The following is a guest post by Wooshii member Matt Milloy, a freelance video maker working for his own company Django and other larger agencies in the UK corporate and online video sector. Matt worked for broadcast and corporate companies in the last 7 years including the BBC, Discovery, and large London corporate video companies producing films from Afghanistan and Nepal to the beaches of Thailand. Matt would like to make more films for small companies. He previously wrote on the Wooshii blog about considerations before freelancing into success.
Try to master your skills, avoid being a ‘jack of all trades’. If you are serious about making it in freelance video production, play to your strengths.
When you are selling your expertise to clients, they will want to see a portfolio work that relates to the service you are going to provide them. Most companies don’t want to ‘take a punt’ with their meagre marketing budget on someone who has can just make video. Take time to build your contacts and work in areas that you can excel in.
If you are brilliant at three point lighting, can secure awesome sound or animate the socks off a motion graphics project, try to favour these areas to provide you with a bedrock of material to work from. It may feel a little limiting at first, but in the long run, a solid, reliable reputation of delivering to a brief – on time, on budget and expertly executed is worth it’s weight in gold.
This doesn’t mean you can’t develop though and move in other directions. In todays mobile, ever changing world of media production, there will always be opportunities to change your focus.
A prime example of this is the now extremely well known DP and video guru Philip Bloom. Philip was a current affairs cameraman for many years (he worked with one of our producers at the BBC) but after becoming an established, respected cameraman Philip pushed himself into the developing world of specialist cinematography, gaining an incredible reputation for his work on DSLR cameras in the process.
Find out what your good at (I love meeting small business owners – and devising a video that works for them) then excel in that field, before taking on the next challenge. A cameraman at the BBC once said to me – ‘You’re only as good as you last job’, and he’s right.