Unit 03: Professional Practice

LO1: Explore the creative media production professions, through research into historic and contemporary precedent

Historic Development of creative media production:

LO2: Discuss personal career goals in relation to the range of roles and subjects in the creative media production

Roles and Responsibilities

2 roles in the film industry I’m personally interested in-


  1. What are the personal qualities relevant to this job?

The personal qualities relevant to this job are to be first and foremost fast and well organised. As editing is generally poorly understood, and always comes near the end of the production process, time is usually working against the editor, and being fast is often the difference between getting a video out the door and getting a good video out the door. 

  1. What are the qualifications necessary for this job (if any!)?

 Employers usually value your technical skills and personal qualities, like patience and creativity, more than formal qualifications. It’s common to move into video editing in film or TV from an entry level role like a TV production runner.

Experience is highly valued and would give you a taste of what it is like to work in the industry. It could also help you to gain practical skills. Getting experience is also a great way to meet new people and make contacts who already work in the industry. Not all jobs are advertised, so your contacts could help you find longer term paid work later.

You could get experience from:

  • editing student or community film productions
  • working for an editing equipment hire company
  • creating and editing films for charitable organisations
  • work experience as a runner in an editing facilities company

A qualification is not essential, but it could help you gain practical skills, like using editing equipment and software. You could study towards a course in film, video or media production. The most useful courses include work placements and the chance to build contacts in the industry.

  1. List some colleges or courses that provide these qualifications

The North West Regional College is a local College in Derry which offers various Media courses of various levels which in the end will leave the student with the degree and qualifications to move into the industry and gain the experience needed to get into the industry. The courses offered include Media which covers all aspects of the Film Industry, Music which has some light video editing included to get started, Art which includes a short video brief, but Creative Media would be seen as the main qualification offered.

  1. What is the general career path to this job…the steps to follow?

There are multiple career paths into editing in the film industry such as freelancing and college. Starting with freelancing can be one of the most common and creatively ambitious. If you already do your own personal video work such as YouTube or already possess some video editing skills putting those skills to use in freelance to help grow your skills can help gain recognition and help get into the industry as well as staying independent and building a career.

The best way to learn to video edit it to do it which means getting your own footage and editing it for practice and developing projects and a portfolio to show clients. Learn from watching other people’s work such as movies, documentaries to learn skills such as storytelling, directing, lighting and audio which will give the experience along with practice needed to expand on your skills and build a portfolio to pitch to clients.

On the other hand, attending a Film or Editing course can help get into the industry by working with local film groups and studios which helps get out there and expand on skills as well as work with industry professionals and get contacts in the industry. This as well as paying close attention to the course and developing your own style can help with getting a job maybe as a runner and later move onto better roles and eventually editing.

  1. List some of the conditions of employment related to these jobs e.g. are

they full-time, permanent, part-time, contract-based, freelance, sick pay,

holiday pay, bonuses, etc.

Being in the creative industry, these jobs can be either temporary, full-time, permanent, part time, freelance and more depending on where you want to go or end up in terms of being independent and working for yourself with clients or if you want to work with production teams or studios with teams of people. Working freelance means you’ll be completely independent with your work, therefore all budgeting, purchasing of hardware, software and equipment will all be left to you while in the end more creative freedom is provided while financing and pay is all managed by you.

On the other hand, being under a studio or being contracted by various studios and production teams can promise a certain pay while also promising to provide sick pay and is more secure.

The most secure option would be full-time working for a studio with a group of editors and other full hires which leaves a lot less creative freedom but would promise the security of being paid as well as sick pay, holiday pay as well as bonuses and working with industry professionals who can help with directing and a vision of what the product will end up like and a final goal.

  1. What levels of pay do these jobs offer?

Editing Jobs in the industry usually vary depending on if the job is freelance or working for a studio. According to Indeed, video editors in the U.S make an average of $22.25 per hour of roughly $200 per day. This is a large sum of money but helps pay for the software, hardware and other equipment for editing and filming as a freelancer.

According to payscale.com the average salary yearly for a video editor in Derry is $17k-$35k. Taking on editing Jobs and opportunities in the US may net more in terms of payment due to editors and creative professionals being more in demand with Hollywood etc.

Being a freelance editor may also require working as a director, director of photography, camera, sound and all areas of film due to being independent 

  1. Where are these jobs most likely to be located e.g. in the Derry area?

Northern Ireland, Ireland, London, L.A.?

These Jobs would mostly be located at local news outlets such as the BBC, Nerve centre and local Bars, Restaurants etc looking for promotional videos. The Nerve Centre offers various opportunities of work and internships which can lead into jobs as they are the main film and Tv outlet in Derry taking on countless students and helping them make their way into the film industry, helping them meet industry professionals and more.

  1. Where would you find out about vacancies in your career choices?

You can find out about vacancies on Editing online through various websites such as Skillset which is the industry standard and body which supports skills and training for those in the UK creative Industries. It covers Film, TV, Games Design, Art, Animation, Photo editing, video editing and much more. Another few sites which offer information on vacancies is Indeed.com which uses your current location to provide job information on your selected roll and allow the user to apply for it either through the site or offer a means of contact. LinkedIn is a website which offers an online public CV to advertise yourself in a means which lets you constantly update and keep potential hires up to date on your profile including skills and experience. It easily allows you to advertise your skills, projects and more on video editing and advertises this to people and companies who may be looking to hire a video editor, letting them easily get in contact.


  1. What are the personal qualities relevant to this job?

Excelled Communication skills to be able to interact with others and plan the different stages of the film as well as keeping a good working atmosphere throughout the process. A strong sense of teamwork and leadership to be able to lead people throughout the process in an organised manner to help gather ideas, suggestions and incorporate them into the final piece. A creative flair and thinking to come up with a unique idea and vision. Initiative and problem-solving ability. The ability to work under pressure and stay calm as well as keep everyone else working well. Excellent time management skills such as making sure no time is wasted and the project is made as efficiently as possible and everyone is catered for. Attention to detail for every part of the project.

  1. What are the qualifications necessary for this job (if any!)?

There are no required qualifications for the job but it is important that the director has a strong will and is able to convince different individuals such as producers, financers and organizations such as public funding bodies, broadcasters and content distributors that you’re worth supporting and will deliver a well worth product at the end of high quality. 

University courses can be offered to help get a degree in directing which can help get into the industry as a degree can show you have experience in Directing combined with the work portfolio built up over the course.

Many Directors start helping on film sets and eventually work their way up from floor manager, assistant, runner to the possibility of eventually becoming a director after experience in camera work, screenwriting and other areas.

  1. List some colleges or courses that provide these qualifications

There are various universities local and afar which offer degrees and courses in film production such as North West Regional College, University of Ulster, Queens Belfast, Letterkenny Institute of Technology, Manchester University, Oxford University and more.

There are also various places which offer work experience in film and broadcast television which will provide a real-life insight into working on a set and seeing how various film and TV shows are made as well as produced.

Various Job Vacancies are found at:

Mandy.com, thecallsheet.co.uk, The Knowledge, grapevinejobs.com

Work experience provides the opportunity to network and build relationships and contacts within the industry and those looking to follow a career within the film industry.

Location filming also takes place across the UK regularly as Filmmakers and Film Productions often seek the assistance of local film agendas to help find local crew and locations. These can offer opportunities for paid or voluntary experience with film production. Some of these include:

Creative England, Creative Scotland, Northern Film + Media, Screen Yorkshire, Film London, Screen South.

  1. What is the general career path to this job…the steps to follow?

Self-employment is a common way to start as a freelancer on fixed-term contracts. The length of the projects will vary on the scale and size of each one. There is no fixed career path into directing and for career development or promotion + progression as in the end it relies on building a portfolio of work and a reputation in a certain format or genre which allows you to take advantage and seize opportunities when they arise.

Your career may develop based on creative interests and could develop from independent film to TV productions and more.

  1. List some of the conditions of employment related to these jobs e.g. are

they full-time, permanent, part-time, contract-based, freelance, sick pay,

holiday pay, bonuses, etc.

People looking to be employed as a director may end up not getting paid till much later on, having to work as an assistant director and gaining voluntary work as a runner on set to gain experience of the ins and outs of TV and film Production and understand the production process.

There are a lot of part time jobs offered in the Directing area especially for experienced directors as well as full time jobs being offered by various studios and production houses too. This job is well paid, and a successful movie can really help lead onto more and bigger films, tv shows, advertisements and help meet more in the industry.

  1. What levels of pay do these jobs offer?

As employment is usually freelance or self-employed, the pay can vary drastically as well as the fees, depending on the size of the project and the experience of the director. Because of this sporadic nature directors may want to take on similar jobs and roles in full time or part time employment such as teaching, lecturing or other industry roles like editing, production manager and more.

Looking at the National Careers Service website, a TV or film director with the irregular working hours of 39 to 41 and according to payscale.com, the average Film/TV Producer salary in the UK is around £36,281 with a bonus of £4,098.

  1. Where are these jobs most likely to be located e.g. in Derry area?

Northern Ireland, Ireland, London, L.A.?

Jobs in the film industry are most likely to be in America, India, Asian countries, with Hollywood being one of the biggest industries in the world.

Online content sources are also taking off massively so jobs can be anywhere films can be made and directed.

In Derry, Jobs can be offered by local Bars, Café’s, restaurants and businesses, such as the Metro, Guildhall, Derry City Council and more who are looking to create an advertisement video to promote their business and may be looking for someone to direct this advertisement. 

Another Option would be the Nerve Centre which offers opportunities for those young and old to get into the film industry by trying different roles they may be interested in and eventually let them meet industry professionals and let them gain insight and contacts in the industry.

The final option could be freelancing and offering services to clients who may look for a wedding video directed, filmed, edited and more, as well as with how the internet had grown, building your own online business and directing your own YouTube channel as well as building from that and using it as a potential future film portfolio to get into the industry.

  1. Where would you find out about vacancies in your career choices?

Directing jobs are rarely advertised so the best way to find them is freelancing and working on personal projects to build a reputation and get yourself out there as well as word of mouth through working relationships. They are usually hired by production companies to make films for the large and small screen, delivering them to film distributors, sales agents and broadcasters.

Independent production companies and producers usually develop projects without a director attached and only begin looking for one as soon as they start financing their project as the directors experience, reputation and artistic value which helps influence the film and satisfy the requirements of the individuals or organisations who are funding the project.

One thing director can do is research projects production companies are working on or developing ideas on in order to find a possible suitable job or opportunity to direct.

Attending various events and networking is important in order to meet contracts from production companies, broadcasters and scene agencies. This is important at any stage of the director’s career as well as being prepared to make direct approaches to production companies with evidence of your own short films and other works as well as a showreel and a CV detailing your skills, work and experience.

LO3: Define personal development plans; highlighting areas to support specific career goals and general skills

LO4: Critically reflect on the achievements of personal development goals and plan for the future

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