Hana Mitchell or Blaq: Image Navigator
A visual storyteller with extensive music video editing experience, Chicago Native Hana Mitchell aka Blaq, brings a spontaneous style of editing to every project. In the wrong place a sequence of images can destroy a story and waste the hours put into acquiring them. The editor's job when done right is invisible it doesn't draw attention to itself unless for dramatic or stylistic purpose but for story telling mere frames can make the difference between comedy and tragedy. Self taught Hana has quite the resume from Grammy nominated music videos for Eric Roberson, Lalah Hathaway, comedian Adele Givens, Omen from J Cole's DreamVille label, Lupe Fiasco, promotional videos for Jamie Foxx, Floyd Mayweather. Feature films, commercials, documentaries and industrial videos. No matter what the subject is she can handle it and make the most mundane into beautiful art. Hana has mastered and continues to push her craft to explore different methods and techniques to string together and coalesce images for motion pictures, commercials and music videos with beauty and grace.
Christopher Adams: A Man of many faces and talents
Christopher Adams, CEO of Impakt Studio was born and raised in Chicago’s Roseland area where gangs and drugs were as much a part of the landscape as the homes and storefronts. As the Chief Animator, Artist, Director and General Business Manger for Impakt Studio, Chris is hands on in all aspects of his busy company. “I learned early in life the mantra of if you want something done well, do it yourself and I wouldn’t have it any other way.” His creativity surfaced early in life. Self-taught in all of his trades, he compared the price of school versus the price of equipment and it was a “no-brainer”. Chris incorporates a variety of disciplines, knowledge and ideologies in his work. “My father is a mechanic and I learned how to fix just about anything from him. His ingenuity inspired me to learn to master the many tools I need in life, both physical and metaphysical.” This philosophy is applied in many instances when the need for “creative flexibility and innovation” arises. According to Chris, “if you know how something works you can dissect it and apply what you need from it to something completely fictional.” Chris also strives to push his art far beyond the urban markets that nurtured his talents, believing that art and music are the “only universal truths left in modern society and can therefore reach far beyond their intended audience.”
Impakt Studio was founded because there was a lack of professional visual presentation amongst Chicago’s music community. “The images representing Chicago were horribly produced, most of which were done by people who knew nothing about the artist and cared even less about them. These images were horror shows that demonstrated no creativity at all.” Because his style is so creative, it can be quite hard to describe. “It constantly changes so that I can reinvent myself and my style. I gather inspiration from a variety of sources including cutting edge film makers, Japanese animation and artists. My all time favorites are: Ansel Adams, Kazuaki Kiriya, Mamoru Oshii, Massamune Shirow, Spike Lee, Chris Cunningham, Mark Romanek, H.R. Giger, Zdzislaw Beksinski, Joel Peter Witkin and Hype Williams.
“When people come to Impakt Studio they are bringing us their hopes and dreams. You have to handle hopes and dreams with care so I treat them as my own, because I want to see them realized as much as they do.”
But the real testament to Impakt Studio’ success is that they have done absolutely no advertising. “We let the work speak for itself. I’ll put our demo reel up against anyone’s no matter how big their budget is. Our creativity and understanding of the tools we use, the subjects we shoot along with the drive to push the limits of visual media has enabled us to stay on top.”
Impakt Studio is very versatile in a world where people quite often get branded to a specific area. Their creativity extends from musical artist such as their Grammy Nominated visuals for Eric Roberson, Lupe Fiasco and Lalah Hathaway to Dreamville's Omen, rock/alternative bands Damage Manual and State of Grace right into the commercial world of large corporations such as Ford Motor Company, Aon Hewitt and Miller Brewing. Most recently spending several months travelling with and doing promotional marketing videos for Floyd "Money" Mayweathers TMT brand. Impakt Studio is industrious and tenacious and it is shown throughout their work, Impakt Studio refuses to leave their imagination on the sideline, lower their standards of excellence or attach their name to the norm, work that isn’t exceeding expectations, which is what has brought Impakt Studio so far in an industry of fly by night companies.