Alumni Documentarians

Nathan Bickell '13Nathan Bickell '13
Preditor, KDAF

Nathan Bickell ’13 has had a dog-on impressive career as a documentarian.

He recently received the Lone Star Emmy for his adoption series, “Ruff Life,” advertising dogs available for rescue through humorous stories.

Bickell has found success as a pre-editor—a “mash up” for producer, writer and editor, a role he plays at KDAF, the CW affiliate in Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas.

"I basically I work as a one-man crew, shooting stories, editing them and writing scripts," Bickell says.

Before KDAF, Bickell had the opportunity to work on First and 17, a weekly documentary series produced by The Washington Post, through his role as a freelance producer for Synthesis Media Productions.

Bickell’s time at Ithaca helped prepare him for his pre-editor, puppy-promoting career. His production classes, such as Professor John Scott’s Nonfiction Production course, taught him, “There is no script, and you have to know what your film will be about before you start shooting, and then you have to ‘write the script’ afterwards in the editing process.”

In Documentary Workshop with Professor Ben Crane, he completed a documentary short called Cornered, about a young boxer training for the title of the 2013 National Police Athletic League Championship. The short ended up winning Best Documentary at the 2013 East Coast Student Film Festival held at George Washington University.

Bickell was also involved with the college’s newspaper, The Ithacan, where he was a sports reporter, columnist, and multimedia writer. His work with the The Ithacan taught him how to conduct thorough interviews and how to work on a tight deadline. “Most importantly, my work on the multimedia section helped me prepare to work as a one-man crew, like I usually do now,” Bickell said.

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