As a student filmmaker, it’s difficult to make your film look like it cost thousands of dollars when in reality it cost a couple hundred.

That’s the key in filmmaking right, to trick the audience with smoke and mirrors? The better you are at that, the more impressive your film will become.

That is exactly what C.R. Bell focuses on in The Guerrilla Guild to Moviemaking. We as student filmmakers, not only suffer from limited funds but limited resources too. Bell saw this andCover01 was inspired to write this book for these purposes. Bell covers every aspect of filmmaking and emphasizes how to economically produce stunning films and still not compromise your creativity. It’s all about thinking outside the box. Through Bell’s fun comic illustrations he teaches us how to look in-between the lines, not only in our story but production as well, in order make our picture look as professional as possible. He does this by not just giving us a cliché border of some helpful tips but the full picture with specific examples that we can both see and read then go out and do ourselves.

The Guerrilla Guild to Moviemaking, gives us resourceful technical advice for grip and lighting equipment as well as some suggestions if you are looking to buy. Tips, tricks, and a variety of techniques that will work with any camera you happen to have your hands on and fundamental knowledge for sound that no one seems to want to tell us. Bell even has a glossary filled with production terminology of every word or phrase we have ever wondered about.

In the words of Bell himself, “the only way to learn this craft is by practicing it, and once you have mastered these moviemaking basics the sky is the limit. So, start reading—then gather your friends, write a script and make a movie!”

About the Author

BellHeadshotC.R. Bell is a director of photography, filmmaker and author. His latest film, The Trout That Saved Mono Lake, has been in several film festivals and is currently on tour with The Wild and Scenic Film Festival. His book, The Guerrilla Guide To Moviemaking, gives beginning filmmakers professional tips and tricks to help them make better films and is available at

C.R. began his career as an advertising agency art director in Los Angeles creating award-winning campaigns for clients such as Baskin-Robbins Ice Cream, Suzuki Motor Cars, and Microsoft. His greatest accomplishment as an adman was as a member of the creative team that produced the Partnership for a Drug-Free America fried egg campaign— This is your brain. This is your brain on drugs. Any Questions?

After twelve years on the ad agency side, C.R. moved to the production side and started directing and shooting commercials and corporate videos; as well as producing television shows for such notables as director Ivan Reitman. For the past twenty years C.R. has traveled the world as a director of photography shooting shows for FOX, History Channel, and A&E, in addition to a multitude of commercials and corporate videos.

In 2009, while giving a guest lecture to a college level video class, C.R. realized that students have a severe lack of knowledge in the basics of filmmaking. That event marked the genesis of his book, The Guerrilla Guide To Moviemaking. It’s lighthearted cartoon style gives young filmmakers the technical knowledge required to more professionally execute and enhance their creative vision, and shows them ways to use inexpensive tools to produce more professional looking films.

The Guerrilla Guide To Moviemaking has been embraced by the educational community as a resource for media classes at all levels from middle school to college. As an author, C.R. continues to work with media teachers to develop additional support materials that work hand in hand with the book to give educators entertaining ways to present the basic concepts of filmmaking.

C.R. is the owner of Bothy Studios, a creative agency and film production company located in Redmond, Washington.

Grip and Lighting

Paperback, 54 Pages
Published: 2011
ISBN: 9780615457000

LibbyBloodLibby Blood, Associate Editor

Libby Blood has a passion for all aspects of filmmaking. Throughout her four years in Advanced Media Production at El Dorado High School, she created countless PSAs, commercials, spot features, live events, music videos, and two award-winning short films. Now graduated, Libby is currently working on two feature films with well-known producers, as well as working with MTV Verge and Nick Cannon's Celebrity High TV. She is also stretching her wings with a full length documentary as well.