Your Work Experience Experience: Gemma Hirst, ITV Tyne Tees – Day 3

13120751_10154782571584746_1905606792_oRemember Gemma Hirst?  Writer & Culture Editor for young writing start-up Kettle Mag, and final year on the University of Sunderland’s Journalism BA.

Last Friday, Gemma finished her three-day work experience with ITV Tyne Tees.

Here at 99% Perspiration, we want to make sure that you make the most out of your work experience placement, so we’ve asked a few key bloggers to document their “work experience experience”, and share it with us; the good, the bad, and the ugly.

From her third day with ITV Tyne Tees, Gemma learned some important lessons – when stories fall through, and you don’t quite manage to get what you hoped for, what do you do?  And how much can you prepare for every eventuality?

Continue reading “Your Work Experience Experience: Gemma Hirst, ITV Tyne Tees – Day 3”

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Your Work Experience Experience: Gemma Hirst, ITV Tyne Tees – Day 2

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Before day 2 at ITV, Gemma sent this photo & said “it’s an orange blazer day today” 

Here at 99% Perspiration, we want to make sure that you make the most out of your work experience placement, so we’ve asked a few key bloggers to document their “work experience experience”, and share it with us; the good, the bad, and the ugly.

Emerging journalist & writer Gemma Hirst is currently Culture Editor with Kettle Mag & final year Journalism BA student, but yesterday she shared her day 2 vlog post with us – about her work experience with ITV Tyne Tees.

Gemma shares her experience of video production, under the wing of Tom Sheldrick; what was it like shadowing a new skill at ITV?

Continue reading “Your Work Experience Experience: Gemma Hirst, ITV Tyne Tees – Day 2”

Your Work Experience Experience: Gemma Hirst, ITV Tyne Tees – Day 1

13120751_10154782571584746_1905606792_o.jpgHello, Creatives!  On her commute home from her first day with ITV Tyne Tees, emerging journalist Gemma Hirst sent us this photo…

Who wouldn’t be excited with a pass to ITV’s building, right?

Let’s back up a bit.  Here at 99% Perspiration, we want to make sure that you make the most out of your work experience placement, so we’ve asked a few key bloggers to document their “work experience experience”, and share it with us; the good, the bad, and the ugly.

Continue reading “Your Work Experience Experience: Gemma Hirst, ITV Tyne Tees – Day 1”

Your Work Experience Experience: Gemma Hirst, ITV Tyne Tees

12711148_10154548050454746_2161477098461425046_oHello, Creatives!  In their 2015 survey, the UK Creative Media Workforce Survey revealed that 77 per cent had done unpaid work experience – which is a staggeringly high number.

Here at 99% Perspiration, we want to make sure that you make the most out of your work experience placement, so we’ve asked a few key bloggers to document their “work experience experience”, and share it with us; the good, the bad, and the ugly.

(Also, see Tim John’s article on tips for how to make the most of, and not screw up, your work experience placement.)

This coming Wednesday, Gemma begins her three-day work experience with ITV Tyne Tees.  Not only will Gemma be shadowing members of their news team; writers, bulletin readers, editors…  She’ll be getting hands-on experience, helping film & edit ITV’s journalistic content.

Currently the Culture Editor for young writing start-up Kettle Mag, amongst writing for many online publications, Gemma is in her final year at the University of Sunderland’s Journalism BA.

Vlog one; Gemma explains how she snagged work experience with ITV’s journalism team, explains her passion for journalism, and enthuses about what lies ahead at ITV.

To find out more about Gemma Hirst, you can check out her blog, and check back with 99% for Gemma’s next vlogs.

Want to share your work experience opportunities with us?  We’re keen to share your stories; get in touch via our Twitter, @99Podcast.

nyf-gold-award-jay-sykes-circle-crop1And, as always,
Stay productive, stay awesome!

Jay Sykes
Executive Producer, 99% Perspiration

99% Extra – Mike Duddy

Mike Duddy is a freelance Sound Recordist / Post Sound Mixer / Audio Engineer, based in the North East of the UK.  His recent projects include working on ITV’s Beowulf, the BBC’s Dumping Ground, and on various feature films.

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Mike taught two sessions with our first year radio production students yesterday (where I lecture on audio production & journalism) on how to use boom poles effectively, and what to expect from a career in sound recording.

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So, the essentials.  “Being a boom operator is all about creative problem solving.”  Mike explained the art of being as discreet as possible whilst carrying out the role on set, whilst seeking the best quality audio possible.

“A little difference in space makes a big difference in sound, so you have to get as close to the dialogue as possible, without getting the boom in frame.”  They’re the very basic principles, of course, but the more you research and the more you practice, the more skilled you can become.  Down to memorising the spacial qualities of each lens being used.  That way, “if you hear a crew member shout out for a specific lens change, you’ll know instinctively how close you need to be.”

Mike asked the class what qualities they thought were essential to boom operation.  Second suggestion in both groups; being tall.  “Being tall is helpful, of course, but it’s not essential.”  What’s more essential to the profession is patience, steadiness, an ability to pick up scripts and sequences, and most of all, top-notch stamina.

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“You’re always chasing the best “polar pattern” (each different kind of microphone picks up a different shape of sounds around it).  It depends on the actors, of course; Hollywood types are professional at repeating movements and delivery in the same way with each take.”  But that’s not always the case, and a lot of the time he’s just acting on instinct to best capture the dialogue.

It must be a difficult task, to predict the movement of actors, but I was even more surprised when Mike revealed how he achieves this:  “I’ve learned to read neck muscles, they’re usually the first sign that someone is turning their head.”

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We’ve chatted about some of the fundamentals of recording sound, but what about the business end?  Some students asked Mike about how easy it is to pursue a sound career in the screen industries.

“Broadcasting companies like ITV and the BBC take on very few staff across their TV projects, and mostly use freelancers.  It’s standard to get on board with a fixed term contract, for instance my work on Beowulf was a 27 week contract.”

His advice mirrors Joanna Makepeace‘s recommendations in the latest episode of the 99% Perspiration podcast; “It’s mostly ad-hoc work – you’ve got to email producers, email line producers.  You’ll often get work from knowing people, knowing sound mixers, knowing boom operators, knowing film crews; so get out there and meet people.”

“It is quite a competitive industry.  There’s a lot of jobs, but a lot of people.  Stay professional, keep emailing.  Don’t pass up opportunities to meet people, to do work experience.”

“A lot of people say they’re keen to get into the industry, but many of them don’t get out there, aren’t proactive.  You’ve just got to do better than the guy next to you.”

“I watch a lot of TV shows, and you can get names from the credits and shoot them an email.  And then put yourself forward for shadowing, ask if there are any opportunities going…”

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And finally, one of our students asked the all-important question of how much you can make from a sound design career working in TV.

“You can get up to about £300 a day working with TV crews as a boom operator.  Which is better than a lot of professions!”

“And there’s a lot of work in commercials as well – there’s massive companies who spend millions on 30 seconds, so that’s great to get into; not just for sound, but for other industries too.”

If you want to find out more about Mike Duddy, and what it’s like to have a career in sound recording, make sure you check out his website.