MEET AN AWC ALUM: ALLI NAKAMURA

The Armed With a Camera Fellowship for Emerging Media Artists has recently opened its call for Fellows for its 2016-2017 cycle. Applications are due October 7, 2016. For submission guidelines and more info, click here.

What’s been keeping you busy? How has life been after AWC? What projects are you currently working on right now? 
Currently spending time between Salt Lake City and Los Angeles. I run a mobile app agency with a few friends I grew up with, we are based in Koreatown. I’ll take a few weeks at a time and work remotely in Salt Lake City. The Nisei population is dwindling and time is of the essence. My goal here is to document and preserve as much of the history as possible. 

How did you first hear about AWC? What made you decide to apply?
I was introduced to AWC while interning at VC. I remember stapling all of the applications coming in and thought how cool it’d be to make some sort of film. I had an idea of the story I wanted to tell but didn’t know how or where to start. A couple years later I was still hesitant. Milton encouraged me to not let my lack of experience stop me from applying. So I put together the treatment I was passionate about and applied.

Tell us, how has the program experience challenged your filmmaking process?
AWC forced me to jump into the entire filmmaking process. A big challenge was juggling the planning, filming, and learning the technical aspects to create a short documentary. A lot of the time I felt like I was winging it, not sure of how things were supposed to be done. But working as a one-woman-crew was something I wanted to do in order to learn all the different aspects of the process. Milton, Ann, and the AWC fellows generously offered their guidance and expertise which helped me a lot through the entire process. 

How did it feel to be a part of the AWC Fellowship - working amongst AAPI filmmakers?
It was a super inspiring experience to be amongst the AAPI filmmakers in the fellowship. Everyone had their vision and story to tell. The environment was encouraging and constructive. At the end of the fellowship, I felt connected to a supportive and creative community of filmmakers. 

Who do you think would benefit most of the AWC Fellowship?
The fellowship provides the environment, resources, and community to support anyone who wants to tell their story through film. For my initial exposure to filmmaking, it was the most positive and encouraging experience. 

What did it mean to you to have your film premiered at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival?
I remember being really nervous, not knowing what to expect sharing my short on the big screen in front of a crowd for the first time. To be in a theater with my family and friends, hearing people’s reaction, was beyond anything I could’ve imagined. The support and energy of the night gave me the encouragement to keep on creating past my own fears and doubts. VC and AWC Fellowship provided such an experience that I will always be grateful for. 

The Armed With a Camera Fellowship for Emerging Media Artists has recently opened its call for Fellows for its 2016-2017 cycle. Applications are due October 7, 2016. For submission guidelines and more info, click here.