Archive for December, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Are you a specialist or a generalist?

I’m a firm believer that today’s shooters must possess a wide range of skills. In most markets the resident shooter must also edit, compress for the web, prepare DVDs, and de-noise sound tracks. Today the expectation is that every shooter is proficient in Photoshop, After Effects, and one of the major NLE platforms, like Final Cut Pro.

Students today who are likely to find ready employment after graduation should be able to handle anything that might arise on a modern production, by that I mean, he or she must be able to confidently troubleshoot a range of issues beyond the immediate camera and recording media. Such a person – a problem-solver – will always be valuable and in demand, and so it’s just smart for film and video instructors to adequately prepare their students for this troubleshooter role.

In most markets the era of specialization ended with the advent of DV in 1995, although, admittedly, we still need well-groomed technicians in technologies like 3D. For most folks the setup of a 3ality rig with two Reds converging on a mirror is a process fraught with peril. So yes, a specialist with specific 3D camera setup skills is currently very much in demand. Considering the market as a whole, however, most productions benefit most from a generalist, that man or woman versatile enough to assume a wide range of responsibilities from script to screen.