Internships can be an extremely good place to start.
Doug’s latest showreel:
I studied Media Production at Lincoln with a view to getting a creative job within the media industry. There are many ways of getting started but I write this from the angle of entering the industry via an internship.
After graduating I worked as a studio photographer in Lincoln, mainly dealing with family portraits and children’s photos, whilst I applied for entry level positions in London. I quickly realised that not having a London address meant that employers were less likely to consider me so my girlfriend and I upped sticks and moved to London with another couple (a good idea if you want to save cash) and I carried on working as a photographer in various London studios.
From jobs as runners to library assistants I applied for over 100 positions. Although it sounds bad, it’s not. As I’m sure lots of people have told and will keep telling you, there are many media graduates all trying to stand out from the crowd. My media degree and experience of working with kids caught the eye of Dale Evans, a broadcast recruitment agency, who put me forward for an internship at Turner Broadcasting.
I have now worked up to the level of producer which, in this sector, involves providing creative solutions to briefs then pitching, writing, directing and editing projects to sign off. You must be creative, organised, technically-minded and be willing to work hard with occasionally small budgets and to tight deadlines.
All of this together makes for an exciting, varied and sometimes random job. One day you might be directing a gnome jousting shoot and the next you could be helping to design a theme park ride.
Internships can be an extremely good place to start. It allows you to gain valuable experience working on projects, creatively or otherwise, whilst experiencing how a TV department operates. Typically, larger corporations offer internships and your job description/duties will be outlined in detail. If you learn to fulfil what is required of you efficiently and to a high standard, you can work on showing your worth to the company and peers more easily than other entry level positions.
Getting an internship is competitive and so whatever extra skills or experience that can go on your CV are vital and, if you know which sector you want to work in, concentrate on getting as much relevant experience as you can.
Keep an eye out for them, sign up to agencies and keep checking blogs like these!
Good luck. Doug Murchie, Lincoln 2005.