At just 22 years of age, filmmaker Aaron Butler’s career is already taking off, with his work being shown around the globe.
The long-time Robina local has produced promotional videos for major brands and clients including Rolls Royce, Red Bull, Princess Yachts, Australia’s Thunder From Down Under, Ozfest, Escape Music Festival and SASS Management to name a few.
One of his latest pieces, which showcases an iconic New York City sunset, will soon appear on the silver screen, after being licensed for an upcoming feature film.
A pretty impressive list of accomplishments for a young filmmaker, who graduated from Bond University with a Bachelor of Film and Television just two years ago, in 2015!
Aaron credits his success to his focus on generating high quality short films, branding and commercial and music videos for businesses, events and artists.
We sat down with the man behind Aaron Butler Films to find out more about what he has been up to and how living, studying and working in Robina has contributed to his success.
Why did you decide to get into filmmaking?
I loved studying film and television in high school; I just loved creating beautiful images on the screen. Filmmaking became my passion and I spent my time watching a lot of videos on YouTube, so decided to make a career out of it and pursue it at university.
My ideal genre is festival videos and after-movies – I love the cinematography of music festivals. I’ve always wanted to achieve this style of film, which is why I’ve moved into this sector the last few years.
Could you please tell us about your business – how did you establish yourself?
Throughout my time at Bond University, I set up my business Aaron Butler Films and started doing some free work for companies who were looking for footage of events and festivals.
Towards the end of my degree, I had built up a large contact list, who still wanted me to do work for them, which transitioned into paid work. Word of mouth caught on and now I have built a lot of connections, which has brought me business.
How did your time at Bond University prepare you for your career and building a business?
My time at Bond University was really beneficial because I was put into an environment with likeminded people who all brought different ideas to the table.
I was exposed to a lot of different avenues of film and videos that I didn’t know about before so it definitely opened my eyes and broadened my skill set.
Videos are such a massive part of the world today and they are at the forefront of commercial businesses – it has never been a more important time for companies to be creating and putting out videos.
What is your biggest professional accomplishment to date?
Last July I went to the United States on a family holiday and we took a helicopter ride over New York City as the sun was setting. I filmed the whole helicopter trip as it was absolutely amazing and then created a video of the experience.
The charter company that we flew with posted my video to their social media channels, which gave me a lot of exposure – now my video has been used in short films and is licensed for a feature film. It has also been used in promotional videos for DJs who perform shows in New York.
The video is making its way around the world, which is pretty amazing and is opening a lot of doors for me as an artist.
Link to the video: http://www.aaronbutlerfilms.com.au/portfolio/new-york-city-from-above/
What do you love about living and working in Robina?
I’ve lived in Robina for over 13 years. As I’m 22, I have spent most of my life in this amazing suburb – in fact, my first job was at McDonalds in Robina and I then worked at Big W in Robina Town Centre.
I went to high school and then university in Varsity Lakes, which are both only a short walk away from everything. All you need is right here and it is literally at the heart of the Gold Coast. When people think of the Gold Coast they tend to think of Surfers Paradise or Broadbeach, but the locals know Robina is iconic in its own right.
How has Robina changed as a community throughout the years that you have lived here?
Robina Town Centre has been the biggest change that I have personally noticed. It used to be a small shopping centre, but in recent years has transformed into a shopping precinct with such a massive variety of stores, really putting it on the map.
CBUS Super Stadium has been an awesome development too. I have watched the Aquis Gold Coast Titans rise from the ground up, which has been pretty amazing.
What is your favourite thing about living in Robina?
I love how central the community is – everything I need is close by so it’s super easy to do anything that I need to do.