A Short Guide on Succeeding in Film School
Are you a struggling first-year student in a film school? Well, congratulations on getting in, but here is where the real work starts. Seeing as you are devoted to pursuing a career in this industry, you will need to be extremely proactive and take the first steps to make the most out of your time in film school.
Attending lectures, reading up on theory books, and analyzing case studies are not the only things you can do in film school. Here in this short guide are ways you can develop the basic competencies you are given through education while meeting people from the industry.
Begin Filming as Soon as Possible
Film school classes are usually composed in such a way that the students do not get the chance to film anything until the second year is in full gear. This can be quite surprising to a lot of students because they come in expecting to create films and shoot footage, but instead, all they get is tons of reading assignments.
Nonetheless, you must remember that nobody explicitly forbids you from filming. So, do not wait and take the first step right now. Join up with your buddies from the course and shoot some footage. It probably will not be any good, but at least you will be able to experiment with what works and what does not before your next years in the school.
Become a Volunteer on Sets
Another great way to develop relevant competencies is to participate in the work on the set. See if your school needs some crew members for help with production, or you could try searching up some job ads for a similar type of help on professional sets. This experience will be invaluable because nothing beats practical knowledge.
You can read as many books as you want, but nothing will prepare you better for the real-world sets than being a crew member and helping out in production. You basically get the first row tickets to a filming workshop. Still, the task of closely watching the work that is happening around you is on you, so, how much knowledge you will retrieve from doing this is completely in your hands.
Rent out Some Professional Gear for Your Projects
One of the main obstacles before film students is the absence of professional gear. Almost all students just love to dream about top-level equipment, but in actuality, only a small portion of students can afford to buy such things. However, if you were not as lucky and did not get born into a family of millionaires, then not everything is lost to you.
In the US, there are a lot of services that provide filming equipment renting services. So, just like you do not need to be a millionaire to “pay someone to write my paper,” the same goes for renting filming gear. Of course, you will have to be extremely collected and organized in shooting the footage but getting your hands on some professional gear early on can really just change around the way you approach filming.
Befriend Your Potential Cast
In film school, you will need to be sociable outside of talking to your course mates. There will be film assignments from the school itself inevitably, and you will have to choose your cast from the actor students at your school. So, it is best if you get on good terms with them and create friendly connections early on.
You will not only create better conditions for yourself in the coming years, but you will also get to meet some awesome and quirky people, as well as attend more parties. Additionally, your actor friends will gladly guide you with your own personal projects.
Do Not Overthink Everything – Concentrate on Creating
A pretty significant part of your film education will be spent drilling the topics of film theory and its history as an art form. Although doing this is incredibly important, studying theory may plant in your unrealistic expectations from the industry.
You might lose yourself to the endless discussions on various film theory concepts and how you should film something without really doing any actual film shooting.
This can be very paralyzing and completely annihilate your motivation to create some films by tricking you into thinking that if you do not plan out every little thing perfectly, then you cannot move onto film making.
Stop this train of thought, gather some friends, and create some shorts! You can talk endlessly about how much you know about films, but it will mean absolutely nothing is you do not have any footage to back your claims up.
Enjoy Being a Film Student
Although doing the things we have mentioned in the guide may sound intimidating at first, but they are really an integral part of studying at a film school. So, do not miss out on creating some amazing relationships and shooting cool footage.
A Short Guide on Succeeding in Film School
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