Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Careers : Event Industry

Do you dream of creating a career that is fun, dynamic, and always exhilarating? Do you envision escaping the every-day mundane boredom of an ordinary job and instead, working on events where no two days are ever the same? Do you see yourself using your creative side to design amazing events that will be talked about for years to come?

Then you will LOVE working in the world of events, meetings, and incentive trips!

Maybe you want to work in the exciting world of special events or corporate conferences, but you're not sure you want to be the actual event planner (or don't quite have enough experience yet).
There are many, many opportunities for event-related jobs in the event & meeting industry, and this site outlines them all. Here are a few examples:

Perhaps you prefer not to put all the work into planning, and instead would rather fly all over the world and merely work these exciting events, meetings, and incentives. As an on-site event manager, you work as a freelancer and literally fly in, oversee a meeting or event, and fly out, off to the next exciting destination.
Do you live in a great destination location for events and meetings and would rather stay closer to home? You can take in-bound groups on a tour of your city, or on exciting excursions, or to elegant restaurants for dinner; or assist meeting planners with the decorations, entertainment, and catering for their event. As an expert in your city, you'd be a great fit at a Destination Management Company.

Or maybe you see yourself as the in-house planner for one of the largest and most elegant hotel and resort chains on the planet. As aConference Services Manager, you can work exciting events for a great hotel chain, which would allow you (if you wanted to) to move from city to city, state to state, and even country to country managing events held at the hotel; or stay in your home city and merely enjoy the many perks of working for an international hotel chain.

Whatever your dream may be, there is a place for you in the world of events.

And don't worry. Even if you don't have any experience or background in any of these exciting career fields, this site will show you the many ways to "break into" the dynamic events industry. You will learn how one of the largest industries in existence is structured, and the many career and job opportunities available.

The options are endless; you are limited only by your own determination!

So what are you waiting for? Your dream life awaits....

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Careers : A Jingle Writer

If you've ever heard music in a commercial, and said to yourself, "I can do better than that!" then, here is your chance to get into the lucrative career of being a jingle writer.

A Jingle Writer Defined 
Someone who is a lyricist, composer, songwriter that writes music for radio and television commercials. They have to be skilled in all styles of music, must be an expert who can compose in the shortest times possible. Someone hires them and they must compose the song exactly as their client wishes them to. That means, you really have no room to show off your artistic skills. The client decides how long the piece will be, the deadline and may even tell you what lyrics they want in the jingle. The job of a jingle writer is to solve the problem of their client.

Jingles on television are usually 10, 15, or 30 seconds long. Radio jingles are 30-60 seconds long. Some jingles will include an instrumental for a voice-over, or it could be a mixture of singing and a voice-over part.

Job Outlook 
Modern technology has saved advertisers a lot of money, by shortening the air time that a jingle gets. A while ago, when you sold a jingle, it stayed on air longer. Today advertisers change their campaign a lot, so the amount of time a jingle is used is about 13 to over 20 weeks, or less if the jingle is only used for a particular season on radio and television.
On a positive note, because of technology, creating jingles are done much faster, and it is more simple. In the beginning, there were just a few people making a lot of money, now there is much more competition. If you want to be a jingle writer, expect to work for hours including your weekends.
Just because you write a jingle, doesn't mean that it will get sold. You also can sell something and the agency won't pay you. There is no organization that supports jingle writers.

How To Be A Successful Jingle Writer 
The only way to be a successful jingle writer without working too hard at it, is to find a talent agency to represent you. When you have an agent, that agent will help you find the work that you are looking for. Chances are, if it is a popular agency, your jingles will be something you'll be quite proud of to have on your resume. Here are a few good talent agencies. Good luck!

Friday, April 20, 2012

TV Careers: Scriptwriting and Audio Visual (A/V)

It is unlikely you will begin your career in film, television and video as a scriptwriter. The business has become so institutionalized, rarely are there opportunities to walk up to a producer, strike up a conversation, and pitch him or her your fabulous idea. Consider yourself lucky if you can get an appointment with one face to face.
I was once an aspiring musician and I can tell you, the music industry is just about the same. This is not being negative, but we must always remember that these industries are just that, industries. Try getting an appointment with the CEO of General Motors or Wal-Mart. Even so, if you keep plugging away at it, there are opportunities out there for scriptwriters, although you probably will not be working on a concept that you created. Another thing I hear from new aspiring writers is, "I have this great idea for a show. How can I get a network producer to make it?" I am sure that it is a fabulous idea, but the reality is that even if you do manage to get an appointment and sell the idea, you probably will not be hired on as a writer. They will pay you some money, and send you on your way. It was only an idea. They will hire trusted and experienced professionals to efficiently develop it into a series or screenplay. Remember, this is an industry.

Looking on the brighter side, there are still opportunities out there for a writer, and you do not have to know much about scriptwriting. There are a wide variety of scripts that are used in television and video. In film, there are writing formalities and procedures that must be met before anyone will even look at your script. There are software packages, how-to guides, DVD's and a whole host of things you can purchase to help make your script or screenplay look polished and acceptable to someone in the film industry. Just keep in mind that it can still be done with just a plain old typewriter or word processor. Unless you are pitching to a network producer, through an agent of course, it is not so formal with television scripts. In television there are several varieties of scripts depending on the application. As an aspiring writer, some of the first scripts you will come across in television will be as a production assistant on a newscast. Let us quickly examine these first. The main script in news is the anchor script. The anchors, producer, director and technical director will receive copies of these. This anchor script will have every story that will be read, who will read it, and notations about which camera, time length, whether the story is on-camera, a VO (voice over) or SOT (sound on tape), and other information. How much of the dialogue is actually written by staff members, and how much of it is just copied, will vary from station to station. Some of it may be written or ad-libbed by the anchors themselves. The other script is called a rundown, which is a script for the crew. The senior news staff will also receive copies of the rundowns. It contains the same information and notations as in the anchor script, only without the dialogue.

Television productions do use script treatments like they do in film. Script treatments are sometimes used to pitch ideas, but in most cases the idea often comes from a staff producer or writer, and the treatment is more of a verbal one. The thing to remember about treatments is that it should interest the reader without using too many words. Think of it like the promo text on the back cover of a novel. It is short, concise and honed down to only essential descriptions, however many pages are required by the recipient. A treatment should leave them wanting for more. Getting back to television scripts. Much of this industry overlaps in many ways, and have seen TV and video scripts that look very similar to film screenplays, I have even written a few myself.

Screenplays, or adaptations of previously written research, information or literature, are useful in many ways on longer projects. In reality, most video productions are ten to thirty minutes long, occasionally reaching sixty minutes. While a screenplay is very useful, there are other ways to write a video script, but we will get to that later. First a written draft containing all the spoken dialogue and scene descriptions is developed. This will resemble a very lengthy and detailed treatment, if you will. If the piece is ten or more minutes long, an informal screenplay is then developed. This will look similar to a film screenplay with scene number, description, direction, any dialogue, etc. for each scene. Another way to write a script for TV and video also serves as a useful guide to use when actually taping the project. It is known as an audio-visual (A/V) script, and is sometimes used for short subject videos.

Affectionately nicknamed a T-script, or a split script, it is a convenient way to help visualize your written project on paper. A T-script gets its name by how it is structured. You can use a 'T" to separate everything as in the example, but it is not really necessary. In fact, you can take any of what I am about to say and write it however way you wish, these examples are just guidelines. Usually a T-script is divided into two columns. The left side is for any visuals to be seen, and the right side for any audio that will be heard. This is an important thing to remember about a T-script. Let us say the actor (talent) is supposed to say, "Good taste!" while a title is keyed on the screen reading the same thing. In a T-script, not only what the talent says is written on the audio side, but since what he says is being seen, it must also be noted verbatim on the video side. Anyway, there are various abbreviations and terminology used to make things easier when writing scripts. Most of this terminology is common in both television and film. Memorize these abbreviations, and get into the habit of using them when writing any script. Abbreviations are important in a script because it alleviates having to repeatedly type out long phrases. Another benefit is that abbreviations help to give the script a visually polished, organized and professional appearance.

There are table-driven software packages available you can buy that will make A/V scriptwriting easy and convenient. You can spend your money on such programs if you like, but I have seen people write T-scripts with spreadsheets, tables, columns and just plain old word processors, which is my preference. It really does not matter how you go about it, because writing a T-script is pretty simple and easy to do. You just have to remember the concept behind a T-script. One way to put it is that a T-script is built in sections. You write the visual components of a given scene, and write whatever audio or dialogue will be heard during that scene in the audio column. Then you move on down to the next scene. This is why people prefer using tables when writing a T-script. Whatever is written in the video cell, will take up as much space as the audio cell next to it, no matter how much text is written in either cell. This is the best way to describe how a T-script is structured.

However way you write one, it is a very versatile and handy tool for short subject videos. When you are in production and taping a scene, it is a quick way to see how you originally envisioned it. An A/V script is useful for corporate, informational, and promotional videos, commercials, music videos and even comedy skits. As opposed to a screenplay, an A/V script is more of a visually detailed reference in words. Ultimately, that is what you are trying to do when writing any script. You are trying to put into words what you envision visually in your mind, so that whoever reads it will take from the words a recreation of that vision in their minds. That's the way I see it anyway. Good luck with all of your writing endeavors.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

What Does It Take To Launch A Successful Career In A Competitive Field Like Broadcast Television?

If I can speak personally for a moment, I have been involved in television for several decades -- as an announcer and so-called TV personality, as a producer-director of thousands of hours of TV programming (most of it live), and as a university professor.
In the latter capacity I watched some of my students work up through the ranks to become producers of TV series and feature-length films. Others found the going too rough, abandoned their dream, and found employment elsewhere.
What made the difference? Probably eight things.
1. Motivation In any competitive field you must really want to make it. This type of motivation does not waver from week-to-week or month-to-month, but is consistent and single-minded. In short, you must stay focused on your goal.

2. Personality Although admittedly a vague term, it encompasses several things. First, since television is a collaborative effort, it requires an ability to work with others to accomplish professional goals.
Included in this category is attitude. In this context we're definitely not talking about someone who "has an attitude."  Quite the opposite.  We're talking about the general demeanor of individuals, how they accept assignments, whether they are pleasant to work with, and how they take suggestions or criticism.
There is often considerable pressure in TV production and thin-skinned individuals who can't detach themselves from their work and take constructive criticism are in for a bumpy ride.

3. Knowledge and skills Producers and directors look for individuals who knowledge and skillsknow how to solve problems on their own, how to use the technology to its best advantage, and who can be relied upon to "make it work."
Excuses for not getting the job done right and on time are generally viewed as an admission of failure. Keep in mind that TV is a competitive business and employers know they can rather easily replace people who don't meet their expectations.

4. Creativity Although we've been trying to define this for centuries, it involves so-called thinking "outside the box," and looking at things in new ways and getting your audience to see and experience things from a fresh, engaging perspective.
The more thoroughly you understand the television medium the better chance you will have of using it in interesting, creative ways.

5. Willingness to sacrifice for your goals In highly competitive fields the supply of job applicants exceeds the number of job openings. For starting positions this means that employers may offer low starting salaries.
Those who stick it out and "pay their dues" can end up working in a field that is exciting and satisfying.  For many people, doing something they enjoy throughout their lives is more important than making more money in a job that they dread to face each morning.
For those whose honed skills are in demand, the financial rewards can eventually be very great.

But, if your main goal is to have a predictable, 9-to-5 job with optimum stability, the field of broadcast television will probably not be a good choice. There is much uncertainty in the field, and the hours you may have to put in can take a toll on a social life and marriage.
In doing documentary work you may be away from home for days or weeks at a time. In news, you may be called out on a story at any hour of the day or night. Some areas of news, such as being a foreign correspondent, can even be dangerous.

6. An aptitude for working with words and pictures Successful television writers, directors, and artists have an aptitude for images and an ability to visualize their ideas.
Although television is largely visual, it's still word-based. We have to be able to clearly communicate ideas to sponsors, cast, and crew in the form of proposals, scripts, and instructions. The ability to effectively write and communicate is directly related to success.

7. Reliability and an ability to meet deadlines If you can't be relied upon to get the job done within the assigned time, your chances of getting future assignments will rapidly diminishlifelong learning -- and eventually disappear.

8. Lifelong learning  If you assume that when you get out of school you will know all you need to for lifelong success, here's a news flash: That's not the way it works.

Although formal education is useful and it may enable you  to "get in the door," most students say that it's only when they come face-to-face with on-the-job experiences that they really start learning about their profession.

And, it doesn't even end there.

The electronic media change very rapidly. It's the people who keep up with developments as reported by newspapers and "the trades"video trade magazines (professional magazines and journals; see below) that are in the best position to take advantage of the latest developments.

Knowing how to make best use the latest computer technology can give you an important competitive advantage.

Successful news people, for example,  tend to be "news addicts" -- constantly reading about current events. If reading newspapers and newsmagazine and "being in the know" doesn't interest you, you should examine your interest in broadcast news.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Photography Careers

Photographers can expect competition for job openings. The interest in a photography career is so high that there are more professional photographers interested in positions as commercial and news photographers than the number of photography jobs available. Photography professionals who succeed in landing a salaried job or attracting enough work to earn a living by freelancing are likely to be very creative, able to easily adapt to rapidly changing technology, and adept at operating their own business.

 Related work experience, job-related training, or some unique talent or skill
— such as a background in electronics or computers
— is also beneficial to prospective photographers.

The employment opportunities for photographers is expected to increase about as fast as the average for all occupations through 2010. The demand for portrait photographers should increase as the population grows. Also, as the number of electronic versions of journals, magazines, and newspapers grows on the Internet, photographers will be needed to provide digital images for placement online.Employment growth of photographers will be constrained somewhat by the widespread use of digital photography.

 Though it increases photographers’ productivity, improvements in digital technology will allow individual consumers and businesses to produce, store, and access digital photographs on their own. Declines in the newspaper industry will reduce demand for photographers to provide still images for print. However, there will always be employment opportunities for photographers who are interested in taking photos in portrait studios for those interested in professional photography or out in the field for special occasions and events

.Career opportunities include:
* Photographer
* Photographic Lab Technician
* Digital Image Specialist
* Computer artists
* Commercial Photographer
* Portrait Photographer
* Medical PhotographerI

you are interested in becoming a professional photographer, it may be helpful to talk to other professional photographers and learn about their career backgrounds. They have already established themselves in the photography industry and taken the steps necessary to succeed in this competitive business, so they are likely to have some additional tips on how to establish your own career.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Some production hints, tips, and advice that I've picked up over the years (Expert's Advice)

Here is a list of some of the most important elements to keep in mind when making a short film. Following these guidelines will help you avoid the more common pitfalls. While these are only suggestions, they will almost certainly improve both your film and your filmmaking experience.

Make sure you have a story worth telling
Would you sit through the short film if someone else had made it? The answer for a surprising number of shorts is No. Ask yourself this question before you even start writing the script.

Don’t start production without a budget
Films, no matter how simple, cost money -- and money is always limited. By making sure you have a budget (a simple spreadsheet will do), you can decide in advance where you want to spend whatever money you have. Without a budget, you can almost guarantee that you will either spend more money than you plan, or end up without the finished film.

Get all clearances before shooting 
You need, need, NEED releases from actors, music/artwork contributors, and anyone else who produces content that appears in the film. Getting clearance signatures before the shoot is simple and takes you moments. After the shoot, it can be difficult to impossible. Don’t get caught, do it now.

Make the film shorter than you want 
Writer/directors always often leave things in the movie that the audience can really do without. It’s so painful to trim away things that were difficult to shoot. Make sure you do it. Your audience will thank you.
When using non-professional actors, cast with personality

I believe bad acting is so common in short films because people are asked to play characters that don’t resemble their personalities. A dirt-poor professional actor can portray the swagger and confidence of a billionaire – but most amateurs can’t. If your lead is an anal-retentive tightwad, don’t cast a slovenly slacker to play him.

Invest in good sound
Bad sound makes many short films (even ones with good stories) unbearable. There are no real replacements for a decent boom mike. Beg, buy, or borrow one and it will triple the chances your film will be watch-able.

Fix it now, not in post-production
Without Digital Domain or WETA working for you, most post-production fixes don’t look/sound very good and take A LOT of time. If you have a mistake in framing, dialogue, or anything else that can be fixed on the shoot, do it!

Don’t zoom in a shot
Don’t touch that zoom switch! A really good cameraman can make a zoom look OK. In almost all cases, though, using zooming is the hallmark of a sad effort. If you need to push in on a subject, use a dolly, camera glider, or a cut.

Know the indie/short film clichés
The most common clichés include using dream sequences, many dissolves/wipes, long credit sequences, or waking to a ringing alarm clock. There even seem to be a few websites devoted exclusively to citing indie/short film clichés. Know what the clichés are so you can make an intelligent choice on whether to use them or not.

Unless you’re shooting on film, avoid night exteriors
Darkness is the enemy of most camcorders. You’ll become acquainted with noise, color shifting, definition drop-out, and more if you choose to shoot at night without a medium size lighting package. It’s usually a lot easier to change the script than deal with all these problems.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Career as a Critic

Critics review and analyze artistic and literary works and live performances. They may communicate their opinions via radio, television, newspapers, magazines, websites or books.Also Known As: Dance Critic, Film Critic, Literary Critic, Music Critic, Theatre Critic

Critics may work for:
  • newspapers
  • magazines
  • alternative weeklies
  • radio stations
  • television stations
  • Internet services.
There are relatively few jobs in the field of arts criticism and competition for employment is keen. Major metropolitan newspapers and large circulation magazines hire a small number of critics as staff writers. They also may hire freelance critics to provide reviews and commentaries on specialized areas of the arts. Smaller newspapers and magazines usually employ freelance critics. 

  1. a strong interest in their field
  2. analytical and perceptive skillsstrong research and organizational skills
  3. flexibility in appreciating new techniques and styles in the artsobjectivity and fairness in reviewing productions at different levels (professional or amateur)
  4. the ability to communicate clearly, concisely, objectively and in a strong personal voice
  5. the ability to handle criticism from others and the confidence required to stand behind their opinionsthe ability to produce creative, entertaining pieces under the pressure of deadlines.
  6. They should enjoy finding innovative ways to express their views, stimulating public interest and discussion, and being recognized for their specialized knowledge, creativity and experience.

Staff writers may be expected to cover a wide range of arts events.Radio and television stations that have film, theatre and music reviews as part of their regular weekly programming may use staff reviewers or freelance critics for these weekly features. Freelance critics sell their articles and interviews to various print and broadcast media, and are paid for each article printed, aired or published online.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Know the Documentary Filmmaking

A work,such as a film or television program, presenting political, social, or historical subject matter in a factual and informative manner and often consisting of actual news films or interviews accompanied by narration. Or in simpler terms: A nonfiction story told through moving images and sound.
Elements of Classic Documentary

  • Events are not staged to create a sense of fictitious reality - reality is captured by the filmmaker
  • Subjects represented are real, not fictitious "characters" or "protagonists".
  • We are made aware of the camera, of the act of filmmaking in the documentary.
  • Attempts to explicitly argue a point of fact.
  • Argument made in the film is supported using visual evidence
Elements of Fiction Film
  • Obscuring the camera to create "natural"flow of story-creating a believable reality using various film techniques.
  • Film centers on the actions of a protagonist
  • Story is about protagonist's struggle to pursue desire.
  • Story takes place in linear, continuous time that is consistent connected to a fictional reality - you don't feel "disjointed" sense of time
  • A closed ending with absolute, irreversible change.

Docos: Essential Elements
  • Images: people, places, things, text, etc.
  • Sound: narration, voices, music, sound effects, background sounds.("nats").
  • Edits: The integration of images and sound.
You strike a balance based on what you wish to communicate:
  • Fast edits and loud music to convey action.
  • Disjointed images and unusual pacing.
  • Straightforward editing for a journalistic feel
The Documentary Team
  • Executive Producer
  • Producer
  • Researcher
  • Writer
  • Cameraperson
  • Editor
  • Talent
What We're Gonna Talk About
  • Story structure
  • Video technique
  • Scripting technique
  • Editing technique
Story Structure: 3 Parts
The Tease

  • Allows viewer to focus on what the film is about
  • Introduces one or more principal characters
  • Establishes setting/location critical to the story.
  • Presents a conflict/set up a problem/asks a question
  • Sets the tone for the film
  • Sucks in the audience - hopefully
The Body
  • The main plot; the meat of the story
  • Get to know the characters, what they're doing and why they're doing it.
  • See the action unfold
  • The body usually makes up 80 percentage of a documentary