SMC Corsay / Daily Press Staff Writer

Much like a child shares characteristics with their mother, Liz Lachman’s films always include resemblances of herself and her life experiences. Her current newborn short film Pin-Up, starring Angela Sarafyan & Christina Chang, acts as a window into the director’s personal trials and tribulations over the course of her life.

“[Pin-Up] is the most recent baby that I’m birthing, and all I can say is ‘Ouch,’” said Lachman. “We’ll see what happens when it gets the car keys and wants to drive.”

On the surface, Pin-Up follows the life of a photographer and documents her growing obsession with a woman whom she believes is her perfect muse. However, given that this is a Liz Lachman film, it should come as no surprise that the work has much more depth. For this project, Lachman decided to reflect upon her journey for “completeness” in a world that so often leaves us feeling incomplete.

“If, for any reason you don’t feel loved, you’re searching for the rest of your life. And it doesn’t matter what you put in place, it could be a piece of art, it could be a person, it could be the most beautiful feeling in the world…When there is something that you obsess over…its not really about that thing or that person, there’s something underneath that that is the cause, that really is what you’re searching for. And when you think you’ve found that one thing, that can become an object of obsession, and that’s what happens in this film.”

Unlike many directors who wait for inspiration to arrive at their doorstep, Lachman’s ability to fuel her creative process with her own personal experiences allows for an endless stream of potential stories. Nonetheless, in Pin-Up, she finds a way to connect her ideas to universal themes that she feels audiences can relate to.

“Regardless of what it is that one person might be going through, there is always a journey that I think is universal…I like to ask more questions than I answer, that seems to be a continual theme,” explained Lachman regarding the plots of her films. “These are the questions I ask [myself], so I think other people are interested.”

Through the process of creating Pin-Up, she was able to experience her struggles from a different perspective; while this led her to work through some of her emotions, she acknowledges the fact that there is always more room to grow. She hopes that her film can inspire others to see the world through the same lens, and understand the power of inward reflection.

“There is a sense of an understanding that you need to look within more than outside for your happiness,” said Lachman. “And that is a journey that I’m still on, and I think a lot of people are whether they know it or not. So maybe this can jog people into that understanding of, ‘Oh, maybe what I’m looking for out there has to start in here, and that’s where happiness lies’”.

Since the age of 15 when she began singing and songwriting, Lachman finds comfort and strength in creating. She attributes much of her growth and self-discovery to her passion for the arts, and finds catharsis and creative expression to be closely linked.

“I know that when I started to write I definitely had something to say,” explained Lachman. “And that was it. It was about expression, it was about being heard…Having a voice, knowing that you have a voice, is so important…For me, even allowing myself to say ‘my voice matters’ let me have the courage to say what I’m feeling.”

Pin-Up will be shown at the Laemmle Monica Film Center from Sept. 13-Sept. 19 alongside a series of other shorts. She also has a feature documentary in post-production starring Susan Feniger, titled Susan Feniger, Forked.