CHC + The Gerbers

January 06, 2017

CHC was recently visited by the wonderfully talented Gerber Duo. The couple creates beautiful films and we are honored to get to work with them. Here are a few questions about their creative process we have to share with you.

How did you discover film making? Was there an “Aha” moment or did the interest grow?

Blue - When I turned 13 my parents gave me a video camera for my birthday. I started filming everything, and began coming up with stories that I coerced my friends into acting in. My dreams of being an Olympic gymnast had just been crushed by a knee injury, but I found myself falling in love with filmmaking and story telling. It was during that time that I discovered I wanted to be a director and that drive hasn't left since.

Jason - I discovered pretending first. I love to pretend/ daydream. I think filmmaking came naturally later on becuase I wanted others to share in that and filmmaking is such a practical way of sharing what I see with others. Films are safe ways to experience experience a whole variety of emotions, there is something wonderful about that and as I realized I could make myself feel, or others feel a certain way with a story on screen, I think it just made sense. I don’t think I could articulate it then, but at the moment, I think that's the best way to explain it.

Is there a project that stands out particularly?

Blue - Time For Love, which was a ridiculous endeavor. It was an 8 minute musical that I made in college. Everything went wrong - my lead actor went to the hospital the morning we were supposed to start shooting and I had to re-cast on the spot, we lost a whole day of footage, and many more little things like the dolly wheel popping mid-take! (I mean, come on!) I learned hard but valuable lessons about trusting God, rolling with the punches, friendship, and production, but still ended up making something that my crew and I were proud of.

Jason - Make Believe, my first short film and Seasons another short film, both feel like the hardest thing I've ever done. I have worked on more complicated, more challenging projects since then, but those two projects make everything feel easy comparatively. Filmmaking can feel like an impossible puzzle sometimes, so much of our efforts are simply solving problems; making those first short films showed me what it takes to actually complete a project. Finishing a project is maybe the real measure of success, not whether people like it or even if it makes money. Just getting it done and learning from it is a win becuase you learn. You learn what works and doesn't work, you can try new things, etc. Maybe this idea is a cliche but I think it's true.

What do you do to unwind, or to step away from work?

Climb! We belong to First Ascent, an indoor climbing gym and go whenever we’re not working. It’s one of the few things that we do that lets us really unwind in a proactive way. We also love to read. We are kind of fantasy and science fiction nerds. A good cup of coffee (Or an Iced Latte in Blue's case) and a book are great. It's great to escape a screen sometimes because with work we are always looking at screens. Blue is currently in the middle of The Wheel of Time series and Jason is reading A Deepness In The Sky by Vernor Vinge.

In writing a soundtrack for your life, who are your top three artists-bonus points if you can pick songs.

Blue - "Yawny at the Apocalypse" by Andrew Bird, "Ashes & Flames" by John Mark McMillan, “Drops In The River” by Fleet Foxes

Jason - "Bullet Proof… I Wish I Was" by Radiohead, “Bubble" by King Creosote and Jon Hopkins, "The Lark Ascending" by Ralph Vaughn Williams

Favorite museum or Chicago tourist attraction?

Garfield Park Conservatory, Art Institute, and Pritzer Pavilion 

What is your favorite part of working as a team and couple, and do you have any advice for other work and life partners?

Jason - Blue is my best friend, so getting to work with your best firiend is obviously the coolest thing ever. More specifically though, Blue feels like the missing half of my brain. Working together, we make better work. I think I can swing too far to one creative direction or another, and she balances that out and surprises me all the time with ideas I could never have thought of.

Blue - I think that my favorite part of working with Jason is that we can have a fare creative argument but at the end of the day still love each other and appreciate each other's creativity. I really enjoy being able to partner with him in every part of my life, that was something that I’ve known I’ve wanted and needed in a husband ever since college. We’re just better together :)

As far as advice for other work and life partners; talking beforehand about how to go about a project together is really helpful becuase it sets expectations beforehand. It can be awkward otherwise if one of you needs to be the "boss" for a moment and you have to tell your spouse or partner, or friend what to do. Lastly, trust your partner. Trust gives you the space to critique and improve. Improvement rarely comes without challenge or conflict and if you have trust, then you can receive critique without taking it personally. you have to tell your spouse or partner, or friend what to do. Lastly, trust your partner. Trust gives you the space to critique and improve. Improvement rarely comes without challenge or conflict and if you have trust, then you can receive critique without taking it personally.

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