We had the good fortune of connecting with Ben Hess and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Ben, what’s the most important thing you’ve done for your children?
As a parent of a 4 year old who is just starting to encounter and experience normal conflict with her peers, my wife and I have really tried to impart in her to stand up for yourself and what’s important to you, but also be kind to others. We stress the importance of taking care of your friends and those who are less fortunate than you.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I began filmmaking a few years ago; mostly as a creative outlet for stressors in life. I have always been drawn to the visual arts, mostly photography, and even did some art and wedding photography in the past. This translated well to filmmaking as I try to find the most creative and visually striking ways to tell stories.
My filmmaking has trended toward not just showing more of the harsh realism in the world than a lot of what I see on movies and television, but also showing the human spirit’s ability to overcome adversity. Because my full time job has exposed me to some of the worst things that can happen to a person, it’s given me a unique perspective on the human condition; especially how dark it can be.
One giant lesson I’ve learned about filmmaking is how important it is to be organized and pre-plan your activities. While it is truly an art form, it takes a lot of patience, organization and planning to get the final product where you want it.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I live in Fort Collins, which is smaller than Denver but is otherwise a great city. The usual hotspots are Old Town, Horsetooth Reservoir, Estes Park; which are all great. I’ve always appreciated the natural beauty of the landscape about 20 miles north of the city. Between Fort Collins and the Wyoming border you can find some awesome box canyons, monoliths, open prairie, you name it. A lot of it is accessible to the public as well.
In town, there are countless little small businesses and restaurants, music venues and breweries to cater to almost anyone’s tastes. The Exchange is one of my favorites; it’s an open grass courtyard surrounded by about 15 restaurants/breweries with things for kids to climb on, firepits, etc.
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 will have to dedicate my shoutout to my wife. Filmmaking is an endeavor I’ve taken on later in life and is very different from my career thus far. She’s graciously accepted that it’s a part of me that just has to come out. This includes enduring sometimes long hours filming and editing on top of my regular full-time job.