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The Freelance Route

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bruno silva
The Freelance Route
on Jan 13, 2009 at 3:30:06 pm

Hello, I am an assistant editor working in a small post facility. I've been leaning toward going the freelance route of editing. What advice would you guys give me as far as getting started? I have no reel, i dont know after effects or photophop, but I have a Macbook Pro and FC Studio 1


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Mark Suszko
Re: The Freelance Route
on Jan 13, 2009 at 5:45:28 pm

Based on that small bit of info, I'd say you are not at all ready to freelance, and should stay put on the job and build skills. Some shops have policies allowing their staff to use company equipment for personal development/enrichment, as long as it doesn't interefe or compete. I had a boss who understood that the things you learn in "playing around" on private whimsies on your own time can be applied to the Monday thru Friday 9-5 clients, so he said I could goof around in the suites all I wanted, on my own time, within a framework of rules, nothing for money, and he wanted to see whatever I came up with.

You might ask your boss sometime about such a setup, where you come in on your own time and work out some tutorial exercises to sharpen and expand your skills. Start with projects that have an obvious application to your for-pay work, branch out from there.

Then try to do more development at home. Buy used books and training DVD's off the net and bone up. I often suggest people find a charity or cause they believe in and do pro-bono work for them as one way to build a reel and make contacts. Take you time with these projects and perfect them to a high degree, using whatever resources you can scrounge up.

During the day, try to find a good time to ask the head editor to show you things when clients are not around, or, if you get a chance, sit in silently and watch the head editor work, ask him or her questions later on break. After every completed scutwork project, ask: "Hey, got those dubs done and shipped, when you have some spare time, could you show me how you do (xyz)?"

Baby steps, and they are mostly free or low-cost. Work your way up. The owners will supprot your development more if they get a good sense that you're going to apply the new skills to their work and not just use them and skip out to hang up a competing shingle. So balance is important.


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grinner hester
Re: The Freelance Route
on Jan 13, 2009 at 8:57:45 pm

Learn After Effects, Photoshop and master FCP. Staff until you feel you have peaked. I cannot stress this enough. If you try to freelance before you are ready, it's called unemployment.
When you go freelance, learn Avid's interface and you'll increase your marketability.
Either way, you will have to know AE and photoshop to be marketable as a freelance editor.



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Marc Villarin
Re: The Freelance Route
on Jan 15, 2009 at 6:40:51 am

Freelance is a big step. When deciding to freelance, you have to ask yourself. Are there many people(clients prehaps) you work with ask if your available to do freelance work, outside the company.

I used to be an inhouse editor , for an events company several years ago. When left the company all I had is my knowledge with photoshop and Final cut 5. I took a gamble going freelance, and sadly I got only two projects for my 1 and half year being freelance. I think the reason is most companies are affraid to gamble with new editors, especially with low profile and limited skill sets.

Lucky I was offered to do an inhouse position in a small prod company, and there I build up my skill set and network. After leaving the company, I was able to work fairly in freelance. Since I also built my network, people who I work with keep calling in.

There are still times that I get stuck with no work for a few weeks even months,but now it not as difficult as it was before.

One thing you have to understand is that your not the only freelance in the industry, there are many us, too many to compete with. You have to show the companies that you have something that seperates you from the rest.

Most freelance are also able to get enough work because that have based companies. Companies that would call them whenever a project comes.

So there build up your skill sets, and your network. Let the industry know that your worth the money they are paying you.



http://www.youtube.com/user/marcdanielvillarin

Look on the Bright Side...


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Scott Cumbo
Re: The Freelance Route
on Jan 16, 2009 at 12:41:24 am

Don't even consider going freelance until you have at least 2 or 3 clients that will book you on a reagular basis.

are there no chance of editing at the post house you already work for? how long have you been an assistant?

Scott Cumbo
Editor
Broadway Video, NYC


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bruno silva
Re: The Freelance Route
on Jan 19, 2009 at 9:14:48 pm

I do some editing here at the studio, yes, but i also work at home on personal porjects just to keep learning. Also, I'm getting lessons in photoshop from my sister in law whose a graphx designer. But i will def get my skills up before making a move.


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John Grote, Jr.
Re: The Freelance Route
on Feb 4, 2009 at 2:02:00 am

Bruno,

Forgive me, but what would you be doing as a freelancer? Do you realize how many knowledgeable freelancers are out there? No offense, but this is becoming a growing problem in the industry and has been for a while, people who aren't that experienced going out and falling on there face and making the rest of us who do know what we are doing look bad.

Do you not see a majority of the postings that ask for those two applications, besides either AVID or Final Cut Pro experience?


Stay at the place where you are and hone your skills, learn Photoshop and After Effects. What what and how the other editors in your shop work and interact with clients.

Cheers,

John



J. Grote, Jr.


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