Think about when you were first starting out as a video production professional. What do you wish you knew then that you know now? As I reflect on my career so far, I can think of two very important pieces of advice I would pass along to any aspiring independent video producer.
- Rent your gear. If you're just starting out as an independent video producer, don't rush into buying your own gear. Rent what you need on a job-to-job basis. This gives you a number of advantages:
- Flexibility - You can be sure to get the specific camera package that best fits the job.
- Modernity - New cameras hit the market on a regular basis. Renting, rather than buying, means that you will always be on set with the latest camera package.
- Experience - When it finally comes time to invest in your own gear, you can make a more informed decision about what you want to buy, because you've already had hands-on experience with what's current.
- Savings - Since you aren't spending your money on expensive gear, you are free to invest it in other areas of your business. Speaking of which...
- Invest in yourself. Take the money you would be spending on gear and invest in a workshop or seminar. As an independent video producer, you can't just be a shooter. You have to edit. You can't just be an editor. You have to know motion graphics. Become knowledgeable in all facets of production. Learning new skills is so important. It can be easy, as an independent producer, to spend a lot of your time trying to market yourself and gain new business. Don't spend so much of your time trying to generate leads that you forget to further your own skill set.
How about you? What advice do you have? Leave your thoughts in the Comments section below.