A Dozen Career Tips for Aspiring DPs
At ProVideo Coalition, DP Art Adams has posted some good advice for young cinematographers. His article is a response to a thread on the Cinematography.net CML-chat list, for which anyone can sign up. These are all practical, realistic tips not about which HMI to use for a particular situation, but rather how to conduct yourself on a set and what to keep in mind for building a career from job to job. He's posted a dozen points; here's his first:
It is more important to be liked than to be competent. If people like you, you’ll have the chance to be competent. If people don’t like you, you won’t get those chances as easily. There’s a very big ASC DP who, when they started out, did work that made me cringe. Over time they got better and better, did bigger movies, and really polished their craft. I once asked someone what it was about this person that allowed them to essentially learn on the job. “They are the nicest person you will ever meet” is what I was told.
It's easy to think that the best way to build a career in film production is to simply be good at your chosen craft, but there are so many other things that factor in -- like memorizing everyone's name on set, and staying in touch after the shoot is over -- that I think Art's list is a valuable one to read. Thanks to Art for posting; feel free to check out the mailing list as well.