LIMA — Nick Kellis and his Heartland Image Foundation are presenting the 4th annual Student Integrated Arts Filmmaker Boot Camp this week and next. The boot camp is open to area youth in grades six through 12. Students will make a “Lima movie,” which will be premiered on July 18 at Veterans Memorial Civic Center for parents and donors.
Kellis, a Lima native, learned the craft of film-making in Hollywood. He moved back to Lima in 2014. His passion for film-making is matched by his affection for Lima and area youth. The boot camp gives young people the chance to study and learn the film-making process.
“We will have classes every day this week from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and we’ll basically have the kids choose their tracks of study. It’s much like a college curriculum,” said Kellis.
The kids will hone their skills in film-making while, at the same time, develop skills in other areas.
“I think it’s a primer for what the collegiate experience is. You need to make decisions, so let’s start them out young — see what their aptitude is and go pursue that, but also realize they have to be well rounded. Ideally this is a liberal arts education in that understanding what the other departments do uniquely qualifies you to be better at your job. You’ve got grips and electric that basically are the same aptitude that you’d find at the tank plant or the refinery or as pipefitters. We’re going to teach the kids basic accounting, budgeting, scheduling like you have in any other job. It’s important for them to be immersed in the whole thing but also be focused on what they really want to learn,” said Kellis.
Last year, the students involved with the boot camp worked on Kellis’ movie, “A Walk With Grace,” which was filmed entirely in Lima. Kellis wrote, directed and produced the film.
This is Payton Parlapiano’s fourth year taking the boot camp. She is 16 and will be a junior at Shawnee High School.
“I got to stand next to people that knew what they were doing — the professionals — and learn. The whole experience was crazy,” said Parlapiano. “Even when I sit down and watch TV, I look at the angles and the way that they came in and the lighting. It’s just been a great learning experience and I’ve met a lot of awesome friends. Everything that Nick is doing is just amazing and I love it.”
Parlapiano is looking into pursuing a vocation dealing with what she’s learned from her time at the boot camp.
“I’ve looked into editing and different things and career choices and I’m seeing all of the options,” said Parlapiano.
For Cassie Phillips, 17, of Lima, the boot camp has given her knowledge that she will come back and revisit after pursuing a career in something else.
“I’ve been thinking about what I want to do, considering that’s really close for me. I like being in film-making, but I’m not really sure that’s where I want to be with my life. Maybe I can come back to it because I have these skills. My dad started out as a Army combat medic, and then came back and started doing videography. So maybe I can get started somewhere else, and if I need to I can always come back to this,” said Phillips.
Kellis brought in Rachel Richardson, career services coordinator, from OSU-Lima, to talk with the kids about career choices.
“I want to talk to the youth about how to pick a career, because it’s a big decision, and it’s hard to make a lot of times for younger people to decide what they want to do when they grow up. At Ohio State Lima, we have several majors they can start and finish on our campus, but I also want to let them know how to make that decision and how to connect it with what their skills are, what their interests are and how to set themselves up for a successful future,” said Richardson.
Reach Merri Hanjora at 567-242-0511.