Kyla Robinson is successfully combining film and screen production studies with her work in the industry.
She completed the first half of the Diploma in Digital Film through SIT2LRN, and has now transferred these papers over to be able to complete the New Zealand Diploma in Screen Production.
This focus reflects the direction her career has taken her, working as one of the producers on the film 7 Distant Shores, based on a true story about child trafficking.
“We're currently in pre-production so I'm working on funding, distribution, attaching more talent and looking at co-production options, to name a few. Being the only New Zealander on the production at this stage, all of my work is done through Skype, email and phone and I've also made a trip to Thailand where the majority of the filming will be taking place.”
Kyla is also working on her own screenplays and productions.
“I’m in the development stage of a feature film I’ve written, also based on a true story, which I’ll be directing and hoping to make locally. I’ve got a few other feature ideas lined up after this one too, and trying to focus on writing and directing with some producing work for future productions.”
Film is a passion Kyla’s had since she first set foot on a film set as a make up artist.
“Originally from Tauranga and Mt Maunganui, I moved to Christchurch when I was 17 to study makeup artistry and design at The Design & Arts College of New Zealand.
“After this, I moved up to Auckland where I worked on my first film as makeup artist and set assistant. However, I realised right away that my passion was in film production rather than makeup artistry.”
Kyla worked on a couple of small productions and did a short introductory course in film and television at South Seas Film & Television School.
“Then I moved to Australia where I worked in various roles including at a talent agency, Access 31 Television Station and Channel Nine along with working as assistant director on various short films and music videos.”
Moving back to New Zealand with two children – the boys are now almost two and four years old – life was pretty chaotic, so it has only been in the past year that Kyla has been able to gradually get back into film.
“I saw the SIT2LRN online course as the perfect way to ease my way back in. Not long after starting, 7 Distant Shores came along and I also started working on my own projects.
“Since starting the course, my screenplay writing has improved and it has reignited my writing passion. I am looking forward to putting the knowledge I’ve gained through study into both 7 Distant Shores and my own screenplays/films.
“I am always eager to learn and absorb as much knowledge as I can from the film industry so will continue to read books and potentially study more, but ultimately throw myself into my projects and learn 'hands on'.”
Juggling home, kids, work and film makes for a busy life. “But I want to set an example for my boys, to follow their dreams and believe in themselves to achieve whatever they set their mind to.”