Freelancing In The Film Biz

Is freelancing considered unemployment? Technically, right?

I consider myself a pretty good freelancer. I have some regular clients and some odd gigs that come once in a blue moon, but pay really well. There’s nothing like the feeling of getting a gig. Two thoughts come to mind:

I’ll be able to pay my bills this month!

and…

I have skills that are worth monetary value!

Both are great feelings for sure. I used to not be a happy freelancer. A couple years back, when I was still wet behind the ears, I used to begrudge freelance work. They’re paying me so little! I hate this job! Not worth it! Now, even if the pay is lower than usual, I put my best foot forward and do the best job possible.

Work is work. Yes, it is about making money, but it’s also about developing work ethic. Somewhere in the world, there’s someone else who can do the same job as you for the same price, maybe even cheaper. So why hire you?

In the film biz, I believe it’s about being friendly, not arrogant like artists could be, easy to talk to and easy to work with. Doing little things that give your client confidence they hired the right person for the job.

Today I messaged one of my clients who was waiting on feedback from higher up. Hey, is there any preliminary work I can do on the video while we wait? There wasn’t, but the client was grateful that I asked, and thanked me for being proactive. It’s the little things.

Working as an artist in the entertainment industry can be brutal. Everyone wants everything for the lowest price possible, causing artists to bid for gigs and undersell themselves to get the job. It boils down to relationships. Are you a “cool” person to work with? Not “cool” as in you dress stylishly and have a ton of Instagram followers. “Cool” as in are you a decent person to the highest degree? Do you make people feel good when they hire and interact with you? These are all things I’m still learning, and working toward being a better artist and employee.

Josh out.

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