Growing up together, Jeremy and Kendra White would pull out the video camera, get cousins together and "make random videos," Jeremy says.
As they have grown up, their filmmaking has gotten more serious ... much more serious.
The past three weeks, the brother and sister duo have been at the helm of Summer Snow, a movie they wrote together and are now directing for American Family Studios, the faith-based company that produced October Baby, which played in Lexington earlier this year.
The story is about a family in which the mother has died, but she left behind letters for everyone to help guide them on their spiritual journeys.
Writing the script was a family affair, including having their mother, Karen White, write the letters.
"When she sent them to us, I couldn't even see the computer screen, I was crying so hard," Jeremy says.
Kendra and Jeremy studied filmmaking at Asbury University, where Kendra says there was as much an emphasis on storytelling as there was on the technical side of film.
"The technology will change, but good storytelling is timeless," she says.
Kendra went to work for American Family Studios in Tupelo, Miss., while Jeremy stayed in Lexington and works as media director at Lexington First Assembly and as a free-lance videographer.
Last year, the duo made Paper Dream, a short drama about a couple who turn to adoption when they can't have a child. That set the stage for Summer Snow and filming it in Lexington.
Executive producer Don Cobb said the presence of Asbury and First Assembly, as well as the beauty of Central Kentucky, persuaded him to bring the production to the Lexington area. In addition to using the Andover Drive home of Dr. Tom Stone as the main location, they have filmed at locations in Nicholasville, Wilmore and Georgetown.
For the Whites, it lets them make their feature film directing debuts in familiar surroundings with many familiar faces.
That said, Summer Snow is a film with ambitions to raise the quality of faith-based films, which often are not as good as their intentions.
Cobb points out that the film has a professional cast of Screen Actors Guild talent and a crew with experience in the faith and mainstream film markets.
Producer Dan Atchison says, "There's no reason why just because the film is faith-based and family-friendly it can't have production qualities that are off the charts."
In the Whites, American Family has a directing duo that totally agrees.
Jeremy invokes Philippians 4:8, which says, "whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable — if anything is excellent or praiseworthy — think about such things."
"With Christian films in the past, they focus too much on the first half of that verse — the pure, the true, the lovely — and that's all good," he says. "But, let's not forget the last half. Let's not forget the things that are excellent and praiseworthy."
Kendra invokes another biblical allusion, saying Christians too often have kept their distance from Hollywood, regarding it as akin to the God-forsaken cities of Sodom and Gomorrah.
"I think God's perspective on Hollywood is more Nin eveh, which in Scripture it says missionaries were sent there to make a difference and change," Kendra says.
While the stakes are clearly much higher than making videos with their old VHS camera, the Whites still enjoy working together.
"We've always been best friends," Jeremy says. "I love getting to work and getting to be with her."
Kendra says, "Growing up, we figured out problem-solving playing together, so now, it just kind of naturally happens on set. Decisions that have to be made happen faster because we know each other so well."