A Journey from Engineer to Film Director: Ishell Vaughan Story

HHW Staff
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Ishell Vaughan

Ishell Vaughan is a professional filmmaker, cinematographer, and the founder and owner of Ishell Vaughan Films. He also represents one-third of the founding members of Secret Society Motion Pictures. He resides in Newark, New Jersey. At present, Nimi Hendrix, Denity and Ishell shoot the majority of their favorite artists’ music videos and run the most intuitive film internship program. Later, he started a subsidiary, The Raw Sessions, a platform where new artists can publish their content and get recognition in the highly competitive industry. It took him nine years’ worth of working experience to be enabled to build a successful brand and career. 

Even though he had done his bachelor of applied science in electrical and electronics engineering from DeVry University, he worked as an amateur for his family and friends. He made short videos due to his passion for photography. It wasn’t until his good friend offered to pay him for a baby shower shoot that Ishell realized that he could make a living through his passion for photography and filmmaking. 

Ishell’s most significant success is to be able to wake up every day and do what he loves. Ishell believes that getting to this level in his career took a lot of hard work and discipline; without that, he wouldn’t even be any compliments. Ishell’s happiest day was when he booked for a job that paid $5,000. It was the first time he had that much many at one time. Ishell believed that was the day that he realized that he was made for this. It was not just about the money but knowing that someone else also valued his work.

Ishell’s most valuable lesson he learned throughout the years is that you can’t be afraid to fail. When he started filming, he had no idea of what he was doing, but Ishell believed that he would never have learned from his mistakes if he didn’t make them. Ishell’s most wanted goal is to be in the space of learning; he wants to always be in a position to gain knowledge. He also wants to leave a legacy behind to achieve and open a studio where inner-city children can come and learn film and entrepreneurship. He also has a valuable piece of advice for young entrepreneurs or someone who wants to make some name in this industry to “Keep Going” no matter what’s going on, just keep going and don’t stop for anyone or anything.

Ishell has received various awards at the Newark Film Festival and recognized a reputation as a creative and imaginative industry professional with an unwavering dedication to his work. The most famous role of his career is in the upcoming film, My First Film, which was written and directed by his mentor Rock Davis and he served as Director of Photography. 

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