Whether you’re raising funds for a creative project or a new business idea, running your own crowdfunding campaign is no easy feat. It takes a healthy dose of passion, discipline, and commitment to bring your ideas and concepts to life, and get your backer community excited about them. Ever wondered what a day in the life of a creative entrepreneur on Indiegogo is like? We’re here to give you an exclusive glimpse into 24 hours of their day.
Juggling film production and a crowdfunding campaign can be challenging, so we’re always inspired when we encounter someone who can do it all. Meet California-based indie filmmaker Jordyn Romero who is in Sri Lanka, filming on location right now. Together with producer Leah de Leon, they are running a campaign to fund their documentary We Are Like Waves — a film that adapts the true story of Sanu, one of the first professional female surfers in Sri Lanka.
This documentary film explores and captures the struggles and breakthroughs of Sanu in an industry dominated by the culture of patriarchy:
“We Are Like Waves is an intimate, powerful story that the world needs now. This story will shed light on the continued push for gender equality in the sport of surfing, and demonstrates how surfing can be used as a tool for women’s empowerment. Not only is Sanu a role model for the young girls in her village, but through the screen, she will become a role model for girls and women. We aim to create a platform for deeper discussions around gender norms, beauty standards, and family expectations within the context of surfing. This story is not just Sanu’s, it is the story of many female surfers around the world.“
Your contribution to their campaign will allow Jordyn and Leah to conclude filming and finish their movie, getting this must-see story out to screens everywhere, in a world where the stories of women of color are missing some real representation.
Read on to see how Jordyn spends 24 hours in her day, working as an indie filmmaker on location in Sri Lanka Then scroll down for a brief Q&A to get to know her better, learn more about We Are Like Waves, and get inspired!
7 A.M. Wake up and make a glass of warm lemon water. Then I read the daily excerpt from “The Daily Stoic” and I journal. Sometimes it’s a few pages, but other days it’s just some bullet points of gratitude.
8 A.M. I go on a nice walk. I like to bring a cup of tea and listen to a podcast. Everyday I try to mix it up too and find new paths in my neighborhood.
9 A.M. I eat a light breakfast. I call it breakfast #1 and it’s typically a bowl of fruit. Then, I check my calendar, email, and social media. I have a work journal where I write down my To-Do’s.
10 A.M. This is when I start doing the creative part of my work. It’s when I’m most motivated and in flow. Most of the time, I am writing and editing my film. Sometimes I am creating pitch materials for future films, updating my website, or other graphic work.
12 P.M. Begin to shift towards business-minded tasks and away from creative ones — unless the flow is still going. I try to ride that as long as I can. This means taking calls and meetings, posting on Instagram, and more email.
1 P.M. I eat lunch at this time, and continue doing business tasks!
4 P.M. Always have an afternoon adventure. Sometimes I go surfing, take a hike, do a workout class, or hangout with friends (weird to think about with COVID). This is the most important time of the day to me. I’ve never accepted the burnout mentality, and so I embrace this time to have fun and enjoy every single day.
7 P.M. Dinner time! I have really gotten into cooking lately — everything from curries to grilling. Typically with a good playlist and eating outside if it’s warm enough.
8 P.M. Love to have a cup of tea. My friend blends her own loose leaf tea, and I love it. Sometimes I watch some TV, or have a good read. Other times, I have a creative boost and will lean into that and work a little more.
9 P.M. Around this time, I start to get ready for bed. I’m definitely someone who needs 9-10 hours a night. It’s prioritized because I literally cannot perform with any less.
Now that you’ve gotten a glimpse of what her day is like running a crowdfunding campaign for a film, get more inspiration in our exclusive Q&A with Jordyn!
INDIEGOGO: How and why did you and Leah become documentary filmmakers? Was it something you always intended for yourselves?
JORDYN ROMERO: I came to filmmaking because of my passion for the outdoors. I grew up making ski edits of my friends and I with a GoPro Hero 4. I went to Chapman University for college which ranks as one of the top film schools in the country – I came in undeclared. I will never forget one night in the dorms I rented the most beautiful surf film, and knew that I wanted to make one like it one day. The next week, I applied to the documentary program with those ski films and have never looked back since. Today, I continue with my passion — redefining and amplifying diverse women on screen in the outdoor industry.
INDIEGOGO: What makes your Indiegogo project unique?
JORDYN: Our Indiegogo is unique because We Are Like Waves has already been shot and is nearly finished. After confirming that I was going to make this film, I was in Sri Lanka two months later. This wasn’t nearly enough time to raise money to fund the film, instead I took out a personal loan and self-funded the trip. It was a huge risk, but I was confident in the story and knew that we would be able to raise money after production to pay back the loan and cover post-production costs. We are so thankful that we didn’t wait to raise money to go, because just a week after we finished shooting, the world shut down.
INDIEGOGO: How did you come across this project and Sanu’s life story?
JORDYN: I found the story through a podcast that featured one of the co-founders of Sea Sisters Sri Lanka, a nonprofit dedicated to teaching local women how to swim and surf. After listening to the episode, I learned that in Sri Lanka there is a cultural mindset that surfing is not meant for girls. Fathers are afraid of what might happen to their daughters, women are taught to stay close to home and they never learn. The stories and social issues shared on the podcast just stuck with me. I reached out to Sea Sisters in an Instagram message and two months later, the film was in full production on the South Coast of Sri Lanka.
INDIEGOGO: What’s your biggest piece of advice for women who want to make movies or have a career in the film industry?
JORDYN: It’s amazing to think about everything you’ve ever watched in your life. I bet almost everything has been made by a man. This means that the entire point of view was through a male’s lens. Nothing wrong with that, but imagine how those stories could be told if through the female lens? How would you see things differently? How would our world be different? Your voice matters and what you have to say matters.
INDIEGOGO: What tools would you recommend to anyone starting their own crowdfunding campaign or project?
JORDYN: The success of our crowdfunding campaign came from our strong email campaigns. Canva was another great tool to build beautiful and engaging content to promote our campaign on social media, Instagram stories in particular. Tools like Slack, Google Drive and UNUM were used often for communication, organization, and social media planning (obsessed with our instagram feed). And of course, Facetime. Leah (Producer) and I would spend so much time cheering each other on – spending a lot of time together even though we can’t “be together” in the pandemic.
INDIEGOGO: What’s next for you and Leah after this campaign fundraising round?
JORDYN: Next it’s time to finish the film! We’re at the rough cut stage of the film – so we are really, really close. After we hit picture lock, the film will be scored, colored, sound mixed. We’ll have a polished film and the best part can begin – film festivals and screenings! We will have a year long film festival tour and a small California film tour, hitting our favorite places along the coast, building community and sharing this story with the world.