African Dream Academy

    director & cinematographer: Ian McAlpin
    editor: Tanya Ager Meillier
    music by: Timothy T. Cleary
    sound recording: Matt Smerling, David Bedard, Oliver Stoddard
    interviews conducted by: Lydia Spinelli & Karen Gaines
    thanks to: Samuel Enders, Lydia Spinelli, Karen Gaines, Kathryn Smerling, Matt Smerling, Gracey Stoddard, Oliver Stoddard, David Bedard, Jennifer Gonçalves, Megan Raelson, Timothy T. Cleary, Richard Levengood, Jennifer Judkins, Alexander Meillier

    The African Dream Academy provides a free education to over 900 students in Liberia, West Africa. This film was commissioned by the African Dream Academy Foundation to help raise funds for the school. If you can, please donate to support their important work!

    Already in Memory

    director: Ian McAlpin
    producers: Martha English, Mark Elijah Rosenberg, Aaron Kovalchik, Ian McAlpin
    cinematographer: Aaron Kovalchik
    starring: Shelly Mars, Joshua Salvador, Tessa John Connor
    production design: Reno Dakota
    costume design: Erika Munro

    A short film created for Ryuichi Sakamoto's async competition.

    The Obama Conversation - Vox

    director: Joe Posner
    cinematographer: Ian McAlpin
    gaffer: Sean Sheridan
    camera assistant: Marcos Herrera
    sound recordist: Brian Buckley
    producers: Greg T. Gordon & Melissa Bell

    Rooftop Films Trailer - LA

    director / dp / editor: Ian McAlpin
    series creator: Mark Elijah Rosenberg
    starring: Kitao Sakurai, Sean Hollihan

    For Rooftop Film's 2018 Summer Series, we imagined a day in the life of Rooftop Films' alum directors. You can watch the rest of the series on Rooftop Films's website.

    Nest - See the Unseen

    director/cinematographer: Ian McAlpin
    producer: Jake Mills Productions
    client: Nest Labs

    How do you make the invisible visible? Nest Labs installed a 6' acrylic cube in Herald Square to highlight the invisible threat of carbon monoxide. I directed & shot this spot to document the project.

    Michelle Obama 360 - the Verge

    for full 360º experience, best viewed on a phone

    executive producer: Nilay Patel
    executive producer: Tre Shallowhorn
    director: Tom Connors
    cinematographer: Ian McAlpin

    Shelly Mars Co. - Endless Summer Day

    director & DP: Ian McAlpin
    music: Timothy T. Cleary
    clothing: Shelly Mars

    An experiment in ever-shifting loops — of sound, of sun, of mind — during an Endless Summer Day.

    The Vanity - Stay

    director: Work-Order
    cinematographer: Ian McAlpin

    They Might be Giants - I'm a Coward

    director: Work-Order
    cinematographer: Ian McAlpin
    magician: Mark Mitton

    Jasper Morrison - Noguchi Gala film

    director: Alex Meillier
    cinematographer: Ian McAlpin
    camera assistant: Jack Berner
    producer: Tanya Ager Meillier

    Burning the Barn

    director/cinematographer/editor: Ian McAlpin
    original score: Timothy Cleary
    additional cinematography: Aaron Kovalchik
    additional editing: Justin Zimmerman
    producers: Ian McAlpin & Timothy Cleary

    The story of the Barn, and how it burnt. Premiering 2015.

    Marina Abramovic & The Institute

    Marina Abramović, fully present, discusses her past and future, her life as a nomad, her interest in shamanism, and her institute: The Marina Abramović Foundation for the Preservation of Performance Art. Shot on location in the hollowed out shell of the former theater/tennis court/antique storage facility she purchased to house her Institute, Abramović opens up and discusses love, death, and what it means to be really present in the moment.

    client: AnOther Magazine
    director: Derek Peck
    director of photography: Ian McAlpin
    editor: Kavitha Surana
    gaffer: Aaron Kovalchik
    sound: Richard Levengood

    Yoshio Taniguchi - Noguchi Gala film

    director: Alex Meillier
    cinematographer: Ian McAlpin
    camera assistant: Jack Berner
    producer: Tanya Ager Meillier

    Banana Republic - Sloan

    agency: Laird + Partners
    cinematographer: Ian McAlpin

    Lupita Nyong'o for Vogue

    Lupita Nyong’o talks about her early years in the United States and working with director Steve McQueen on 12 Years a Slave. Shot for Vogue's “The Backstory” series.

    Invisible Robota

    Challenged by APM's Marketplace to create two videos for their Robots Ate My Jobs series, Joe & I decided to search out the robots we use everyday, but might not think of as robots. Which begs the question, what qualifies as a robot?

    directed by Joe Posner & Ian McAlpin
    cinematography: Ian McAlpin
    animation: Joe Posner & Heather Faye Khan
    music: Kelly Pratt

    Born to Fly

    Elizabeth Streb is an extreme action architect. Born to Fly traces the evolution of Streb’s movement philosophy as she pushes herself and her dancers from the ground, to the wall, to the sky. Guided by Streb’s theory of movement – to walk on walls, dive through glass, move so fast you disappear and…fly; the film asks: Can adrenaline be a form of medicine? When does movement become art? Why be a part of it? How do race, gender, sexuality, and class appear on the dancers’ performances, on their bodies?

    Premiered at SXSW 2014 - Theatrical release Fall 2014 -

    director: Catherine Gund
    producer: Tanya Selvaratnam & Catherine Gund
    editor: Alexander Meillier

    Busta Rhymes - Google Play

    A career highlight: shooting interviews with some of my favorite hip-hop artists, and then THE SCENARIO live at the Brooklyn Hip Hop Festival.

    Balancing Blocks

    Pretty much a documentary on how Fort Standard makes their Balancing Blocks.

    Directed by Part & Parcel
    Director of photography & animation: Ian McAlpin
    Sound & Music: Brian Jones

    Quentin Jones for Mercedes Fashion

    director: Matt Black
    client: Mercedes-Benz
    producer: Coveteur
    cinematographer: Ian McAlpin

    The Russian Winter

    Brooklyn-born John Forté was a Grammy-nominated musician in The Fugees at 21 and a federal prison inmate at 26. When his prison sentence was remarkably commuted in 2008, Forté was given a second chance to share his talents with the world. This feature documentary chronicles his concert tour across Russia, a journey of musical and personal discovery. The Russian Winter debuted to critical acclaim at the Tribeca Film Festival 2012.

    Directed by: Petter Ringbom
    Cinematography: Ian McAlpin & Petter Ringbom
    Produced by: Le Castle, Inc.
    Creative Producer: Dream Hampton

    Featuring: Alina Orlova, Sunsay, Brian Satz, Victor Logachev, Artemy Troitsky, Billy Novik, Zero People, Ryan Vaughn, Patrick Firth & John Forté

    Interview with the Robot

    The second of two videos for Marketplace's Robots Ate My Jobs series. The talented Max Silvestri interviews a robot of questionable talent... and motive.

    directed by Joe Posner & Ian McAlpin
    cinematography: Ian McAlpin
    starring: Max Silvestri
    music: Kelly Pratt
    robo linguist: Emma Tsujimoto Cunningham

    Ada Kokosar for Mercedes Fashion

    director: Matt Black
    client: Mercedes-Benz
    producer: Coveteur
    cinematographer: Ian McAlpin

    John Forté & Sunsay Windsong

    One long shot in the Moscow apartment I lived in with John Forté's band during the filming of the documentary The Russian Winter. With appearances by Alina Orlova, Brian Satz, Ryan Vaughn, Patrick Firth, Dirty Lick-Lick, and Grunge John Orchestra Explosion.

    Directed by: Petter Ringbom
    Cinematography: Ian McAlpin

    Levi's California Summer

    Photographer Cass Bird street-casts the real people for her shoots. Each brings his or her own unique energy to the shoot and then Cass orchestrates it all like a conductor of beautiful chaos, which makes my job easy. Shot in Santa Monica, Malibu, & San Pedro, California.

    Director: Cass Bird
    Cinematographer: Ian McAlpin
    Client: Levi's Europe

    Javelin: Soda Popinski

    The Sea Floor Sea Urchin Dance Troupe perform a
    Busby Berkeley inspired number to Javelin's hit song,
    Soda Popinski!

    Official Selection SXSW 2009!

    Between 2 Islands

    A film-symphony for The Roosevelt Island tram.

    Shot on one reel of super-8 film, in camera editing.
    Official Selection of the Straight-8 Festival, 2008.

    Directed & Shot by Ian McAlpin
    Assistance by Purva Amar
    Music by Sam Posner

    Sit & Read/UNIS: Risom

    Kyle of Sit & Read re-upholstering a RISOM chair with left-over scraps from a UNIS collection, to be displayed in the UNIS store. As with much of my work with Part & Parcel, a blend of stop-motion animation and observational cinematography.

    co-directors: Part & Parcel
    cinematographer: Ian McAlpin
    music: Garrett Morin

    The Student of Prague

    Faustian pacts! Dueling suitors! Diabolical doppelgängers! A re-imagining of the 1913 "grandfather" of German expressionism, The Student of Prague combines silent film aesthetics and the latest in movie-making technology to provide the discerning spectator with a uniquely modern silent film.

    Directed by: Ian McAlpin & Spencer Collins
    Produced by: Karla Stojakova
    Cinematography by: Klaus Fuxjäger

    Horror author Hanns Heinz Ewers, excited about the mew medium of moving pictures, wrote a screenplay, "Der Student von Prag." His tale borrowed elements from Faust, Edgar Allan Poe's "William Wilson," and E. T. A. Hoffman's "The Double." Stellan Rye directed the film in 1913 with Paul Wegener in the title role. Predating Das Kabinett der Dr. Caligari by six-years, Der Student von Prag awed audiences with its trick filming techniques, making it one of the earliest examples of German expressionism. It was subsequently remade twice, in 1926 and 1935, the '26 version starring Caligari's somnambulist Conrad Veidt in the title role.

    Kate Spade: PINK

    Frequent collaborators Part & Parcel brought me on to shoot and help them animate this stop-motion Pink Museum for Kate Spade's year of color.


    Ian McAlpin tells stories with pictures. He studied film, photography, and semiotics at Brown University, with additional study at the Czech Film Academy (FAMU) and the Rhode Island School of Design.

    Ian has worked in almost every aspect of film production––development, production, post-production, even accounting. His ten years of set experience have left him versed in multiple forms of filmmaking: short, feature, analog, digital, documentary, animation, experimental, & narrative. 

    Past clients have included: Google, NPR, Newsweek / The Daily Beast, Levi's, The New York Times, and Nickelodeon. Ian is a founding investor and board member of Hive Lighting, Inc.––creator of next-generation plasma lights for film production––and editor of Funeral Photography––a digital shoebox of analog images.

    When he's put down his camera for the day, you can find Ian obliquely strategizing in Brooklyn, NY.


    ian [at]

    site credits

    Running on Stacey, coded by Ian Hatcher, designed by Ian McAlpin.

    All icons from The Noun Project. "Super Eight Camera" designed by John Caserta. "Headphones" designed by Fredrik Jansson.