Meet the Tutors – Sasha Snow
Our Meet the Tutor series is designed to give you an insight into our tutors and their experience at the Met Film School.
|Sasha Snow works as a DoP and documentary filmmaker. Sasha teaches on our Two-Year BA and our 8-Week Documentary fFlmmaking course.
Sasha has recently been honoured with the Environmental Filmmaker of the Decade Award at the Green Planet Movie Awards. He is now working with Passion Pictures and The National Film Board of Canada on another environmental thriller about the felling of North America’s most sacred tree in a perverse act of environmental terrorism.
What is one thing about your field of expertise or filmmaking in general that excites you?
As a documentary filmmaker you have had to be able to develop quick, strong relationships based on mutual trust. This requires a well-developed capacity for empathy, sensitivity, awareness, pragmatism and flexibility. You have to be a good listener with an open mind who is fundamentally more interested in other people than yourself.
As a producer/director working in a commercial environment to develop ambitious projects, I have had to be passionate and dedicated enough to persist with an idea long enough to succeed, to be able to communicate my ideas visually, verbally and in writing to a variety of audiences, and to be organised enough to cope with the budgeting, scheduling and the logistical demands of filmmaking in challenging social and physical circumstances.
I have subsequently found that this combination of personal qualities has lent itself very well to the demands of teaching young and not so young adults from a wide social, ethnic and political background. Teaching and documentary filmmaking both have the wonderful tendency to confound my expectations and assumptions about people and what they’re capable of.
Do you have any links to your past/current projects (youtube link, url)?
A St.Petersburg Symphony – SashaSnow.com/Petersburg
Hadwin’s Judgement (in development) – Hadwin’s Judgement
How would you describe your time teaching at the School? What do you think is the most challenging element of the course you teach?
Like filmmaking, teaching at the Met Film School requires nurturing trust with students quickly by engaging them with documentary as hybrid art form, commercial business and potent means of empathetic communication. I do this just as much by looking and analysing the work of acknowledged masters in the field as getting students to realise the potential of their own unique point of view.
Documentary filmmaking requires a combination of creative, technical and social skills and I attempt to give a foundation in all of them in a very short time – it’s the last of these that is by far the most challenging. The creative and technical aspects can be easily taught and fairly easily learnt. But the way we communicate with other people is something that we each develop over a lifetime of experience. It’s a matter of trying to switch on the best in each student.
What are the key attributes you look for in a student?
Passion, enthusiasm, empathy, open mindedness, the desire to help others as well as themselves and the ability to listen.
Any useful tips for aspiring filmmaker?
Take critical advice but once your imagination has been captured by an idea, don’t ever let anyone persuade away from it. Easy ideas are easy to make. Good ideas are always the hardest to realise.
How can we get in touch with you?