Posted 23 May 2011 - 04:17 PM
I have been into photography and film since a young age and I started to take it seriously when I was about 14, and soon purchased a DSLR. I haven't quite gone that way with film yet, because I felt I didn't have enough friends who were into that kind of thing to ever make anything half decent. I've only got a little sony camcorder type thing, nothing special.
But I've thought about cinematography and that kind of job for my future, but I was worried that, because at my late stage I still hadn't got to grips with 'proper' videocameras, that there would be no point to pursue it. Although right now cinematography is my goal for my future, I decided my back-up is going to be advertising.
After browsing these forums for similar topics to this I found that a lot of people were very negative about the UK film industry, and it's not that I wouldn't mind moving if I ever got the chance (if that meant work), but I'm worried that if I try to pursue this goal I won't achieve it due to the number of people my age who are much more skilled technologically than me.
obviously I know there is no definite path to becoming a cinematographer, but I wanted to know if pursuing this goal at this stage is a unwise move. I do want to do it but I think that doubt it holding me back. I don't know anyone in the business which is obviously a huge blow, although I've tried contacting some people (with fairly limited success) but anyway, thanks for your time.
Posted 23 May 2011 - 04:39 PM
Posted 23 May 2011 - 04:48 PM
Because I don't have a great camera I was wondering, except for my school club which has surprisingly decent equipment, is there any way to start getting to grips with film? As I said, I don't have enough keen friends to do anything on my own, but are there places I can go to make films and things, or maybe even television/film crew who take trainees?
Posted 23 May 2011 - 04:59 PM
You can check craigslist and mandy.com for shoots. Most of them will be low budget. Apply for any job as a Camera Trainee or Camera PA that you can (or electric, I came up through lighting, and It was very beneficial). Show up. work hard. Network like crazy. A lot of this early work will be for no pay, but eventually you'll have to set and keep rates. And while of course not every job will pay you well, you should make sure every job, once you have some experience, pays.
School is not necessary aside from networking, and honestly, meeting people at a coffee house and going to industry events is a lot cheaper.
There is American Cinematographer magazine, subscribe to it, for the US films and what's new over here, and there is British Cinematographer magazine as well which I'm sure has industry stuff where you are.
There is also cinematography mailing list (cinematography.net) where you can peer in on the mail-servers and look @ what people are asking and answering. Make sure you submit your questions to the right list-serv and subscribe to them all.
Look up and check out local rental houses. See if they'd be wiling to demo you some cameras there. Be humble and honest. They want customers as much as you want work, and if you're going to eventually rent out thei kit it is in their best interest to show you how not to break it. While there you may meet some people checking in / out.
be outgoing to people you meet and pushy sometimes. Ask them if you could buy them (get them) a coffee sometime and pick their brain. A lot of people will be a lot nicer than you think. YOu'll need thick skin, though as alot of them are real asses.
hope it helps.
Posted 23 May 2011 - 06:01 PM
The lighting department on the UK productions tends to use qualified electricians, but some do move over to become DPs.
You should check the Skillset web site, which gives details of courses other than the NFTS and any trainee schemes.
Posted 26 May 2011 - 12:21 PM
But once I leave school this will be really handy
In the meantime I think I'll get involved with the film club and as you say get meet some people hopefully. I checked skillset for courses and there doesn't seem to be an awful lot of good courses for my level dedicated to film and cinematography, so I might go for a Fine Art BA and go from there somewhere.
Thanks for your help
Posted 26 May 2011 - 01:37 PM