Joel Staveley is something of a millennial polymath. As one of New Zealand’s pioneers in 3D digital visualsation and reality capture metrology technology, he traded up state-of-the-art 3D laser scanning equipment for a seemingly low-tech picture taking device. Little did he know that those 5 years spent studying mechatronics & robotics engineering would eventually lead to a passion he almost stumbled on many years ago.

After almost 9 years being involved with the engineering & technology sector through work and study, it was time to jump into the deep end and take on a new challenge. Unlike the highly constrained and structured world of engineering, a creative pursuit was essentially limitless and offered freedom that every engineer could only dream of. During the years of establishing his content creation agency, EYESORE Digital, he moonlighted as an adventure tour guide and drove buses around the beautiful country he calls home – New Zealand. Naturally this seemed like a perfect opportunity to capture the landscapes we all enjoy. This planted the seed for a few epic journeys, taking Joel to 23 countries and experiencing travel on the other side of the world.

Six years after entering a creative pursuit into photography and cinematography beginning in 2013, he’s had the opportunity to work with companies such as Panasonic, General Electric, Woodside and over 70 brands and organisations throughout New Zealand in different capacities. His passion lies in seeing others succeed and this drives his quest to create high-value commercial video content for brands, businesses and individuals alike.

For the curious….

When did you get into photography & film?

I purchased my first camera in 2013 after getting my first full-time job. I spent my whole first paycheck on a used Canon 5D II with a 24-105mm F4 L thinking a pro camera would take “professional” photos. I was very wrong.

How did you get into filmmaking & photography?

I think I always had an interest in digital media since a young age. Most of my interests involved 3D animation, Photoshop and Flash at the time. It took over 10 years of occasionally making videos before I realised it was a passion I had all along.

What equipment do you use?

I shoot with the Sony A7 III & A7R II currently and a full range of zoom and prime lenses covering everything from 16-200mm between F1.4 to F2.8

Did you study film or photography?

Like most people who transition into it today I’m entirely self taught. With a plethora of free content available to learn with it’s an easy thing to do but nothing replaces the real-world experience.

Can I work for you?

Sorry I’m not able to take on any employees. I get sent CV’s weekly to EYESORE but the business isn’t in a position to take anyone onboard. I ocassionally hire contractors when required for editing and assisting on projects though.

Why do we call ourselves “filmmakers”?

Simply put, there really isn’t a better description for intra-disciplinary content creators who delve into so many aspects of video creation and storytelling. It requires a lot more than just the knowledge of filming as it requires understanding of the entire process from start to finish. Lighting, sound, direction, scripting, blocking, editing, post-production and so much more. It encompasses a wide array of disciplines that being a cinematographer just doesn’t cover. It’s not to inflate our egos – in fact more often than not we fully awkowledge that we are just a jack-of-all-trades. We don’t specialise in any one thing but we have the knowledge and skill to bring it all together and do our best to understand what it’s like for everyone involved in content production.