Living Arts College will be hosting an evening of film screening for celebrated Cinematographer, Lighting Designer and Producer, Aravind Ragupathi on February 25th, 2016. As an 18-year veteran with over two dozen festival wins, several feature films and independent productions to his credit, Aravind’s work has landed him in productions in Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York, Kansas, Virginia, North Carolina and in his native India.

His extensive portfolio as a Cinematographer includes features, narratives, industrial and music videos for leading film production houses. He is an eight-time Telly Award winning Cinematographer / Producer. Hundreds of his photographs and write-ups have been published in leading magazines and newspapers in Asia and around the world.

Aravind’s interest in American history and culture motivated him to collaborate and produce compelling stories involving the American Civil War, African-American history, the Civil Rights Movement and neo-American stories. In 2015, he produced two unique projects which share a unique perspective centered on war and personal relationships.

This screening features “Sons of our Fathers”, a story of a family separated by the American Civil War. A family divided by North and South, with the consequences being devastating life-changing twists and turns. The second film, “Karma’s Shadow”, follows two young GI’s connected by war and circumstance during the Vietnam War. After the war, both men embark on different moral paths that will ultimately bind them together towards a violent outcome, where an action-packed showdown in New York City determines their ultimate fates.

Aravind collaborated with local talent and crew members who contributed to these projects. Director (Karma’s Shadow) Rob Underhill, along with Co-Producer (Sons of our Fathers) Anthony Dowling, celebrate this evening of art with friends and our community. Anyone interested in attending must RSVP to: as seating is limited to this engagement!

Facebook for Sons of our Fathers:
Facebook for Karma’s Shadow:



Living Arts College’s graduating class was treated to a guest speaker who has been an actor, director, writer, and producer. Estes Tarver holds an MFA in acting from UNC-Chapel Hill. He is currently recurring on Season 2 of Finding Carter on MTV as Sgt. Hall.

Mr. Tarver has also appeared on such shows as Under the Dome, One Tree Hill, and Dawson’s Creek. Estes coaches actors at the professional level. His acting students have booked major roles on shows and films such as Terminator Genesys, Hunger Games, and Army Wives.

Mr. Tarver’s advice to our graduates (paraphrased): “Do what makes you happy,” “Get out there and network,” and “Follow your dreams.” and he should know. People suggested to him that a move from New York to Raleigh might not be the right direction. Estes makes sure to tell whoever suggests as much that he is doing very well, thank you




June 2013 Uptone Pictures produced a film based on a true story about a union soldier during the civil war who was captured and escaped from a Florence POW camp in 1864. The film was made here in North Carolina at the Stageville Plantation in Oxford. Twenty one days at approximately fourteen hours per day, cast and crew battled the heat, ticks, snakes, mosquitos, and more to film this epic event.

Mike Davis, CEO of Uptone Pictures and a longtime friend of Living Arts College has always been a huge supporter of our faculty and students. He contracted Professor Craig Brandwynne and his company Center Sound Records to provide all of the audio and music needed for the film. Craig hired about 12 students from the college for the project. Some were paid and some were interns depending on their availability and experience. This was a fantastic opportunity for the students to have this type of credit on their resume while attending college. There were some more students that did participate in a limited fashion but they did get some experience.

Our institution is very proud to be a part on this film as it is opening in over 250 theaters around the country and slated for many overseas markets. The following faculty and students were a part of this production. Some are continuing to work on the M&E Track for overseas distribution.

Union Bound premiered on January 14, 2016 at the Marquee Cinema at Wakefield Plantation, Raleigh NC.

Living Arts College received screen credit along with all of the students that participated in the film.


Professor Craig Brandwynne – Sound Supervisor/Composer

Professor Nicholas Bagwell – Lead location sound mixer /Post Production dialog, music editor, SFX editor and mix engineer

Professor Benjamin R. Parks – Additional Voices (ADR)


Louis Russell – Assistant Location Sound Mixer/Boom Operator

Brian West – Boom Operator

Thomas McCollugh – Boom Operator

Post Production

Jefferey Whitner –  Foley & Sound Design

Rebecca Grant – Foley & Sound Design

Max Gratzer – Foley & Sound Design

Jeremey Allred –  Foley & Sound Design

Arnold Hernandez – Foley & Sound Design

Fredrick Williams – Additions Gospel Music

Cameron Bullock – Additional Voices (ADR)

Brandon Thomas – Additional Voice   (ADR)

Jordan Ramsey – Additional Voices   (ADR)

Marsalis Davis – Additional Voices   (ADR)

EXTRAS (On Screen)

Jeremy Pidgeon

Isaac Holder



A Successful Graduate’s Story.

Julian Thomas graduated from the College’s Photography program in 2012 and has been successful in his Photography career ever since. While he was still a student, Julian won several local ADDY Awards from the AAF (American Advertising Federation) and began his freelance career. Julian worked as a Freelance Photographer for the Raleigh-Durham International Airport, then Clear Vision Communications, Inc, and then as a 1st Assistant for Scott Bryant Photography.

Julian is now based out of Chicago and continues to find opportunity around every corner.

Just look at who Julian ran into recently in the pictures above.
(Julian Thomas on left with film maker George Lucas on right)




Today’s filmmaker is moving from treatment to pre-production to production to post to distribution with TOTAL filmmaking experience.

  • Course work is more like STUDIO WORK via a series of Portfolio Studio critiques.
  • Productions are built around learned TEAMWORK made possible by meeting course challenges such as deadlines.
  • There is an “art” to success in filmmaking and it’s called PRODUCTION DESIGN and it’s taught here—hands on.
  • Building industry CONNECTIONS is about the learning and meeting others outside the classroom such as competitions.
  • Cross over to JOIN FORCES with other program talent such as Audio and Media Design to become a CREATIVE FORCE for production.