Long Story Shorts: Mind’s Eye


This month’s edition of Long Story Shorts transcended the impalpable wall that separates actuality from reality.  What does that mean?  Considering the need for representation in storytelling, we can accept the easy relationship of real actors joined to their characters, and similarly with the real lesson their stories represent.  Director, Andrew Czudak, a staff animator at Maestro, suggests that we can just as easily digest an inference that any character, metaphorically or actually represented, proposes enough semblance of the form to parallel a truly real contribution to his story.

Screen Shot 2018 07 30 At 1.53.51 PM


Featured below are some Behind the Scenes stills showcasing the craft of this suggestion beautifully at work.  Czudak takes his theme further by building a complex landscape, again through the impression of what we understand our surroundings to contain.  The façade is built from a collection of toys, artfully placed to create the silhouette we identify as an industrial setting.  He adds an ambiguous atmosphere of fog and flickering light to mirror the mystery behind his inevitably misunderstood villain.



[Photograph by Max Grudzinski @maxgrudz]

   There is an epiphany bequeathed to each viewer as we take a hard cut from this imagined land, to the creator in real time:  a young boy who has fabricated the narrative and with whom we identify implicitly.


 “The transition draws in the viewer and invites them to watch over and over again, looking for clues in the surrounding world for the childhood they relate to,” says Czudak.  “It’s not simply about nostalgia, it’s about the essence of imagination. I want the viewer to reflect on the worlds they built as kids.  Because they don’t just create the environment, they also provide the magic of being involved.”  That involvement is the intangible quintessence of childhood play – the otherworldliness that slowly flaked away in adulthood, and which we still crave as artists.



[Photograph by Max Grudzinski @maxgrudz]

Don’t forget to follow @makelongstoryshorts for more!

Long Story Shorts

Maestro Filmworks presents “Long Story Shorts,” a team creative endeavor with an aspiration to build awareness, experience, education, and exploratory traditions into our process.

LSS BTS 2Photograph by  Max Grudzinski

The parameters bracket a short film featuring up to two characters, one location, and one minute of thought provoking, digestible story-telling, all completed in one day and strictly for distribution on Instagram.

“There is an underserved audience on Instagram with an appetite for short form content that no one is really tapping into,” says Kris Mendoza, Executive Producer at Maestro. “Our aim is to produce fun, digestible short films and passively bring them to your feed for your viewing pleasure.”

KAT 1640Photograph by  Kate Feher

For Maestro, these exercises keep the creative juices flowing.  We invite you to witness our progress, as we showcase our projects monthly!  Shown above is a Behind the Scenes vignette into the world created by Max Grudzinski, a talented photographer working with Maestro across multiple platforms.  Here, he is flexing his Directing muscles for the first time, kicking off our series with gusto!