PRACTICAL makes films and videos that are the culmination of cameras, research, travel, sketchbooks, sleep, screen time, and running wild. Based out of Traverse City and Grand Rapids Michigan, we love sharing our work and process with those around the world.


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written by Paul Genzink  -  Project Release  -  July 18, 2017


Post shoot errands are kind of my favorite. I’m an introvert, so the time alone after a week on set feels like heaven. While returning gear to rental houses, I started thinking about all the things we had just accomplished.

When writing the script there was always this tiny shred of doubt in my mind about being able to pull off filming scenes that will amount to literally a half-second the final edit. Things like someone sailing, or a rock climbing scene that requires a camera mounted at the top of a wall, or a young couple demoing their kitchen. When considering the work it takes to find the right people to fill roles, logistics for work like this, and not to mention the insurance and legal ramifications, it’s hard to resist the voice in your head that says, “this sounds kind of tough to pull off, you know what would be easier and probably still on message? [fill in the blank].”

Ironically enough I kept reminding myself of the words in the script that I had written: “It’s better to try and fail than not try at all.” Granted, I’m ripping off an old saying, but it served as a wonderful reminder throughout this process.


Pushing past the doubt, even when it’s based on a small slice of reality, is what helps me grow not only as a director but as a person as well. It’s really an exercise in trusting the team you’re surrounded by and your cumulative networks. If you never try, you’ll never know what you’re capable of, and if you never reach out, you’ll never know which one of your friends is friends with the guy who owns both rock climbing facilities in town and puts in a good word for you.

There were so many times during this process that I was ready to compromise my creative integrity because the puzzle pieces weren’t falling into place in an organized fashion. But I didn’t, we didn’t. Our team bought into the vision and worked their butts off and we came out the other side with only a few bruises.

And it worked.

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