We had the good fortune of connecting with Brandon Boulay and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Brandon, have there been any changes in how you think about work-life balance?
Work life balance has been a difficult thing for me to establish as a creative. A big part of my life is my work as it is inherently part of my personal identity. But it can be really difficult to not only balance your time but also your personal identity, self worth and happiness. It is easy to ignore you life balance when work is going great and fills your soul when creative and fun projects are abound. However, it can get really dark when you are constantly being rejected for work, or measure your value against the productivity of others (social media is a huge driver of this feeling in many other creatives I know “look at all the cool work everyone else is getting, whats wrong with me that I don’t have that?!”.
I have learned to find balance in understanding that I want to be a multi dimensional human being. Hobbies, time with friends off-set, spending time on growing myself as a person – these are all things that actually feed my creative self and help me create better work. Without balance, my creative practice felt like pulling an all nighter on a project in school, or cramming for a test. Sometimes you do better by just getting some rest and starting the next day fresh than trying to make yourself bleed for it at every turn. Yes, sometimes creative works requires us to put in that effort and commitment, but there is no rule says that we must always exist in that dark, difficult space.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
My work is really about offering my perspective on the human experience. this might sound vague and fluffy and induce eye rolls in some, but this is the only answer that feels fitting. Specifically in my long form documentary work, I am interested in telling stories with empathy so that outsiders can truly put themselves in another person’s shoes for that time and hopefully encourage them to do that with others in the future.
I ultimately feel that human beings have a hard time seeing all human beings as human beings……… if that makes sense. The world as we know it has to much “US vs THEM” and not enough WE. When we share experiences it helps create parallels with others and in some cases this can be the in-road to finding common ground and create empathy for a person or idea that you have been at odds with previously.
None of us can do this alone, in creative practices and in life. It takes a village to survive and I want to have a big village to support and to give me support.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I only moved to LA a few months pre-pandemic so I am NOT a great guide but here are some faves of mine.
Point Dume – beach + rock climbing together. What else can you ask for.
Highland Park – this is where I have lived in LA and LOVE IT HERE. Get a coffee at kindness + mischief and then get tacos at home state OR ANYWHERE ELSE HERE BECAUSE THEY ALL ARE GREAT.
Comedy Store – I cannot wait for this to re-open post covid.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I have been supported so much by a lot of amazing mentors and collaborators.
A few key people who have helped me so much in this new stage of my career are:
Ryan Duffy, one of my favorite collaborators and a true mentor in helping me develop as a filmmaker. Courtney Crockett, who is so much more than my collaborator but also my partner in life and changed my entire outlook on storytelling. Donna Drewick, EP @ Howdy Gang for supporting me in so many more ways than she is probably aware of both on + off set.
Recent books that changed my life.
“How to Change your Mind” – Michael Pollan
“Breath” – James Nestor
“Outliers” – Malcom Gladwell
“Bone Games” – Rob Schultheis
Main Image: Daniel Huitting Additional Images: Chris Savage, Courtney Crockett