Today we’d like to introduce you to Jerry Morka.
Jerry, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I started off with photographer in 2016. I spent two years after graduating high school figuring out what I wanted to do with my life. In June 2016, I did my first photoshoot borrowing a friend of mine’s camera, I hit up my good friend Melissa Hernandez who was just getting into modeling at the time and asked her if she’d be down to do a shoot. She said yes, We met up and shot. After posting these photos on Instagram I got so much love from it and that made me want to keep shooting.
I did photography for a year and a half and during that time I grew an interest in filmmaking. I begun to shy away from the photography world, diving into filmmaking more. I was given my first camera in 2017 by my father. I studied and learnt as much as I could as a freelancer before deciding to start my own small production company / brand called Zipps Studios.
Zipps Studios was already a company name, created by my father, Johnson Morka who was a well known filmmaker back home in Lagos Nigeria.
My father fully supported me when I decided to make filmmaking my career so I chose to keep his company name just so I could give it a name here in America. I made it my brand here and have been running with it since then.
In the early stage of my filmmaking career, I would reach out to different college party promoters or club promoters asking them if they needed video coverage for their events or parties. I did that for a while then I started working for a modeling agency called Texas trendsetters. I shot with a lot of their models and also did a couple of videos for their events, parties, promo and more. Doing this, I was able to get my name out on bigger platforms associated with the agency and that helped build buzz around my name. I met a guy named Mike Perkins who had a close model friend of his that he sometimes managed. He introduced me to her (Regina Unite) and I begun working with them both. We traveled around the states, working and creating dope visuals. They played a great role in helping me grow and network, putting me in a good situations to meet other creators and creating opportunities for me that I wasn’t able to create on my own at the time.
In 2018, I started to get a lot more work, shooting videos and taking pictures. I did that while trying to keep up with my hourly job. Haven already learnt so much from YouTube on filmmaking, I wanted to know more about the business side of filmmaking so I enrolled in the film program at Houston Community college. I eventually quit my hourly job, making filmmaking a full time job. It was hard but I was able to keep up with my bills with the few jobs I was getting. I also worked as a Uber driver on the side when I didn’t have any filmmaking jobs to work on. I started saving and investing in myself, upgrading my equipments and building relationships.
Things started to pick up. I was blessed with so many different opportunities. I was directing, shooting, editing music videos, Short films, Commercials and more. I worked with a few big brands like Adidas, WSS shoe wear, Bacardi, Hardbodykiotti from 97.9 the box, VYPE media, underwater Mexico tour and many more. I was able to work with different local artist and shoot a few bigger artist like Tay money, Ugly god, BlueFace, Dababy, Stunna4Vegas,
PartyNextDoor, Joe Praize and more. Shot at a few big events like Rolling loud Austin Texas, lyrical lemonade hosted by Cole Bennett, Lil Wayne & Migos concert in South padre Island etc. I’ve collaborated with many social media influencers, models, photographers, film makers, fitness gurus and more. All these made me who I am today and I’m not done yet. There is so much I want to accomplish and I know I will in due time.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Overall it has been going great but like anything in life there were and still is a few obstacles along the way. Earlier in my journey, I would work for free with certain clients hoping to land a second paid job with them and a lot of them never came back or rejected my proposal to get paid for the next job. Also finding jobs was hard at some point. I wasn’t getting anything coming my way and that was a little frustrating but lucky I don’t just do this for the money, I do it because I actually love doing it, so when things were slow, I’d just create stuff for myself and work on improving my craft.
Please tell us more about your work, what you are currently focused on and most proud of.
Zipps studios production is a video & photography company. I run it by myself. I have a few friends that help on various projects but as far as being on the team so far it’s just me. I hire other filmmakers here and there if needed for a specific project. I’m most proud of how far I’ve come with this. Not really having a full team hasn’t stopped me from achieving the things I want to achieve. I believe that’s also what sets me apart from a lot of other filmmakers. I strive every day to be an all-around filmmaker and know the in’s and out’s of every Job during a production. I write my own scripts, treatments, shoot, edit, direct, produce all my projects. My goal is to slowly bring set people to take over a few of those positions to make it easier for me. I have my go-to people I call during a project that I trust on set but few of them aren’t really filmmakers they just understand how it goes. Being independent could be very hard but I hope to have a full power team soon.
If you had to go back in time and start over, would you have done anything differently?
If I had to start over, I’d probably use my time better than I did in the past. A lot of time was wasted on different things that I wish I could’ve invested in other things that would’ve benefited me more but it’s all a learning experience and I’m not done learning.
- Phone: 832-763-7639
- Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: @zippsstudiospro
- Facebook: Jerry Morka
- Twitter: @Zippsstudiospro