We had the good fortune of connecting with Yoni Coen and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Yoni, what do you attribute your success to?
Honestly, I think that simply learning to value myself and my work before anything else has been the biggest contributing factor in my success in this industry. I’m incredibly lucky to do what I love, and love what I do, and that in and of itself is a success.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I think what sets me apart from others is my positive attitude and willingness to do whatever it takes to get a shot, or to light something the way it needs to be lit. I’ll never say no to an opportunity or a challenge that gets in my way. A lot of people will add lots of bells and whistles – flashy editing, wacky lighting setups, sometimes doing too much. I like to keep it real and simple, and I think my work conveys exactly that. One of my favorite projects I’ve shot to date is called “Sunnyville”. Written by Rony Michel, it’s a sci-fi fantasy set in a 50’s world. I got to have a ton of fun both planning for and shooting that film. It’s currently doing rounds right now at festivals, and has been nominated for and won numerous awards already. I’ve learned that I need to value myself and my work before anything else, otherwise those around me unfortunately won’t think the same. I’ve also learned that in this industry, you need to both check your ego at the door, and learn how to keep it intact, to avoid being stepped on by others, and to be able to deal with all sorts of situations properly.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I’d really like to shoutout the guys at FilmVans & ParaLighting Van Nuys. They were some of the first people I started working with when I started lighting, and they’ve been incredible all along the ride. Not only have they been my go to for G&E rentals for years, and saved my butt from production 911’s, but they’re one of the big factors in my success in this business.
Brandon Lavoie Screengrabs from “Sunnvyille” (2020)