Ashton Trujillo will be joining the Humble Beast team as our media intern, but he's not much of an intern. The dude's a beast, and we plan on learning from him during his six-month stay. Ashton received his Bachelor of Fine Arts from California Institute of the Arts in 2013. He is an experienced video producer, videographer, and editor. Check out his video reel, and a sample piece he did for his internship application, "Treasure". Ashton has been married for three years to his wife, Lorraine, and together, they have a 1-year old son, Data-Imrah.
(Editor's Note: While Ashton is in Portland, he will be doing some freelance work to subsidize his living expenses and help cover his family. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org if you're interested)
We shot Ashton a few questions so you guys could get to know him a little better. We're excited to work with him and keep putting out great content for Humble Beast fans! Welcome aboard, Ashton!
Why did you want to intern for Humble Beast?
"Well first, Humble Beast has meant a lot to me in my spiritual journey overall, so I’m stoked to serve alongside you guys! The Lord really used Christian Hip Hop, specifically Humble Beast and Lamp Mode, to keep my feet on the ground, head in the clouds – especially when I had just thrown out all the sinful garbage I had been listening to before and felt very vulnerable to outside influences and the influence of music being the most prominent.
I remember hearing my first Christian hip hop song and thinking whoa…
It had a lot to do with my craving for theology and wanting to really grow in knowledge. At that time in my life I was pining for something that would not only feed me heavier doses of theology but still allow me to sink into the melodic drifts of the music. The latter was just as important to me as the theology – a way of engaging the mind and heart to greater worship. And that’s where Humble Beast came in. I was getting sound theology but still getting crafted music that I could let take me on the journey of music because I knew it was worship to the King and for that my soul and mind were well pleased at the influence.
I guess that was a really long way of saying that I’m thankful for Humble Beast Records.
I’m rather obsessed with the dynamic duo of Film + Music (and by music, I mean more soundtrack than score) and it’s actually why a lot of my favorite films are various music videos or films where music plays a huge narrative role. I wanted to intern for you guys to see what we could grind out together, utilizing film and music and to see anyway that I can help get your message out which is the message for all time. Whether it’s a Left Roasters' spot or a music video, I know we will do it all unto the Lord and that it’s all ultimately to display our awesome God - so let’s roll!"
What is your favorite HB album?
"Hmm... I think I would have to say Instruments of Mercy. JGivens' Fly Exam is a very close second."
What is your favorite album, period?
"I think it might be Josh Garrels’ newest album, Home. That album moved me immensely. Talk about an album that carries you to heaven’s shore."
Who is your biggest artistic inspiration?
"I would say C.S. Lewis, the 'Master Likener.' John Piper, in speaking about Lewis, summarizes my core beliefs, purpose and projection as a filmmaker:
'…He found from romanticism and rationalism that this world is most honest and most true when it is pointing beyond itself, and thus seeing itself as like that and not that….If the key to the deepest meaning of this world lies outside in what this world is not, then the world will probably be illumined most deeply not simply by describing the world as what it is, but by likening the world to what it is not.'
I would also add St. Augustine. The weight and rawness this man brings inspires me on almost everything I do. I don’t think there has been a project where I’m not musing on C.S. Lewis and St. Augustine."
Tell us two or three movies whose cinematography has impressed you.
"I would like to very seriously put a disclaimer on this answer. While there is certainly a massive influence from these films on my life as a filmmaker, I’m not sure if I would return to some of these films, or recommend them. It always bums me out when you go back to one of your favorite films and find all this sinful garbage in it! At that point you gotta just trash it. Nonetheless, here are some films whose cinematography very much influenced and impressed me: Apocalypse Now, Rhinoceros, Daft Punk’s Electroma. More recently, I loved the cinematography of Selma."
Is Leo finally going to win that Oscar for his role in the Revenant?
"Haha! Well, I hope so. While I haven’t seen the Revenant yet, I typically love all Leo’s work, and I do believe he deserves an Oscar. I also bet that the cinematography is going to be breathtaking when I finally see it."
(Editor's Note: Since answering these questions, Ashton has seen the movie. This is what he had to say:)
"I finally saw the Revenant....oh...my...goodness..."