As we’re starting to bring on our next cohort of 3-month Placements, this time they will be specialising in social Media. Take a look at work of our previous placements – who specialised in Production.
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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.Facebook API came back with a faulty result. You may be accessing an album you do not have permissions to access.
Check out our ‘Rossendale Documentary Short’:
Follow our Pinterest page to keep up-to-date with our ‘Apprentice Showcase’, featuring creative projects that our apprentices are involved in:
The week before last Manchester held the Design Mcr Festival: The Science of Imagination. Which is: “10 days of events celebrating creativity, collaboration and inclusivity in the worlds of art, design, illustration, animation and photography”
There were events including: exhibitions, film screenings, workshops, debates and more. Adapt Studios hosted a Graphic Design workshop at The Sharp Project called DesignDojo for young people during half-term which went down very well. Andy (pictured) delivered interesting insights into the design process; how logos and brands are conceived with imagination, creativity and trial and error. The attendees were tasked with creating identities from basic drawing tools, scissors and glue.
SharpFutures also helped to run NORTH: The Great Debate at The Manchester School of Art , myself and 4 members of our placement scheme were tasked with meet and greet, distributing name badges to the invited guests and checking tickets of visitors.
Many guests were high-profile people within the industry, the event having been organised and run by Malcolm Garrett and Kasper de Graaf of IMAGES&Co, the panel consisted of Sir Richard Leese [Leader of Manchester City Council], Lou Cordwell [CEO magneticNORTH], Caroline Norbury [CEO of Creative England] & Professor David Crow [Dean of The Manchester School of Art] who led a balanced argument from different positions and viewpoints within the sector.
During the event I was in charge of the roving microphone as the event was a general Question & Answer format between the audience and panel; whilst Dan, Lucy, Nick & Callum were collecting the names and positions of the speakers in the audience for use in title cards for the film which will be made of the debate. I will post a link of the video when it has been released, which should give a good overview of the debate.
There were some interesting points made during the evening, where even the definition of ‘The North’ became a contentious issue. But hopefully it will be the beginning of developing relations between the northern cities and creating a dynamic northern corridor for business and especially creative digital.
At SharpFutures we’ve recently recruited 8 placements for a 12 week course, which consists of workshops, masterclasses, content creation, real-life creative briefs and become part of the SharpFutures Talent Pool and support network.
Welcoming this first cohort of placements which consists of 8 people varying in many different areas of interest such as graphic design, production running, scriptwriting, social media marketing, the list goes on.
As a part of my work with SharpFutures I have been involved in a number of workshops that have been organised for the 8 placements to gain them an insight in to the industry and to also give them advice. The first workshop i was involved in was on Content management and curation.
(Marketing Exec and Web Developer) involve a big chunk of time working through content and managing it from the SharpFutures Blog, to the website and the Social Media.
The second workshop I did was with Lauren Hira, we hosted a workshop to show and discuss all the activity that SharpFutures gets up to working for clients and on our own social media presence, we also went in to how it has become a skill very much in demand at the moment.
It has been a really interesting learning curve hosting the workshops as only 2 years ago, I found myself in a very similar seat to them. I remember that first workshop on Social Media Marketing I attended at SharpFutures as an Apprentice in my first month, not exactly sure of what Social Media marketing consisted of or how it could be utilised for a business. Just in 2 years of learning on the job and much of my own time being spent on researching into all the newest discoveries and innovations of the Social Media world I now find myself confident enough to share my knowledge. I know from my own experience, learning from someone actually in the industry is much more advantageous compared to learning from a book published 5 years ago. A lot of the content and advice in that book may now be bit out of date compared to the real world, with things such as Facebook and Twitter constantly adding features and innovations you have to keep up with the changes to stay on top. Being able to pass on my knowledge felt quite rewarding, although it’s now more important than ever to stay on top as I potentially have 8 competitors chasing me…
Reiterating what Danny has said,
. As it forces me to take a step back and look at the work we do on day-to-day basis more objectively . It’s also made me appreciate how much I’ve learnt over the past 2 years and not assume knowledge when talking to others.
As everyone seemed to respond positively to the workshop I’m planning to hold a workshop on using WordPress as a blogging/portfolio platform to promote yourself as a creative individual. We’ve already taken the placements through setting up and using Tumblr as way of displaying and sharing their work. But I think WordPress provides a more succinct and professional platform much like a real website, although slightly more limited than a full WordPress website; it still looks professional and can also help develop coding and design skills.
Create Abstract Art with an iPhone & a Torch
All photographers have to start somewhere, and whilst for high-end commissions, quality gear may be essential, during the time that you are building up a portfolio and learning all about light, shadow & composition, a simple phone camera & one light source can yield surprising results. This blog is all about accessible art – all the following shots were all taken at home on an iPhone 5, using available light which anybody can do.
The first subject is nothing more than a bangle laid on an A4 piece of paper, lit by a torch (from the Pound shop!) I folded the edge of the paper over to create more shadow – you can do this, and more at home yourself and here’s how:
Take an interesting object – something that might create a dramatic shadow & place on a piece of white paper on a table – don’t just plonk it in the middle, consider the rule of thirds. http://digital-photography-school.com/rule-of-thirds/
Lie the torch on the table and move it all around the subject until it casts a shadow you like. Switch ALL the house lights off, yes even the TV – this is best done during the evening with no other light which might detract the effect. For extra texture, try tearing or cutting the paper.
Frame your shot holding the phone firmly with 2 hands, zoom in if necessary although bear in mind, this may cause extra fuzziness (grain). Either lean on the table to hold as steady as possible – or tuck your elbows into your body for support if photographing from above.
Hold still for several seconds whilst the camera focuses, wait a few more seconds and then click with as little movement as possible – remember, the slightest shake can blur your shot.
It’s surprising how close-up the iPhone will focus, but you do need to be patient whilst it searches for something to focus on. If it doesn’t focus on your desired point, gently touch the screen on your focal point and wait a few more seconds for the camera to refocus.
The following shot is an ordinary glass tumbler placed on a sparkly tile underneath a kitchen downlight. I added perspective by twisting the corner of the phone to create distortion, rather than photographing flat on.
And here’s the apple icon on my iMac with the keyboard reflected by kitchen lights.
This is a small sculpture of a double bass player lit by a torch against a propped-up piece of white paper. The smaller images are the same sculpture but with a tin foil background, and a wider view of the set-up.
For the purpose of this blog, all images are unedited other than cropping, no filters, no colour correction, contrast or borders etc – I wanted to show how you don’t even need to leave your sofa to create fun images that add to your portfolio. Have a go yourself — we’d love to see your results.
For anyone interested – the photograph below is the only one taken on a professional camera (again unedited so you can judge the results for yourself)
Some other resource to inspire you:-
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 the 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.
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.
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