The Biggest Lie I Ever Told Myself

6325072032_c7a8baf6c6_oThe biggest lie I ever told myself was when I was in the third grade. I began to do poorly on test. I couldn’t understand why I wasn’t smart like the other kids. I figured they were born with knowing the answers. I remember telling myself at that young age, “I’m not smart.” My third grade teacher told my mom that I probably had trouble hearing. Because I believed the lie I told myself, I didn’t blame my ear, I blamed my brain.

 

I believed it all though out high school. I always made sure to do all my homework because I knew I wouldn’t do good on my test. I would just make a passing grade. I even made sure to be a good student so my teachers would feel sorry for me and pass me.

It’s when I started to read more, that I saw I was getting better at remembering things and communicating my thoughts with others. Reading books grew my confidence and knowledge. I realized as an adult, I was smart, I just needed to work out my muscle inside my head, my brain!

Now I see, if I want to learn something new, I need to go out, read about it, discuss it, research it, seek it, to prove the lie wrong.

Forever a Student

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We live in a great time where we don’t have to go to a room to be a student. We are the generation raised by the Internet, its up to us how we use it. I recently started looking on youtube key words, “start up business” or “photography lighting” to learn from professionals. I want to use the knowledge given freely to learn more about the skills I want to develop. I’ve probably watched every Steve Jobs interview out there.

Creative live.com is one great resources I discovered years ago. If you catch a live showing, the classes are free. They have workshops with professionals on all kinds of subjects. A course I’ve bought was from celebrity wedding photographer, Joe Buissink. Hearing how he developed his business and his photography style has been so helpful to me. There is no excuses when it comes to learning something new. I encourage you to find resources that can make you better at what you do and to keep on growing.

10 things I learned from Interning at The WB

When I was in college we were encouraged to find a place to intern. We we’re told this was our ticket in the door. My first interview for an internship felt more like a job interview which made me hope it would offer to pay me in the future. The new employee wanted me to start right away.

When I arrived at the place I was a little disappointed as the office building was old and run down. They say not to judge a book by its cover but I was judging this place, from the empty parking lot, to the smell of the hallways. I asked myself, “Is this where I want to work?”
When the employer was two hours late, I finally was let into their office space. He had me start on logo designs right away. During the day I over heard conversations of the owners marriage problems, and slow business issues. I went home with a dead end feeling, since I was working for free and the internship wasn’t what I expected. The second day I showed up, the owners was no where to be found. They told me where to get the key and to keep working on those logos. This internship was a dead end. I figured if the owners didn’t want to be there, neither do I. I left the office that night and wrote a note that I was thankful for the opportunity but it’s not going to work out.

1. Be honest with yourself. Allowing yourself to be honest will help you discover what you like by seeing what you don’t like.

2. Work for a place that you find interesting and values you as a person. Doing research before on the place and job will give you a better idea on what to expect.

3. Be a good listener to your surroundings. Are the people around you happy? Do those who work there enjoy their job?

4. If you have a feeling the internship isn’t what you want to do, say something sooner and respectfully. Be careful not to burn a bridge that you might cross in the future. Letting the place of business know you are leaving instead of just disappearing shows courage and respect.

When I told my college councilor the internship didn’t work out she pulled me aside. “This just came in the morning and I think you’ll like it but you have to get your information to me today.” When I looked at the letter head I saw the Warner Brothers logo. I ran to my desk and filled out the application. Later that week I got a call, the interview would be in Burbank.

At the interview I realized they were looking for a team mate who would fit in with them. She didn’t seem to care about what school I went to, she wanted to see how well I would fit in with the team. The team was full of laid back thirty something creatives that were extremely different from one another. Everyone seemed friendly and excited to be working there. If I got this internship I would be driving an hour everyday to work not to mention morning traffic.

When I learned I got the internship I was so excited and getting paid for my time there was a big plus. I couldn’t wait to start working as a graphic designer. It was there that I learned how much work goes into a career. I had no life for the next six month. I was either in the office helping everyone out or on the 101 freeway trying to get home. Overall, the experience working at Warner Brothers was amazing. I knew it was God’s favor on my life because getting a job at a big production place like Warner Brothers is nearly impossible. I was excited when they asked if I wanted to extend my internship five more months.

It was neat to eat lunch on the lot where the cast of ER would be walking around in their scrubs. I was able to watch episodes of their newest shows before the season even came out. I was assisting and helping the office by doing the small office task for them as well as have creative freedom to solve problems on my own.

The more I worked in graphics, the more I saw I really wanted to learn how to edit videos. I knew if I was offered a job, it would be hard to go to school for editing. This was before learning how to edit was so accessible. There was still so much I wanted to do before I settled down with a full time job.

When the creative director asked what I wanted to do after interning, I told her I was going back to school. They threw me a good bye party and said to give them a call when I was done with school. Having such a great internship experience made me thankful I was honest with myself about the first one I had.

5. Figure out your goals and where you want your career to go during the internship. This is the best time to discover what is it you really want to do, what field of specialty would you like to work in. What you enjoy most.

6. Try to be helpful with everyone in the office. Develop new skills that you can brag about on your resume or that can land you a job.

7. Don’t complain. Be grateful for whatever task they give you. The better the attitude the more responsibilities they will give you. I did a coffee run once, and enjoyed the walk to Starbucks.

8. Make a good impression on everyone you meet. Be sure to remember names and shake hands with those you are introduce to. Having confidences goes a long way.

9. If its a non paid internship, make sure you are getting your pay though experience. Make it worth your time and effort. What you put into it, that is what you will get out of it.

10. Act like you belong there, as if you are a full time employee. Take your internship seriously, take advantage of the opportunities it might bring. 

Interning at The WB at the start of my career let me know God had my career in His hands. He was leading me I never thought was possible. People doubted I could make a living off being creative, but I knew being creative is what I was born to do.

Cinematography with Gale Tattersall

I first discovered Creativelive when photographer Jeremy Cowart posted a link to an interview he did with Chase Jarvis. After I watched that interview I must have spent a few hours watching some of Creativelive’s workshops. I then became a devoted student.

I got an email announcing the news that Gale would be teaching a Cinematography workshop with the HD DSLR. The requirement was to send in a video. I for one hate bring on camera but I knew this was a chance in a life time.

My video was chosen and off  I was to Seattle to learn film making from House’s Director of Photography, Gale Tattersall.

Gale was one of the first people in Hollywood to use the HD DSLR for production filming. Word began to spread that these small cameras could produce high-end quality video.

Ending all excuses.

I enjoyed learning from Gale because he not only embraces new technology but has been working on films for years.

Here are some things I learned while in the workshop. You can buy the videos here if you like.

-“To make a great film you need three things – the script, the script and the script.” Alfred Hitchcock

-Use the right camera for the right situation

-The HD DSLR was first used on House to solve a problem: Great for filming in tight areas.

-Using more than one camera side by side to get the same performance but different framing.

-Use the depth to field & framing to better tell the story.

-Direct the eye. Control the depth to field, what you want the viewer to look at.

-Use lighting to tell the story, don’t over romanticize every shot. Sometimes things need to be ugly and uncomfortable. Good cinematography is invisible. Make it to follow the story.  It’s easy to take it in the wrong direction. Each scene can have a different “genera”.

-Do camera test. See which ISO works best with less grain. (160/320/1250). Camera test will save you time.

-Set white balance according to the lighting temperature.

-Separate your eye from your brain. See what is really there: color reflections, shadows, white balance degrees, lighting, background, etc.

-Know the rules before you break them.

-Talk with the director and writer so you have a clear vision of the project. The director is the captain. Get on his wave length.

-Play with the subconscious.

-Understand lighting, don’t make it noticeable. It’s all about what kinda film you are making. Use the particle lighting in the scene to light the scene: windows, lamps. Justify where the light is coming from. Direct the eye with lighting. Lighting gives attention. Darken the background and illuminate the subject.

-If film making is in your soul, don’t stop, keep on doing it.

-With the HD DLSR cameras you can “dream less and do more.”

photos by: Creativelive & Michael Kleven

Wow that was a lot.. and so much more. Here is a fun video we created in the workshop. When we were previewing the raw footage Gale complement my shot. 🙂 twice. (@:37/@:58)

 

Encounterfest Video

For  years I dreamt of attending Hillsong College in Australia. I wanted to devote myself to learning leadership skills, biblical principles, and to give my talent to encourage the church. While I was there I was able to create projects that thousands around the world have seen. I enjoy work that has a great purpose and that influences people to go after their dreams, potential and get connected to God.

The Encoutnerfest youth conference was the first time I not only edit projects for a conference, but looked over a team of editors as a producer.

1st Editor/Producer/Graphics