Every year Esher College Media and Photography department hold their very own Oscars to celebrate second year students work. As Media Technician, my role it was my responsibility to come up with the Intros, Nominations are…, Winner is… and make sure everything technical went smoothly on the night. It was a stressful month or two leading up to the event, in which I produced over 50 videos and held a couple of rehearsals but it was worth it because the actual night went smoothly apart from a couple of minor hiccups, which were bound to happen it being my first time. Afterwards, we had an after party in a bar by the river in Hampton Court and it was good to relax and talk to the students and teachers.
I’m looking forward to doing my second Oscars in 2018 as this time I’ll know what to export and hopefully there won’t be so much to do because I will have prepared most of the content and will only have to adapt it to make relevant for this year. Although the pressure is quite stressful once the show begins because if something goes wrong, it’s most likely on me but the adrenalin and satisfaction you get afterwards makes it worth it.
In the last term of my 1st school year working at the college, I put on a 2 part mini course of filming and editing a multi camera project. I managed to get 6 students to attend the course, which at the end I gave them a certificate as proof of completion. The idea being it was something they could put on their cv and help them on their university application. It was a really proud moment when an article about the course featured in an Esher College newsletter.
Inspired by how well my first set of workshops went, I put on additional workshops during my second year. I put on a week After Effects workshop every Thursday for four weeks and at the end the students and I agreed we would carry on doing more every other Thursday. The workshops have given me a good excuse to refresh myself on what I learned during the After Effects course Esher College paid for me to take as part of further development. It’s also given me an excuse to keep using the software on a frequent basis, which is important to make the knowledge second hand. Aside from the stuff already learned in the course I attended, I’ve asked students what they want to learn to tailor the experience towards them. This way I’ve taught myself how to do several visual effects including: Teleportation, Screen Replacement and Sky Replacement.
There’s always been one element of video editing that I’ve always struggled with because I’m colour-blind and that is Colour Grading but as it’s been one of the most common questions I get asked by students, I finally managed to crack it and I now feel confident. With my new-found skills acquired, it’s been my most popular workshop I’ve done and students have filled up my timetable with either 1 to 1 or workshops in pairs. I’m now confident enough to take up the responsibility to grade Extra Time, which the majority will be sky replacement.
Up until my job as Media Technician at Esher College, I had not lasted in a full-time role for more than four months. I was beginning to worry whether due to my Chronic Fatigue or Asperger’s Syndrome if I was able to stick at a job and keep up with the pace of a proper job. My previous jobs, were either a seasonal role, the role wasn’t right for me or required me to travel the other side of London with heavy equipment every day during rush hour. That’s why when I reached a year in the job in September, it was a very proud moment. It showed that once I found a job in the field I love, with the right environment, distance from home, I would be able to do the job.
Some of the perks of the job is I get to go on trips such and get paid for doing so. In 2017, I went to see Blade Runner and film students on an military assault course. With the footage of the military assault course, I put it in a shared folder for students to access and edit their own promo video for the assault course following a short brief I had written. Their teachers worked it into part of their editing exercises. It was a great way to test the students skills of structuring a video, telling a story, pacing, cutting to music and learning how to use video to sell a product.
My plan for 2018 regarding work is to definitely finish the rest of the school year at Esher College, especially to get a chance of improving upon the Oscars and because the working environment will be very hard to leave. Going forward, if I was to stay at Esher College, I will feel I need some extra work load to feel like I’m making a step up. There is a potential for me to run my own Complimentary Studies classes where I would get paid teaching wages instead of technician for the hours I teach. Otherwise, I’ve heard that ITV get teachers in to teach specialised areas and as it will be in Central London, this will likely to be a significant pay increase. I need to find out whether it would be part time or full time. If part time, there might be a chance I could do it on top of my current work.
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