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Brandon - Prof cinema - Los Angeles
 
  • Ambassador
  • (14 reviews)
M
Michael
« Perfect! I had an amazing session. Learned a lot and couldn't have found a... More »
M
Michael
« Perfect! I had an amazing session. Learned a lot and couldn't have found a better teacher. »
$130/h
Profile and Qualifications Verified
Response Time 5h
Lesson formats available..
  • One-to-one
Lessons can be held..
Subjects taught
  • Cinema
  • Film Production
  • Scriptwriting
  • Audio-visual Arts
Levels
  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced
  • Professional
  • Kids

Filmmaker: Award-Winning Writer/Director/Producer with over 20yrs experience helps you take your project to the next level

Methodology

I love mentoring, encouraging, and teaching the next generation of filmmakers. Every student pursuing storytelling through moving images is different and so I like to customize my approach to your specific needs. If you have an idea you are developing and working on, we can look at it together in any stage and come up with a strategy to get you to the next level.

Ambassador

One of our best tutors! High-quality profile, qualified and response guaranteed.
Brandon will plan your first lesson with care.

Background

I am an award-winning Director/Writer/Producer of Feature Films, Commercials, and Music Videos — eager to encourage you in all your creative storytelling pursuits. My feature films have been in theaters as well as on Netflix, Amazon, and iTunes. I'm a member of the Directors Guild and have worked on a wide variety of hundreds of projects around the world. In the Video space, I’ve worked with Grammy Award-winning artists like The Jonas Brothers, Zendaya, Selena Gomez, Moby, Demi Lovato, Dove Cameron, Sixpence None The Richer, Imogen Heap, Vince Gill, Cold War Kids, Debby Ryan, Bridget Mendler, Steven Curtis Chapman, and Naomi Scott. In the commercial space I’ve been at the helm of campaigns for Nintendo, Sony, Disney, Microsoft, Pixar, Amazon, Dreamworks, Converse, SEGA, Yahoo!, and Aprilia Motorscooters. You can see some of my twenty+ years of experience on IMDB. ((concealed information)

Rates

Rate for online lessons : $130/h
Lesson formats available..
One-to-one
Lessons can be held..
Subjects taught
  • Cinema
  • Film Production
  • Scriptwriting
  • Audio-visual Arts
Levels
  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced
  • Professional
  • Kids

Brandon's CV

BRANDON DICKERSON is an award-winning writer/director/producer honored for his work in film, documentaries, commercials, and music videos—including the coveted Cannes Gold Lion. With over twenty years of experience as a filmmaker, Dickerson also enjoys serving as a writer, speaker, educator, and improv teacher. Brandon currently lives with his family in Fredericksburg outside of Austin, where he is directing/producing the docu-series WINE TOWN TEXAS.

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE:
THE WALT DISNEY COMPANY
2000 to present // Freelance Director
Director of a wide variety of promotions for many of Disney's signature creative franchises including:
JONAS • NARNIA: The Lion, The Witch, & The Wardrobe • NARNIA: Prince Caspian CAMP ROCK 2 • LEMONADE MOUTH • SNOW WHITE • PIXAR’S Tinker Bell (x3) Beauty & The Beast • PINOCCHIO • Beverly Hills Chihuahua • Princess Protection Program

Working with artists including:
Demi Lovato (x3) • Selena Gomez • Zendaya • The Jonas Brothers (x2) • Bridget Mendler • Sabrina Bryan • China McClain • Dove Cameron • Mitchell Musso • Raini Rodriguez Meaghan Jette Martin • Steve Rushton • Tiffany Thornton • The Beau Sisters • Adam Hicks

SOME MUSIC VIDEOS AVAIL: (concealed information)

SPIRAL FILMS
1997 to present // Founder+Owner
Select COMMERCIAL Work as Director:
Microsoft • Sony • Drug Free America • SEGA • JC Penny • Converse • Autodesk • Aprilia • Nintendo Dreamworks • Midas • Disney Channel • Amazon Kindle • Yahoo! • Chili’s • Hasbro • Teledyne • S.T.A.N.D.

Select MUSIC VIDEO Work as Director:
Switchfoot (x4) • Stephen Curtis Chapman (x3) • Michael W. Smith • Toby Mac • Delirious • Newsboys (x2) • Sixpence None The Richer (x2) • Jeremy Camp • Moby • Vince Gill • Cold War Kids • Dishwalla • Rocco Deluca •Nickel Creek • Fiction Family • Imogen Heap • Kenny Wayne Shepherd • Five Iron Frenzy (x3)
***Full list of 150 spots+videos available on request

Feature FILMS: (Trailers can be viewed here: (concealed information) )

SIRONIA (writer+director) (available on ITUNES + AMAZON)
SIRONIA is the story of a talented musician who has been chewed up and spit out by the Hollywood music machine. Frustrated by his broken career, Thomas Fisher and his wife Molly impulsively pack up and move to small-town Sironia, Texas to live a more authentic life and raise their first child near Molly’s brother and his family. Despite the change of scenery, Thomas’s deep resentment over his lost dreams gets the best of him as he struggles to find peace with his stalled career until he remembers what he loved about music - and Molly - in the first place.

VICTOR (writer+director) (available on NETFLIX)
A mother's love. A son's rebellion. The faith to overcome.
From the streets of THE CROSS & THE SWITCHBLADE comes the inspiring true story of Victor Torres — a migrant teen from Puerto Rico forced to survive the ghetto of Brooklyn in 1962. Enslaved by the power of gangs and the addictions of the neighborhood, he must now find freedom before he destroys his family and himself.

A SINGLE FRAME (director) (available on ITUNES + AMAZON)
A SINGLE FRAME tells the story of a photograph taken in 1998 by a glamorous and daring French photojournalist that sparked a quest for an inquisitive Texas dad, who ultimately finds himself riding shotgun beside a clever wartime fixer in Kosovo in hopes of finding the subject of the photograph: a refugee boy with his arms folded in a tattered blue sweater. Weaving together the stories of the war, the now-deceased photojournalist, Alexandra Boulat, and the search for the boy, A Single Frame is a documentary testament to the power of photography and to the belief that every life matters.

BENJI THE DOVE (writer - adapted screenplay)
A tender tale of four boys rapidly coming to terms with school, bullies, friendship and loyalty. Based on the critically acclaimed Icelandic children’s book by Fridrik Erlingsson.

WHEN JACK WENT GLAMPING (writer+director) (available on AMAZON)
With his mid-life marriage on rocky ground, dejected one-hit-author Jack Spencer goes glamping (glamorous camping) with his wife, Amanda, in search of a spark. When the isolated retreat suddenly becomes anything but private with the arrival of double booking honeymoon hipsters and a super-hunk land owner, Jack must learn to get over himself as he dives deep off the grid into a comedic exploration of love, failure, relevance, and miniature donkeys.

IN THE MOMENT IMPROV (2019)
• Founder / Teacher - Teaching Imrov classes and creating performance opportunities for
the Hill Country community.

14 reviews on Brandon
  • 5/5

All our ratings are collected by us and are given in confidence, they correspond to a real experience.
M
Michael

Perfect! I had an amazing session. Learned a lot and couldn't have found a better teacher.

Brandon's response

Michael was filled with insightful questions and eager to jumpstart his film career.

M
Matt

Perfect! Unflinching honest talk. I will be signing up again.

Brandon's response

Matt is awesome on every level. He's passionate about his craft and looks for every opportunity to be helpful with his gifts and talents -- both personally and professionally. I look forward to seeing his journey ahead.

A
Amit

Perfect! Passionate, caring and detail oriented! Brandon is amazing!

T
Traeger

Perfect! Brandon is AWESOME.

D
Danny

Perfect! He gave more than I asked for by way of insights from personal experience and hard-won wisdom. The word to sum it up is Generosity. Thank you, Brandon!

N
Neil

Perfect! Exceptionally knowledgeable on all areas of the industry and adept at teaching and communicating it. I went in with some very specific problems and Brandon was able to provide detailed, invaluable advice which could end up saving me a lot of money in the future. Whatever level you're operating at in the industry, I'd recommend Brandon if you find yourself stuck on something or in need or guidance

Brandon's response

Matthew was great!

L
Lynx

Perfect! Brandon was extremely accommodating and I can't thank him enough for his time. In those 30 minutes Brandon helped me more than my combined 3 years of discovery, apprenticeships, and meetings. If my concept is to ever become a reality it will be all thanks to Brandon and his great insight. It goes to show that his accomplishments came directly from his knowledge and mindfulness. If you are looking to grow in the industry or just talk and listen to one of the successful directors in the film world, Brandon is your guy.

Brandon's response

Eager Learner!

J
Jamey

Perfect! Brandon is an Awesome teacher! During my Bachelor of Screen Production at the Australian Film Television & Radio School I needed someone IN THE INDUSTRY to help me navigate my studies and independent projects. I had walked into the deep, dark forrest of storytelling, a perilous land and, I needed a mentor to help me find my path, and lead me through. Over the past few years Brandon has been doing just that. This year, I am proud to say that I have emerged with my Bachelor in hand, and a full-time job as a Producer on a Documentary series in the USA, working alongside professionals from Hollywood to New York. Let him help you find your path, I'm glad I let him find mine!

List of tangible scenarios from our meetings:

I couldn't clearly articulate my ideas into a compelling Story framework:
"Can I tell you about these ideas I have, and could you help me make sense of it in a screenplay?"
- Brandon sat and listened to my messy ideas, and helped draw them out of me in a way that was ordered and ready for the page.

I needed help overcoming logistical issues on set:
"Hey Brandon, I want to make a bedroom turn into a forest but I don't have a million dollar VFX budget... How would you do that?"
- Brandon guided me through a series of real-world experience questions to help me come up with a perfect solution.

I wasn't quite prepared for post-production.
Brandon helped me map out a plan that was simple, articulating who might want to watch my film, and how we're going to reach them.

Brandon's response

Amazing Student!

6 recommendations

C
Caroline

Brandon taught a dynamic filmmaking elective at our high school and I saw firsthand what a gifted teacher he is. Since he was making his own film at the time, he was able to share every step of that process with his students, including an invitation to the set to watch production in process! His energy and passion are contagious, and he has a warmth and curiosity that allows for genuine connection with his students. I highly recommend him!

C
Chris

It is always a pleasure when Brandon comes to speak with our students. As the Chair of the Department of the Film & Digital Media at Baylor University, I find Brandon is incredibly knowledgable about filmmaking. He has a passion for storytelling and really knows how the process of making a film works. He also carries with him a generosity of spirit - he truly enjoys teaching and mentoring others.

L
Lauren

I’ve worked with Brandon as an Executive Producer on a wide variety of high profile commercials and music videos since 1999 with clients like Nintendo, Converse, Microsoft, SEGA, Sony, and The Walt Disney Company. His Cannes Gold Lion was awarded for a clip he directed for my company Kaboom Productions and we helped produce his debut film SIRONIA. Brandon is not only a tremendous and capable filmmaker but a thoughtful and gracious human. He is always seeking to grow in his own talents and experience and does the same for those around him. He loves film and exudes positivity and enthusiasm. To me- that is key to being a teacher and mentor. I can't recommend him highly enough. (Lauren Schwartz, Owner/EP, kaboom productions)

J
Jamey

Brandon is an Awesome teacher! During my Bachelor of Screen Production at the Australian Film Television & Radio School I needed someone IN THE INDUSTRY to help me navigate my studies and independent projects. I had walked into the deep, dark forrest of storytelling, a perilous land and, I needed a mentor to help me find my path, and lead me through. Over the past few years Brandon has been doing just that. This year, I am proud to say that I have emerged with my Bachelor in hand, and a full-time job as a Producer on a Documentary series in the USA, working alongside professionals from Hollywood to New York. Let him help you find your path, I'm glad I let him find mine!

List of tangible scenarios from our meetings:

I couldn't clearly articulate my ideas into a compelling Story framework:
"Can I tell you about these ideas I have, and could you help me make sense of it in a screenplay?"
- Brandon sat and listened to my messy ideas, and helped draw them out of me in a way that was ordered and ready for the page.

I needed help overcoming logistical issues on set:
"Hey Brandon, I want to make a bedroom turn into a forest but I don't have a million dollar VFX budget... How would you do that?"
- Brandon guided me through a series of real-world experience questions to help me come up with a perfect solution.

I wasn't quite prepared for post-production.
Brandon helped me map out a plan that was simple, articulating who might want to watch my film, and how we're going to reach them.

L
Lynx

Brandon was extremely accommodating and I can't thank him enough for his time. In those 30 minutes Brandon helped me more than my combined 3 years of discovery, apprenticeships, and meetings. If my concept is to ever become a reality it will be all thanks to Brandon and his great insight. It goes to show that his accomplishments came directly from his knowledge and mindfulness. If you are looking to grow in the industry or just talk and listen to one of the successful directors in the film world, Brandon is your guy.

B
Bryan

I have hired Brandon three times as director not only because he always creates a superior final product, but also because I knew he would take time along the way to teach my team. My creative team's skills have skyrocketed with his instruction on working sets. Brandon is conversational and relaxed, creating a wonderful environment in which to work and learn. I would not hesitate to work with him again or recommend him to others.

Interview with Brandon

QUESTION 01 | 08
1) How did this passion find you? When did you start practicing?
Brandon — My passion for filmmaking began in a movie theater in Southern California when I was eight years old.

My family would go to the movies almost every weekend, and one October evening, we saw The Champ.

I cried.

We went back to the same film two weeks later to see little Ricky Schroder idolize his dying boxing father, Jon Voight.

I cried again.

Even as a little dude, I realized this was a powerful medium if one could fully grasp what drama was coming and yet still be emotionally charged. I asked my dad, "How does it do that?" He explained how films worked, and the person at the helm was a "director."

Amid schoolyard aspirations of being a fireman, dating Olivia Newton-John, and someday owning a Sony Walkman-I declared, "I want to be a film director."
I wanted to be a part of stories so powerful they could make you cry.

Twice.

I got my hand on a VHS Camcorder, dusted off my father's Super8mm film camera, and convinced anyone I knew to be in my moving pictures. And so, my practice as a writer/director/producer began.

I'm still practicing.
QUESTION 02 | 08
2) Which artists or works affect you the most?
Brandon — I have a wide variety of inspirations. My professional career started in Music Videos and then Commercials, so I looked up to Michel Gondry, Spike Jonze, and David Fincher, who were at Propaganda Films where I signed - right before they closed shop.

My feature film work spans a variety of genres, so I'm a massive fan of Danny Boyle. I'm a sucker for Musicals…I love John Carney. Love West Side Story and Singing in the Rain. Growing up, I was moved by everyone from Hitchcock to Wim Wenders, Spike Lee to the Cohen Brothers, Speilburg to Jean-Luc Godard.

As an independent filmmaker, I think Mark Duplass is the smartest guy in the room. "Becoming a well-rounded artist," he says, "is about embracing imperfection and churning out work until it improves."
QUESTION 03 | 08
3) What are the qualities and skills required to succeed in this area?
Brandon — I agree with director Robert Wise's three P's required to be a filmmaker: passion, patience, perseverance.

When you dive into thoughtful and steadfast work, storytelling through films is like "poetry, beauty, romance, love, these are what we stay alive for." (to steal from Dead Poets Society)**

**BTW - Austin Kleon's Steal Like an Artist book is fantastic with inspiring insights like, "The artist is a collector… Your job is to collect good ideas. The more good ideas you collect, the more you can choose from to be influenced by."
QUESTION 04 | 08
4) What is the most valuable advice you can give to help someone stay focused on creative projects?
Brandon — Find your WHY.

A wide variety of friends, mentors, and unshakable optimists have asked me, "What is your Why?" Answering WHY I'm creating something gives me courage in the face of adversity.

The concept of WHY was made popular by Simon Sinek at @TED in 2009. No doubt, the big WHYs in our life help with inspired focus, direction, and meaning - and yet, I've discovered finding a specific smaller "Why" for every film project gives me the motivation to press on and stick with it.

Figure out your "Why," and you'll be unstoppable and find joy in your work.

• • •

Some practical encouragement I share with students:

"Don't wait until you know who you are to get started. You're ready. Start making stuff." - Austin Kleon

"Swing the sword in your hand. Don't dream about what you can do once you get the access, do with what you got. And… don't just make something just to make something. Make it count." - Mark Duplass
QUESTION 05 | 08
5) How would you describe your passion; how does it make you feel?
Brandon — Joy. Pure Joy.

In my office, I have a poster from the Irish Film Centre quoting Godard…

Photography is truth. And cinema is truth twenty-four times a second.

When I'm working in my passion, I feel like I'm communicating truth.
QUESTION 06 | 08
6) What creative achievements are you particularly proud of?
Brandon — I am proud of all my feature films, but there is something special about your debut.
SIRONIA isn't a perfect film, but I love the performances, the 35mm film cinematography, and how the music weaves into the narrative.
QUESTION 07 | 08
7) Have you ever been surprised by a student; by their ability or quick progression?
Brandon — I am consistently inspired by students who go above and beyond.
I find that grit, passion, and determination always win over ability.
Filmmakers who progress rapidly are those who are willing to work hard and embrace the idea of failing fast and often.
QUESTION 08 | 08
8) Being a Superprof is an art! What is your secret?
Brandon — In the past few years, I've done a deep dive into Improv- taking classes, performing, and teaching workshops. I find the art form inspiring all aspects of my life. There is gold in Improvisation. One of my secrets to being an effective Superprof is applying the best practices from Improv…

Listen.
Be in the moment.
Embrace the freedom to fail.
Want the best for your teammates.
Don't judge yourself or others.
Say YES! And… add your bold, honest voice with passion.

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