As a director, Graham is usually the one behind the camera, giving encouragement and notes to the people being filmed. So when it was my turn to interview him, I got to metaphorically step into Graham’s shoes, which I imagine are some cool indie brand I’ve never heard of.
Graham’s personality can only be described as chill — which is why it’s unsurprising that his favorite core value of Blue Wheel (we call them by their acronym YOOCI) is Cool Under Fire. “It’s really just something I think I’m good at — going with the flow and staying level headed in stressful situations. On set, no matter how much you plan, something always goes awry. Also my last name is Burns.”
That last line almost perfectly encapsulates Graham’s sense of humor — somewhat dry, somewhat punny, but definitely makes you chuckle.
Before joining the team at Blue Wheel, Graham and his partner in crime, Jackson, ran their own creative studio in Brooklyn called The Brothers Buoy, specializing in a wide range of creative endeavors, including product photography, video production, graphic design, and more. If he had to describe what he did to his grandparents, he’d say something like, “I bring creative people together to make pretty things.”
At The Brothers Buoy and at Blue Wheel, Graham has never stuck to just one creative endeavor — which brings us to the worst piece of career advice Graham has ever received. “I think the saying ‘jack of all trades, master of none’ gets thrown around a lot as a way to dissuade creatives from expanding what they do, when in actuality I think having a variety of skills and interests is more valuable in the long run.”
Then, Graham drops a major knowledge bomb: “The full quote, by the way, is ‘A jack of all trades is a master of none, but oftentimes better than a master of one,’ which is essentially saying the opposite of what people usually mean.”
Apparently, Graham isn’t just an expert at knowing the full versions of famous idioms; he’s also a master karaoke singer. Back in the day when we could gather with friends and strangers in public spaces and open our mouths to sing without the hindrance of masks, Graham’s favorite song was “Hold The Line” by Toto. “It really gets the crowd going,” he says. We can only imagine.
The last thing Graham and I talk about is his favorite GIF. “George Michael Bluth from Arrested Development coming home defeated and collapsing on the floor.” You can almost imagine Graham coming home and doing this after a long day at a shoot.
Watch Graham’s full Fast Fives video below!
Wanna work with people as cool as Graham? We’re hiring!