The trajectories of our life and career journeys can be straightforward, or they can be convoluted, with many sharp turns, nooks and crannies, and detours along the way. The changes and challenges that life has in store for us can be great. What matters most is that they eventually lead to a happy and fulfilled life – and not just in career terms. The following stories of personalities from among AMU graduates illustrate this statement.
Lukáš Milota graduated from FAMU in cinematography and he also teaches ceramics courses. Actually, film was at the beginning of his journey towards ceramics. It was making films in Japan, to be specific. “During my first visit to Japan, I was trying to find a samurai sword smith in Kamakura. A local young man who I lived with helped me with that, and in return, he asked me to film an interview with the owner of one porcelain shop. It was a beautiful, traditional Japanese house on the edge of town, selling folk ceramics coming primarily from the village of Onta and from Okinawa. That’s where it all began,” remembers Lukáš, adding that it took him an additional eight years to actually touch clay for the first time. That happened at Václav Kugler’s workshop. “Then the lockdown hit, and suddenly I had plenty of time for ceramics. A friend and I opened our own workshop within the Holešovice Fairgrounds two years ago,” he explains and adds that he definitely didn’t leave cinematography behind. “I am currently making Ondřej Provazník’s film with the working title “Highlight”, and the ratio of that to ceramics for me is about 50/50, which is fine by me,” he says as a cameraman. He appreciates filmmaking because he gets a unique opportunity to take part in something with a social effect and great impact. “It is fascinating, and it involves many emotional yet also ephemeral moments. Without a computer and viewers, you actually have nothing. A cup is just a small, mundane thing, but it can give you joy every day. You can hold it in your hand, take a look at the bottom and at the other side…” he says. He has found an interesting parallelism between cinema and ceramics. “It’s the kiln, and maybe it substitutes working with analogue film to me a bit. It entails a degree of randomness, liveliness, and an expectation of the result, which I miss in digital cinema,” he notes. Lukáš believes a wide range of professional interests is certainly not a must for everyone, though the current turbulent times may result in radical changes in the field of audiovisual art. “Inflation makes financing films increasingly difficult, and then there is AI with its rapid development and next to no requirements for sophisticated software or manpower; the industry may face pressure towards using it. That makes me all the more grateful for the fact that we are filming using 16mm stock. I feel a little bit like a dinosaur facing an asteroid rushing in, but I do find that exciting,” he admits and adds he wants to try as much as possible in life. “I find diversity important, plus I believe that most activities involved in craft and art are related,” he notes in conclusion.