The creation of “Feel No Burn"

"The creation of “Feel No Burn” has been a true blessing for me and my colleagues. May we all feel our our hearts strengthened when we sit back to enjoy the emotional uplift of these filmic interactions" describes Aryna Tsyltsyna.


What initially sparked your interest in filmmaking, and how did you

When I was 6, my brother introduced me to the anime "Naruto". From the very first episode, I became a loyal fan of the cheerful and determined main character and spent the next ten years with him (yes, it's an extra-long anime!).

As I grew older and reflected on my nature, I realized that much of my persona is structured around this anime. "Naruto" imparted perseverance and self-belief, inspiring me to keep fighting for my dreams. I felt genuine gratitude to the creator, Masashi Kishimoto, for his work and its influence on me. That's why, I decided that, through my creativity, I’d also like to positively impact people. And because I was and continue to be obsessed with videography, I chose filmmaking as the ideal path for me.


How do you believe your academic background has influenced your approach to filmmaking and what motivated you to pursue additional education through online courses?

I believe that a film director should be well-educated and well-rounded, not just in the field of filmmaking, but in various disciplines. That’s why, I always strive to expand my knowledge and gain a deeper understanding.

Through various courses such as "Building Your Screenplay" (University of Cambridge), “Hollywood: History, Industry, and Art” (University of Pennsylvania), and others, I developed the ability to delve deeper into the meaning of words and images. I learned to search for symbols, implications, and causal links within the story. This has enhanced my storytelling skills and allowed me to craft films that have more depth and substance.


Could you describe your creative process when working on a new project, from conceptualization to completion? 

Please follow along as I use “Feel No Burn“ (FNB) as a concrete example to describe my approach to the creative process, because therein lies an invitation to witness my process and workflow. 

Step 1. Introduction.

I was honored with an invitation from balladeer, Mark Aaron Hudnall, the author of “Feel No Burn“, to create a big rock video. 

At first, it was absolutely vital to listen intently. I soon gathered a series of understandings laying the groundwork for FNB. 

As I took Mark’s expressions to heart, I felt creatively ignited, and the video became a collaborative merger of ideas. 

It’s the projection of 2 prismatic souls adventuring in the cinematic approach to songwriting. 

I saw that the best approach a director could take to FNB is that  of analog workflow because it’s linear. It takes flight like an airplane rolling down a runway. 

I also saw a certain love for simple genius was already at work, because FNB is conceived from a standpoint of art appreciation.  Its storied structure is based upon our ancestral affinity to admire the beauty of geometric patterns. But in this case, we allowed native rituals of North America to take the place of sacred geometries because that’s what they reflect. 

When I perceived that FNB is rooted in a logical stack of beloved rituals, then I also saw there is an essence to it which is essential to everything which gives us strength.  With these notions firmly grasped, the director in me saw how I could add onto the original story and project it onto the big screen.  Shortly after our initial discussion, within minutes we were off to scout locations, and draw pictures in beachsand!

Step 2. Diving into the topic of Indians.

I read A LOT about the lifestyle of Indians to gain enough knowledge for writing the script. Although our goal was not to authentically recreate an Indian tribe (we had the backdrop of the city of Minsk and non-Indian actors), it was important for me to understand how Indians behave and live.

The idea for having a skyscraper in the background is that by allowing the city of Minsk to play itself, we’ve added a layer of eclecticism to the mix, enabling the song to become imbued with a sense of contrast awareness which it never could’ve gotten otherwise.  This idea would later prove to be a driver in its popularity, because it invoked local PRIDE.

Step 3. Storyboarding.

As a meticulous planner, I always stick closely to the storyboard. During the production of "Feel No Burn," I collaborated with the director of photography, Ivan Mozhar, to create a photo storyboard right on location. This approach proved to be highly effective and I highly recommend it to filmmakers!

Step 4. Revealing your ideas to your team.

I will elaborate more on the importance of the team in the 5th question.

Step 5. The Shooting phase.

As a well-known director René Clair said "The film is ready, the shooting is all that remains to be done”

I believe in maintaining a chill and enjoyable atmosphere on set because, after all, why do we do this if not for pleasure? The shooting day for the "Feel No Burn" music video was like an Indian party, full of fun and enjoyment :) 

Step 6. Post-production.

My vision is simple: Don’t be afraid to come up with new ideas; be in search of solutions, and you will find them.



How do you balance your artistic vision with the practical constraints of filmmaking, such as budget and resources?

The most valuable part of filmmaking is your team. I believe that every constraint can be stretched with the help of creative and passionate people.

Since "Feel No Burn" is already my example, allow me to take it one step further. 

The task was heavy: Creating the North American Indian atmosphere in Belarus (sewing costumes, building a teepee), had never been done before and was not easy. The children absolutely adored it and ate up the cultural exchange. Also, Mark Aaron Hudnall is the first American to film a big rock video here in a country hit by sanctions and the most stressful thing of all, was obtaining permission to film in a prestigious location. Other challenges included aspects of logistics involved with arranging for a host of fire dancers, horses, canoes, and a large supporting cast. All of this was to be achieved within the course of a mere month because Winter was approaching. As luck would have it, we filmed on the last sunny weekend of the entire year. Getting FNB shot on-time felt like something of a miracle.

Of course, I could have chosen to scale-back, and sought a more practical alternative, but as a true filmmaker, I was determined to do my best to bring big things to life. So, by inviting the right people to the project (Maria Bureiko - set and costume designer, Nastya Mulyarova - producer), nothing stood in our way. As a result, "Feel No Burn" turned out to be a remarkable piece of work, which is now being admitted to festival after festival. It’s been a life-enriching experience.


Can you share a particularly rewarding moment or achievement from your filmmaking career thus far?

I'm truly excited about the achievements of "Feel No Burn." Although the music video has just begun its festival journey, it has already garnered significant attention. "Feel No Burn" has been selected for three additional festivals (results are yet to be announced), and it was also chosen as the winner of the prestigious EUROPE MUSIC VIDEO AWARDS. This is a great honor for me and everyone who dedicated themselves to this project!!!



Looking ahead, what are your goals and aspirations for the future of your filmmaking career?

In the future, I am eager to continue collaborating with Mark AAron Hudnall by creating new music videos. In my opinion, his recently released song, “1n3n5,” is an explosive rock hit that deserves an incredible music video. I hope that both listeners and viewers will love it as much as I do.

As a film director, I also aspire to bring my short film ideas to life. Via filmmaking, I aim to draw attention to issues such as the recognition of women, the misunderstandings between parents and their children, and educational faults in a non-inclusive society.


Describe creativity in your country? Advantages and disadvantages? How would you compare it to other countries?

As an independent director, I have observed a growing number of young creators in Belarus who are filled with enthusiasm, ideas, and a strong drive to succeed in the film industry. They are actively seeking projects and are eager to make their mark. However, in terms of the ratio between creators and available projects, there is a scarcity of opportunities. 

Besides, there is a lack of grants or financial support for young creators, which limits their freedom to pursue ambitious projects. As a result, many independent productions in Belarus tend to be low-budget, one-day production videos.

Nevertheless, I see many advantages in independent Belarusian production and to my mind, foreign customers should pay attention to it, and here are some points why:

 1) Cost-effectiveness. Production in Belarus is generally more affordable compared to other countries. Ex: The production of the "Feel No Burn" music video would have been 10x more expensive if produced in Mark AAron Hudnall’s native Los Angeles. This means the film was not likely to be made, otherwise. 

 2) Diverse locations. Belarus offers a diverse range of locations suitable for different types of productions (beautiful landscapes, historical sites, modern urban areas, and more).

 3) Uniqueness. I believe that young creators in Belarus open up new perspectives and inspire fresh and unconventional results. Belarusian filmmakers are worthy of being heard and seen; they are saving their ideas to one day use them! So, don’t miss their fire! ;)


Tell us more about the song Feel No Burn, what motivated you to create this piece?

I am grateful to Mark AAron Hudnall for choosing me after screening others.  I’m proud that this artist bridged the generation gap and saw fit to empower me to create the “Feel No Burn“ music video. He let us do our jobs! From our first meeting, I was amazed by his charisma, passion, and determination. 

He was very decisive when instinctively choosing me to become his locomotive, and I can’t tell you enough about what a great feeling that is. 

The creation of “Feel No Burn” has been a true blessing for me and my colleagues. May we all feel our our hearts strengthened when we sit back to enjoy the emotional uplift of these filmic interactions.  

We are proud of our result and wish “Feel No Burn” a great success!