Written by James Tu
MA Directing Film and Television
My first term of MA in Directing Film & Television has been a train ride full of anxiousness and excitement. At times it seems as though the rails were a little loose causing a bit of discomfort, other times they seemed secure and ridged and I lived through it with relative ease. Although, that goes for almost everything when starting a new experience. I feel it has been treating me well recently.
Now that I have become more acquainted with the people and the surroundings, I am more aware of what is to be expected later and in the near future so I’m positively confident on projects to come.
Just recently, I wrapped up a two day shoot with my film crew on the first term project at Talbot woods. It was a fresh experience directing actors and group members around a forested location with dogs dashing by every couple of minutes and it was a great, but challenging time. In addition I got a strong impression that I performed quite well from the crew’s responses but, I also had a sense of achievement from my own perception.
Although, I must admit, I don’t believe the kind of coordination that’s required is for everyone. You have got to be prepared at every moment to solve any problem and situation when it’s needed and it can get tricky. However, as someone who is doing a Directing course, it is in my expectations to be able to handle such a task. Although, it is quite ironic to me because I am mostly introverted, it takes some time for me to develop my relations with people. However when hard work, responsibility and focus kicks in, my attitude changes. But, in a social setting that’s a different story. Its mind numbingly irritating to have to speak to groups of loud people who want to converse about things I have no interest in, especially if we have just met. That’s one of the reasons I got the impression I was going to have a hard time starting the course. But, I managed to find my path. I like to build my connections slowly by speaking to individuals or small groups who I feel I can have a fun or intellectual conversation with. That way I can really begin to know someone and understand how they feel as a person and that relation to me is worth more than having many smaller friendships. By doing that I was able to weld well with my course and thus I have been able to “survive” comfortably.
It’s a reality that things aren’t always going to go swimmingly, at times when things are getting a little hard to cope with in University, you just have to overcome those issues by either talking to your tutors (which I personally have had good results with) or friends and in some cases, you just have to push your worries aside and go forward yourself because at the end of the day, it’s you who has to make the decision to keep going or to give up. I do not mean to put a negative connotation on “giving up” because there are instances where it’s for your own good to move on and find something worth your time, you just need to give it a thought and really understand what’s worth keeping and what you should walk away from. Perseverance is key and when overcoming your apprehensions a feeling and sense of achievement at the end of a project is greatly received, knowing you are armed with the skills to tackle the next challenge.