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Advice needed: Internship or reel?


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#1 Edgar E Velasco

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Posted 25 March 2009 - 08:33 PM

I'm a student one semester away from graduating and have the oportunity to work on either more stuff for my reel (as of now, I only have four shorts as a DP) or an internship at either Birns & Sawyer or Panavision. It is likely that I won't be able to do both. Which of these options would have a better chance of yielding a job on-set?
Thanks in advance.
Edgar E Velasco
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#2 Scott Fritzshall

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Posted 26 March 2009 - 12:04 AM

I don't know what anyone else would say, but I'd recommend the internship. You'll eventually need a reel, but an internship can get you experience, as well as really valuable contacts. I did an internship at a post house in Chicago a few summers ago, and not only did I have a really great time, but the people I met ended up being incredibly helpful, and I still keep in touch with several of them. It didn't directly help me get work, but it indirectly helped me out in a whole bunch of ways. I'd say that you can make a reel any time, but getting your name and face out there, meeting people, and showing them what you can do is something that you should start sooner rather than later. The experience may very well help you make a better reel down the road as well.
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#3 Ryan Thomas

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Posted 26 March 2009 - 12:41 AM

I think the internship for sure. It's the one that's most likely going to get you the work later on.
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#4 Larkin A Seiple

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Posted 26 March 2009 - 01:04 AM

I'm a student one semester away from graduating and have the oportunity to work on either more stuff for my reel (as of now, I only have four shorts as a DP) or an internship at either Birns & Sawyer or Panavision. It is likely that I won't be able to do both. Which of these options would have a better chance of yielding a job on-set?
Thanks in advance.
Edgar E Velasco


Depends on how much stuff you will be able to create for your reel. Then again if you shoot one great project that looks spectacular you might get more work from that alone. Sometimes it's not about the reel but one great project showcase your ability. However if you are trying to seek employment at either company after the internship that is a different story. If you want to work there to gain knowledge of cameras I think shooting more would benefit you in the long run. But then again you could work there and get great hook ups for gear? I would simply say you can learn about any camera online or even by visiting either rental house, they give tutorials for free. I interned at two different camera houses myself. I learned a lot about every camera. Now those camera are not being used (F900, varicam, 235) nearly as much as new technology, (RED, EX3), this was 2 years ago. If you have a better real to showcase your work your more likely attract more work.

A camera is a camera.
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#5 John Carreon

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Posted 26 March 2009 - 02:45 AM

Go with Panavision 100%

Birns & Sawyer is a joke...it's not a bad place but professionals rent from Panavision. Watch a random group of movies...and the end credits will have Panavision on the list.

You will make more connections and work with better equipment at Pan.

Also, if you want to be a DP...working at a Rental House will get you mechanically familiar with the gear and job offers as a 2nd or Loader...not as a DP...if you want to work your way up through the Camera Department thats fine...but nobody looks for a DP at the Prep Tech Counter...

John
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#6 Serge Teulon

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Posted 26 March 2009 - 06:21 AM

As an up-and-coming dp there are so many benefits to working at a place like Pana.

Apart from technical experience and contacts, you also stand in a great position to try and wrangle some equipment to go out there in your free time and shoot some stuff for your reel.
Killing 2 birds with one stone me thinks
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