Tye Coffey is a 20-year-old film creator and videographer from Sacramento, California.
She began filming in high school, after taking a film class where she learned how to more effectively collect her ideas and turn them into something viewable for others. Since then, Coffey has been in love will all aspects of film.
“I do film, and really for me, film is more than just movies. Really what I like to do is take whatever visions I’m having in my mind—when I’m listening to music, when I’m out, whenever I have ideas—and translate whatever feelings those visions gave me into something that I can share with other people. I try to help people feel what I felt at those moments,” explained Coffey.
Her goal as a filmmaker is altruistic. Coffey strives to use her films as a platform to share knowledge about the African American community and Black Diaspora as a whole.
“A lot of the times people ask me why I am an African studies major instead of a film major. I feel like with African American studies that I am learning the content I want to convey, instead of learning how to cover content generally. I want to leave an impact by allowing people to go away from my work knowing that they know a little bit more about their culture. I really want to raise awareness about all of the things that are happening around us, because the struggles of African Americans are global,” she said.
Right now, Coffey divides her time between creating content that she envisions and helping others bring their ideas to life as a videographer. She has shot fashion shows, clothing brands, campaign promotions and numerous events in and around her community. However, her favorite project is still a video she created for her family reunion. For her, the power of a film is not always in the way it looks, but the feelings it leaves you with.
“One of my favorite films was actually one of my first ones. It was kind of cheesy and of my family reunion. It was in the beginning stages of me learning to edit, but I love it because it was so organic. Everyone I show it to always thinks that it is so cute and loving even though it is not the best quality.”
For all aspiring filmmakers, Coffey believes that the most important understanding you can have is an understanding of yourself. Many times, creatives just want to create that they lose what they are trying to say. Yet, Coffey understands the creativity stems from the artist themselves. Without having an awareness of your own feelings and message, you cannot create affective content.
To aspiring filmmakers, she advised, “Just stay true to yourself. Stay true to what you want to do, what you want to convey, what your message is. As an artist, what you’re really doing is trying to take your internal feelings and display , so it’s really important to stay true to yourself so that those feelings don’t get confused and lost.”
You can stay up to date on all of Tye Coffey's work by following her @thecoffeystop on instagram.