The Creatives

Taysha McFarland Headshot - Director, Writer and Producer

Taysha McFarland

Producer/Director/Writer/Actor and Founder of Toprock Productions.

With over 20 years training and working as an actor, Taysha made the move to the other side of the camera to bring more stories to life.  Since crossing to the other side, she has won awards for her short films; "A Song for You", "If Only" and "Shop Your Values".

In 2017, she founded Toprock Productions with the aim to create engaging, yet family friendly films, teleplays and more!  

Taysha has studied Meisner, Strasburg, Pulse and Chekhov techniques and has performed in both Australia and the United States.  

She has a strong belief that continual training and practice is the key to the ability to fully transform your whole self and bringing your character to life. 


Tristan Braines


From a young age, Tristan became fascinated with film and cinema.  His passion has lead him to posses a great deal of knowledge when it comes to filmmaking.  

After having had a taste of making films in High School, Tristan took a gap year studying a Foundation Course at the VCA, completing several short films. Soon after that he studied for three years at Swinburne Faculty of Design, undergoing the Bachelor of Film and Television Production, where he worked on numerous projects and productions, in a variety of genres and creative roles. 

He has since gone on to become an award winning producer, having his films, "If Only", "A Song for You" and "Shop Your Values" taking home awards for best film and audience choice awards.  


Cindy Pritchard



With over 35 years professional experience, Mornington Peninsula local, Cindy Pritchard was an original cast member of many Australian musical theatre productions, including 1200 performances of “Les Miserables”, and 60 performances as Mrs Potts alongside Hugh Jackman in Disney’s “Beauty & the Beast”. 

With extensive television credits in the ‘80s and ‘90s, Cindy has recently broken into the film industry. She not only been recently credited as an actor, but has also stepped into the producer role. Her recent film credits include associate producer on AACTA nominated feature film, “Book Week”, which is also currently streaming on Stan, and executive producer on up and coming film, “Zarephath”, produced by Toprock Productions. 

Other professional credits include “The Sound of Music” alongside Lisa McCune, “Showboat” directed by the legendary Hal Prince, “Me & My Girl”, “Sweet Charity”, “Oliver!” and the role of Fruma-Sarah with Topol in “Fiddler on the Roof”.  She has also toured all over the country playing Earth Mother in “Menopause the Musical”. Just to name a few.

Cindy is looking forward to working on the hilarious comedy series, “Galactic Circus” alongside the creative team. 


Nicholson Ren

Producer/Director of Photography/Colour Grader

Nicholson is an experienced and in-demand cinematographer who specialises in narrative, fictional filmmaking.  Through his films, he aims to create a very natural look with a preference to a low key lighting style to create the most appealing images.  He believes in making the best out of what is available.

With each shot, he takes pride in working out the finer details to enhance the overall story of the production.   He has a vast knowledge on cinematic production.

With many years of experience in colour grading films around the world, Nichoslon is always ready for the next steps and challenges in the film industry.

For updates on his new projects follow his page on Instagram.


Samuel Vella

Cinematographer/Gaffer/Camera Operator

Samuel is a cinematographer with an extensive background in the camera & lighting department; having worked on a variety of projects ranging from music videos, corporate branding & feature films.

Samuel graduated from RMIT, where he studied Screen & Media and contributed to over 15 different projects, where he worked on various styles including documentary & short film narratives.

Since graduation Samuel has continued to expand his knowledge of film & cinema by working with veteran members of the Melbourne film community, where he met & worked with Toprock Productions on several projects.

Samuel’s style is contemporary, eclectic & emotionally-driven. Drawing on a wide range of inspirations; old and new, Samuel can adapt to fit the needs of any story or project.

You can view some of Samuel’s previous work on his Instagram.


Chris Tuazon

Sound Design/Composer/Musician

Chris has a great ear for music and sounds and is a key member of the garage, grunge, psychedelic band, Mojo Pin.   Being with the band for over 8 years, Chris wanted to learn more about recording to help the band.

He studied Studio Engineering where he learned about the possibilities and other avenues for creativity in the field of audio.  This is where he also found a passion for film and live events.  He sees this as a new medium for his musical expression, broadening his sights.

Between gigs, Chris enjoys working on set and perfecting the audio in post production.


Ian Vandermey


With a background in live music for domestic and international artists, Ian made the switch to film and TV in 2017.  Since then he has worked on many productions, specialising as a gaffer and location sound recordist.  Ian's sole focus is now on lighting and has built a solid reputation amung many Melbourne cinematographers.

Ian continues to improve his talents, moving into rigging and stage construction.  Not only that, but he is also a writer for both film and children's books.

Ian still works part-time as an audio engineer and lighting technician.


Tessa McHugh

Makeup Artist/SFX Makeup

Coming from a performing arts background, Tessa's passion grew for the film and television industry.  It lead her to completing a diploma of Screen and Media in Specialist Makeup Services at Victoria University.  

While studying, Tessa began working on film productions and continues to grow her repertoire in both film and stage makeup.  She is trained in SFX makeup and enjoys getting crazy with some creative looks.

Check out more of her work on her Instagram Page.


Luisa Molina

Makeup Artist

Luisa studied makeup artistry in Colombia with it being a hobby while she worked in business management.  After a year into the course, Luisa realised that makeup was where her true passion lies and made the decision to do it for a living.

She has now been working as a makeup artist for over 5 years and has done everything from bridal makeup to film and television makeup.

She believes that enhancing natural beauty is more important than creating a new face through make up.  Luisa hopes her makeup will help contribute to other women's self love, teaching them how to look more beautiful in the most natural way.

You can check out more of Luisa's work on her Instagram Page.


Nikki Wong

Animation Artist

Nikki's fixation with animation and story-telling began when her dad brought back Studio Ghibli films when she was ten.  She then went on to explore animation with flip books,  sketching backgrounds and drawing more comics.

Halfway through college, Nikki made the switch from her science major to art. Following that, she went on to study animation, design and typography at SAE.  Her strengths are in storyboarding, concept design and 2D animation.

While studying, Nikki was able to collaborate with people in different fields to create games and short films.  One of which, "Commander Sam" was screened at Flickerfest 2019.  Another short animation, "Get It Right" by Diplo was created while she worked under Viskatoons.

You can find out more about Nikki's latest and past work on her Facebook Page.


Mark Davenport

Editor/Assistant Camera

Since the age of 15, Mark has been editing.  He studied at SAE where he obtained a Bachelors degree in film.  He enjoys editing for narrative productions and currently does video editing for Cultural Infusion. 

Mark also enjoys working on set as a camera assistant.