Welcome to the DIY Documentary blog! The times they are a-changing…and now is the perfect time to get that doc made that you’ve been thinking about for too long. The playing field is even; the days of expensive equipment and large film crews are behind us. Anybody with an interest in storytelling and a passion to learn can make a great documentary!
My name is Jack Ballo and I am a self-taught filmmaker and screenplay writer who has made several documentaries by myself from start to finish. I have been compelled to share my experiences in this DIY documentary blog as well as in workshops by teaching filmmaking from the simplest approach.
Unlike doc workshops and courses that tell you how to budget your film and raise funds, along with how many people you will need to hire to make your film…I teach people how to do all aspects of making the film by yourself. Everything from concept to distribution and I know how to do this because this is how I make all of my films.
I’ve made three award-winning DIY documentaries without any crew or staff working with me. My latest project is a short DIY iPhone doc that will be screened at film festivals throughout 2018. My first screenplay was purchased and was recently made into an independent feature film. I studied the art of story telling and learned that a good story in a documentary is just as important as a narrative fiction film.
I also learned about DIY filmmaking by making mistakes, taking chances, analyzing the viewer’s point of view and asking questions to anybody who knows more than me. I researched great documentary filmmakers and watched their films with a pen and paper in my hand. I listened to their interviews on YouTube and I read about them. I attended filmmaking workshops and courses that were comprehensive and focused on one specific topic at a time. I am also a big believer in learning from a finished product. The best part of learning about filmmaking is that your competition shows you all their skills and ideas in their finished films. There are no secrets in this business, everything about great documentary filmmaking is open to the world to see and learn from. Just turn on Netflix.
By following this blog, you will learn about things that nobody else is talking about. I’ll share with you what I’ve learned as a DIY documentary filmmaker and how I made my films. In each of my blog posts I cover a specific area of DIY filmmaking with information that may help you with your documentary. I am challenging anyone who has a story inside them, to follow this blog and learn about “Do-It-Yourself” documentary filmmaking. Your first film may be just around the corner!