Professional Portfolio Contact – Ross Hammond

Ross Hammond works as a graphic designer for a marketing company in London. He most recently helped me with some design work for my first short film ‘VR’, creating the logo design and adapting this to posters and DVD covers.

Screen Shot 2015-05-20 at 20.57.31Ross is an important contact for a number of reasons, not just his graphic design skills, which I am sure will come in handy in the future. He lives and works in London, and owns an online T-shirt company, ‘High Rise Club’, based out of the capital. I have been fortunate enough to work on a number of promotional videos for the company, acting as director, camera man and editor, which is great experience for me and looks good in my portfolio.

So Ross works in the creative industries in London, and so meets with other creatives from other industries regularly, which can only be beneficial to me, as he can put me in touch with these people, and hopefully give me a good recommendation. But more importantly, it is the T-shirt company that I have the most interest in, as I have already created films for them over the last few years, and already plan to film some promotional material for them over the summer.

Having this contact is mostly important, as it is allowing to build my portfolio and practice with different styles of filmmaking, and is practically a guaranteed source of work for me, something I am going to need to promote myself with and attract work offers elsewhere.

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References

HighRiseClub [online]. (2015). Available from: <http://www.highriseclub.co.uk/&gt;. [Accessed 15th May 2015].

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Professional Portfolio – Filmmaker Networks

There are numerous networks that filmmakers or people working in the arts can join to help find work through self promotion and connecting with people. I have previously spoken about Linkedin, the worlds biggest professional network, but here I am going to be talking about networking sites specific to film or the arts.

Filmmaker networks, such as Shooting people and My First Job in Film, are online networks specifically tailored to people working in the film industry. They allow users, like with all networking sites, to create a profile, as a sort of online CV, where they can showcase some of their work, talk about projects they have been involved in, the qualifications and certificates they have, as well as talk about their aspirations. As with the two film networks I have mentioned, there is a fee, which can put some people off, but on the other hand can act as a filter, resulting in a user base that is serious about making films. There are free alternatives such as Talent Circle, and they can be just as useful, but they don’t seem to be as credible as Shooting People and MFJIF.

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As an aspiring director, these networking sites can be a very important tool or me in the future. Shooting People has gives its users the ability to put out job calls, which means I can actually search specifically for jobs as a director, or for more junior roles if it suits. Not only is the network advantageous for job hunting, Shooting People has built up a strong community of filmmakers, and gives them the ability to share their knowledge to the community of members in the form of regular bulletins that are sent direct to your email address, where discussions and questions are carried out about all different areas of filmmaking.

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My First Job in Film is more costly than Shooting People, but does regularly post film industry jobs, many of which are junior roles for people wanting to get a foot in the door of the industry. During my time at at University I have been a member of the site and found it hard to find jobs that would suit my availability, added to that the extremely high application rate for each job made it very hard to be successful. However, now I am close to leaving University, and I will have much more free time, I plan to improve my CV and portfolio and start applying for more jobs. I know if I was able to get a permanent entry level role, then that would be put me in good stead for the future.

References

Myfirsthobinfilm [online]. (2015). Available from: <http://www.myfirstjobinfilm.co.uk/index.html&gt;. [Accessed 12th May 2015].

ShootingPeople [online]. (2015). Available from: <https://shootingpeople.org/home&gt;. [Accessed 12th May 2015].

Professional Portfolio – Linkedin

Linkedin is a networking site for professionals, and works in a similar way to the social networking site Facebook. It allows users to build an online profile, or online CV, that shows of their skills and there working history, and to connect with people they have worked with. This allows people to build online networks of their own, where they can be kept up to date with what others are working on, and be on the look out for potential business opportunities or partnerships that arise.

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Linked is has over ‘300000 members’ (Nishar. D, 2014), which makes it the largest professional network on the internet, which is a good indicator of how seriously the site is taken and how the professional world is embracing online networking as a tool for recruiting and promoting themselves and their brands.

I have a Linkedin profile of my own and the the past few years I have begun to build contacts with the people I have worked with. I have not always taken Linkedin that seriously, as with some of its features, like endorsements, it can feel like a popularity contest, but the more I have built up my portfolio of work and the more connections I have made, the more I feel that it will be beneficial in the future.

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There is not doubt that Linkedin can be beneficial towards my career as a director, as I can keep in almost constant contact with all the people I have worked with, and will work with in the future, and keep a record of the work I have completed, available to view by my connections and to potential future employers. Although the site is not media, or film specific, it is taken very seriously by users and companies and has become a very credible way to network with other professionals,

References

LinkedIn [online]. (2015). Available from: <https://www.linkedin.com/nhome/&gt;. [Accessed 12th May 2015].

Nishar, D. (2014). LinkedIn Official Blog [online]. Available from: <http://blog.linkedin.com/2014/04/18/the-next-three-billion/&gt;. [Accessed 15th May 2015].

Professional Portfolio Contact – Paul Pritchett-Brown

Paul is another contact I have gained through my internship at Sundog Pictures. He was the in-house editor who worked on numerous Sundog Pictures productions as well as looking after a lot of the IT and technical aspects of the company.

I feel as though editing is very important skill for any film maker going into any area of film. Having the ability to edit proficiently, as well as knowing the art of editing is a great tool to have as a director too, as there is likely to be many hours editing independently, or alongside different editors in the future.

I wasn’t able to have much contact with Paul whilst interning at Sundog, only carrying a put a few jobs for him here or there, however during my recent 2 day trial at the company I was able spend a lot of time learning about his editing processes and how he used various pieces of software. As mentioned before, my trial days turned out to be unsuccessful in the sense that I did not get the job, although in a different way it turned out to be a success.

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Paul is soon to be leaving Sundog Pictures to work on his own company Glassy Pictures, and the job I was trialling for was essentially to replace some of the technical elements of his work. I wanted to make sure that I gained a good contact out of this situation regardless with what happened with the job, so I let Paul know that however the trial turned out, I would still be looking to move to the London area for work and would love to pick up some extra editing work with him if I could. On top of this, Paul is a licensed commercial drone flyer, and he suggested that I could assist on shoots in the future if the chance arose. This is something that could be very beneficial, as the use of drones in filming is becoming more and more popular, and as I plan to be directing films in the future, it would be great to have experience in this area and potentially the knowledge to utilise drone technology.

References

glassypictures [online]. (2015). Available from: <http://glassypictures.com/?page_id=9&gt;. [Accessed 15th May 2015].

Professional Portfolio Contact – Ben Anthony

Ben Anthony is a documentary film director who most notable film of recent years is the first episode of BBC3’s Life and Death Row series. I met ben whilst interning at Sundog Pictures, where he was making a ‘Brand Values’ film for Virgin Trains. I was fortunate to be a runner on the shoot for that film, and was able to spend 4 days working along side him.

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I know that it is likely that when I start out in the film industry, I will have to carry out many very junior roles, either as a runner in a production studio, or as a runner on film shoots, and this makes Ben a very important contact. If I find myself working in documentary films i the future, it makes sense to have some kind of access to someone in that area, even better if that person can offer me advice and offer me the chance to work as a runner for them. After completing the Virgin shoot with Ben, he kindly told me to keep in touch, as he might have runner work in the future that would be suitable. I would be really keen to do this, as I know that when shooting larger documentaries he works with a very small crew, sometimes just himself, sometimes just him and an assistant producer. This would be an extremely beneficial opportunity for me, not only as it would look great on my CV, but i would get hands on experience working closely with a very talented and experienced director of film.

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So far, nothing has come up that has fitted my schedule and his, but after finishing my studies, I hope to take advantage of this very useful contact, and pick up some more experience.

References

BBC [online]. (2015). Available from: <http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b03ytxmh&gt;. [Accessed 16th May 2015].

Professional Portfolio Contact – Richard Wood

Richard Wood is a very active member of the film world of the West Midlands, and I was fortunate to have been taught about being a freelancer when I studied music technology at Warwickshire College about 5 years ago. Since then I have kept in touch with Rich over the years and have met him occasionally at networking events that he has hosted. One of those events being ‘Roots to Shoots’, a local film screening and networking event held in Coventry and Leamington. Richard had invited me and a few other students along to screen our film, after we had produced and shot our own music video in France as part of of music course.

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I have also attended the Coventry based film networking group ‘Call the Shots’, another of Richard’s ventures, which still runs today. I am also part of the ‘Call the Shots’ Facebook group, which I utilised during the production of my FMP, with some helpful suggestions from Richard.

Richard is a very important local contact, as he as made films in this region for many years, and has an unbelievable contact list of his own. If I am to stay within the West Midlands to pursue my career as a film director after University, Richard will be an extremely important contact, and will no doubt be able to help with acquiring work.

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References

facebook [online]. (2015). Available from: <https://www.facebook.com/groups/calltheshots/&gt;. [Accessed 15th May 2015].

Professional Portfolio Contact – Justin Tagg

Before filming my final major production, which I had written and was due to direct. This would be the first short fictional film directed by me, and I wanted to get advice on directing, not only for the film I would be making, but for my potential career as a director. A friend of mine who attended the University of Lincoln had attended a couple of lectures by someone name Justin Tagg. He has told me that he had been working on a short film, that had had a very successful Kickstarter campaign and that it had became a huge it on the indie circuit, gaining a ‘Staff Pick’ on Vimeo, which is a pretty big deal. The film Justin had written and directed was ‘Mouse X’, which you can watch below.

I emailed Justin to see if he would be able to give me any advice on directing, and he was more than happy to, offering to have a Skype conversation. The Skype chat went on for around 40 minutes, so I was able to ask a lot of questions and get a lot of advice. We talked about his approach to auditions and casting, dealing with actors and crew, as well as different directing techniques, even recommending the book ‘Directing Actors by Judith Weston’. This was extremely helpful to me, someone who had not directed a short film previously, and I was able to utilise some of the advice Justin gave me along with that from Judith Weston’s book.

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Although the advice given to me was more about directing, rather than how to get into directing, it has potentially made me become a better director, which will help me producer stonger work, and therefore help my career. Justin is a very creative person, and is involved in a lot of projects, so there is the chance for work in the future if I maintain contact with him. He is also working on a feature length version of ‘Mouse X’, something I would be very interested in getting involved in.