Good artists copy, great artists steal.

by Ray Roman in , ,

Good artists copy, great artists steal.
— Pablo Picasso

Below is an animated .gif of a scene from My Imaginary Friend, a short film I worked on with my friend Brandon Mackey.

Now here’s a frame from the film Citizen Kane directed by Orson Welles. (screen capture is

As I mentioned before, the screen capture above is directly from a article titled “The Camera Is An Eye – Not A Vacuum Or A Gun”. The article refreshed my memory of a scene I worked on from the short film ‘My Imaginary Friend’. This image stuck out to me the moment I saw it because I can remember lifting this same technique from Citizen Kane. In 2006 when I was in college and made ‘My Imaginary Friend’, is around the time when I watched Citizen Kane for the first time. I may have watched it a couple years before, but just around this time of my life I was obsessed with Orson Welles. Now I don’t believe I was technically ‘stealing’ like I have titled this post, but I was for sure influenced by the cinematography in Citizen Kane.

Nowadays these choices of where to place the camera is ingrained in the way we make movies today. In fact every movie is technically stealing from the past in one way or another.

As a filmmaker I believe it’s important to try and understand the history of filmmaking as much as possible in order to stay creative, and fully understand how stories can be told.