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November 26, 2008 at 10:23 PM #42950dosericParticipant
Hey everybody, just discovered the website. I’m Eric
I consider myself as a digital artist and do a lot ot media (graphic, photo and video). I have more than 5 years and I have directed 5 music videos…I just got in Chicago to actually study my passion and earn a degree since there is no school for that in my country (Benin, Western Africa). I hold a degree in communication and advertising but that was just too much theory…
Here is the fact:
I use to work as digital media technician in the creative department of an advertising/production agency back home. I did a lot of designs for print, motion graphics and editing and photography. I was really proud back then since i had access to equipment and studio.
Here I am now, and is struggling to pay my studies. I have decided to buy either a semipro camera and a camcorder and other accessories. but I can only buy one thing at a time.
I know there is a lot of people here who do both Photo & Video. I would like to know which market will help me make enough money to buy the rest of the equipment.
I also would like to know if I SD is still around in the US video production because in Africa or rather in my country it is really rare and considered a luxury. I already own what i think is a good computer to do some work and is setting up my website.
All support will be much appreciated (www.sericdossou.com)
November 26, 2008 at 11:34 PM #179916EarlCMember
The only area I feel comfortable responding, or have any concept of the right answer, is what to go with first. I believe, especially in the market area you will be operating, that photography would prove your best “quickstart” in both acquiring business, marketing your services and experiencing solid initial growth.
You might discover that video is subject to a different level of expectation, actually requiring more up front investment in order to establish yourself as a valid go to business. Both service areas are thoroughly saturated IMHO in many of the larger metropolitan areas and surrounding areas, but of the two I would go with photography as a first line of attack.
Stay with us. Welcome aboard. Check out some of the other sites: http://www.dvprofessionals.com; http://www.weva.com; http://www.videouniversity.com; and http://www.wedvidpro.com. Some of these are jampacked with self professed primadonnas but there’s still good stuff to be found in the archives and occasionally on a hot new thread. Also, there are some other sites I cannot remember the names, but are mentioned here and there on these sites.
January 5, 2009 at 5:34 PM #179917composite1Member
EarlC’s right about going into photograpy first. As a fledgling freelancer, you’ll be able to make more contacts with potential clients wanting photography services in the onset. You’ll still incur some expenditures because you’ll need a pro camera rig (or one that looks it!) and a reasonable amount of support gear (lights, backdrops, etc.) You’ll also have to keep everything portable because the majority of potential gigs will be on location (i.e. weddings and other events.) Doing these gigs will build your reputation and crediblity as a professional among your clients and peers. Also, photography will put you in contact withpotential clients who will be interested in video production services. Clients like someone with a good rep and work they can see.
The bad news; Initially, you will have to work on a ‘peer to peer’ basis to build your intial client base. That means friends, family and acquaintences. The drawback is; you’re not going to make much money because people who ‘know you personally’ will have an expectation of ‘getting hooked up’ (i.e. paying nothing or little.) They will not understand your pricing covers equipment usage, materials and overhead. You will also run into problems with payment for services rendered as many will figure ‘since they know you’ you’ll let them ‘slide’. With that in mind, maintain a professional demeanor (don’t flip out) and you will find among your ‘problem customers’ you have some ‘gems’. These are the ones you’ll establish a good relationship with and they will help bring you new business.
Now, you’ll run into the exact same problems on the video side but worse because video production is expensive. If I had a$100 for every new client I’ve seen with the HOLY$%%^&! look on their face when they find out how much it actually costs to make a professionally done video, I could bail out the auto industry! As a new freelancer without a name or reputation, you are going to have to do some ‘freebies’ and price your work well below the average. Unfortunately, you’ll have to work much harder to produce credible looking work as your build your clientele and rep. The good news; as your rep grows you can charge more.
Oh, and standard definition video is going to be around for a while more. I still see ads for freelancers with SD Camera packages for major networks and so on.
January 5, 2009 at 5:37 PM #179918D0nParticipant
no need to choose photo or video…both is where the future is at.
January 5, 2009 at 6:55 PM #179919EarlCMember
generally speaking, all the above overpriced, oversold and not realistic two-way tools without significant heavy investment in accessories.
January 6, 2009 at 5:27 PM #179920composite1Member
Yeah, I concur with EarlC on the 2 format rigs. Though my outfit is seriously looking at the Canon 5DmkII, the main issue is; support gear. There is little or no supportgearfor the new tech at the moment. Panning for a photo on a photo tripod is one thing, doing it with a video camera is another! Also, what about sound? As is, those rigs may have mic plug-ins but odds are good you’ll need asecondary audio recorder.
The main issue for someone in your position (little or no cash) is ‘money’. Anything by RED will make you a candidate for debtor’s prison! Canon and Nikon are more affordable, but you’ll have some kinks to work out like what are you going to edit the footage with? Yeah, there is support with quicktime, but what other programs are available to you that will support the video format? And, you still have support gear issues; how much will batteries, media cards, sync cords, etc. cost? Recording images and video to UDMA Cards is great, but you’re going to have to cough up $125 minimum per card and the more Gigs it has, the more it will cost.
January 21, 2009 at 10:26 AM #179921AnonymousInactive
For a good publishing site, check out http://www.entertane.com
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