About Banner

The Discerning Lens is the web home of Paul David Benedict, a freelance digital film director, cinematographer and producer.

Paul David is a filmmaker with a knack for telling challenging and nuanced stories. As a student at North Park University in Chicago, he produced and directed three feature films before going on to co-found a production company, Brainroot Light and Sound, in Kansas City. With Brainroot, he traveled the world producing short-form documentaries.

In 2010, he returned to Iowa to focus on narrative storytelling. Local media quickly dubbed his work as the director of Iowa Filmmakers as some of the best in the region. In 2012, his viral-hit video Iowa Nice was picked up by CNN, MSNBC, NPR and the BBC. Rachel Maddow called it “the funniest political ad to come out of Iowa.” The short film was later selected as an official honoree by the Webby Awards, the highest awards ceremony for digital media. In 2012 and 2013, Paul David produced segments for ESPN’S College Football Daily, which aired twice weekly for a national audience.