I shoot my films in Memphis, TN, where I’ve lived for the last twenty years. I wouldn’t have been able to shoot films like this even ten years ago. Things have changed a lot since then, allowing me to do the kind of work I do, here, in my hometown, and to get it out to other people, wherever they are. Memphis is a big part of who I am and I think my films, wherever they “take place,” reflect that.
Most of my films focus on strong women characters who’ve reached decisive moments in their lives. Often they don’t fully apprehend who they are and what that means for them. I like the feeling that I’m observing them right at the moment their fantasies (about the world, about themselves) collide with the realities they’re living, creating some illuminating, if painful, moment of self-awareness. Men are a big part of their lives, so the films look a lot at men as well—but typically from a woman’s perspective.
In 2011 I started a series called Woman’s Picture, with an anthology film of the same name. That film explores how three women (played by Ann Magnuson, Calpernia Addams, and Amy LaVere) stand up to the challenges presented by their everyday environments—some of which involve men, work, home, friendship, and family.
Subsequent films in the series either follow up on these characters or introduce new ones—or both, as in ONLY CHILD, the second feature in the Woman’s Picture series, which revisits Amy LaVere’s character from the first film and a new character played by Grace Zabriskie.
Photo by Austin Young