Bachelor in Film and Media Arts
I’ve known for years that I wanted to go into editing, because of this I tend to go over the top with my projects, because it comes so easily. Looking at my first films I’ve definitely improved and thrive when I edit. I’ve learned new tricks and techniques and my instinct regarding when and what to cut have improved. I’ve now learned Avid and really enjoy it. Also, I’m way more comfortable editing audio and sound effects which really adds to the film. I’ve lately been pushing my skill in this field as well, because of how well I’ve been doing and my own urge to further my abilities. I now am adding more effects and really diving into the subclasses of editing; visual effects, sound mixing, and color correction. I’ve always known the basics of them, but now I’m really engaging with them and it is adding a new fun challenge to editing that makes it exciting to see what I can create next. Lucky all my film classes require us to edit, so I get lots of practice and experience that really pushes me and makes me improve every day.
Looking through my film history, directing is my weakest link. I’ve had opportunities to direct and every time it falls flat. My biggest issue is that I don’t feel comfortable telling people what to do. You need to be confident in your film and always have the answers. However, the moment someone questions one of my thoughts or suggests new ideas it makes me question everything and I usually go with their way. The reason I’m not improving is I haven’t had a class where they fully talk and explain directing or focus on it. The classes are mostly about the style of film and creating stories. Another big part of directing is bringing your story to life, and while I can think of ideas and see scenes in my head, having to tell an actor how to show an emotion goes right over my head. I’ll say be surprised, but there are so many different forms of that, and I just don’t know what else to say to describe the emotion. I now just tell people the scene and just go with whatever face they give. I would love to have a class or just a workshop about directing. Not just people telling me ‘just say what you want’ or ‘be assertive’. That isn’t teaching me anything and isn’t helping me at all.
Throughout my two years at North Central Michigan College and one year at University of Tampa, I’ve had some classes and professors who have changed my thoughts and skills in film in the best way possible. The most important professor would be Anne Morningstar from NCMC. She was the first film teacher I had and really thought me not just the basic of film, but what it’s really like in the real world. One of the things that has stuck with me the most is that she told me all animators know film, but not all filmmakers know animation. I didn’t understand what she meant until our school hired a film crew to shoot a commercial for the school and when it got to the film and animation section, they had no idea what it took to animate and ended up filming a little section of a student taking photos for a hand drawn stop motion, but then didn’t put it into the final film. I also learned that most editors are unemployed until they’re booked for a movie and it’s very risky. That’s why I don’t want to do movies and go a safer, but still fun route.
Working for a movie honestly doesn’t appeal to me; you’re stuck working on a project for a year or more and there’s so much pressure I’d go crazy. Instead I want to work for a company. Big or small doesn’t really bother me as long as I have a steady job editing. I do realize that I might have to start out as a PA or intern and work my way up, but I think that’s the best route you can take as you get to experience the different positions and understand them more. I also don’t really plan on going to California; maybe New York. Luckily the film industry is moving around and of course technology makes it easier to do my job anywhere, but I definitely see myself in a city editing commercials or maybe a tv series.