Take the following with a contradictory grain of salt.
I’m not really sure of the direction I want to take this post just yet. I guess I’ll just make it up as I go along. Doesn’t everybody?
This is advice. Purely personal advice from my findings in life so far, to do with the artistry/media industry. You may not like it, or agree with it, but that’s perfectly okay! It is what it is. This post is not targeted at any one group or organisation of people, it’s simply a resource I have decided to create for people to learn from. If you do learn anything from reading this. Then I’m a happy camper! I would love to know if you did benefit in some way, so please let me know 🙂
There’s a huge grey area (at least in my experience) between artists/creatives/creators and the latter. For those that are starting out, or have even been freelance/self employed in the art/media sector for a number of years or even a lifetime, you will probably know what I’m talking about when I describe this grey area (In fact I’m certain you will do).
By grey area, I mean, quite literally, people (generalising ferociously) don’t really ‘get’ or understand us artists/creatives. It’s grey because “people” (again, generalising horrendously), think being a creator is as simple as flicking some paint on a canvas, or clicking a shutter button and the work is done. But if you’re a creator yourself, or you know someone close to you that is, you will know that this is of course NOT the case. At least I hope it isn’t in which ever field of being a creative, you are in.
Some might say this is a ‘problem’. But I see it as something unique, which I wish to never let die. I actually like the separation (if you can call it that) from the ‘people’ (again, again, again. Generalising. There will be allot of this! Last apology. It’s difficult to get the point across without also coming across as an asshole, which is something I am not).
The idea of this brought me to thinking.. why does this even need to be a thing in life? Why does it exist still, even after all these years of artists and creators on this earth. Hundreds, if not thousands if not more! The answer I came to is, “Lack of knowledge in a field, will likely lead one to thinking lesser of a particular field of work”. Stupid I know. Because of course, I don’t know a thing about accountancy. Yet I still respect the profession greatly! Doesn’t always work when you flip the roles around though. Why is that?
I think it’s purely because us humans, are notoriously statistically driven. I think it’s just that. We like numbers, we like quantities and we like to know what, when and how we’ve done well, in an instant. Instant Gratification. Being an artist doesn’t give you that in the same way as let’s say; accountancy, mass-product distribution. I like to think of those as square professions, with defined edges and corners which you can turn to go ‘up in the ranks’. Whereas being an artist/creative you are forever chasing that dream but, instead of being a square path, it’s circular. It’s business. But it’s a totally different ball game within business. Not always, but sometimes. It might appear to non-artist/creatives that what the other does is easy work, or easy money.
WHY DO WE EVEN CARE? AND SHOULD WE EVEN CARE?
Because we do. Yes and no.
I can’t necessarily answer that for you. All I can do is give you my own personal advice, which is what I choose to follow. That is, be comfortable with yourself, what you do and what you stand for. To the point where you are able to stand up for your worth and being, and be proud! Don’t let anyone tell you any different. Be confident! In hindsight, I have fallen victim to not doing this many times in the past, but I am grateful to have learnt quickly and very early on in life that indeed, life IS too short to give two fucks about what other people think of you (with the exception of your close friends/family). Fuck em’.
I mean that in a way which doesn’t actively target those that don’t understand, no. I mean, you be you. And if anyone tries to question you on your worth, you tell them, and you stand your ground and be proud! By you don’t let it phase you, or question your judgement of others.
If you don’t care, this is probably a great deal of nonsense to you, but props to you for having one less stress in your life, and for making it this far!
Those thoughts spurred on a long and tedious thought process over a number of weeks, which lead me to think that this could be overcome, and I could possibly be the one to do that (or one of many). The idea struck, that creating some form of mass shared documentary content would help overcome this. (much like the “I’m Vlogging Here” Vlogumentary – by Corey Vidal & Shay Carl). Which got shared like wildfire and reached its funding budget well ahead of time via the Kickstarter Campaign.
But then I realised, I didn’t want to do that. At least not right now.
I would rather target and reach out to those who could benefit the most from addressing the situation. I have been able to overcome all the bad thoughts, so why can’t you? Which is why I am writing this blog post, and you’re reading this right now. I hope this has been of some help to you!
Lastly, I am interested to find out what YOU do, as an artist/creative. How do you overcome these things (if at all) Do you care? I’d love to find out!
Reel showcasing everything shot freelance from late 2012 to 2013!
All shot & Edited by Charlie Locke
Canon 5D Mark III – Canon 7D
Before I begin, I would just like to note that, this is a long blog post, and most if not all of the information within it, is highly subjective. Which therefore means you may not agree with, or necessarily think in the same way. It’s all personal preference and opinion!
So what do I mean by ‘Staying true to your Edit’?
Well.. Over the years I have spent behind the desk, editing various different projects. One thing has stuck regardless of the genre, shooting/editing style or anything like that. It’s on a much deeper level of keeping that wide perspective view of the whole Production as a whole. I say this because I myself have been subject to focussing on certain aspects of a project far too much, and in way too much detail. To the point of not actually being able to progress, or move on with the edit. This is something I think has developed over the years, and has only gotten worse as the production value has shot up considerably.
I believe the cause for such attitude and outlook over a project, is for caring ‘too’ much, believe it or not (Atleast for me anyway). You want every cut, every move and every aspect of your project to be spotless & squeaky clean. It’s something I was subject to just a few days ago (hence why I am writing this post), and I think it might be beneficial for some to hear my thoughts on how to get around this.
But first, let me explain a little more about what I actually mean by this. Just to put things into perspective for non-editor readers.
I’m going to call this ‘Too-mucheitous’.
Too-mucheitous – Is where you spend so much time (‘Too much time’), and effort on a very minute part of a project, refining it, fine tuning it, trying different things, switching things around, pushing the ‘boundaries‘ of the edit, all for making the final output ‘BETTER‘. As an editor, (regardless of project) your job is to control tempo, and mould the overall feel and flow of the cuts throughout the duration of what ever it is you are working on. Again, all subjective. In doing so, it can sometimes be easy to lose that firm grip on the project which you once had. Meaning, you almost lose the ability to tell what is ‘right’ and what is ‘wrong’. Of course nothing is right, or wrong. It’s all subjective, but on a technical level, (I have found) it to be easy to lose hold of the reassuring “Okay that’s GREAT, and no that bit is bad” feeling whilst working on something.
So.. the cure (as if this is some sort of disease)
Form a Schedule!
The way I am able to get around this, is simply to form a schedule. Not necessarily of my whole day, but my time spent Editing. For example.
9.00 – Align and sync first minute of timeline – 11.00
—Break— (Watch an Episode of Breaking Bad or something)
And so on…
So the plan basically revolves around the idea of not spending too much time on ‘one’ thing at any given time. Two hours, is long enough to be staring at the same screen for. Hell, that may even be too long for some! I know it’s enough for me. The moral; Engage and work on a segment, shake it off, grab a cuppa tea, then go back to work but start of pick up from where you left off on something else. This enables your brain to be thinking elsewhere than just one part in a project. It engages the crucial parts in your head, which run like background tasks on your computer. Segments/areas will appear more fresh and readily available to you if you simply spread out your workflow to multiple segments and stick to a rough planning schedule. Set aims/goals to get certain parts done within certain time frames.
Get your ass outside, and soak up the sun, the rain or whatever else mother nature can throw at you. I often find going for a walk, or taking the lovely Zigster out for a turn around the field sometimes helps with this, and keeping a positive attitude.
And yes, Editing ‘CAN’ be a soul destroying act to play on yourself, but atleast for me, the final output always overwhelms that leaps and bounds. Hugely gratifying once it’s all done and you can view your project as one piece. As a viewer, as opposed to the creator/tweaker.
Those are just a few things that help me, I would be interested to know how many other people are affected by Too-mucheitous.
Someone must find a TRUE cure! 😉
The title says it all. All it literally takes is a smile and you will go a long long way.
I was enjoying a gorgeous Rib-eye steak lunch this Sunday just gone, in the Priory park restaurant with mama and her partner. When a family sitting behind our table were trying to get a family portrait to celebrate the weather and atmospheric scenery I suppose! As always with family portraits, you take multiple shots using a few different people to include everyone in the pictures you take, but I asked the lady whether she minded if I took the picture!
She obliged, and that is exactly what I did.
Yes, all it took was a smile, and I was able to make a full family portrait for someone to enjoy. That’s a simple, yet awesome and effective feeling! It was brought to their attention (not by me) that I am actually a photographer, which resulted in me handing the mother one of my business cards. This felt great for me, gaining possible future business from just being kind and helpful!
I am proud to present, my 2012/13 Reel. It has been an utterly fantastic, yet exhausting year and a half. But I only imagine it will become more and more hectic, yet still enjoyable as time goes on. I wouldn’t be able to work as hard as I do, if I didn’t apply 100% of myself to the job. This is just what I ‘love’ to do!
I hope you enjoy!
Having started out in Digital photography, one of the first lens’ (Aside from the kit lens) I owned was the 50mm 1.8. This was, and still is commonly known as the ‘Nifty Fifty’ ‘Plastic Fantastic’.. These names are all well and good, but why has it accumulated those names after it?
I can only speak on behalf of Canon’s 50mm 1.8 as currently I haven’t used any other, but the build of the thing is quite poor. But it’s £80! You cannot expect L grade quality for that amount of money. For around the equivalent of $100 bucks, you get a tiny, lightweight, loud focussing hunk of plastic with some optics in the middle. Before you run away and cry, let me tell you this… I think EVERY beginner in photography should own this lens.
My first ever Digital SLR camera was the Canon Rebel Kiss x5, more commonly known as T3i / 600D. Most of you will know this is a 1.6 crop framed sensor body by Canon that uses the same sensor from the 7D! It can still produce some fantastic images given the skill and lens’ put in-front of it. However, being a crop frame sensor camera, it has some issues. Your 50mm lens is not going to give you the results of using a 50mm on a full frame sensor, meaning your 50mm is going to be equivalent to using an 80mm on full frame.
[Canon 600D, 50mm 1.8 | 25sec | f2.5 | ISO100]
The optics are sharp, very sharp in-fact! When stopped down to 2.2,2.5,2.8 this lens is on par with L glass quality. No Joke!
The reason I think this lens is absolutely compulsory, is because it takes away a number of contributing factors of using the kit lens that could simply complicate things when learning the fundamental and technical basics of digital photography. You don’t have to worry about zoom. Which means obviously no aperture changing at different focal lengths. You are no longer restricted by shooting in extreme low light due to that huge 1.8 aperture. You are stuck with using your FEET (imagine that) to compose your shot.
*Insert picture of person taking picture with feet*
Using this lens, and learning absolutely everything about it will in my opinion, make you a better photographer. It will teach you that discipline of actually using your feet instead of zooming. There are times when this is necessary, and times when not.
It’s fantastic! I no longer own it, as I have the 1.4 now.
This lens is not only good on crop sensor bodies, but also full frame! The first time I used a 50mm on a 5D Mark III, I was blown away. And most of all, inspired. I WANTED to shoot with this lens, it intrigued me. It’s fascinating, what results you can get with shooting with it. It increases creativity when composing the shot. It gets you on your feet and more involved with telling a story in your image.
Welcome to my blog! If you don’t already know who I am, let this be a brief introduction to you!
My name is Charlie Locke, I am currently living in the delightful Bedford, UK area (Note: sarcasm). Currently working freelance as Cinematographer, Director of Photography, Editor & Photographer. My first encounter with video making, was with stop motion Animation with BluTac/Clay figurines from the age of about 10! But more on that at a later date perhaps.
If you like what you see on my site, be sure to check me out under any of the social media links on the bottom left of the page! Expect to see lots more work popping up on the site soon. Along with updates and tutorials along the way!
That’s all for now, so I will leave you with a rather cute image I took of my beautiful golden retriever, Ziggy!