Media Parents

Author Archives: Amy Walker

About Amy Walker

www.mediaparents.co.uk is a jobs and social networking site committed to keeping experienced talent in TV production. It was set up by Series Producer Amy Walker.

blue 2.0 media parents summer party july 30th

by Amy Walker

Join us at Blue 2.0 this Thursday with employers from the BBC, Channel 4, the CDN, Objective Productions, Firecracker, Barcroft Media, ZigZag, Blast! Films, Endemol Shine, Midnight Oil Productions, Melina Media and others for a cracking party…

Join us at Blue 2.0 Media Parents Summer Party this Thursday...

Blue 2.0 and Media Parents are having a summer party at blue 2.0 from 6:30pm on July 30th to celebrate the all-new blue 2.0 and Media Parents’ 5th birthday! We’d love you to join us on the roof terrace for drinks!  The party will be a great laugh, and a brilliant opportunity to network over a glass of wine with execs and freelancers across the board.

Blue 2.0's Commercial Director Nicola Whitehead will be there...

Blue 2.0 will kindly be providing complimentary drinks, and refreshments for earlybirds. If you are a production exec, PM, SP or anyone who books facilities and would like to take part in a the blue 2.0 Aperol Spritz tour at 5:30 please let us know – Nicola Whitehead and Mark Bos at Blue 2.0 are keen to show off their facilities! See more here http://blue2p0.com

Blue 2.0 work with the very best in the business, producing distinctive, creative, audience-pleasing Drama, Factual, Factual Entertainment, Documentaries and Short Form. Our dedicated team of producers, creative broadcast artists, sound designers and support staff have substantial industry experience and knowledge. Everyone on the team is motivated to deliver the highest standards of creative and technical excellence.

And don’t forget that applications are open for the Media Parents GEITF Back to Work Scheme 2015 until July 31st please let your contacts know. Details are on the blog at http://www.mediaparents.co.uk – we’d be grateful if you would pass it on.

More about the Blue 2.0 Team…

Nicola Whitehead, Commercial Director

I began my Post Production career in 1995 as a Runner at blue (now back to blue 2.0). Having worked my way up in the Post Production world as a Bookings Manager, Post Producer and then finally Head of Production I bring a huge wealth of experience and technical know-how to each project. I have overseen award-winning projects such as ‘The Nuremburg Trials – Goerings Last Stand’ (‘Best Specialist Factual’ BAFTA TV Awards) and other high profile productions including, ‘The Beckoning Silence’(International Emmy Winner) , ‘Stephen Hawking’s Universe’ ‘ Great British Bake Off’ (BAFTA Winning) and the multi award winning ‘Live from Space – a lap of the Earth’ for Arrow Media.  From Mary Berry’s soggy bottom to Dermot O’Leary Live in Space (almost) I’ve looked after it all.  I worked through the transition of 4:3 – 16:9, Tape to Tapeless, SD to HD and now HD – 4k and counting.  So I’ve seen a lot of changes, not Black and White to Colour though! I look forward to meeting with you, the Media Parents.”

Blue 2.0's Executive Director Mark Bos.

Mark Bos, Executive Director

Mark has worked in the TV/Film industry for over thirty years. He started in the cutting rooms in Soho. And has worked for Granada in Manchester, BBC, CH4, PBS USA. Mark was also on the launch team for TV3 London. Twelve years at ITV in production as Producer/Director ending up as a Series Producer and two years in front on the camera! Here’s the link (I am not proud) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DeV_jwNxe9w Ten years at Fremantle Media in production as Production Executive and running the regional production office and in house post facility. Too many series to list them all but here’s a few Grand Designs, Property Ladder, How Clean is your house, Four Rooms, Escape to the Country. Mark joined Blue 2.0 in early May as Executive Director and is loving the challenge of building a new brand! We all look forward to meeting you over a drink.

The Media Parents Back to Work Scheme is accepting applicants until July 31st - for details see blog post and email events@mediaparents.co.uk Please join www.mediaparents.co.uk for great jobs, networking and events.

July 28, 2015 @ 3:12 pm Posted in News Comments Off

Back to Work Scheme announces sponsoring companies

by Amy Walker

We’re delighted to announce that Media Parents is partnering with BBC Wales, Channel 4, ITV Studios, Sky, Wall to Wall, Endemol Shine UK, the CDN and GEITF to support parents getting back into TV via the Media Parents Back to Work Scheme for a third year running. The scheme has a 100% success rate in returning experienced TV professionals to the industry, and applications are open until July 31st, see www.mediaparents.co.uk for details. Read on to see what Sky’s Celia Taylor and Channel 4′s Ralph Lee have to say about it…

The 2014 Media Parents Back to Work Scheme Winners at Edinburgh TV Festival.

Media Parents (a social enterprise set up to promote flexible working and help working parents balance the demands of media and childcare) is running a mentoring and placement scheme to help parents and carers back in to the TV industry following a career break. Seven successful applicants will be awarded sponsored places at the Guardian Edinburgh International TV Festival (GEITF) and returned to the TV workplace via mentoring and networking.

Channel 4's Ralph Lee is a Media Parents mentor.

Channel 4’s Deputy Chief Creative Officer Ralph Lee, a mentor on the Media Parents Back to Work scheme, says “A lot of talented people in our industry face challenges managing the development of their careers and their roles as parents.  It’s great that Media Parents Back to Work Scheme helps people return resume their careers and supports them in achieving a work life balance in a demanding work environment.”

BBC Wales's Judith Winnan with a freelancer at a Media Parents event in Cardiff.

Judith Winnan Head of Factual for BBC Wales comments “BBC Wales has been working with Media Parents to strengthen our relations with the freelance community in Wales and it’s great to be part of a scheme that is specifically aimed at helping experienced professionals return to work.

Media Parents’ Director Amy Walker says “It’s fantastic to be running the Media Parents Back to Work Scheme again at a time when the importance of diversity in the workplace is being recognised, and when the BBC squeeze could see freelancers under greater strain to find work. This successful scheme will offer skilled parents the opportunity to bring their talents back to TV through networking and mentoring. Previous mentors have included Channel 4’s Ralph Lee, BBC Worldwide, Channel 5 and Discovery Channel commissioners – it’s a great network.”

Sky's Head of Non-Scripted Commissioning for Sky Entertainment, Celia Taylor.

Celia Taylor, Head of Non-Scripted Commissioning for Sky Entertainment backs the Media Parents Back to Work Scheme: “As a working Mum I fully appreciate the importance of this scheme and I am really happy to fully support it”.

Richard Thomson, Wall to Wall MD at a Media Parents networking event.

Richard Thomson MD, Wall to Wall, says “We have a number of returners at Wall to Wall and are delighted to be helping other experienced individuals back into the workplace. This is a great initiative.”

ITV's HR Director Sue Harrington

ITV Studios’ HR Director Sue Harrington commented “I’m delighted ITV Studios is able to support this years Media Parents Back to Work scheme.  We’re a family friendly employer and helping talent return after a career break is something we’re very supportive of’.

Bella Lambourne, HR and Operations Director at Endemol Shine UK notes “Endemol Shine UK is delighted to be able to be part of this scheme again after the previous success stories.  Enabling and encouraging talent to return and remain in production is as important as ever for the content industry.”

Endemol Shine's Bella Lambourne at a Media Parents event.

Amanda Ariss, Executive Director of the CDN, comments “The Creative Diversity Network is delighted to support Media Parents’ Back to Work programme which has a great track record in helping parents and carers reconnect with the industry and their peers, and at a time when diversity of talent, ideas and backgrounds has never been more vital to the industry’s creative way forward.”

The CDN's Amanda Ariss.

Successful candidates will be awarded a delegate pass, plus accommodation in Edinburgh, with bespoke mentoring sessions from the sponsors. To apply by July 31st please send an email to events@mediaparents.co.uk to request an application form, and scroll down this blog for further details.

The Media Parents Back to Work Scheme is accepting applicants until July 31st - for details see blog post and email events@mediaparents.co.uk Please join www.mediaparents.co.uk for great jobs, networking and events.

July 23, 2015 @ 11:35 am Posted in News Comments Off

GEITF tickets reduced freelancer rate

by Amy Walker

Not content with only partnering with Media Parents on the Back to Work Scheme, GEITF is also offering cheaper places : It’s the 40th anniversary of the Guardian Edinburgh International Television Festival on 26-28 August and to mark the occasion, we’ve curated an event that promises to be one of most important, entertaining and star-studded yet.

From MacTaggart speaker – Oscar- and Emmy-nominated writer Armando Iannucci – to the “world’s most influential”/ “Britain’s most dangerous” woman Nicola Sturgeon, plus the man currently in the media spotlight, John Whittingdale MP, our programme reflects this most pivotal of moments in broadcasting history.

With 60-plus sessions, new commissioner speed meetings and channel controller drinks, make sure you’re part of the crowd of decision-makers and creative leaders by registering now at www.thetvfestival.com.

Key speakers include:
Ben Anderson,  Chris Bryant MP, Frankie Boyle, Kellie Bright, Nick Broomfield, Kay Burley, Julia Davis, Victoria Derbyshire, Stacey Dooley, Rick Edwards, James Harding, Adam Hills, Ross Kemp, Peter Kosminsky, Shane Meadows, Jimmy Mulville, Mark Lawson, John Logan, Richard Osman, Ron Perlman, James Purnell, Sarah Sands, Meera Syal, Katharine Viner
Plus: Channel controllers; US game-changers, YouTube talent; commissioning editors…

To qualify for the special Freelancer rate of £299 you will need to provide an invoice to a company for provision of your services. To find out further information on how to qualify for this discount and to book visit:

http://www.thetvfestival.com/festival/prices-offers/

Passes for freelancers are £299 (+VAT & booking fee) which is a £100 reduction on the 2014 rate.

http://www.thetvfestival.com/festival/festival-programme/

The Media Parents Back to Work Scheme is accepting applicants until July 31st - for details see blog post and email events@mediaparents.co.uk Please join www.mediaparents.co.uk for great jobs, networking and events.

July 22, 2015 @ 12:37 pm Posted in News Comments Off

TXing Today Call the Council SP Ali McBride

by Amy Walker

Media Parents Back to Work Scheme alumnus Series Producer Ali McBride writes about her latest productions. Ali was a winner on the 2013 Media Parents Edinburgh Back to Work Scheme, and the 2015 Scheme is now open for applications so please apply!

Series Producer Ali McBride relaunched her career via the Media Parents Back to Work Scheme http://www.mediaparents.co.uk/freelancers/6744/ali-mcbride

It’s been a busy few months since I last checked in.  The good news is that the series I was working on, Call The Council, has finally made it to air.  And fear not – if you missed the first few episodes, it’s on BBC1 every morning at 11am until the 17th of July and/or iPlayer too.

Seeing it finally make it on air has brought back many memories of what can only be described as a fab production.  It could be that I’m experience that feeling after childbirth, of course… i.e. as soon as it’s over, you forget the pain but I really don’t think so. Looking back, it was genuinely one of those productions that just worked. The reason? Simple – the team… we just clicked.  For those of you who have battled through a daytime series you know it ain’t for the faint hearted.  It’s fast, relentless and unforgiving. As soon as one deadline passes, the next is on its heels and looming large. That said, our team quickly got into our groove and, as with parenting, realised the only way to survive it was with a bloomin’ good schedule!

"It was genuinely one of those productions that just worked. The reason? Simple - the team… we just clicked."

At the helm of keeping us in line was our Production Manager and mum of a 4yr old who worked part-time (or should I say was so darn efficient that she managed the whole production in part-time hours!).  Most of the team locked in edits were parents too actually, often juggling viewings around football training and baby pickups. Now not everyone on the team came in every morning wiping snot off their shoulder but a lot of us did.  And those who didn’t, and remained snot-free, seemed able to stomach the odd witterings about surviving drop offs unscathed etc.

Our production survived toddler tantrums, teething and temperatures – and all done with lots of laughs and good humour.  There was also a quiet understanding that when one of us said ‘I’ve got to go now’ we were able to. No drama, no questions, no glancing at the clock.  Just an understanding and appreciation of what that meant. Sometimes the planets just do align on productions; the right people, the right content, the right attitudes – but whatever it was, I’d love to get that team back together for another run.

At the moment, I’m Series Producing a very different beast of a production. It’s the Current Affairs output for The One Show on BBC1.  This time, there aren’t as many other parents on the team but there really is only so much time a girl should spend talking about teething and temperatures so perhaps that’s not such a bad thing!

http://www.mediaparents.co.uk/freelancers/6744/ali-mcbride

The Media Parents Back to Work Scheme is accepting applicants until July 31st - for details see blog post and email events@mediaparents.co.uk Please join www.mediaparents.co.uk for great jobs, networking and events.

July 15, 2015 @ 10:25 pm Posted in News Comments Off

Media Parents Edinburgh Back to Work Scheme opens for applications

by Amy Walker

We’re delighted to announce that Media Parents will partner with broadcasters, indies and GEITF for a third year running to support parents getting back into TV with our Media Parents Back to Work Scheme – there are 7 places up for grabs this year – so please apply!

Media Parents (a social enterprise set up to promote flexible working and help working parents balance the demands of media and childcare) is running a scheme to help parents and carers back in to the TV industry following a career break.

Media Parents (a social enterprise set up to promote flexible working and help working parents balance the demands of media and childcare) is running a scheme to help parents and carers back in to the TV industry following a career break.  The seven places are sponsored by BBC Wales, Channel 4, CDN, Endemol Shine, ITV Studios, Sky and Wall to Wall.

In 2014 six successful media parents / carers were awarded sponsored places at the Guardian Edinburgh International TV Festival (GEITF) and returned to the TV workplace – this year we’re offering the opportunity again. Will you win a place?

6 Media Parents Back to Work Scheme winners attended the Guardian Edinburgh International TV Festival in 2014, seen here with Media Parents Director Amy Walker.

Successful candidates will be awarded a delegate pass, plus accommodation in Edinburgh, with bespoke mentoring sessions from the sponsors. To apply by July 31st please send an email to events@mediaparents.co.uk to request an application form.

Applicants are required to send a 300 word précis outlining their experience and ambitions upon returning to TV, plus a CV and completed application form obtained from the above address, submitted by July 31st. The email should be titled with the applicant’s name, job title and genre. Applicants must be available to attend the Edinburgh TV Festival in 2015. See the Festival programme and dates here : http://www.thetvfestival.com/

Candidates are required to have 3 years’ experience in TV and should not have worked continuously in TV for more than 12 weeks since their career break. This doesn’t mean you need to have been out of work for 12 weeks, it means you can’t have worked continuously for 12 weeks since you have returned to work.

There is no submission charge but successful applicants must subscribe to either the talent or network section of www.mediaparents.co.uk for one year to prove their commitment to returning to the workplace. Thank you for your interest, we look forward to working with you.

The Media Parents Back to Work Scheme is accepting applicants until July 31st - for details see blog post and email events@mediaparents.co.uk Please join www.mediaparents.co.uk for great jobs, networking and events.

@ 11:15 am Posted in News Comments Off

5 minutes with Emma Love, producer

by Amy Walker

Congratulations to Emma Love who won a place on John Yorke’s screenwriting course (please see previous post). Emma writes “I was over the moon to find out I’d won a place on the John Yorke Screen Writing course courtesy of Media Parents. I’ve worked in TV production for twenty years so am really looking forward to learning a new skill which will hopefully lead to new opportunities.”

Congratulations to factual Producer Emma Love who won a place on a screenwriting course developed by John Yorke (pictured).

Emma writes : I have been lucky enough to work on some fantastic productions and with really talented people.

Twice BAFTA, Emmy, RTS and Grierson nominated I have enjoyed travelling the world, spending long periods of time in prisons, hospitals and embedded with police forces.

As a former Fleet Street reporter I know a good story and how to spot great characters and have a proven track record in casting for full commissions.

I am very proud of the programmes I have been able to be a part of and am comfortable working alone or as part of a team and enjoy nurturing research and AP talent.

http://www.mediaparents.co.uk/freelancers/10432/emma-love

Please join www.mediaparents.co.uk for great jobs, networking and events.

June 28, 2015 @ 11:57 am Posted in News Comments Off

win scripting coaching from John Yorke

by Amy Walker

We’re delighted to announce that John Yorke, the man behind many of Britain’s best dramas, is acting as a mentor on the Media Parents Back to Work Scheme, and has also kindly donated a place on his storytelling for screen course to one lucky Media Parents member. For details on how to apply by THURS 18th JUNE please see the watercooler at www.mediaparents.co.uk

John Yorke and the cast of Shameless. Huge thanks to John for mentoring for Media Parents and for this opportunity.

STORYTELLING FOR SCREEN (ONLINE) – FEEDBACK

Rachel, UK

“Brilliant course. It’s been a blast. I’ve learned a lot from all my fellow writers. All David’s help and feedback during the course has been fantastic, and as a result of the course, I feel much more confident about tackling difficult story lines than I ever have done before.

The final report in particular was very useful. I have learned a lot, and I have loved it. I know I still have quite a bit of work to do, but I don’t mind hard work. All the feedback and encouragement has been extremely valuable.”

Norman, UK

‘The end-­‐of-­‐course feedback was fantastically helpful – I’m already at my desk, working on the next version of my treatment.

David has given positive and focused criticism throughout the course – and this, combined with the insights from John’s book, mean I really feel a lot more qualified to write a script now that I have done the course. The beauty of structure!”

TEACHING

• The course lasts 16 weeks.
• Each of the first 6 sessions runs over 2 weeks; the final session runs over 4 weeks.
• All the teaching, interaction with participants and tutor moderation takes place in an online classroom, accessed via a website, and course materials and forums are open 24/7.
• Sessions open on a Monday; assignments must be completed and uploaded by the following Wednesday with critiquing of fellow participants’s work completed by the final Sunday in the fortnight, before the next session opens.
• Completed sessions remain open throughout the course so that you can review course materials and revise your work.

The course is taught using the following:
• Short audio files from John Yorke.
• Short video files from John Yorke, David Roden and/or other industry experts.
• Online guidance notes and directed prompts and exercises, devised by John Yorke.
• Directed reading and viewing lists from John Yorke.
• Online peer critiquing from other participants in the group.
• Tutor moderation (David Roden).
• The support of an online community and virtual classroom.
• A dedicated resources area, continually updated by the Into the Woods course team.

FINAL SUBMISSION

At the end of the course, you will be invited to submit a 4-­‐page treatment for one of your own stories. This might be for a drama, documentary, corporate video or reality show.

You will receive detailed written editorial feedback (of up to 1,000 words) on your submission from John and David, to evaluate your ideas and handling of techniques such as acts, scenes, and use of suspense, action and visual thinking, plus advice on where to take your ideas next.

SESSION PLAN
Session 1: Introduction to Storytelling Part 1
This first session is about reading, watching, thinking and experimenting. You’ll start by thinking about the grammar of storytelling and the essential elements of a story, and experiment with summing up a protagonist’s wants and needs. This session is also about getting to know your fellow participants.

Session 2: Introduction to Storytelling Part 2
The second session builds on the basic building blocks of the archetypal story identified in Session 1, examining structural form in more detail. Now you can identify a story’s protagonist, antagonist and desires, we’ll look at the inciting incident, the character’s journey and story endings (crisis, climax and resolution).

Session 3: Essential Storytelling Tools
This third session is about being able to see if a story works – how to ‘break a story’. You’ll start by thinking about the essential elements of a story, and experiment with three-­‐act structure. By the end of this session you should be able to deconstruct a story.

Session 4: Five Act Structure
This session breaks down a story into five acts and looks at why this is such an invaluable tool for storytellers. Practical exercises include identifying turning points and midpoints and rewriting a TV soap episode in five parts.

At the end of this session there is a live Q&A chatroom session with John.

Session 5: Building Stories
Introduces the basic building blocks of stories – scenes – and their properties, and explains why you need to get inside characters’s heads to make them work. Practical exercises include identifying the different parts of a scene and writing a story in five scenes.

Session 6: Top 25 Storytelling Tips
By now, you should know how to create your story, know how to test its elements to ensure it works, and structure your story into beats, scenes and acts. This recapping session takes you through some of John’s simple tips that we hope will inspire you to look at stories and scripts with a fresh eye. These are the 25 most important things to bear in mind when creating drama, and there are mini-­‐exercises and clips throughout so you can check your knowledge and learn from masters of story structure in TV and film. If you have a problem with a story, these 25 tips probably provide the solution.

At the beginning of Session 7 there is a live Q&A chatroom session with John.

Session 7 Developing your own Treatment
Every television show will ask you – before commissioning a story – for a synopsis and a treatment. We start this final session by looking at the difference between a synopsis and a treatment, then learn the rules for writing a successful treatment.

This final session lasts four weeks, with two weeks to write your treatment and another two weeks to give and get feedback from your peers.

Approximately 2–4 weeks after the course finishes you will receive detailed individual feedback on your treatment from David and John. You will also have the option to continue working with your peers in a specially created course alumni area online.

The online classroom closes at the end of this session, but you can join the alumni area for an annual fee of £50. This gives entry to an archive of course materials and allows you to continue posting work for review from your peer group.

GETTING THE MOST FROM ONLINE LEARNING

The course has been carefully designed by John Yorke with the Professional Writing Academy, which has extensive experience in delivering writing courses online in universities, for CPD training, and for recreational writers. The course is intended to develop the skills we believe are essential for good writing in every medium, from novel to screen, including:

• greater knowledge of story structure
• an understanding of the writing craft and professional conventions • discipline, independent practice and confidence in your work

• the ability to critically evaluate writing (your own and that of others) within a professional context.

The learning model is structured around a combination of peer and tutor feedback and aims to develop and hone your critical faculties through constant practice and revision.

You will not be given detailed tutor feedback on every piece of work you submit (there are mentoring schemes offering this, if that is your preferred route). You will receive individual tutor feedback on each of your final session pieces, and then detailed feedback on your treatment from your tutor and John Yorke at the end of the course, which discusses your strengths and weaknesses, and offers advice on where to take your work next.

Although your tutor monitors your work through the course, perhaps more important in the learning experience are the close working relationships you establish with other participating practitioners, who will include writers, editors, creatives and professionals from the writing and screen industries.

The practice of critiquing each other’s work increases and refines your understanding of what makes a good story – and the working relationships that form very often carry beyond the course to provide you with ongoing discussion and feedback from a close-­‐ knit group of practitioners you trust.

Sometimes, students with little experience of critiquing or working in a group can feel rather intimidated by the process at the outset – often because they think they will feel more comfortable with a one-­‐to-­‐one relationship with a tutor.

This is fine, but it isn’t what we offer here. So please think carefully before accepting a place that will challenge you, develop your work, and require you to work with other writers and to deadlines.

This course is not a passive experience predicated on submitting work for ‘marking’ by a tutor, but a challenging, dynamic process that we know will help you grow into the best creator of stories that you can be.

BIOG

John Yorke is former Controller of BBC Drama Production, Head of Channel Four Drama and Managing Director of Company Pictures. As a Commissioning Editor and Executive Producer, John has championed many of the defining works of British television, and is responsible for some of the biggest audience for drama in UK TV history. He has overseen some of the UK’s most enduring and popular programmes, from Shameless and Life on Mars to EastEnders and Holby City, alongside award-winners like Bodies and Wolf Hall.
John has worked with a vast array of talent, from Paul Greengrass and Paul Abbott to Debbie Horsfield and Jimmy McGovern. In 2005, John created the BBC Writers Academy, the only writing course in the world guaranteeing broadcast work and which has produced a generation of successful television writers. His first book Into The Woods (Penguin) is the UK’s bestselling book on narrative structure.

www.johnyorkestory.com

June 14, 2015 @ 6:50 am Posted in News Comments Off

5 minutes with Jenn Westlake AP and PC at Creative Week UK

by Amy Walker

I remember when I first started working in TV, I was told by a producer that I should either have kids now (age 18), or wait until I was 40. I didn’t really take much notice at the time, but I soon began to realise that I very rarely saw women working in TV who had kids and if they did, they were at a very senior level. So I have to admit that when I became pregnant a couple of years ago I did feel like I was committing career suicide.

AP Jenn Westlake meets with Sugar Films' MD Pat Younge, ex BBC Head of Vision.

While my career is very important to me, having a baby wasn’t something I was going to put after it; I wanted to be able to have a baby when I wanted and still return to work when it felt right. I had Alexa (now 15 months) after working in Canada for a year. I then moved to Germany and came back to London when she was 6 months old. I started to look for part time work, but I was at a bit of a loss as to where to start – the company I had worked at for a couple of years before moving to Canada had closed their TV department and my other contacts only had full time work to offer, which I wasn’t comfortable with as Alexa so young. I did eventually manage to get a brilliant AP job at Bare Films, working from home for a few months, but knew that was very rare and lucky!

AP Jenn Westlake (right) with Back to Work Media Parents PD Victor Schonfeld (left) and Shooting AP Luke Jameson at BAFTA.

By chance came across Media Parents, after a friend had ‘liked’ it on Facebook. I’d never actually heard of Media Parents before (wish I had!), but realising that there were people out there trying to help people like me gave me the reassurance that there was flexible work out there to be had.

I immediately signed up to Media Parents and soon after won a place at their Back to Work scheme, where I attended at day at Creative Week UK. Amy Walker was such a great support right from the very beginning and really boosted my confidence when it came to networking with everyone there. Listening to the talks and chatting to others really reignited my passion for the industry and made me realise that not all employers discriminate against women with children!

AP Jenn Westlake with ITV Shiver's Head of Talent Michelle Matherson and the Back to Work Team at BAFTA

It was great to be up to speed with the industry trends again and to hear first-hand from directors about the challenges of taking risks and having a passionate commitment early on, with the reward of a great film afterwards (i.e. Jonathan Sehring on Boyhood).

Boyhood Producer Jonathan Sehring (right) talks to Matt Mueller from Screen International at Broadcast's Creative Summit.

With branded content being a hugely talked about thing within the industry, it was really interesting to listen to Amy Kean’s (of Havas Media Labs) fun presentation on the future of technology and the possibility of ‘dreamvertising’/ advertising to you in your dreams. While the notion seems quite far-fetched, it definitely got me thinking about where the industry will be in a few years’ time.

Amy managed to set up meetings with Talent Execs and MDs for me, which really gave me the push I needed to get my name out there and make new contacts. I’m really excited about what the next few months will bring and hope that I manage to find a job that enables me to balance my family life with work. I work as an AP or Production Coordinator, you can see my CV and contact details here when logged into Media Parents : http://www.mediaparents.co.uk/freelancers/11011/jenn-westlake

June 4, 2015 @ 1:20 pm Posted in News Comments Off

media parents mini back to work scheme delegates at Broadcast Creative Week

by Amy Walker

Media Parents is delighted to partner with Broadcast Creative Week for our latest Back to Work Scheme. Below are the latest successful Media Parents delegates who will be attending the conference days at BAFTA, learning and networking alongside Media Parents Director Amy Walker. Please contact us through www.mediaparents.co.uk if you would like to meet at the conference or would like to receive anyone’s CV.

alana baily, development producer

http://www.mediaparents.co.uk/freelancers/10458/alana-baily

An experienced development executive and producer, I enjoy working across a broad range of genres from documentaries and specialist factual to factual entertainment and formats.

I have developed ideas for all UK broadcasters as well as many US and European networks in previous roles at ITN Factual, Princess, BBC, Love, Ricochet, Optomen and numerous others.

My credits include the critically acclaimed presenter-led series ‘Reggie Yates: Extreme South Africa’ for BBC3, documentary single ‘How To Find The Perfect Flatmate’ for C4 and the award-winning BBC2 series ‘Climbing Great Buildings’.

I worked so hard to get into TV in the first place and I really love what I do – I think I appreciate it even more since I’m on a forced break from it – that I really don’t want to become another ‘mum who leaves television’ statistic. Whilst I’m incredibly keen to get back to work, I’m not prepared to sacrifice seeing my son during the week so am determined to persist with trying to find a part time position.

jenn westlake, AP / PC

http://www.mediaparents.co.uk/freelancers/11011/jenn-westlake

I am an organised, effective, hard worker with a wide skill set from assistant producing to coordinating to editing. I have experience working in the UK and Canada and am confident in setting shoots up abroad. I can turn my hand anything and enjoy having a varied role. I’m self motivated and equally happy being part of a team.

I have a one year old daughter and am initially looking for part time work until I am ready to go back full time. I have a baby at home who is obviously very important to me, but my career is also very important and after a year of being at home I’m really itching to get my teeth stuck into something. I am really struggling to balance the two at the moment, but am confident that with some coaching I can make it work.

Kirstin Cameron, Producer, Glasgow

Kirstin Cameron, Producer / AP

Timing as they say is everything and after years of trying, the joyful but unexpected arrival of my baby son has put my career progress from AP to Producer on hold. With the Television industry in Scotland being a small network, and therefore opportunities for new Producers limited, working away from home to pursue my goals would be the obvious solution but being away from my son who is still only 9 months old, isn’t feasible at this stage.  Limited opportunities, healthy competition, a lack of credits, poor confidence combined with parental guilt, is a terrible combination!

Growing pains of a new Media Parent aside, there are projects which I’m keen to pitch, Producing skills I would like to hone and after establishing a good reputation and collaborating on (I hope) exciting productions, ultimately I want to take the next step to Series Producing. I feel my adaptability, forward planning, problem solving and creativity have probably improved thanks to my son arrival but its time to put those skills to use outside of the home!

Kyra Beguiristain, Producer

http://www.mediaparents.co.uk/freelancers/8889/kyra-beguiristain

I am an experienced Producer who works across a wide variety of genres, from Current Affairs (the Tonight series) and Consumer (Rogue Traders, Cowboy Builders, Homes From Hell), to Fact Ent (Britain’s Secret Shoppers, A Place in the Sun), and primetime Features docs (The Day The Immigrants Left, The Town That Never Retired, Embarrassing Bodies), bringing a sound journalistic approach to every job I do. I have also worked in Development and I am a confident shooter.

One of my key skills is negotiating difficult access, with Government institutions such as the Ministry of Justice, Scottish Prison Service etc. as well as large multinational companies and NGOS. Very comfortable dealing with difficult contributors, in often extremely sensitive situations.

I enjoy working with complex legals and secret filming; very used to dealing with programme lawyers and compliance issues! I started off my TV career cutting News for BBC World; I am very keen to make use of that experience and would love to do more work in the edit!

NB: the large gap in my CV is due to taking a couple of years’ maternity leave!

Luke Jameson, shooting AP / vision mixer, Manchester

http://www.mediaparents.co.uk/freelancers/8439/luke-jameson

I have lots of experience in different areas of TV, radio and online production, including sport, fact ents, obs docs and Childrens TV.

I’ve recently qualified for and completed a Creative Skillset funded Vision Mixer training course at BBC Wood Norton, after directing (some vision mixed) over 40 hours of multi camera motor sport output for Motors TV in 2013.

I’d like to progress with Vision Mixing but would consider other appropriate opportunities. I could do with a little help to get me started.

Victor Schonfeld, PD

http://www.mediaparents.co.uk/freelancers/8516/victor-schonfeld

I have developed and researched, as well as written, produced and directed internationally acclaimed, award-winning documentaries with highly sensitive subject-matter and controversial viewpoints. Credits include ITV, Channel 4, BBC, etc.

I took a long break from documentary making for family reasons and to pursue other professional interests. I am now eager to resume documentary production, bringing my zest and proven high standards to big and small projects.

For more information and each freelancers’s CV and profile please see http://www.mediaparents.co.uk talent section.

Please join www.mediaparents.co.uk for great jobs, networking and events.

June 1, 2015 @ 4:10 pm Posted in News Comments Off

5 Minutes with Ian Marriott-Smith Dubbing Mixer/Sound editor

by Amy Walker

I found Media Parents recently and think it’s a great place to keep up with all the latest news and projects in the media world, writes Dubbing Mixer & Sound Engineer Ian Marriott-Smith. When I’m not at home looking after my daughter, I spend most of my time in post-production as a sound editor. Read on to see how Ian makes a portfolio career work, including working from home.

http://www.mediaparents.co.uk/freelancers/9048/ian-marriott-smith

My background started in 1996 in the commercials world as an engineer in the fabulous sound studios of Angell Sound in Wardour street, where I learnt how to create soundscapes and mix great audio with both the nicest and most demanding of clients and producers. I had a short stint in Scotland to see what the media world was like outside of London and had a great memorable year at Canongate studios in Edinburgh. Back to London after that and I joined Evolutions Post production for 9 years to mix long-form TV, Documentary, Comedy, Panel shows, Daytime shows and Light Entertainment, the most notable probably being QI, The Apprentice, Gladiators, Embarrassing Bodies, Timewatch and some BBC4 music documentaries.

Ian Marriott Smith showcases his freelance audio work on his website.

I took the leap in 2011 and became freelance (and got married in the same month!) and have been continuing post production audio work in most of the Studios around Central London, Soho and East London. It can get quiet sometimes when there are dips in the industry and productions slow down but luckily I also became a freelance photographer at the same time as becoming an audio freelancer and have some post production clients, business clients and work for the Oval and Surrey Cricket. Between these two careers I manage to keep myself fairly busy! I have built a Garden studio where I can tracklay and mix audio and also take photographs; my commute to work on some days is all of 30 seconds!

The tricky part of being a freelance dubbing mixer is balancing the amount of work I do at home (in Kent) and the amount of work I do in post production facilities, I can mix most projects at home as I have a pretty fast internet connection for file delivery and receiving media but it’s difficult to be away from the rest of the process as you can’t beat face to face interaction (even if that is down the pub after a job!)

Ian Marriott Smith's home studio.

It feels like an exciting time to be part of the industry at the moment, things seem to be changing extremely fast with software becoming cheaper and more and more broadcast platforms requiring content, it’s a little tricky keeping up with it all sometimes, but as long as I have a flexible approach to projects and keep up with all the latest technical standards and requirements I find things seem to work out pretty well.

http://www.marriottsmith.com

http://www.mediaparents.co.uk/freelancers/9048/ian-marriott-smith

@ 2:09 pm Posted in News Comments Off