I’ve been wanting to interview these two wonderful people for years now. My wife and I are about to celebrate our 7th wedding anniversary and I am so pleased to have the opportunity to speak to the filmmakers of our special day. Thank you for taking the time to do this interview Empty Cup Media Colin Burwell and Carla Sinclair. We discuss how they started in the business, genres of film that they do, Renaissance Man, challenges, hobbies, and fun stories while filming.
1. Tell us a little bit about how you both started in the business?
Colin Burwell – “I went to college for Broadcasting and started my own business a few months after graduating in 2005. Had a mediocre job working for a production company in Toronto and the work wasn’t very satisfying. Took out a big line of credit and bought my own gear. I did really small jobs for a few years in order to build my reputation.”
Carla Sinclair – “I joined the company in 2008 after moving to Ontario from BC to join Empty Cup Media (and ultimately married Colin). After I started working for Empty Cup, larger clients started coming in and we were on our way to becoming a film company. Together, we tackled video challenges with complimentary filmmaking skills.”
2. What genre(s) of film do you do? What recognitions have you received for your films?
Colin Burwell and Carla Sinclair – “We focus on short documentary films and company promos. Recently we began making TV shows for Bell Canada which is the largest project we have worked on so far. We’ve made two seasons of “Renaissance Man” and are beginning production of a new show in the fall. A few of our short films have also won awards in film festivals and have placed top 12 in international competitions.”
3. Did you ever have a project where you had to overcome a challenge? Please describe.
Colin Burwell and Carla Sinclair – “When we were screening our TV show ‘Renaissance Man’ at the Robert McLaughlin Gallery in Oshawa to a small crowd and one of our episodes audio was out of whack in an apocalyptic way. We were worried we couldn’t play that episode (that was filmed at the same location as the venue) but after a few phone calls and some new audio connections, the issue was solved right in front of everyone. It was a good reminder that tech issues can arise at any time and require quick thinking to resolve.”
4. Do you have any hobbies that you enjoy outside of film?
Colin Burwell and Carla Sinclair – “We enjoy gardening, playing with our baby Draven and our pug Gryffin, making things out of wood and travelling long distances.”
5. Tell us a story about a fun experience while filming?
Colin Burwell and Carla Sinclair – “We filmed a webisode in South Africa for over 2 weeks and got to film in the outback with wild animals all around us. It was a unique feeling of opportunity and fear since the best shots would come from the animals that may be the most dangerous. Filming wild animals is very random and when the shooting is good, it’s really good.