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Check out Tad Sallee’s Artwork

Today we’d like to introduce you to Tad Sallee.

Tad, we’d love to hear your story and how you got to where you are today both personally and as an artist.
Thank you for having me! I come from a family of entrepreneurs, my family owns a business in Tucson called Fermented Tea Company, I guess thats why I’ve always had the itch to be a business owner of some kind. I’m thankful that my family has always been incredibly supportive and positive about pursuing my dream which all started when my mom bought me a copy of the Indiana Jones trilogy on VHS when I was 8. Watching Spielberg’s magic unfold on the screen transported me to another world, that’s when I knew I wanted to do grow up to get a career in the film industry. Regardless of whether I was in front of or behind the camera, I was going to get hands-on experience in recreating that same magic in some way.

After graduating with a degree in film and television; and with the current state of Arizona’s film industry, I stumbled into being a wedding filmmaker. Since 2014, I’ve filmed over 100+ individual weddings and have absolutely fallen in love with the industry. I’ve had incredible opportunities to travel across the nation, meet amazing couples, film in surreal locations, and to craft unique films about people falling in love… as a career! The thing I enjoy most about what I do is that at its core, when you strip away everything else, it’s a career focusing on capturing how LOVE triumphs anything. That to me is magical.

We’d love to hear more about your art. What do you do and why and what do you hope others will take away from your work?
I’m a firm believer that films need a human touch. The first impression that an audience gets when starting your film and how they feel after they are done watching is CRUCIAL. It not only leaves the imprint on how your audience responds while watching your film, but how they FEEL and their overall perception of your film, afterward. Being able to evoke a strong emotion through cinema is important to me, which is why I transitioned from working a traditional 9-to-5 and went full-time into wedding filmmaking.

My goal is to make my couples relive their wedding day, and I want them to feel the emotions all over again from another perspective. I tell my clients that I don’t feel confident in completing their films until I’ve teared up myself from watching them. It is so important to me that I treat every single couple as if a Hollywood production company approached them and wanted to make a movie about their love story. I feel a wave of accomplishment when I hear from a stranger who has told me that that they have teared up over watching one of my couple’s films. It has made me believe that the camera is a really powerful tool and when utilized correctly; it can create some incredibly moving images. It can help people relive the most sincere memories, see old friends and relatives, and to commemorate a precious moment with a new set of eyes, all over again.

Given everything that is going on in the world today, do you think the role of artists has changed? How do local, national or international events and issues affect your art?
I think there is a noticeable new era of filmmakers today, ones that I like to call “Auto-Operators.” With cameras becoming incredibly self-sufficient, a lot of camera operators are relying heavily on these new mechanics of cameras to dictate their work. We are not pulling focus as much as we used to and instead relying on new technology to create a mechanical shot. We are heavily relying on autofocus and gimbals to do what would have been unthinkable ten years ago. You can get really great shots on even the most basic of cameras and lenses, but at the end of the day, it’s not about the equipment; but how you use it. I think it’s important to remember the roots that were implemented way back in the cinema when it was all about being precise with your camera direction and telling a story rather than trying to roll through the day on “automatic.” I try to compensate that by implementing a human touch in my films, not necessarily by breaking the fourth wall but by getting intimate with my clients; allowing the camera to capture those truly raw moments that some others might normally overlook.

Do you have any events or exhibitions coming up? Where would one go to see more of your work? How can people support you and your artwork?
I’m currently transitioning from a previous wedding company to go full time with my own personal brand. You can expect loads of new content on my social media sites soon. if you or someone you know is in need of a wedding filmmaker or photographer, please reach out for my pricing and availability. I’d sincerely love to explore the possibility of us working together.

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Image Credit:
My personal photo by Shawna Cadwell

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