Help Junaid Direct Music Videos
Hi, my name is Junaid Timtooni Yakubu and I am a young filmmaker who is working towards becoming a writer and director of feature films and television shows. I studied Film and Media Studies at Dartmouth College and created several student short films during my time there. Since graduating, I’ve been working in New York City as a freelance videographer, and on film sets as Production Assistant and Sound Recorder. My US VISA expires soon, and I shall be returning to Ghana, to explore the next phase of my career. My goal is to set up shop in Accra, the capital, and get work directing music videos for artists working in Ghana's music industry. This will be a great arena to develop a sharper visual style, and hone my skills as I work towards tackling bigger projects. To be able to successfully launch myself and attract clients once I arrive in Ghana, I will need to upgrade my equipment to a more professional standard. And I need your help to raise the money to buy this equipment before I fly home.
The equipment I’m looking to acquire are as follows:
1. 2017 imac Editing station - $2300
2. Panasonic Lumix GH5s (camera) - $2300
3. Panasonic Lumix G X Vario 12-35mm F/2.8 (Lens) - $900
4. Leica DG Vario-Elmarit H-E08018 Wide-Angle Zoom Lens - 8mm-18mm - F/2.8-4.0 - $1100
5. Panasonic Leica DG Vario-Elmarit 50-200mm f/2.8-4 ASPH. POWER O.I.S. Lens - $1700
6. DJI Ronin-s (Gimbal stabilizer) - $800
7. DJI Mavic 2 Pro (Drone) - $1500
8. Tripod - $350
9. Light Kit (3 light kit) - $300
10. Zoom H6 recorder (Sound recorder) - $400
11. Two Sennheiser G3 lav mics (lavalier microphones) - $1000
12. Boom Pole and microphone - $300
This comes to a total of $12,950.
Working as a freelancer in New York City, I've observed that most clients choose which freelancers they’ll work with based on the kind of equipment that the freelancer can bring to the project. Having great equipment would significantly increase my potential to score gigs once I arrive home.
The equipment I currently use are a canon 70d dslr camera, a rode video microphone, and a tripod. I’ve also done all of my editing on my 2012 macbook pro. I acquired this equipment in 2014, just before I took a year off from college and went back home to learn how to make films. This equipment served me well during that year of exploration. I made several projects and got a better sense of how to write, direct, and edit.
All of the projects I’ve made have been zero budget affairs and were completed with the help of friends and family. As I grow into directing bigger projects, it's become more necessary to upgrade my equipment to be able to execute at the high level that clients expect.
A possible next step for me would have been film school, but that’s too expensive. I’m still struggling to pay off college loans. Rather than accrue more debt, I shall go home and try to build a career.
My long term goal is to write, direct, as well as produce feature films and television shows. I’m very much inspired by the African novels I read in a class I took back in Dartmouth called, “The African Political Novel.” There are so many beautiful African stories that have not yet been told on screen on the scale and quality that they deserve. And the problem is not a lack of talent. It’s more of a lack of resources to support productions, and the lack of efficient distribution channels to market and sell these movies. It’s a challenging problem that is going to require several heads to figure out. And I would like to contribute to that discussion.
Making music videos is a step towards reaching this goal. Various African musicians are investing in making better music videos to attract new audiences across the globe. Making music videos will give me the opportunity to hone my skills with practice, and also give me a better understanding of how to combine image with music. It will also give me the opportunity to work among a community of other filmmakers, musicians and artists, and open up the potential for collaborations on future projects.
I am optimistic about this path. Directors like Antoine Fuqua, David Fincher, Hiro Murai, Michel Gondry and Ridley Scott, all honed their directing skills making music videos and commercials before transitioning to feature films and television shows. I had the opportunity to direct my first music video a couple of months ago, and I see how making more of those could really improve my craft overall.
With your help, I will buy this equipment, go back home and lay the groundwork for what I hope will a future of creating many many dope projects.
I appreciate any support that you can give. Thank you. I look forward to sharing future projects with you.
Here's playlist of some of the videos I've made:
Thank you everyone for the support and encouragement. I've bought the first piece of equipment, a dji ronin s gimbal stabilizer, and this is definitely going to allow me to perform a lot of cool camera moves and minimize camera jitters in my work. Thank you all so much.