Articles by Colin Sytsma

For the last nine years the focus of Colin Sytsma’s work has been documentary filmmaking that contributes to the universal good and conservation of our world. Originally trained as an experimental storyteller and cinematographer at the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee he started working at the award winning documentary film company 371 Productions. After the completion of the Emmy nominated documentary, As Goes Janesville, Sytsma left 371 Productions to start Wood Grain Media, a documentary film company that supports a variety of types of filmmaking. He works in Milwaukee with a focus on Cinema Verite style filmmaking. He produced Wisconsin’s Mining Standoff for Al Jazeera English’s Television show Fault Lines. Sytsma also co-directed From Mass to the Mountain, a feature length documentary chronicling drought and deforestation in an unstable eastern Panama. Currently he is the director of photography on When Claude Got Shot, an Independent Television Service(ITVS), the Ford Foundation, and Sundance funded film documenting gun violence in Milwaukee. In 2018 he received a Brico Forward Fund award from the Milwaukee Film Festival to finish his Stolen Apes film. In 2019 he is working as a cinematographer on the Participant funded documentary Messwood, a film about a combined high school football team between two largely segregated neighborhoods. He directed the short film Stolen apes that won best short film at EkoFilm, the Ireland Wildlife Film Festival, and best environmental film at the Zagreb Tour Film Festival in Croatia. Sytsma currently sits on the board of advisors for the Freeland Film Festival, a film festival trying to rid the world of wildlife trafficking and human slavery.