Videographer | Business Owner | Content Creator
How did you decide that you wanted to be in the Film Industry? (Did school play a role in introducing you to this industry?)
Not really, I got into this because I wanted to help out two friends who are still my number one people today, Selig Eccles (@digitalzggy photographer, businessman and content creator) and Gervail Lemo (@jrlee_socrazy comedian and content creator). I was good at it and saw a way to make some good money if I applied myself. So, for me it all started with wanting to help people. I believe that we all have a core goal or purpose in life and once you figure out what that is you can do any job that fulfills that goal with greatness. My core goal is helping people so videography is just ONE of the ways I satisfy that.
What was your first production? Tell us about the experience and what motivated you to continue.
My first production was a music video for two local artistes. I remember we didn’t even get food that day but I ensure we got paid. I always ensure we get paid. As tough as the production was though it’s still one of my best videos. I did all the colour grading work and motion graphics.
Have you worked with any international productions? If yes how would you compare it to a local production?
I don’t think I have, at least not formerly. Probably assisted on something that went international though.
What was your most memorable moment on set?
I haven’t had that yet. I’m still searching for it.
How would you describe your filming style?
Expensive, foreign. I try to make things not look local. You must ask me, “that’s Trinidad?” because despite us seeing here every day, perspective is king.
What is your method to get the perfect shot?
Have patience. Have a plan even if it took you 5mins. Don’t go in blind, also consult the people you trust. They will see something you can’t and that’s invaluable. Also, be brave, take a calculated risk at times. Don’t overthink it, you know what you’re doing. Trust yourself.
What is your go-to/favourite piece of equipment?
Me, I’m my favourite piece of equipment because before my camera can do anything it needs to go through me and if I fail, the whole job falls apart. But if we need to get an actual piece of equipment it’ll be my drone. It helped keep food on the table during Covid and made it easy for people to enjoy my country from a new perspective.
What was the best advice given to you by someone in the industry?
You don’t know everything because even though I’m very confident in myself and that can come across as arrogance and rub people the wrong way. I’m still an idiot with a camera that just happens to shoot decently ha-ha.
Who would you like to work with in the future?
Locally I’ve already worked with most people I wanted to. Haven’t worked with Josia Persad yet though, talented guy. Internationally, Boy Director TG Omori (Nigerian Director). I love his weird perspective.
Where do you see yourself in the next 3/5 years?
Next 5 years I won’t be behind the camera. The business will be scaled up so we can handle bigger productions and I can focus on my other businesses one of which is going back to farming because that’s what brought us here. That’s Paramin.
What advice do you have to give to anyone wanting to follow this career path?
Make sure you get paid. If you’re just starting off and you don’t know what to charge, come up with a figure, any figure that you deem reasonable for your time and ensure you get the money in hand before you start to work. Getting paid upfront ensures people take you seriously. Don’t be afraid, be bold. If you go to KFC you pay first and you trust that they will give you chicken and fries so the same principle applies. For reference, I take full payments for all jobs equal to or under 6000TTD upfront and 50% upfront for jobs above that. Corporate clients pay differently from others but do your research to find out who will have you waiting 2 years for a payment and try not to work with these companies unless you’re comfortable with taking that risk.
How can others get in contact with you and also view your work?
Everything is on www.rmvisualstt.com
Bio: “I’m the owner of rmvisualstt.com. I grew up in a Maraval-Paramin, Trinidad and Tobago a place where hard work is extremely familiar and family ties are even more so. This mentality flows through every aspect of our business as we are meticulous in every production. I come from a very laid-back society where a lot of providers take little to no pride in their work, frustrate their clients with run-around, lack empathy and in the end produce a very poor product. I’m 100% against that. That’s why I encourage communication. I’ve seen how scared clients are to give us their budget because they’ve been hurt in the past. That’s why I listen. I listen and allow you to express what you want and work within your budget to the best of our ability. I’ve completed productions in Grenada, Guyana, Rome and Ireland with organizations such as CARDI and the GFAR, FAO, LAFAST Motors, Lifestyle Motors, etc. This gave me valuable experience in “run and gun” style shooting, a powerful tool in this fast-paced environment. I am also versed in mobile content creation because funny enough I started shooting my first videos and photos with a Nokia 1020.” – Renaldo Matamoro.