Filmmakers: Macaela Vandermost

Macaela Vandermost originally got into film to avoid homework.  Editor’s note: wish I’d thought of that.  She found that if she told her teachers she would make a video about a subject, she could get out of writing a report.  With a VHS camera, she created elaborate productions with other kids in the neighborhood.  While in college she worked as an editor on a local TV show (Comm Ave).  “I spent more time at the TV network than at college, and made more friends there too.  It was really fun, more like a club than a job.”  She was promoted to a producer before she graduated.  She says getting a job in post-production after that was pretty easy.

Today Macaela calls herself a Creative Director.  “It’s the only title that encompasses everything I do.”  She runs her own production company and supervises a staff of seven full-time employees plus freelancers.  On any given day she could be on set directing, in the editing suite, meeting clients, or giving comments on others’ work.

She says it’s hard to say exactly when Newfangled Studios started.  “I went freelance five years ago, and took on any projects I could.  If there was more work than I could do, I’d hire a freelance crew.  I started renting space and hiring staff about three years ago.”  The majority of their clients are ad agencies.  They do branded documentary films, infographic animations, and corporate industrials.

One of the things Macaela enjoys most is collaborating.  “When working with an ad agency, you get the dynamic of a whole new set of coworkers for every project.”  For any given project, there is a new brand message and new people to meet at the agency and brand.

Macaela also has a film of her own which is a collaboration with her wife, Jenna VanderMost.  It’s a documentary about a guy named Jarrett, who grew up in a family of skydivers (his parents skydived into their own wedding).  At an early age he became hooked on skydiving, and when he seemed to be on top of the world he went too far, and tore his spinal cord in a ground launching accident.  Macaela and crew filmed him as he retrained to enter the USPA Skydiving Championships — the “Superbowl of skydiving” — as a paraplegic.

“We’d ultimately like to make this into a branded film.  One audience for this film is extreme sports people, so those brands would be great.”

Her company is moving toward doing branded films on a more full-time basis, complemented by branded animations.  “There’s a lot of space right now for creating video that people seek out instead of pushing ads at them before what they chose to watch.”  Newfangled is looking forward to more collaborations with people who create content viewers are seeking out.  “I’m a passionate story teller — at the end of the day, if you can tell a great story you can engeage your audience.”


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