Category Archives: Production

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WE’RE HIRING : Production placements at The Sharp Project & The Space Project

SHARPFUTURES ARROW

SharpFutures are looking for 8 talented people for a 12-week Production and runner support Placement Programme.

Please see below for details: 

12-week PLACEMENT (full-time work experience)

REAL LIFE PRACTICAL BRIEF

START DATE: 9th November 2015

Must be available to work:

* Stage 1: 9th November 2015 – 18th December 2015

* Stage 2: 7th January 2016 – 18th February 2016

To gain a place on this work experience programme you need to demonstrate that you have the right mix of skills in addition to creativity, tenacity and perseverance. You also need to demonstrate that you would be interested in and provisionally available to join SharpFutures POD for part-time and casual work after the placement has been completed as well as during the placement. For more details on SharpFutures POD http://sharpfutures.org.uk/pod/

The Space Project

You may have graduated from a Production course at University or are self-taught and passionate about working in the industry. Either way you have to have some knowledge be it camera skills, editing skills or production skills or creative project management in general. This course is not for a complete novice but equally it is not for industry professionals.

SharpFutures production placement programme will offer you the opportunity to enhance and gain valuable industry skills in addition to an insight into the many roles associated with digital production.

You will attend regular workshops held by industry professionals, whilst learning the ropes of how to be a runner for The Sharp Project and The Space Project and in the second half of the placement you will work on producing a live content brief with fellow placements.

Whether you would like experience drawing storyboards, writing scripts or scouting locations in pre-production, be part of the camera, lighting or sound crews in production or be involved with the editing in post-production. SharpFutures production placement programme will give you the opportunity to gain valuable experience.

Applicants should have knowledge of the production industry and display an amount of skills relevant in producing video content. You should have either had experience in Production before be it a University course or are a keen enthusiast of all things ‘content making’ in your own time.

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Essential qualities

* Reliable

* Motivated

* Can commit to two six week work placement (a minimum of thirty five hours per week across twelve weeks in total)

* Over 18 (due to Health & Safety)

* Be able to attend The Sharp Project and The Space Project every day for the duration of the placement

* MUST NOT BE in full-time education

* Have be able to work flexibly, across a seven day week and in some cases on a twelve-hour rota

To apply you must send a short description (100 words or less) of why you should be offered this opportunity, your CV and your portfolio of previous work to talent@sharpfutures.org.uk

Placements will be paid at national minimum wage for your age.

Manchester residents will be given priority interviews.

All successful applicants will be offered a formal interview to meet the team discuss the details.

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The Funfair [Home Mcr] – Theatre Review by Dom Corry

Come one, Come All to this tragic Affair…is an introduction which seems fittingly implicit of the outcome in the play I have just seen;

The Funfair” is an immaculate modernisation (adapted by the genius that is Simon Stevens) of the 1932 premier “Kashimir und Karoline”. The thematic addition of the gristly glamour of fairground; with its grease, dirt and candy floss is alluring from the off in its undertow and gives the overall story an immersive new dimension and a juxtaposing poignancy.

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Kash (excellently executed in tired , masculine self-affliction by Ben Batt) and Karoline’s (Katie Moore who mastered the art of depicting decline) love is doomed from the opening scenes , corrupt and sullied by personal insecurities, coaxed and squeezed out by a wolfish world, maimed at the jaws of social, economic and political turmoil (rings a bell!).

The tragedy is set in place as Kash seeks refuge under the wings of his best friend and grubby, footloose, misogynistic Frankie Marr (played by Michael Ryan in an absolute 5 star, stand out, “Jesus he’s good “ portrayal), whilst Karoline is guided into unassuming danger by the odd, jittery Chase (endearingly played by Rhodri Meilir) and his partner, the undermined Esther (Victoria Gee).

Christopher Wright as the nauseating Southerner Mr David Spear and Ian Bartholomew as Mr Billy Smoke are the serpents in the grass, the embodiment of the world’s nastiness; the performances are again pretty much perfect and spellbinding.

The stage set-up and music are also perfect in this play, with a band playing in what seemed to be a recording both above and below the stage in each musical interlude to add a sinister and unnerving tone to the play’s foundation – a great effect.

The soundtrack itself also adds a distinct atmosphere to the play, mainly focusing on 50’s/60’s rock n roll songs – a dreamboats and petticoats nightmare emerges from the soothing melodies to further immerse me (the audience) into the plot, the effect was perfect.

The play is heart-breaking, the acting was acutely on point, the visuals hypnotic and now I want to go to The Funfair.
Bravo!”

Learning SketchUp

Here at SharpFutures we’ve begun using SketchUp to mock-up the stages and studios at The Space Project & The Sharp Project.

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It always takes a bit of trial and error when using a new piece of software , but we believe it will be an effective tool for potential clients to able to view a 3D digital scale model of the stages or studios they are looking to hire.

We will post back soon with some of our ideas and developments.

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SharpFutures [FRAMED]

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As a means of curating and displaying the work produced by our recently graduated placements, we produced a brand-new website with Pixel Kicks of The Sharp Project:

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We held an  event at The Sharp Project, where; the website was launched, films were premiered and the placements received their graduation awards.

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If you’d like to keep up-to-date with SharpFutures [FRAMED] and our online video content, subscribe on YouTube and check-out our new website.

Check out our ‘Rossendale Documentary Short’:

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Branding – Business Cards

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I was tasked with project a month ago, where I was to create one business card for both sites.

However according to the branding guidelines; the two logo’s cannot appear next to each other, which presented a slight challenge.

I created a version for five members of the management team, across biz-card-photothe two sites. Some of these members work solely at one site or other or both which dictated the two sides of the business cards.

I had slight challenge at one point with colour formatting in one of the logo’s, the studio at the printers had a problem with the PMS colour formats used in the PDF logo’s which I’d not come across before. The fix for this was to simply save out the PDF’s as CMYK colour images ready for print. I’m pleased with the outcome and hope they are used effectively for networking and marketing the two sites.

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Paul Frift and Hilary Bevan Jones’ Essential Tips for Being A Successful TV Producer

Earlier this year, DigitalTeapot14 attendees were fortunate enough to be part of an interactive panel with respected TV Producers Paul Frift and Hilary Bevan from Endor Productions. Together with Director and Actor Victoria Wood, they had recently completed filming Tubby and Enid at The Sharp Project. 

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Hilary has worked on numerous ground breaking and influential drama (“Cracker” for ITV and “Red Dwarf” and “State of Play” for BBC) and has won a primetime Emmy for the acclaimed HBO film “The Girl in the Café”. In 2006, she was also made Chairman of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts, the first woman in its 60 year history to hold this position. Paul is best known for The Escape Artist, and Restless. He has also worked on such feature films as Aliens (1986), Empire of the Sun (1987) and Rob Roy (1995).

  • PREPARATION at every stage is key – always do your homework!
  • ANTICIPATE, anticipate, anticipate – The ability to anticipate is vital.
  • ATTENTION to detail – You have to be able to see both the bigger picture and pay close attention to the tiniest detail.
  •  ASSUMPTION is the Mother of all ‘screw-ups’ – An oldie but goodie.
  • NEVER assume that someone else has done something – Inevitably, they won’t have!
  • You need STAMINA – so look after yourself, eat, sleep and exercise
  • It’s a SERIOUS job, so make sure you are prepared for filming conditions – suitable footwear, wet weather clothing, sun cream, insect repellent etc.
  • Be PERSISTENT –  Never give up!
  • It’s all about HARD WORK – There is NO substitute.
  • RESPECT and learn from your colleagues especially those with experience.
  • Aim HIGH and follow your dreams – But also be realistic, don’t try to run before you can walk!

All photos courtesy of Neilson Reeves Photography

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Z-Card Production for The Space Project

The Space Project is Manchesters newly-built flagship drama & production facility, located in West Gorton 5 minutes from Central Manchester – it is the site of the old Fujitsu & ICL  computer housings. The Space Project was built in response to meet the growing demand for high quality, flexible production space in the North West.

I was recently briefed on a design project for a combined marketing, technical specification and business card functioning print device for The Space Project.

We chose a Z-Card format, as we thought this would be the most suitable and effective for our needs. The Z-Card is useful as it functions like a business card whilst folded up but as a double-sided sheet when unfolded (much like the classic Ordnance Survey map layout). The target audience are production teams so we thought this format would be easy to distribute , and are pocket/wallet-sized rather than having a large A4 folder like The Sharp Project brochure.

The Z-Card needed to be graphic guide to the site for productions and visitors, and also display all the features of the site and the technical specifications of the production facilities. At times this proved to be a challenge as we don’t have any photographs of the site, and we had no customer-facing footprints of the space except for the stylised logo.

On the first side I produced a simplified footprint of all customer-facing rooms and areas that will be used on the Ground Floor and First Floor with detailed dimensions and power specs for each sound stage.

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On the reverse side I used stills from the CGI animated marketing fly-through (produced by The Drawing Room) to annotate and visually demonstrate the spaces without using too much text which wouldn’t be read.

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We tried to leave empty space on both sides so that the diagrams could be annotated and people could make notes on them to enhance the card to their needs. The card will also serve as a preliminary basic marketing tool until we produce a proper brochure, like we did for The Sharp Project.

I designed the Z-Card with supervision from Tom Clarke (SharpFutures) and brand consultation from Malcolm Garrett (images.co.uk).

I’m pleased with the outcome of the printed Z-Card and I hope it proves useful to staff and customers.

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Dom Corry – Digital Runner Apprentice

The first thing I feel is the ease and breeze, people seem to enjoy what they do here, so in turn you aren’t met with hostility or general bad reverberations, vibes, air …this then makes for a clean and un turbulent landing on to planet Sharp Project and since that landing I have enjoyed my first week here.

‘What is it people actually do here then, man?’

I hear you inquire in your mind’s eye (I’m pretty shamanic in that way see)

It’s a fair question and seeing as I am now officially a ‘digital production runner’ here, I should have the answers…I do… I think.

So as I understand it The Sharp Project is a building ,hub and general epicenter of all things creative digital based in Manchester, in which specifically creative digital based businesses form this sector rent space to run day to day duties of their ever blossoming ports of call, be that photography (Nelson Reeves) or the creation and distribution of stage lights (ELP) and of course as well as being primarily tenant based this big bad spaceship of a structure also has 4 stages available for anything from events to television and set storage even if I went off the question a tad bit. if you want more information where tenants are concerned then I can give you some; this place also has memberships available for people(again within a creative digital context) who want a place to work, resolve and generally come to plot world domination. That would be my understanding of ‘what people do in here’ and what it actually is that The Sharp Project erm is, even though you didn’t ask, I told you I was shamanic.

You also didn’t ask what the role digital production runner entails, but I will tell you in brief. I help with the day to day running of the machine and pumping of the heart.

So the moral of the first week at The Sharp Project and I’m pretty certain in life generally is that being polite being honest and generally being a good human being will serve you well; first and fore mostly within the sharp project.

Over and out (for now).

Dominic Corry

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Scott Rosbottom – IT/AV Apprentice

It has been an interesting first two weeks for me. In which I have learnt a fair bit already whether it’s from some basic coding to making an Ethernet cable. I honestly believe this is a fantastic opportunity for me and hopefully for the people who later on follow in my footsteps. Everything seems to kind of just flow and as much as it can be completely hectic at points it still seems to all work. It’s got an amazing team of employees in which you can build a close rapport with very quickly, it’s a close environment with a variety of different tasks and jobs to do partly being the reason it flows so well because even though everyone has their certain aspects in a job and specialise in certain things we all chip into different jobs and aspects to have it done to the best it can be and the most efficiently.

I have personally never felt so comfortable in a job, its doing what I want to do, how I want to do it and the environment I most thrive in. everyone has good attributes and bad attributes, I have found in these two weeks alone some of the stuff I am better at than I thought and some things I need to brush up on in which I knew already but I have the help to better myself in them ways within my time here. In my time here up to yet I have configured a wireless router, set up my own desktop, made the Ethernet cable for it, made a inventory of all our stuff which we will be using also as a in and out system, learnt front of house, and have the job of setting up the AV in the campus. I’ve also learnt that I need to stop sometimes and just listen sometimes as it would be massively beneficial to me and I don’t always have to be in the limelight I can step back and learn from other people.