TALES OF THE TRADE
Professionals reflect on their career paths
Keith Mehlinger is Associate Professor of English and Language Arts and Director of the Screenwriting and Animation Program (SWAN) at Morgan State University. A producer/writer/director, he produced episodes of the syndicated series, Story of a People, and a documentary about parents of sons lost to street violence for the Morgan multimedia project Mother's Lament. He is currently completing Black Scholars in America, a documentary about black college professors in the battle against Jim Crow in American letters. He also serves on the Board of Directors of the Maryland Film Industry Coalition (MFIC).
Zoraida Díaz, a Colombian-born photojournalist, covered some of the most impactful Latin American stories of the 80s and 90s for Reuters. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Newsweek, Libération, O Globo, The Guardian, Dagens Nyheter, Clarín, and elsewhere. She is currently pursuing an MFA in Creative Writing and Publishing Arts at the University of Baltimore.
A native of Baltimore, Matt Porterfield has written and directed four feature films, Hamilton (2006), Putty Hill (2011), I Used To Be Darker (2013), and Sollers Point (2018). His work is in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art and the Harvard Film Archive, and has screened at Centre Pompidou, Walker Art Center, The Whitney Biennial, and film festivals such as Sundance, the Berlinale, and SXSW. As a producer, Matt has participated in IFP’s No Borders, Cinemart, FIDLab, the Berlin Coproduction Market and the Venice Production Bridge. He teaches film production and theory at Johns Hopkins University.
Nina K. Noble is a freelance producer and producing partner of David Simon’s Blown Deadline Productions. With Simon, she produced the HBO series The Wire, which won Directors Guild and Peabody Awards; Treme, which won a Peabody Award; The Corner, which won an Emmy; Generation Kill, Show Me a Hero, and The Deuce. On all her productions, Nina makes community outreach and inclusion a priority, especially focusing on exposing young people to the industry. She is a mentor in the Morgan State University Screenwriting and Animation program (SWAN), and a consultant for Baltimore School for the Arts Film and Visual Storytelling program.
Kyle Yearwood is an award-winning visual artist from Baltimore who utilizes a combination of photography, videography, and animation to promote new ways of seeing and understanding reality. He graduated from Morgan State University with a degree in Screenwriting and Animation. His work has been exhibited at the National Black Theatre and at the Museum of the African Diaspora, and has been featured in The Baltimore Sun, Afropunk, Essence, and on ABC2 News. He was a 2018 Light City Neighborhood Lights grant recipient.