The Hidden GEM Creative Studios works with award-winning media professionals from the commercial media industry or the social justice non-profit arena to create innovative media and educational programs. Artists in our network are available for creative or instructional services, and can be reached through our CONTACT page.
Rafael Flores, MFA (Co-Founder & Director, Green Eyed Media)
Rafael Flores is a bilingual documentary and narrative filmmaker of Mexican-Lithuanian ancestry. He is Phi Beta Kappa Scholar who holds a Masters of Fine Arts specializing in Directing, Social Justice Film Production, Chicano Cinema, and Third Cinema. He also holds a BA in Comparative Literature and Cinema Studies from the University Washington. He is currently a lecturer at San Francisco State University and The College of San Mateo where he teaches Latin-American Cinema, Digital Film Production, Screenwriting and Documentary film. His work has been praised by various institutions that include: The White House, The Grammy Foundation, TED-X lecture series, the Cannes International Film Festival, the Writer’s Guild Theater of America, the London Guardian, and the Chicano International Film Festival.
Claudia Suarez (Post-Production, Hidden GEM)
Claudia Luz Suarez is a Salvadoran born and East Oakland raised aspiring documentary filmmaker. She graduated from the University of California, Santa Cruz in Film & Digital Media and Community Studies. Her films explore immigration policies, the changing political climate, educational barriers, and resiliency in Oakland. She strives to center youth and community voices in all of her narratives. Currently, she is a freelance film editor working to create professional content that highlights the different stories and organizations coming out of the Bay Area.
Sompong Viengvilai (Post-Production Manager, Hidden GEM)
Sompong Viengvilai is a Laotian-American filmmaker who was born and raised in Richmond CA. Inspired by his own families refugee experience, has has worked with various non-profit organizations where he refined his talents in film production and mentored student filmmakers. Mr. Viengvilai received his B.A in Cinematic Arts from San Francisco State University. His area of emphasis is Cinematography and Post-Production. He has worked in the non-profit media field for over 5 years, and his work has been praised by Redbull, NY Post, The California Endowment and the Amaphiko Foundation.