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Life & Work with Jeff Fresco

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jeff Fresco. 

Hi Jeff, so excited to have you on the platform. So, before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today.
I started taking pictures back in high school through my photography course. Here I learned the basics of composition, lighting, and style. I remember walking around my neighborhood in Los Angeles looking for vintage classic cars to take pictures of. Throughout the years, I kept taking pictures with film and then moved on to mirrorless cameras. I started taking videos, and through YouTube inspiration, I knew I LOVED taking videos. There is so much to videography to build on and learn; if I had to choose my two favorite parts of video are color and audio. With color, you are really able to show emotion or direct feelings to the viewer. With audio, you are able to elevate emotion and storytell so much more. 

By growing from photography to videography, I’ve been able to elevate my skills and share my content on social media. I decided that in order to continue growing, I wanted to try creating footage for other people. It’s such a creative challenge to hear the wants and needs of a client and then bring that to life with the endless possibilities of ways to do it; to me, it is both the beauty and challenge of the journey. For me embarking on this journey with other people is what brings satisfaction and joy to my craft. I know that I love working with people, and this is my way of bringing their ideas to life. 

As a small business, I primarily focus on aerial work because of my joy of flying drones. I practice weekly and recently got my license to support commercial businesses. There’s a lot of bumps that I have experienced, like working long nights just to nail down the color, spending hours to choose the music and soundFX, or even just editing and deciding how to piece the clips together to drive the story the way to the needs of the clients with my style. There have also been a lot of achievements along the way, working with real estate and franchises. It’s crazy to see my work from a few years ago and today; if I stay on course then it can only continue to get better and change as I keep honing my craft. It’s important to me to continue working with people and businesses, shooting photo and video, and enjoy the journey as much as possible. 

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way? Looking back, would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
This is my first year (started in 2021) as a part-time videographer. I took a few years to try to understand everything from cameras, drones, and editing. This learning, I told myself was necessary to have the full skill set in order to start a business out of it. Looking back, I feel that I kept telling myself this partially to improve my skills but also because I was shy and had imposter syndrome. To myself, I’m just a guy with cameras and drones recording footage of different places and people; who am I to charge others for this footage that I create? That was one of the biggest mental hurdles, understanding that I will never be ready to jump into this business, but had more than enough skill and passion to work with others and always continue to grow. I remember creating my portfolio and thinking how I have managed to do all these projects, which were challenges to me because of this unconfidence. I felt that charging for my work really opened the doors for people to critique me and be compared to others. The goal is always to bring the vision of the client to life, and knowing that this may not always be easy, especially when working in new environments, but in the end, it has always led to positive content. I hope that sharing this shows how much I care about my work and the time/effort I put into it, even if it is for a “couple of pictures” or a “few minutes of video.” No matter what I create, I want it to be the best that I can do and make an impact. This is what drives me and is at the core value of myself and business. 

As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar, what can you tell them about what you do?
I’m a full-time engineer specializing in embedded software. It was a long road to get to where I am now; I graduated from UCSD and got a temp contractor job. I went to grad school part-time and worked full-time to get to where I am. I believe that understanding how technology is created and then actually using cameras and drones to create content is my true passion. It balances my creative flow, there is a lot to both these fields, but I think having the freedom and flexibility to create content the way I want is what draws me into videography. I enjoy being an engineer and also the creativity process. I’ve built relationships out of my hobby, and I can see the progress that I’ve made. I’m known as the drone guy at work, and with my friends. Every trip I go to I make sure to look up spots, weather reports and plan out different shots. I feel that true professionals in the creativity space are so good at making things look easy, but it’s only easy because of all the behind-the-scenes work. I’m proud of recently shooting for a brand-new Chick-Fil-A here in San Diego. It really opened up my confidence and pushed me to new levels of commitment, organization, and planning. I spend a lot of time organizing my content and taking notes of ideas at random times, which is why I carry my notebook. I’m a passionate person in these two fields of engineering, and creativity is where I am in my element. There is so much more I can do, so I’m pushing myself in different ways and seeing where these two careers will take me. 

Any big plans?
As a creative, I’m always looking to level up my skills and work with like-minded people. I’ll be in the lab working on storytelling, primarily with color theory and audio. I meet often with people in my space; it helps keep each other motivated and get better together. I’m working on building a community on drone creativity, photography, videography, different moves, camera settings, and working with businesses. I want to document all of this through social media and a blog just to have a way of expressing myself without worrying about algorithms but focusing more on community. I definitely know that I want to get into sports FPV, so I’m reaching out to different people that play different sports and bring all of that to life. I’m professionally licensed to fly here in the United States, and there’s so many options to do with that it’s exciting. I’m planning so much more creativity around drones and cameras, so finding how to build a community to get better myself and then help people and connect with others is the next big move! 

Pricing:

  • Photoshoot $100
  • Videoshoot $150
  • Real Estate $150

Contact Info:

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