Finding and Killing Obstacles Between You and Your Film

For several months I’ve been working on an idea for a documentary that is really getting me excited. I’m sick of being a “filmmaker” without a film. It is time to do a feature length project.


Ideas are Easy

Coming up with ideas is the easy part, executing them is another matter. I have a notebook full of ideas for shorts, docs and films but getting on the phone, scheduling shoots and paying for flights is where things get tricky.

Making Your First Move

I think the hardest part about making a film is finding the first hurdle between you and your idea and dealing with it. If you are going to make a film, you HAVE to get busy finding that first obstacle, staring it in the face, acknowledging it, finding a way to kill it, and then move on to the next obstacle.

The Obstacle


In my case, the obstacle is actually DSLR Video Shooter… I love making content for you guys, but running this site takes more work than most people think. I don’t do much production anymore (outside of the show), I haven’t done any web design work this year, all I do is film videos for the site, moderate comments, try to ignore trolls and attempt to answer all the emails I get. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE YOU GUYS and I am so blessed to have this community and job (if you can call it a job), but it has become a full-time gig that doesn’t allow for much free time.

So now I know what is keeping me back. Time to exhale, pull the trigger and make the kill…

The Kill

Now, don’t worry… I won’t be killing DSLR Video Shooter! Some obstacles can be killed. Being lazy for instance, just get off the couch/office chair/beach and start working on your film. A lot of the obstacles we have can’t be killed. If you have a family, you have a family. You can’t get rid of that (or at least you shouldn’t). So we have to get creative and find ways to work around some obstacles. I can’t kill something I love doing and something that keeps food on the table. So I have to get creative.

After looking closely at how I spend my time, I have found gear reviews take most of it. They take a ton of time to complete (testing the gear, learning new cameras, researching compatibility etc.) and they often have deadlines. I usually have around 10 reviews going on, each with a 30 day window to complete. I also have between 20 and 50 reviews lined up. Yeah, pretty dumb right? This is a problem for me, not only do I spend a ton of time working on my reviews, but all the fun tutorials that I miss get pushed back.

So I’ve decided to stop taking review requests and finish all the reviews I have committed to. I might take a few special reviews like the Canon 7D Mark II (#sarcasm) but will hold off on anything else and focus on getting my current queue emptied. From there, I have to complete some other content like my GH4 guide, A7s guide and a guide on filtration with Tiffen.

From there, I’ll be free to start working on some films! And of course I’ll keep working on tutorials and videos on development and behind the scenes.



Once we make that first kill we can sprint for a little while, but we will inevitably run into another obstacle, but this time we’ll know how to take it down.

What are You Waiting For?

What obstacles stand between you and your first step toward making a film? We can all use some encouragement and inspiration to get moving on a film. So please, share your obstacles and how you plan to deal with them!