We had the good fortune of connecting with Kelly Strawinski and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Kelly, what do you attribute your success to?
I think the biggest factor behind my success is being passionate about learning new things. My never-ending thirst for knowledge has paid off more times than I can count. Working in video, the industry and the technology are constantly shifting and growing in new directions. Staying curious and trying new things has enabled me to move with the market as well as have a bigger picture of what other creatives are doing.

A great example of this started in 2019. I had a little bit of downtime between projects and so I thought I would learn what I could about animation. Before this, I had only worked with filmed content. Over the course of a few months I created a series of animations whenever I had a break, simply to learn how the process worked.

When the pandemic hit in 2020, our agency’s (Launch Interactive) video department was shut down like the rest of the industry. When work started coming in again, we were being asked if we could do animation to avoid filming in person. I spent the next year working almost solely on animation projects. Prior to teaching myself this new skill, we would have had to turn down or hire out all the requests for animated work.

Now that we are back to filming in person, I have a wider range of capabilities that our agency can offer and build into the content we are producing.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I started filming as a nine year old and fell in love with the magic of using motion to tell stories. I made hundreds of short films as a teenager before attending film school at UNCW. I loved finally getting to learn about filmmaking from experts, as I had previously only been self taught.

My childhood dream was to work on movies, and after graduating I did just that. I spent a couple of years working on film sets around Atlanta before realizing it wasn’t what I was looking for longterm. I valued being on a team, but wanted to be a bigger part of the creative process than I would be on large movie sets. I wanted to have my hands back on the camera and more flexibility to try new things.

This led to founding a small creative agency with my sister, where we built websites and produced video content for a variety of companies. We worked together with great success for almost four years before I took the role I currently have at Launch as the Video Production Lead. Now I get to work with a team of talented creatives making content I’m proud of.

None of the transitions I have made have been easy choices, but they have all given me the opportunity to grow as a filmmaker. And growth is truly what drives me to want to work in the first place.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Walk on the Beltline to Julianna’s in Inman Park for breakfast crepes
Pop into Virginia Highland Books to scoop up a new read
Grab lunch on Buford Highway – So Kong Dong is all time favorite of mine
Go for an afternoon climb at Stone Summit Atlanta
Dinner at El Tesoro if the weather allows
Finish the night with good music and drinks at The High Museum for Jazz Night

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My parents have always been incredibly supportive of my creativity, whether that be my endless storytelling as a child or filmmaking as an adult. They encouraged me to be the best I could and to keep seeking out new challenges.

I also work an incredible team of creatives at Launch Interactive. Working with people that are willing to jump into the unknown and explore ideas with you makes a huge difference.

Website: kellystrawinski.com

Instagram: @kellystrawphoto

Linkedin: www.linkedin.com/in/kellyatl

Image Credits
Headshot of me taken by Cate Kennedy All other photos taken by me (Kelly Strawinski)

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