Meet some of our talented Staff...
Each summer we are able to assemble an impressive group of young professional filmmakers and film students to teach our kids. Many return year after year to teach. We are grateful for their talent and commitment to teaching young people.
Teaching the Art of Filmmaking to kids 11-18.
SENIOR STAFF INTERMEDIATE PROGRAM - Born and raised in Annapolis, Katie Sieracki has a BFA in Film and TV Production from NYU. She has written and directed the short film TONTINE, and currently lives in Los Angeles. This is Katie’s 13th year as an instructor with FILMSTERS Academy. Since graduating from college, Katie has finally found a calling in life: to work with adolescents. She claims has FILMSTERS to thank for helping her find her way, and is certain her relationship with the film camp will continue for many years to come. She holds the unique distinction of having taught all three levels of film camp.
John Michael "Jike" Gudger
THE CHIEF/WRITING TEAM LEADER - Jike Gudger loves taking time out to help aspiring writers. Like the students of this camp, Jike was exposed to the film culture from a young age and has carried many of the lessons learned from it throughout his life. He received his B.A. in English from St. Mary’s College of Maryland and a MPP from UMBC. He has also spent time teaching in Micronesia as a Peace Corps volunteer. He now holds a Master's in environmental policy. He just wrapped up session at the state legislature working on policy. Patti and Lee’s encouragement of his creativity and improvisation has served him well. Even though he's not he’s officially “in the business,” Jike spends a good portion of his time writing and workshopping screenplays. Jike has assisted the Annapolis Film Festival over the past few years. He teaches the curriculum and is Senior Staff on deck in the building and edit rooms.
PRODUCTION MANAGER - Natasha recently moved back to Maryland from Maine where she was an education program coordinator, managing outdoor environmental education programs for K-12 students. Previously, Natasha served as an Americorps Member in Baltimore, MD providing literacy education for K-3 students. Natasha also worked on the 4th grade team at Arlington Echo Outdoor Education Center in Millersville Maryland. Natasha graduated from University of Richmond in 2014, double majoring in Film Studies and Environmental Studies. This is her sixth year at Filmsters Academy.
ART DIRECTOR - Graca McKenney earned a BA in Art History & Writing from UMBC and a certification in Graphic Design from AACC. She worked with FILMSTERS for four years before returning to the Eastern Shore, where she currently designs online training activities for Piedmont Airlines as a Learning Development Specialist. She has also provided support graphic work for the Annapolis Film Festival since its inception. This is her 11th year with FILMSTERS Academy, where she oversees all Art Direction and graphics needs for the films and the print program, festival poster and helps all of the kids create posters and graphics for their films.
ADVANCED INSTRUCTOR - An Annapolis native, Ashley Deckman is an NYU MFA filmmaker based out of Manhattan, New York City. She is best known for her work as an Associate Producer for hit reality show "Our Little Family." She also worked for a year as the Production Coordinator for the Annapolis Film Festival in 2015 and Festival Manager in 2018. She is working to complete her M.F.A in both Directing/Writing and Producing from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts where she just wrote and directed her first film. Ashley will working with the Advanced program again this year.
ACTING TEAM LEADER - Hayes Biche is a New York based writer and actor. With theater degree from Oberlin College and training at The Acting Studio and Shakespeare and Co., he is fluent in many techniques of acting. Recently having graduated from Upright Citizens Brigade sketch comedy program, he writes, performs and directs with his comedy group ‘Broccoli in the Breadbox’. Hayes Biche is head of the Acting team and he just completed the Amy Pohler School of Comedy. As a student of the very first year of Filmsters, he is excited to return add to this amazing community!
TECH MANAGER - Returning for his third year at camp this summer, Josh Kruger is a former Army combat photog who served two tours in Afghanistan. He is a trained Camera Op/DIT, drone pilot and Adobe Creative Suite expert. Josh has worked on several FILMSTERS productions and served as tech support for the Annapolis Film Festival for three years. An avid outdoorsman and parcore acrobat, he loves rock climbing and nature. He hails from Tennessee, but now calls Annapolis his home.
Mitchell "Mac" Makowicz
INTERMEDIATES - Returning for his second year at camp this summer, Mac is a former Army combat photog who served two tours in Afghanistan. He is a trained Videographer, Soundman and Adobe Creative Suite expert. Most recently, Mac has been shooting for the Boston Red Sox. He lives in Boston with his wife and has been looking forward to returning to film camp again this summer.
ACTING TEAM - Bio to come.
ACTING TEAM - Brooke is an actress, writer and PA. She has been a student of film camp for six years and returned as in intern last year. A recent graduate of Full Sail University, she currently does improv and stand up comedy locally. She was the first recipient of the Eliza Edmunds VISION award at FILMSTERS Academy and through her experience at film camp has been lucky enough to participate in over 20 short films, working with professional actors and filmmakers in the industry. In 2015, Brooke played the lead in the dramatic short film, INSIDE, made by the Advanced program, which screened in the Student Showcase at the Annapolis Film Festival, 2016. She also starred in GAME BOY, GOT A CLUE? and other short films. She worked as a PA on the feature film FISHBOWL by Stephen and Alexis Kinigopolous and volunteered at the Annapolis Film Festival. This is her first year with FILMSTERS Academy as a staff. She has loved film camp since she first attended at age thirteen.
ADMIN TEAM - DaJuan first came to FILMSTERS Academy as a student at age 11. He has a remarkable singing voice and has performed in FILMSTERS Academy's screening night's musical intermission each year leading the group and often doing a solo. He has worked on many short films at camp in the roles of actor, producer, cinematographer, editor and production design. He attended the Advanced Program three times to make “The Ones We Love,” "Kiss of Death"and "Inside," which was featured in Maryland’s own Annapolis Film Festival. DaJuan attends the University of Maryland majoring in Criminal Justice. He first taught at FILMSTERS Academy in 2016. He has passion for politics and social change and is currently the youngest candidate to win the role of Alderman at the Annapolis City Council - Ward 6 in a Special Election this summer. He loves film camp and is glad that it happens during his recess from the City Council!
BEGINNERS - Connor is a rising senior at the University of Southern California, where he studies screenwriting in the film school. Outside of class, he works as a freelance music video director and editor. Connor was a FILMSTERS student when he was younger, and this is his 3rd year on staff working with the Beginners. He is on the writing team and is originally from Annapolis, Maryland.
INTERMEDIATES - Lindsey graduated with dual degrees in film and digital media in 2016. Since then I've been working in fictional and commercial work and have had many opportunities to travel. I love the creative collaboration that goes into filmmaking and look forward to helping the students learn how they fit into this team. This is her second year at FILMSTERS Academy. She lives in Annapolis, MD.
BEGINNERS - Wes originally started in acting, but transitioned over into directing and screenwriting while at Filmsters Academy. He directed such Filmsters films as Meta and Paranoia. He is a rising junior at the Savannah College of Art and Design, majoring in Film and Television with a focus on direction. Wes directs, writes, and gaffs. He is also looking for work in the world of film while also managing his Mongolian throat singing career on top of everything else. This is Wes’ ninth year, third as staff, at Filmsters Academy.
ACTING TEAM - Returning as a staff on the Acting team this year at camp, Amanda is a recent graduate of Virginia Tech with a degree in Theater Arts. She made the Dean's list every semester. A student at FILMSTERS Academy in 2008 and 2009, Amanda returns for her third year as an intern for the acting team. She recently graduated with a B.A. in Theatre Arts from Virginia Tech, where she spent the last few years stage managing and performing in many productions, including the university’s production of the Tony Award Winning Musical Fun Home. She is currently working in Orlando, Florida as a performer for the Walt Disney World Company. Amanda is happy to return to film camp and is excited to learn and grow with the FILMSTERS family!
BEGINNERS - Bio to come.
ACTING TEAM - Bio to come.
BEGINNERS - Cooper has been an intern and is now a second year instructor in Beginners at film camp. Cooper is interested in writing, directing and music. Currently, he is studying at AACC and is a drummer in his band, Cooper has been a PA for the Annapolis Film Festival and on many other local productions in the DMV. He loves the energy of film camp and production.
WARDROBE/COSTUMES/MAKEUP - In her second year at Pratt Institute in NYC, Sarah is studying fashion and design. Severna Park High School senior Sarah Howland was 7 years old when she discovered her passion for fashion design. “My grandma got me this purple journal that had a navy blue gown on the cover,” Howland said. “I started designing princess-like ball gowns and putting them in this book. Once I filled that book, I went on to the next one, and I continued to fill sketchbooks for years.” Howland is now on her 13th sketchbook. Howland began taking sewing lessons at age 10, and she recently broke free of patterns to make her own designs. She interned at FILMSTERS Academy last summer and returns as a staff this year to dazzle us with her innovative designs for the kids.
INTERMEDIATES - His 6th year at Filmsters Academy, Ben Trevey is a cinematographer who is currently entering his second year of film studies at UNC School of the Arts. He has been making films for the majority of his life and has recently shot numerous short films and music videos. He splits his time between coasts, working in Hollywood during his summers on short films, television series and feature films. He has worked at the Annapolis Film Festival for many years as a BTS videographer and is passionate about the Annapolis community and inspiring the next generation of filmmakers.
BEGINNERS - Arthur has been a regular fixture at film camp since he was 11. Since that time he has acted, written and produced many short films. He is a gifted artist and graphic designer and has assisted Art Director, Graca McKenney with designing the kids movie posters. Known around camp as "Obama", from his most famous acting role in "Past to President,' Arthur is a youth counselor at Boys and Girls Clubs of Annapolis and Anne Arundel County. He is currently a student at UMBC and this is his ninth year at camp, first year as a staff.
INTERMEDIATES - A graduate of Full Sail University this Spring, Stavros also holds a Bachelors of Science from the Manchester School of Technology in Video Production. Working primarily as an A.D, Producer and Director, he has credits on multiple short films including; Cowbelles - Director, SD productions Invasion, FS studios Swipe Right, Caesar Salad, Schools in Session, Tricology Productions Rush and The Power of Drag. After graduation Stavros moved to Smyrna, Georgia to work in the film industry right now he has done some extra work on a few tv shows, and movies ,he aspires to be an Assistant Director in the film world one day. He is good at talent wrangling, Final Draft, Adobe Premiere Pro, counting walkie talkies and answering the phones.This is his first year taking on Filmsters Academy. During his time at Full Sail Stavros directed a short film Cowbelles, he plans on submitting it to Key West Film Festival.
INTERMEDIATES - This is Josh Dale’s first-time teaching at Filmsters Academy. Josh has graduated with a bachelor’s degree from Full Sail University. Josh has been acting as an extra on shows such as Brockmire, The Outsider, and Teenage Bounty Hunter. He has also worked on the short film Choices, and Cowbells both being shown in film festivals. He has also directed his own short film Rush. Although he has directed Rush, and Co-Directed The Power of Drag, he specializes as a DP/Gaffer. He grew up in southern Florida and recently moved to Atlanta, Georgia.
ADVANCED - Kenny Unangst’s first love was editing. He began editing stop motion transformers videos at the age of 11 and moved on to short films in high school. He also worked two years as an editor at the company Digital Feast cutting promotional material for businesses in the area. He then attended Full Sail University and was created as editor for many projects. After graduating he became the creative director of Digital Feast. Proficient in both AVID Media Composer and Adobe Creative Suite, he is a workflow expert. Kenny also color grades and oversees effects and post-production. Kenny is new to FILMSTERS Academy this summer.
FORMER FILMSTERS ACADEMY STAFF
BEGINNERS - Born and raised in Annapolis, Chellie is a graduate of University of Colorado in Boulder with a degree in film. Chellie was the Programming Coordinator for the 2017 Annapolis Film Festival where she worked closely wtih filmmakers from around the world to bring their films to Annapolis. She just wrapped as Production Coordinator for the Annapolis Film Festival 2018 and prior to that went on the road as a PA on a brand new NETFLIX series. Chellie was a PA on GREAT BIG BABY, a feature documentary shot in New York City and has worked on various productions with FILMSTERS. Chellie taught three years with Beginners. She is on her second season of APOC on the CW series "All American." She lives in Los Angeles, CA.
INTERMEDIATE STAFF - This is Mandisa Henry’s seventh year with FILMSTERS Academy. Presently, she work in production at Studio Unknown, a sound design and music studio in Baltimore. She is a 2007 graduate of the University of Maryland, College Park with a degree in Psychology and a minor in Human Development. Since its inception, Mandisa has been a big part of the Annapolis Film Festival. She is on the Programming Committee and she currently serves on the Board of Directors for the film festival. She works as Production Manager at Studio Unknown, a post-production sound studio. Her area of expertise is Music Supervision. She is an instructor in the Intermediate program at film camp. She has taught for eight years at film camp.
INTERMEDIATE INSTRUCTOR - Ryan Gugerty graduated in 2012 from St. Mary’s College of Maryland with a degree in film and photography. Ryan is interested in documentary film, photojournalism, and film photography education. Ryan spent this past year serving in City Year Boston, a team-based national service program. Ryan has spent nine non-consecutive years teaching with FILMSTERS Academy and lives in California. He returned two years ago to celebrate our 15th summer!
ACTING TEAM - Wes Farquhar is a local actor and improvisational comedy performer from Towson, Maryland. You may recognize Wes as the lead in last year's Advanced film ARDEUR. He is an aspiring filmmaker, a member of Shrug Productions and is currently studying film at Towson University. He is currently developing a web series. "I make perfect scrambled eggs and sob my way through Fast and Furious 2 every time it’s on television." This is his seventh year with FILMSTERS Academy.
INTERMEDIATE STAFF - Dan Sadler graduated from York College in 2010 with a degree in Mass Communication and a minor in Music Industry. Dan is a Varsity Lacrosse Coach at Chesapeake High School and musician in a local band. Dan’s production company, Badler Productions, produces video work in and around the state of Maryland. Dan is an experienced director, cinematographer and editor. Dan has had many memorable roles at film camp. He has played superheroes and villians, kooky professors and creepy Dads and is probably best remembered as the lead role of Jesus in the FILMSTERS Academy film, JESUS, INC. He is a member of Shrug Productions, a sketch comedy group. This is Dan's 8th year at film camp.
ACTING TEAM - Charles Rocco Henry of Severna Park, Maryland, has performed improvised comedy for over a decade. In the past, Charlie taught high schoolers improvisational skills and he is a founding member of Shrug Productions. a sketch comedy group. He has acted in several film camp shorts such as (Powder Man, Inside and Pulp Non-Fiction), as well as, shorts created for the 48 Hour Film Festival in Baltimore. Charlie recently appeared as a baseball fan in a commercial for National Bohemian beer. He has been at film camp as part of the acting team for six years this summer.
ACTING TEAM - A five-year FILMSTERS Academy alumnae (2002-2007) Holly has been a member of the acting team at film camp. She now lives in Los Angeles. She is an actress, performs stand-up comedy , and is a member of a Los Angeles-based acting troupe. She has appeared in several indie feature films, short films and music videos. Holly hopes to return to FILMSTERS Academy this summer as an industry guest instructor.
Maurice "Moe" Taylor
SFX TEAM LEADER - His name is Maurice, but everyone calls him Moe! He’s a cool, down-to-Earth guy that is very ambitious, persistent, detailed and creative. He graduated from the Art Institute of Philadelphia with his Bachelors of Science in multi-media art
and animation. He currently runs his own multimedia company and is also a full time Artistic Genius at Tessemaes All Natural Dressings. He breathes, sleeps and eats art; art is life to him and he enjoys everything about being creative and sharing his visions with the world.
INTERMEDIATE INSTRUCTOR - Born and raised in Annapolis, Ellen Reed Heuer is a graduating senior at Connecticut College, where she majored in film studies with a minor in music. She spent one semester abroad in Vienna, Austria in the Fall of 2016. She directed the 2013 Advanced film THE ONES WE LOVE and directed her first narrative short in 2015 at Connecticut College. Last summer, she interned at The Documentary Group in New York City. At film camp, Ellen teaches Beginner and assists in production on the Advanced film each summer. Ellen has cut trailers for the Annapolis Film Festival and has been responsible for running print traffic during the event. She is currently working for a production company in Brooklyn, NYC. She is thrilled to be returning to Filmsters this summer as a staff once more!
BEGINNER INSTRUCTOR - An Annapolis native, Mariana grew up at FILMSTERS Academy and went on to earn her degree from the New York Film Academy in NYC and Los Angeles. . After living and acting in LA for a couple of years, she has returned home and is working for Hartcorn Studios. This is her second year teaching at FILMSTERS Academy and she is very excited to see what she can bring to the many films created at film camp.
Logan McKenna Brown
BEGINNER STAFF - Originally from Georgia, and now a graduate of George Mason University, Logan has graduated with a major in Film and Video Studies this spring and aspires to be a Cinematographer/Director one day. She is a filmmaker with experience in short films having just completed and screened her senior thesis film, THE GAY CLUB. Logan has worked on various short films and productions at her university over the past four years. Her recent web series, Through the Trees Eyes, won a local Emmy Award for short-form fiction. She is a talented photo journalist and has shot behind the scenes for the Annapolis Film Festival. Her 4th year at FILMSTERS Academy and she is very excited to see what kind of talent the campers bring this summer. With a keen cinematographers' eye and a wicked sense of humor she will take on the Intermediate program this summer. In her spare time, Logan enjoys cinematography and photography.
BEGINNER INSTRUCTOR - Kathleen Taylor is currently earning her BFA in Theatrical Production Arts from Ithaca College, concentrating in Lighting Design, Scenic Design and Electrics. She was the lighting designer for multiple IC No Bucks stage productions and was also one of the lighting designers on the Block Concerts for the hit a cappella groups on campus, Ithacapella and Premium Blend. Her work on those shows has led her to work with The Vocal Company, many ICTV shows and Park School movies. Upon her arrival to Annapolis in 2010, Kathleen sought out FILMSTERS Academy and has been with them since, first as a camper, then an intern, and has now finally reached her dream of being a staff member for camp. In 2015, she missed camp to serve as Lighting Director for an outdoor ampitheatre in Hawaii. She resides in New York City.
EQUIPMENT MANAGER - A Colorado native now residing in Los Angeles, Antonio currently attends Santa Monica College as a film and cinema major. He works as a freelance Grip & Electric Lighting Tech on independent film sets, music videos and commercial productions, including the music video “Zumbao” for Taboo of the Black Eyed Peas. He worked in the camera department on the independent feature film, THE GOOD NEIGHBOR, starring James Caan, Keir Gilchrist and Logan Miller, released in 2016. His work as a cinematographer includes “Bod Mod,” a short about teenage body modification featured at the Los Angeles Film Fest, and “The Ones We Love,” which was featured in Maryland’s own Annapolis Film Festival. He first attended FILMSTERS Academy in 2009 as a student and has participated whenever he is available.
ADVANCED - Andrew is a 2013 graduate of SUNY Geneseo with a BA in Philosophy. He started his television and film career working on The Good Neighbor in 2015. Shortly thereafter, he moved to Maryland and began freelancing in the DMV area as well as working for the FILMSTERS Academy as a summer instructor. Over the past year, he has freelanced full time with Sirens Media on various reality shows. Andrew returned for his second year as Production Coordinator with the Annapolis Film Festival 2017. Andrew has an interest in acting and screenwriting and will return to film camp this summer.
EQUIPMENT MANAGER/SUPERVISING GAFFER - A Colorado native now residing and working on set in Los Angeles, CA. Kevin works frequently as a freelance cinematographer, grip, assistant gaffer on several commercial and independent film productions. He has worked on many music videos and commercials, including the music video “Zumbao” for Taboo of the Black Eyed Peas. He worked in the camera department on the independent feature film, THE GOOD NEIGHBOR, starring James Caan, Keir Gilchrist and Logan Miller, released in 2016. For the past two summers, Kevin supervised the lighting with the Advanced class on the short films INSIDE and META. He hopes to join us again this summer.
ADVANCED - Hailing from Silver Spring, MD, Erica Rowe graduated from the School of Visual Arts in New York City in May 2010 with a BFA in Film & Video Editing. She works as a Freelance Editor in DC, engaged in creating documentaries for National Geographics WILD and others such as the award winning “Endangered Hawaii”, narrated by Richard Chamberlain, and “Don’tHate Me”, a work-in-progress about self esteem in teenage girls. She is a founding member of Shrug Productions. She has also branched into Special Effects by teaching herself 2D and 3D Animation. Most recently, Erica has also become a Published Author with several short stories on Amazon for Kindle under the pen name East Oakley. This is her ninth year with FILMSTERS Academy bringing experience in special effects, makeup, and stage combat.
ACTING TEAM - Bio to come.