It’s been a little while since I wrote my last blog post. I won’t make them too often, so that they’re always something different to look forward to. So maybe grab a coffee, make yourself comfy, and have a wee read of my inner thought’s.
Last month I shared some news about starting a new job. It had been news I’d been waiting to hear myself for quite sometime. I’ve always had a job, since I was 17 - so to be unemployed for 5 months felt rather odd. (I mean this whole pandemic situation we’re all in feels a bit odd too!)
Going back to work, back to the hospitality/service industry, it’s been a little hard to adjust to. A lot of people connected with me on LinkedIn and messaged me with loads of support, as they were in the same situation as I was. Not being able to work in their industry anymore, and now going back to jobs they hadn’t planned to do. But it’s all ok, we can’t judge others or ourselves for not being able to secure a job in the industry we want to be in right now. So many businesses are suffering, and we just gotta do what we gotta do!
Alas keeping myself busy and making coffee for a living has been fun, meeting new people again and working as part of a team. I’d missed that so much since the pandemic rendered me to working from home and not going into the studio at university or the design agency I once worked at.
So even if I’m grinding beans and repeatedly asking for a customers name because no one can understand anything anyone’s saying while we all have masks on, it’s nice to be working again.
Despite having a new job to focus on though, I also wanted to continue working on my portfolio. I wanted to use this time to build my skills even further into the field of film after graduating uni and now having full creative control on what I put out there. So I gave myself this little task, a challenge, to create more films.
This idea came about back in June when I took part in the 72 Hour Film Challenge, hosted by Peter McKinnon. I made a short film about the idea of just creating something. I’ve made loads of videos about my day to day life, but structuring that in the style of a ‘short film’ felt unusual to me. So as much as this was a challenge in terms of structuring the video and planning how I’d tell this story I also wanted to test myself and learn new filming and editing techniques. Things that I’d seen in other Youtube creator videos, like Daniel Schiffer, or even ones that Peter himself had filmed (usually with the assistance of others though!).
The challenge with re-creating videos like the ones they make though, is that they’re often made with several people involved in the shoot. They have friends and assistants that star in the films, or help get extra shots. They have others around them to aid their filmmaking process.
But, I usually work alone. And I want to make sure my own film skills can be as good as they can be, so that when I get to work in larger teams I’m ready.
So, the challenge I gave myself was for each month to create some form of video content. Because I want to work more in advertising and social media, I wanted to create content for those platforms. So in September, the challenge began.
The first film I properly created for this challenge I set myself was my Nike “just get out of bed and do it” video. I storyboarded, shot, filmed and edited everything by myself. There’s a video over on my youtube channel explaining the whole process of each step involved in creating this video. The main aim for this video was to strengthen my storytelling abilities. After the 72 Hour “just create something” video I knew I struggled with the storytelling aspect. Storyboarding the idea and drawing out - the roughest of sketches - really helped make sure that the video I was away to create emoted some form of feeling in the audience, and also told a story. It was great fun, and I did it all in a really small space of time. Another part of this challenge I had given myself was to get it done over the course of a weekend, so that it doesn’t take up too much time.
For Octobers video I was releasing Tie-Dye t-shirts for Lucid Thought Apparel, my clothing company, and I wanted to experiment with some fishtank/underwater videography. This was a big challenge for myself, experimenting with lighting and an entirely new set up. I ended up following a tutorial from Daniel Schiffer on how to create a DIY aperture 300d mock pan light. It worked alright, I’ve only used it once for this shoot, but who know’s maybe it’ll be my new go too light!
I used this set up for a couple of photographs as well, (the one at the top of this blog post!) as that’s something I want to work on more as well - my photography has been lacking lately, and I want to try and get back into it. The video's I created for posting on social media turned out pretty dang cool too if you ask me, there were some issues, and there always is when you’re trying out something new.
But that’s the point, no matter how many issues I face I still get there, I still make something - and learned something from it. If I just sat about worrying about all the things that could go wrong, or oh this won’t work because I don’t have an aperture 300d with a nice big dome to diffuse the light or have actors to star in it - nah, that’s not going to fly with me. I still want to create things even if I don’t have access to the equipment or assistance I need.
So I’m quite proud of the videos I’ve produced so far. I’ve not decided what Novembers will be, but watch this space and follow my instagram as that’s most likely where the video will be posted!
Thank you once again for reading my inner ramblings, I hope you found them somewhat insightful. Once again everyone, stay safe, look after each other and let’s support one and another - in whatever job they find themselves in, to stay positive and keep creating.