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Thread: Lay of the Videographer's Land

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2010

    Default Lay of the Videographer's Land

    The title says it all - lay of the land of the 'industry' (whatever that means.) In a sense, I'm trying to get a scope of the range of possibilities and work that are available to the guy with the video camera - both far and wide.

    So for instance "corporate" and "event" videography seem rather vague - and implies it's like a big tree to me - sprouting several niche branches of speciality. I might be wrong. I gather that wedding videography is a huge one, but there are surely other options, paths or lines of work that hardly get a mention, but are just as viable, if not common place?

    Let's list and explore them here.

    (P.S. I wasn't sure where to post this. Maybe under a section called careers-advice? :P)
    Last edited by Spiral Dementia; 02-25-2011 at 04:05 PM.

  2. Default

    Hi there.
    For a start there are so many areas to work in video, I'll outline in broad detail three way that I think most people get into working in the video 'industry'. These are not scientific designations and the lines between are very blurry, but here goes.

    My first is the 'true' video industry populated by those who are formally trained, time-served and accredited by recognised industry organisations. They work to standards in a proper career structure and produce film tv and high-end corporate media.That industry is notoriously difficult to get into without certification/qualifications and/or having connections.
    Another is the self-proclaimed industry populated by those with some understanding and command of areas of media. They generally come straight from film/art school or have worked in the 'industry' and leave or retire and are either unable to obtain a suitable position, or are confident and resourceful enough to plough their own way, often starting with bands, drama groups or the ubiquitous weddings. This is not really an industry rather an amorphous collection of businesses working to their own self-defined standards, so in effect no standards. They will use equipment of their own choice selected by their own preference and affordability. They mostly obtain the 'holy grail' of the unregulated business - corporate - by dint of hard work, niche marketing/promotion, networking or sometimes sheer luck.
    The third way in is just do it. These are people who extend and develop their enthusiasm for video, be it the creativity or the technology and often a mixture of both. They are inspired by their own achievements, the encouragement and support of family or friends and the payment and satisfaction they get for work done. They often get into it as a hobby or a 'second career'. Their business development is usually a matter of serendipity - being in the right place at the right time.

    The problem for the outsider or someone looking to get in to the 'industry' is that most people will know and recognise the first sector as being an industry, but everyone else is proffering the same sort of image of them self through self promotion. It's virtually impossible to discern from websites if someone is the top of their tree or the grass roots.

    None of this is meant to be a concise summing up of the video industry, merely the idle ramblings of someone on a wet Saturday afternoon without a wedding to do. I'll leave you to guess where I fit in to the above.
    Last edited by ThomTom; 02-26-2011 at 04:59 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2010



    Thank you, ThomTom. That's given me a really good sense of context - especially when you discuss the general procedures videographer's can take.

  4. #4


    That's a good summation of things by ThomTom. There is also another sector, I would call the indy film maker which is the wanna' be writer, director, story teller and the only way they can get their story told is doing it them selves. This is a bit like the indy documentary maker who feels so passionate about a subject they go and make a documentary about it. This is also the poor relation side of the industry, as in they don't usually get paid for their work. Their only pay off is the personal satisfaction of doing it.

    There is also the very niche market areas where often an expert in a particular field will out of necessity or not knowing any better becomes a video person an example is TVF on this forum he is an expert mechanic and turned his hand at video for the Land Rover enthusiasts. He also asked a very similar question recently to this.

  5. Default

    Blue has an interesting point. If you have another interest, I don't know, say judo or pottery, or diving. Then those that are involved may well wish to see that interest filmed. Thereby if you have contacts in your field of interest, you could then use them to get you into a gig. Possibly that may involve a piece of special kit that you use with your camera, like underwater housing or a car mount. Or you become good with a pole mount. Anything that helps you stand out. The goto guy for a specific niche.

    Modern wedding video from London videographer

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