I recently had the opportunity to exclusively interview Imani Sparks to learn five random facts about herself, and what lessons she has learned about being a freelance filmmaker. Check out my interview with Imani below:
Loryn: How has your production company grown since the pandemic?
Imani: It.SPARKS media, LLC has grown to be so much more than I expected in just the few months that we have been around. I started this company in September of 2020 shortly after graduation from graduate school at New York Film Academy. I set out to help my friends and also to get a jump start and give myself time to grow and really work to build company beyond what I imagine it could be! We are already preparing to release our first short film which is a huge accomplishment amid the pandemic.
Loryn: What lesson have you've learned from being a freelance filmmaker?
Imani: There were two lessons actually. First, I needed people I could depend on and second, the insight to educate myself in areas I didn’t know. I realized how much I learned and gained through experience. I had to learn where my flaws were and fix them before fully presenting myself. I have to find out the things I don’t know so I can gain knowledge before attempting the job. I’ve done all that through every experience I’ve had before now. Especially with my new short that I just filmed. So, when I say I need people, I needed my friends Sneha and Joe to help me sort everything out. Leaning on your team is so very important. One person can’t do it all and being open to help from those around you is such an important lesson. My Team has always been right there to step in for support and I’d do the same for them.
Loryn: What have you've learned about yourself during the pandemic?
Imani: I have learned that I struggled with allowing myself to need and trust people with things that mean a lot to me, and that I need to strengthen my faith. I found out that I need to stop reacting to things that are hard and just be calm and do my part. Truly believe that God has me. I was tested so heavily for the past year and half and everything I thought wouldn’t work out, did. So why do I allow myself to stress when I’ve been ok in the end. Just like with my short film coming out at the end of summer, I learned that this profession is hard, but learning to understand and better control my emotions, allowed me to overcome many of the challenges that I was faced with. Once I calmed down, things started to find their way and the film is beautiful. Learning through experience is key and I wouldn’t have had it any other way.
Loryn: What advice do you have for those interested in becoming a filmmaker?
Imani: First, never let anyone tell you, you can’t do something you’re passionate about! A lot of times people are going to want to change your story and push their beliefs on you. You have to stand strong in what you want. You decide when you need an opinion or advice but let it be from someone who will keep it real with you. Second, build a team! You need people. I can’t stress that enough! It’s ok if you don’t know everything, there will always be someone who knows what you don’t. Above all, know you were made for this. You didn’t come this far for nothing.
Loryn: What is something people would be surprised to learn about you?
Imani: I think the only thing anyone is ever surprised about me is that I’m a snowboarder. I have been snowboarding since I was 14. It’s something my father and I picked up after watching the x-games. It’s one of the best things that my dad and I do together. I’m always happy to see him having so much fun. I have two snowboards myself but only one is able to be used so I plan on buying more. No one probably thinks I’m serious enough to buy more snowboards, but I am!
Stay updated with Imani Sparks by visiting her website: http://itsparksmedia.com/ . Be sure to follow Imani Sparks on social media:
YT: it.SPARKS media