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Making the Grade: Blending the Technical with the Creative with Lindsey Mazur

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Forager colourist on starting out at The Mill, always asking questions and appreciating the path you are on

Making the Grade: Blending the Technical with the Creative with Lindsey Mazur

Lindsey Mazur is a colourist and multi-disciplinary artist based in Chicago, Illinois. Lindsey has collaborated with numerous brands including Nike, Levi's, Under Armour, & Vogue on a global scale. Her work runs the gamut — from broadcast & online commercial campaigns, to music videos for the likes of Charli XCX & Jamilah Woods, to narrative films travelling the festival circuit. She loves collaborating with local talent, as well as emerging artists & filmmakers. In her spare time, she loves to shoot film and digital photography.

LBB> First experience in the world of colour grading / when did you know you wanted to pursue it?

Lindsey> I’ve always been drawn to post production. Ever since I was a kid messing around with clunky camcorders making home videos. It was always in the final editing / finishing stages that I had the most fun. But it wasn’t until college that I learned what a colourist was. I was working as a runner at The Mill over my winter break, in the early day of the Chicago studio. There was only one colourist there at the time, Luke Morrison. I remember coming in to check on his suite but lingering in the doorway to ask him all sorts of questions and watching him press all these buttons! It really just opened my world up. I loved knowing there was a career that blended the technical and creative sides of my favourite stage in the creative process.


LBB> How / where did you hone your craft and did you have any particular mentors?

Lindsey> I began at The Mill Chicago. I was an assistant there for about four years. I remember feeling quite in over my head at the start, but I had such incredible people helping pave the way for me. I learned so much of what I know from Luke. In the first couple years I was there, he empowered me to really get creative with the tools I was using in order to achieve new results, and to always stay curious. Matt Osborne was with us for some time as well; he reminded me to explore new looks to find what works and never be afraid to start over. In later years, Mikey Pehanich and Oisin O’Driscoll both helped me along as I was honing my own style and approach. It was never any one person, but rather the sum of everyone’s patience and generosity with their time that I was able to learn and grow so much in my time at The Mill.

LBB> We’ve found that colourists often love art and photography. When you’re out of the studio, what inspires you?

Lindsey> I agree, they usually go hand in hand. I personally love taking photos. I shoot both film and digital as of late, just depends on my mood and where I am. I have a little point and shoot Yashica that’s great to bring on walks around the city. Film feels more organic and spontaneous to me, which is why I find it’s a great medium when you want to balance shooting with savouring the moment too. Digital can be a lot of fun for me though, because it feels more exacting: for when you want that just-right shot. I love messing around in Lightroom at the end of some travel trip, poking through everything I shot that day and trying out different looks to create something that feels fresh and fun.

LBB> What advice would you give to a budding colourist?

Lindsey> Never be afraid to ask questions! Try to learn from those whose work you admire. Explore the work of artists you like, and figure out why it is you like their work. What do they do that makes their work stand out to you? Hone your own tastes. Then relish in what makes your own work stand apart. Every artist has something different to bring to the table. Lastly, start where you are and use what you have — a lot of us start by getting coffees, shadowing, or prepping a timeline. Acknowledge and appreciate the path you are on and how it is serving your future goals!

LBB> How is the craft and trade of colour grading changing?

Lindsey> I think now more than ever, we’re seeing a huge shift in workflow and remote capabilities. This means more flexibility for both colourist and client, but it’s a double edged sword: it also means that collaboration may start to rely more on a digital connection than a personal one. It seems everything moves faster these days: shorter project lifespans, quicker turnaround times. I hope that as things continue to shift and change, especially amidst the pandemic, we can still take the time to appreciate each new project or client collaboration and recall the connection this work can bring.

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Forager, Fri, 06 May 2022 08:58:33 GMT