
Titus Cole: I was extremely fortunate to work at the Lord of the Mics, to document their tenth anniversary and seventh edition of the clash. It is an exquisite series about Jamaican grime clashes, where grime MC compete together in every clash. When I first began there, I knew I loved film and documenting stories with the lens of a filmmaker and a cinematographer. But when I began entering their world, I realized how much music impacted me both as a viewer and as a filmmaker. As part of the tenth anniversary special, there were ten clashes. There were so many amazing MCs that year; Kozzie, Mez, Blessed, Row D, Jaykae to name a few. But apart from being able to be present in the process of these clashes, I learned so much about how music and recording music in a specific way can impact a piece of film. Of course, I always knew how important of a role music and score play in film but working on such an impactful project cemented my thoughts on film and music. I thought about the role of music much more deeply after that. Furthermore, in the last period I have collaborated with important companies, such as SBTV and Biggafish With whom I have filmed international stars such as Tory Lanez and YG in documentary form. I love my work, above all because it has allowed me to collaborate with artists such as Jacquees, Wizkid, Kret & Konan, RAe Sremmud, and many many others. Working with artists of this importance requires continuous commitment and professionalism. It takes empathy to resume their performance.
NY Art Life: That is very moving, thank you so much for sharing that. What do you hope to create next?
Titus Cole: After several commissions and personal projects, I realized how much I enjoy working on the cinematography myself. For my next project, I want to heavily focus on cinematography and the ways I can inform my storytelling and my narrative with my cinematography technique. There is so much a filmmaker can do with skillful moves and motions of the camera. This means that a filmmaker who participates in the cinematography must be fluent in film cameras as well. Fortunately, I have been able to learn more and more over the years and experiment my own style with my understanding of cinematography. So that is my goal; to create a film with camera work just as impactful as the story.
NY Art Life: Fabulous! Good luck on your project. At last, what advice would you give to younger filmmakers or a younger version of yourself?
Titus Cole: Keep going! The road to filmmaking is a long and bumpy one, but you cannot give up. It is an exceptionally long and strenuous process, one that you must trust to create something. But to make a film, the process must also seem clear. That means you need to have a plan and a budget for doing things. So, it is always best to begin with a simple plan or concept. Then, with the knowledge of your budget and a good understanding of your capabilities you will be able to expand the areas you will be covering, such as if your project will have a score or a specific lighting. Overall, it is important to have fun and enjoy the filmmaking process in a way like how viewers enjoy the film.
NY Art Life
Thanks, Titus, for your availability, we are waiting for you in New York for your next project. NYC needs artists like you.