I've always known I wanted to make movies, but my path to get there was not a straight line. Growing up in Southeast Idaho made it difficult to believe I could ever achieve any of my dreams and I knew the first step was getting out into the world to see places I never thought I would see and meet people that were different from me. So I joined the US Air Force. My time there took me around the world and very much shaped my outlook on life.
Once I separated from the military, I studied film at the University of Utah in Salt Lake, using the GI Bill to pay for it. After working as a wedding videographer for a while, I was hired at the local ABC affiliate as a news video editor and then switched to the local CBS affiliate, KUTV, where I won an Emmy for a story I edited about Utahns traveling to North Dakota to work in the oil fields. Working in the news industry was also a very formative step towards understanding the kinds of stories I wanted to tell, and how I wanted to tell them.
After news I moved into producing marketing videos and made a comfortable living but still had not made any big strides toward my goal of becoming a filmmaker. That happened when I met an exceptional group of people at the company where I worked. We started making small short films where I was usually the writer and editor. We made Call of the Void for the 48 Hour Film Project and Pendleton Road for the Demonchaser Horror festival, both of which we won awards for.
Seeing that the infrastructure was in place, I decided to shoot my shot and threw my name in the hat to write and direct our next project. We raised some money and produced Papercutter, the story of an MMA fighter with anger issues that has been ordered to attend a hugging therapy group. The film came out well, but mostly ended up serving as a learning experience for me.
With my directorial debut behind me and some big lessons learned, we decided it was time to swing for the fences. I wrote and directed Jump Seat. It's a big story for a short film with all the elements I've always wanted to include. Jump Seat is who I am as a filmmaker, at least the beginning, and now it's time to see if audiences will respond well to that.