Monthly Archives: June 2015

Steps To Take After Graduating From Film School

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After graduation from grad school, it is important staying on top of what is going on in the film industry. Joining the most popular movie database like IMDB would be a helpful resource in movie, television programs and contacting agents and production houses directly. Reading film related magazines and websites like Variety and Hollywood Reporter would be encouraging to stay knowledgeable about your field of interest. Exchanging information with your former classmates and others that are in the film industry for comparison.

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Networking is a key resource to stay in contact with your classmates for updates and the latest in trends of moviemaking. Networking with new people can provide fresh ideas and new friendships. Your Professor at Film School might be a friend with someone who is producing a movie and can assist you with getting in touch with them.

Projects

Developing your own projects will help you in obtaining valuable experience. You will have a project to show to prospective employers or investors. You can try and convince someone to fund your project, which is still in development to help your career get a jumpstart.

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Freelancing is always an avenue to put your time and energy in. Self employed and choosing whom your short time employer will be is a great choice until you land a more permanent job. Stay up to date with all major changes with camera equipment and new software. Apply for entry-level jobs they can be crucial elements in your career path in the film industry. If you apply these things you’ll find it easier to find job.

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Tips on using LinkedIn

My recent visit with my student advisor had led to some really interesting tips regarding linked in for job hunting and even more interesting about how one can gear up for it.

The first step is finding the company you want to work for on LinkedIn. Let’s for example just use the company Blizzard Entertainment. Simply search for them under jobs.

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After you find their page you’ll see on the right how it says 3,478 Employees on LinkedIn. This is where you want to click next. LinkedIn is a website about people and it’s the people inside we want to get to know.

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When on the next page we’ll want to look on the left side of the page and go down to the category school. Click the “+Add” button and type in Full Sail University. Having done that we have now cut down the three thousand plus employees to twenty nine potential contacts.

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From here you may want to send out a few connect request depending on the department you are looking for. I found a particular Camera Operator who works within the company. From there I searched him on Google and found his demo reel and current resume. There is no better way to know what a business is looking for in a resume, than to see the ones that landed jobs within the company.

By using a few tools in the search criteria LinkedIn is a very powerful tool to use to help research your future employers and find out what others have done to get hired.

Relocation After School

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With graduation pending and the job market more challenging than ever the question arises; Where to find a job? Personally I have gone left when others went right and putting my energy into another person’s projects does not sit well with me. I would rather use the creative drive and energy into my own projects. So for me I will not actively seek a job working for another unless its freelance. I desire to forge my own destiny being an independent filmmaker.

The first option for me is to remain in Orlando. To be a true maverick independent film maker. The last option is for me. With a family based here and several actors that I have had the pleasure of befriending Orlando is the perfect spot for me to take my destiny into my own hands

However for those who do not have that drive or ability to be an independent filmmaker the first location that comes to mind looking for a job is Los Angeles. This is where all the big companies are and that’s where Hollywood is. The largest production companies, soundstages, media companies are located here so naturally ones mind would gravitate to where the money is. This being said LA is expensive with the average medium rent for a one bedroom being over $1600 (Numbeo.com). Additionally the average income to live independently is $38,000.

Another hub for the entertainment business is New York City. While New York is the fashion capital and home of television, the movie industry has made resurgence thanks to Disney acquiring Marvel Entertainment. Marvel Comics is based in New York and naturally most of Marvels character property/events take place in NYC as well. This makes NYC a vibrant prospect to pursue a career in film. The down side of this location is like Los Angeles, NYC is expensive with the average rent over $1800 a month.

The last location I would consider is Atlanta. With tax incentives ATL is booming. Turner Media Group recently put one of its productions wings to be headquartered in Atlanta and you can find several media outlets with a major presence there along with Tyler Perry Studios. Cost of living is lower than both LA and NYC.

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FIRST JOB AFTER COLLEGE

It’s everyone’s wish to get a job immediately they finish their college education. Some students are lucky to get advice from their career department put in place to help them venture into their desired careers. Below are tips on how you can earn a spot in your dream company or organization.

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1.Internship

I once met Director of photography Paul Mayne. He narrated how a simple internship led to his dream career job. Many people don’t know that being an intern in a company or organization that you have been envying for a long time, might just earn you a job.

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But on the other hand, it’s good to do a case study of the organization, before accepting an internship especially if its unpaid. Weigh your options by looking at the past records of the interns. If the company has a high percentage of interns working free for them, but hires only one or two, then you need to look for other options because your chances of getting hired are minimal.

2.Networking

Sometimes you take it for granted, but the people who you interact occasionally with, might be of great help when you are looking for your first job after college. So how many networking events have you attended and how many people who own or work for the companies you admire have you talked to?

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If none, then you need to pull up your socks and attend as many networking events as you can. If you have then keep communicating with them since some might realize your passion and desire for your career field and probably hook you up with a job.

3.Don’t follow the crowd

Trust and believe in yourself. Don’t do something because your friends are doing. A good example is that most people always talk about moving to LA or New York after college, because that’s where the money is. Yes that’s where the money is, but have you thought of yourself first before moving there? Good jobs are everywhere and if you look around, you will definitely find the right job that you have been dreaming of. Never wait to make people know of your creative ideas.

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Writing articles or blogs about what those companies do, might just land you a job or internship. Companies always pay attention to what people say about them. If they like your ideas, then they might hire you.

These are three simple tips that could lead to your first job, but there are ways more. Go for the right tips for your first job.

Pictures From:

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Before Moving To LA: BE PREPARED!

Moving to LA is a big commitment. However, if you’re going to make the big jump make sure to keep these three things in mind.

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First: Stability Is Key

You want to make sure that you are financially stable because it’s not the cheapest place to be. When you’re in LA it’s best to have your own car. Nothing in LA is close. Paying for a taxi can really start to add up while traveling back and forth to sets and locations. That being said it’s also a good idea to live around where you’re planning to work. LA has a lot of great things, but traffic isn’t one of them.

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Next: Networking

LA is the place of dreamers. Everywhere you go you’ll find people that have a lot of the same interests as you.  With that in mind, networking is a great way to make friendships and make connections. Maybe they have equipment that you don’t, or maybe where they lack is your strong point. Either way the people surrounding you are going to become your best asset. This is a great way to build a team and work on independent films. If things go great you can even start a production company, who knows!

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Finally: Get To Work

If you’re looking to work for big productions LA has plenty. You have Warner Brothers Studio, Paramount Pictures Studio, Universal Studios and more! It’s great to start sending in resumes now and setting up interviews. There are films that are being worked on every single day in LA. If you cant get a paid position volunteer, no one turns down free labor. However, if you can’t get into the big productions you should always have a plan B that you can start with to help build yourself up.

With all of this in mind make the move to get your dream job just be prepared!

Your First Steps In The Film Industry

So you’ve made your decision on where you’re going but have you decided what you’re doing once you get there? Working in the film and television industry offers a lot of challenges to gaining employment. It’s important that you are prepared and have all the pieces that are required to land that job. A résumé and cover letter are sometimes not enough when working in the creative realm, unlike some other industries. Employers looking to hire someone who is contributing artistically look only for the best. Imagine your résumé with all the production and post work you’ve ever done; pretty hard to put on a plain sheet of paper. Since the suits don’t generally exist in the same realm of thought as artists it’s important to stand out. What’s the best way to stand out? USE YOUR ART! Make something and show it to people.

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It’s important that an employer sees a résumé that is clear, shows what you have done, and highlights your skills. But, the best way to stand out is by having your work to show. Whether if it’s stills or a reel make sure to stand out visually. But what if I don’t have any work? This is often a common misconception. Mostly anybody has made some sort of artistic expression via a visual medium, even if it’s something you thought was bad or you don’t have much to show from it. Play it up, and stay confident because most people interviewing for your first job aren’t going to rip your portfolio to shreds in front of you. If it’s bad, and your interviewer doesn’t know that much about art, they might love it! Keep a cool head because you never know who that company is looking to hire next. It could be you.

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What about freelance work? Great! Take it! In those first couple of months, understand that steady job employment isn’t something you’re going to have right out of school. You need those jobs that maybe only pay for two days of work. It’s important to get yourself out there to meet people and make connections. Everyone is going to need something made down the line, and if you’re on the “good to work with” list, they’ll likely call you first for some paid work.

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Another thing to realize about independent work is sometimes things don’t work out. Funding fell through, someone backed out. It’s a fickle industry filled with business people and artists. Don’t let this get you down. Prepare for these things to happen and keep an open dialogue. If they wanted you to work but couldn’t pay, don’t be quick burn that bridge. Keep in contact with people who have work, check in with people every month or so, they may need someone to fill in for a position they hadn’t been advertising. When you keep in contact and have a good relationship with people in that industry, you just made hiring someone that much easier for them.

Three Ways School has Already Prepared You for Your First Job

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So you’re soon to be graduated and now you’re entering the job hunt. The task of securing your first job post graduation can feel daunting, maybe even scary. Here are three reasons your academic experience has already prepared your transition into the professional work force.

 You Have Learned How to Learn

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We are learning the language of the industry and building both theory and practical knowledge bases to apply to our professional careers. But sometimes the learning isn’t about the what, it’s about the how.

The reality is that despite everything you learn in school, you will still inevitably be clueless when it comes to certain elements of your new job. This is perfectly normal. Some level of training will almost always accompany your new job. An education is about “learning how to learn” just as much as it is about learning the material itself. Academic rigor has conditioned you to meet the challenges of your new job.

You Changed Your Mind in School, You’ll Likely Change It Again

It is highly unlikely you will land your dream job right out of graduation. There are only so many opportunities, and the competition can be fierce. But it is important that you still take some kind of job regardless, even if it’s not a perfect fit.

Think about how many times you changed your mind in school about what type of job you wanted. Maybe you wanted to be a producer, but you discovered an unexpected passion and talent for post-production editing? Or maybe being a director wasn’t what you thought it would be.

These self-discoveries will occur during your professional career as well. You never know how you’ll respond to something until you try it. Be open-minded about jobs that may lie outside your personal ambitions or comfort level.

You Already Have A Network of Contacts- Use Them!

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Your fellow classmates are in the same job hunting boat. A job that may not be a fit for them may be a great fit for you, and vice versa. Stay in touch with them, you can tip each other off about opportunities.

In the same vein, stay in touch with your course instructors. They have industry experience and may have former industry contacts looking to hire.

Lastly, the Career Development center is a resource for job seeking Full Sail alumni – take advantage of it!

In conclusion, leaving the academic world and entering the professional world can be an intimidating experience. But remember that your school experiences have already instilled in you the tools you need to not only survive your first job, but to flourish in it.