Appendix

Appendix 2018-06-19T05:31:33+00:00

Interview Preperations

Before I start the interview with each interviewee I must first tick off the following checklist to make sure the invitee has value to bring to my research:

  • The interviewee should not be on a payroll, or have a steady income from a salaried employment at a company or for a supervisor
  • The interviewee should have his/her own company or should be actively working as a freelancer
  • The interviewee should successfully be earning a living and remain cost-effective with his/her business
  • The interviewee should not be tied to one specific location to be able to perform his/her duties
  • The interviewee should be actively living his/her current digital nomad lifestyle for at least a year
  • The interviewee should be willing to openly talk about his/her business on the record for the sake of this research

If the invitee checks of all boxes, making him/her suitable to be an interviewee, I can move on to the actual interview. I will first introduce myself and explain a little bit about the interview and its’ goals and function. To make sure the interviewee understands my questions correctly I will ask him/her to first watch a 9-minute video on YouTube that explains the Canvas Business model in a clear and brief way. After that I will turn on the recording on my IPhone and inform the interviewee that the interview has officially started.

  • Demographic
    1. What is your full name?
    2. What is your age?
    3. What is your nationality?
    4. What is your gender?
  • Canvas related
    1. Value proposition
      1. What product or service are you selling?
      2. What problem are you solving?
      3. What need are you fulfilling?
    2. The customer
      1. Who are your customers?
      2. Why would they buy from you?
      3. How does the typical persona look like?
    3.  Channels
      1. How does the product get to the customer?
    4. Customer relationships
      1. How do you get customers?
      2. How do you keep the customers?
      3. How do you grow the customers?
    5. Revenue streams
      1. How do you make money from each customer?
      2. What strategy are you using to sell product/service?
      3. What is the pricing you are using for your products/services?
    6.  Resources
      1. What are the most important assets for your business to keep running?
        • Financial
        • Physical
        • Intellectual
        • Human
    7.  Partners
      1. What resources are you acquiring from each partner?
      2. What activities are your partners going to perform?
    8.  Activities
      1. What are the most important things you need to do for your business to keep running?
    9.  Costs
      1. What are the costs to operate your business model (for activities, partners, and resources)?
        • Most important costs
        • Most expensive resources
        • Most expensive activities
      2. What are the fixed costs?
      3. What are variable costs?
  • Remaining Sub Questions
    1. In your experience, what AV- or creative markets have the most demand for freelancers like you?
    2. In your experience, what AV- or creative markets already have an overly saturated supply of freelancers like you?
    3. Do you have a project coming up where you will collaborate with other (creative) freelancers and alliances? If so, do you think it will be possible for me to run along for a day in the context of a different sub question of my research?
    4. Did you ever experience any technical difficulties or malfunctions of your equipment while working in extreme climates?
    5. What is your favourite country you’ve worked in?
    6. What is your least favourite country you’ve worked in?
  • Personal Questions
    1. What is your favourite project you’ve worked on?
    2. What is your least favourite project you’ve worked on?

Interview Results

Date: 04-01-2018, 19:46
Method: Skype Conversation
Location: Bali / Australia
Audio Recording: https://vocaroo.com/i/s0w1zngS28dG

Personal Information

Name: Paven Gill
Nationality: Australian
Gender: Male
Age:
Company: Sonder Films
Contact: https://www.facebook.com/SNDRfilms/?ref=profile_intro_card

Answers to Sub-Questions

-AV markets: Every market has a lot of demand, depends on how you deliver your product, especially in the creative market. Though he thinks every market is overly saturated, but with low quality products/services.

-Technical Issues: No experience

-Countries: Japan and Australia, no favorite

Answers/Notes to Person-Oriented Questions

-He only posts his best work on his Instagram, and saving up on his unused footage to later use it in behind the scenes or tutorial videos

-He is active on multiple social media channels (YouTube, Facebook, Instagram & Vimeo), and divides his content on these channels

-He is not really travelling, and would use a different approach if he would be travelling more

-Striving to work for environment saving companies (tesla etc) in a creative way

-Tip: Find local artists who are on their way of becoming big, contact them and work with them, and become their go to ‘video guy’

-Gear: Sony A7R2 + Zhiyun crane + 14mm 2.8f + 35mm 2.8f (Sony A7R2 sensor allows cropmode, which gives the possibility to make one lens wider)

-Get to the customer with the sentence: I can bring value to you guys, would you be down to do something? Start doing it for free, post it on Instagram, people can see what you can do and next time they need to pay

Conclusion

My main conclusion business wise is that apparently he is able to work on projects he likes, and works completely on his own. Even though he is not (yet) living from his videos alone, he has shown me that he still keeps close to his vision and passion without being too commercially influenced.

Furthermore he has shown me that he achieves this by keeping a close and personal relationship with his customers. This helps to keep his customers excited about his work and vision, making it easier to push his vision to the customers.

Paven also has a good experience with the Zhiyun crane, which helps me make the right decision for what gimbal I should buy.

He also made me realize that maybe I should rethink the gear I’m shooting with, as mine is not really lightly packed. This will make it difficult to travel a lot with it. So I have to rethink what my goal is, how much I expect to travel and how I can optimize my gear for that. So maybe I should think of a way in which I can minimize the amount of lenses I use, as I’m using 3 right now.

Another thing I realized after this conversation is that maybe I should invest in a better speed booster for my camera, as the one I have now disables the connection between the lens and the body, making it impossible to use the internal stabilizer of the lenses.

Paven’s social media channels have a structure and a division between what he posts where. Currently I only have one social media channel that I use, and maybe I should think of a different approach to reach the maximum results that help me to reach my goals.

My final conclusion from this interview is that in this field of working its apparently prevailing to first offer work for free, in order to get noticed and be able to next time ask for money. And one good way to start offering work is to ask them how I can deliver value for them.

Date: 05-01-2018, 19:58
Method: Real life conversation
Location: Oka’s Bakery in Bali
Audio Recording: https://vocaroo.com/i/s0KdrXMmogUz

Personal Information

Name: Lexington Stanley
Nationality: English
Gender: Male
Age:
Business: Dazzled Ship
Contact: https://dazzleship.com

Answers to Sub-Questions

-AV markets: The creative industries are a bit saturated because it’s easier to make stuff now. But if you do your work well, you stand out and add value to yourself, which makes you high in demand.

-Technical Issues: Experienced that his computer really needs to be in an air-conditioned room while working to keep the GPU cool.

-Countries: Has worked in UK, America, Portugal, Bali, Thailand. Favourite is Bali. Personally didn’t like Thailand that much.

Answers to Person-Oriented Questions

– Has set up a company called Dazzle Ship, been running for 5 years and based in the UK. Started from him being a freelancer, grown into a company to form teams and accept bigger projects. Currently specialized in 3D motion graphics. It started as a full service agency, but turned out to be too stressful and he focussed more on what he likes most: 3D.

-The more services you offer with your company, the more managing tasks and energy it needs to keep the company running.

-Made a music video for Addison Groove, purely out of hobby, didn’t get any money for it. He knows the guy personally. Did gain him some exposure and boosted his profile. Opened some doors for him. Actively submitted to loads of film festivals, and got into a couple.

Conclusion

Based on Lexington’s experiences, I think I should think really well about what services or products I really want to offer before I start freelancing. I now think it’s better to refrain to a certain set of values instead of trying to offer nearly everything in the creative field. This is because every creative service or product asks for a different approach, structure and mind-set for creating. The more services I offer, the more time I’m spending managing everything instead of actually doing it.

Even though I already knew it, Lexington also made me re-think the value of time in a career, especially as a freelancer/entrepreneur. It took him quite a while to even be able to focus on what he wants to do the most, working only on 3D motion graphics. He had to endure some projects he really didn’t like, with some clients that gave him lots of stress. He had to grow his company and take some directions that later turned out to be directions he didn’t want to go to.

In his experience, music videos are not highly profitable, but also mentioned that he doesn’t enough experience with it to state it as a fact. So far I can conclude that the biggest value music videos can bring for me is exposure and opening doors to new opportunities. This makes me think if it might be just a matter of pushing trough and keep making music videos until enough people discovered my talents and revenue starts building up.

And finally Lexington gave me the idea that it isn’t that hard for European citizens to start working as a freelancer in the USA, even though it might seem impossible to get in there. This is good for me as my end goal is still to be working in the USA for big music artists. He also mentioned Bali to be his personal favourite place to work at so far, helping me decide what my top 3 of countries to work in will be.

Date: 07-01-2018, 11:55
Method: Real life conversation
Location: Ubud, Bali
Audio Recording: https://vocaroo.com/i/s1IE49xVXWap

Personal Information

Name: Daniel Afreelancehuman Cosmic
Nationality: Australian
Gender: Male
Age: 32
Business: A Freelance Human
Contact: www.instagram.com/afreelancehuman

Answers to Sub-Questions

-AV markets: Vila (or even expensive hotels) videos are pretty much non payed, as they are all for exchange/barter deals (in Bali at least). Retreats have a high demand for AV services.

-Technical Issues: Humidity/mold issues for lenses, he wants to fix that with dryboxes.

-Countries: Australia, UK, Bali, USA

Answers to Person-Oriented Questions

-He has a set of different packages to choose from, depending on what the customer wants. His bare minimum is just a 1-3 hour shoot and he gives them the files in an organized and spotted time line with the best shots and a DJ set, no further editing. This specifically works really well for Instagram profiles/brands looking for content.

-Thinks there is great value in sponsorships of big brands in videos. Product placement in artistic and qualitative (music) videos. For example a jewellery brand paying for a complete shoot for a music video with the watches being placed in the video.

-Lets customers pay 50% up front and 50% on completion

Conclusion

What inspired me most about this conversation is that Daniel made it clear to me that it’s possible to stick to your own style and vision while working as an AV-freelancer. He translates his personality and his cosmic energy into pretty much all of his work, and you see that in his products. His videos are almost identical to how I see him as a person, and this happily makes me realize that I don’t have to be afraid to become too commercially oriented to become profitable with what I do.

Instagram really works well for finding customers, showcasing a little of your work, but not as a main channel for my best and artistic work. Vimeo works better for building portfolio and gaining followers on the artistic side. Instagram should really be used with a business approach.

As a freelancer I should start thinking in packages to offer to the client. This helps the client to choose and decide for what they want, and this helps me to keep a nice overview of what I (can) offer.

Probably the best practical idea Daniel gave me is to start offering footage without any editing, but just in a organized timeline with the bad parts cut out of it. This allows brands and influencers to get a lot of footage to use, with minimum effort from my side. And most of the time these brands and influencers aren’t even interested in a high quality edited video for a huge price, they just want loads of semi-quality content to post.

And finally after this conversation I think I should be investing more time in finding out what the possibilities are regarding sponsorships and placed products to fund the more creative and artistic videos I want to make. It will also help to include an influencer with a big reach to get these brands to sponsor the videos.

Date: 25-01-2018, 16:05
Method: Real life conversation
Location: Canggu, Bali
Audio Recording:

Personal Information

Name: Yoeri Stor
Nationality: Dutch
Gender: Male
Age: 31
Business: Enterprise Media
Contact: https://enterprisemedia.tv

Answers to Sub-Questions

-AV markets: According to him in a place like Amsterdam there is lots of competition amongst AV producers, but in a digital nomad place like Bali the AV markets are still in high demand. After movies are also pretty overly saturated (at least in Amsterdam)

-Technical Issues: Lens swaps are dangerous in tropical climates, better to do in airco spaces. He said he used to hold the lens to an airco system to let the condensation go away, or even spit on the lens.

-Countries: USA, Portugal, Ibiza, Philippines, Bali, Germany, and France

Answers to Person-Oriented Questions

-He managed to build his really successful business straight from the ground, with no relevant education. He started this by bluffing his way into the business and really actively reaching out to festivals to make after movies. He didn’t even have experience with making videos, but quickly worked his way up, trusting on the snowball effect of clients bringing him new clients.

-His path of growth gave him a lot of experience, and can be divided in the chapters: Aftermovies > branded movies > and now he is working his way a bit more to personal interests like spiritual and personal development videos.

-His company name has changed multiple times, solely for the reason to make the name sound more like the kind of services and products he offered at that time.

-For the first two years of the existence of his company he mainly stayed in the Netherlands, building his company with Dutch customers. Only recently he started to work remotely.

-Has a website but doesn’t use it a lot, thinks Instagram might be more important these days

-He has a different point of view on his financial situation of his company that ive seen so far. He calculates all of his personal expenses into the cost structure of the company. I think he has a lot better understanding of how cost structures of a business works and how the taxes for example work.

-His approach for trying to become digital nomad is to first take a few big assignments to earn a lot of money, so he can use that as a buffer so he is able to travel for a few months without even earning any money, so the pressure is not that big to find customers there right away.

-With big assignments he uses proxys to edit. The people who made the footage can make proxy files of the footage and then edit with the lower resolution files and send the project file back to let them make the export.

Conclusion

Yoeri showed me that an education is pretty much a luxury in this field of working, and it can be done just as well, or maybe even better, without being schooled for it. This doesn’t mean that I regret my education, because I did learn a lot from it. But it did made me realize even more that once I will start working with clients and not have the burden of school tasks constantly bugging me, I can quickly rise to the top of my game like Yoeri did.

I’ve also heard it before, but after this conversation I really concluded that a website isn’t that important anymore these days for creative freelancers. Most work can be showcased on other platforms and social media that mostly even offer a lot more views and engagement. And social media often brings in a lot more new clients than a website will. So right now, especially for someone who is not that tech-savvy with building and maintaining websites, a website feels pretty much a waste of time, energy and money to me.

As my conclusion for this research is slowly forming, I’m starting to crave more to a structure and a leading figure that will help me quickly gain lots of experience and build my network. Whether this will be through a company I work at full-time or a good partner that I work a lot with is not yet clear to me. But after learning from Yoeri I am playing with the idea that it might be interesting for me to ask him if I could become one of his partners/freelancers.

One of the things he helped me to understand is that it’s quite usual to earn money over rental of equipment and hiring freelancers. This works by telling the customer who is paying, that the price of rental is slightly higher than it actually is. This could even be justified by the argument of the time and trouble it will take to go out and get the equipment at the rental studios etc. He also ads 10% of unforeseeable costs to the invoice and sometimes earns money on this too.

And finally a valuable lesson is that working in the after movie market might not be as profitable as I would wish, but it could really help my exposure, network and experience go up really quickly.

Date: 15-02-2018, 20:37
Method: Real life conversation
Location: Made Bali Guesthouse
Audio Recording: https://vocaroo.com/i/s0Hkepmv1zns

Personal Information

Name: Jade Morssinkhof
Nationality: Dutch
Gender: Female
Age: 23
Company: Jade Morssinkhof Films
Contact: http://instagram.com/jademorssinkhof

Answers to Sub-Questions

-AV markets: Online sale videos are in high demand according to Jade, and she thinks that here in Bali there is far less competition compared to the Netherlands. Influencers are generally giving high demand of content and also have big budgets.

-Technical Issues: Has experience with camera breaking down, sent to repair and got the result that it was because of salt vapour from the beach reaching the inside of the camera.

-Countries: Cape Verde, Sri Lanka, Indonesia (Bali). She heard about speculations of a new visa being introduced especially for digital nomads in Thailand for 6 months.

Answers to Person-Oriented Questions

-Started her freelance career with a good deal with Cowork Paradise, after her reaching out on cold leads (emailing companies) if she can work for them. The deal allowed her to make a promo video for that company in return for a flight ticket and expenses for the first month in Bali. This company also gave her lots and lots of new leads and clients.

-She was capable of making some good investments because she worked at a full time job for some time before she started her freelance career.

-Noticed in December and January that she didn’t have a lot of income or customers asking to do business. She experienced that the amount of work fluctuates pretty much throughout the year.

-Experienced that cold recruitment of clients through email works every time to get things moving. For example touring companies around Europe were really positive and wanted to take her around for 2 weeks in return for a video

-She made pretty smart deal with a Dutch company that allows her to go out to different countries to make a short video about eating culture there. She does this every 60 days and the company pays for expenses and travel costs, and also an hourly rate for her services. This 60 days interval is especially clever because this allows her to make her visa runs while working every time, saving her a lot of money.

-According to Jade’s friend Travis, influencers on Instagram with 50k followers or less, mostly don’t ask for money to be in a video yet, as they are still building their profiles and need content to become a big influencer, these influencers might also be wanting to pay to be in a video. Anyone above 50k followers generally asks for money to be in a video.

Conclusion

The girl who inspired me to come to Bali in the first place, also fuelled my excitement for Bali once again by making me realize that working as an AV freelancer around Bali these days is actually a strategically strong move. As there is little to no competition here and lots of markets to chose from with a lot of demand. And from all markets, the influencers on Instagram are probably the best one, given the fact they often have a lot of money to budget into projects, and are looking for a lot of content. Not even mentioning that Bali is constantly renewed with more influencers, coming and going.

Furthermore, Thailand seems like a better place to work at after this conversation. I already had my eyes on Thailand as its already pretty known for a good environment for digital nomads. But as Jade introduced me to a possible new visa option specially created for digital nomads, this place got more interesting. I need to research into this further though.

Jade also helped me think about what times are most profitable around here, and told me that December and January can be pretty difficult to get a steady income in. I’m going to have to take this in consideration when planning my expenses.

I don’t have experience with reaching out to companies yet, and to be honest never really felt like it could be a time efficient way of finding work. But Jade told me that approaching companies with cold leads (emailing them) in bulk sizes will actually almost always yield a good result for at least a couple of companies.

Another smart thing that Jade does is that she found a way to integrate her visa runs with a paying job for a company. This allows her to save a lot of money on visa runs that she had to do anyway already. I should keep this in mind, and hopefully find a company that I can offer the same deal to.

And lastly Jade gave me the idea to research a little more into royalty free music. As the music of my videos will probably become an issue on its own, with dangers of copyright infringement if I don’t pay for the music. But often there is no budget to pay for the music. Royalty free music could solve my problem in some cases, and according to Jade some services sometimes offer free packages of royalty free music to use in commercial ways.

Date: 19-02-2018, 18:54
Method: Skype conversation
Location: Bali / Berlin
Audio Recording: https://vocaroo.com/i/s1bvNonlHKlO

Personal Information

Name: Anna Pesavento
Nationality: German
Gender: Female
Age:
Company: N/A
Contact: http://www.annapesavento.com

Answers to Sub-Questions

-AV markets: a lot of demand for full time video producers (especially in berlin)

-Technical Issues: Take a good insurance for equipment

-Countries: Serbia, France, Netherlands, Germany, and Mexico.

Answers to Person-Oriented Questions

-Has a decently long and quite successful history of working (and studying) experience in the field of AV working. Giving her lots of experience and a big network in the right industry for her (music and video). She worked at a company called Native Instruments, in the marketing department.

-Works in a company that acts like a production company, but isn’t registered yet, because of a minimum amount of funding/revenue. Bit in this company she shares work with other AV producers. Besides this she also works as a private freelancer, and mostly gets hired by networks to do camera work.

-There is a pretty big difference in the working flow between working as an editor for a client and working as an editor for a director

-Has some experience with getting projects funded, although mostly the tasks to get the projects funded were run by other people around her. Her experience with working gave her a good reference or what prices she can ask.

-She uses a hackingtosh to keep the OS of apple, but use a lot cheaper hardware.

-Kunstlersozialklasse is a German institute she uses that allows artists who are self-employed in Germany to get funded for half her insurance as a freelancer.

-Crewunited offers her a platform to showcase her work and to reach out to her.

-She has been getting some really cool assignments just because she showcased some of her personal non-commercial work online.

-She sometimes uses a structure where she promises a small percentage of her revenue (5%) to existing customers if they recommend her to a new client. This works especially well to get big assignments with a lot of budget.

-Native instruments works a lot with artist feature videos to sell product, instead of in your face marketing videos. These videos also offer lot more interesting videos to make.

Conclusion

I already wrote a little about this in the post about me meeting Anna in Singapore, but my most valuable lead of thought from this conversation was that it might be a much better choice to start with working full time for a European company to gain experience and network before I start as a freelancer. If I do this, I also found out that I might be able to get a funding for start-up freelancers in Germany, but I have to research into that. Germany also seems to offer me some really good opportunities, as there is a lot of demand for full time AV producers according to Anna. I’m already speculating moving to Berlin for some time after my graduation, and this has certainly helped me to push in that direction. If I can find an interesting company that also works with artist features (like Native Instruments) instead of in your face commercials, I could really be onto the right steps for my career. And in the perfect scenario I would also be accepted for a Kunstlersozialklasse funding by the German government. But these are all things for me to further research once I actually go to Berlin.

Regarding my sub-question about technical issues with extreme climates Anna gave me a new perspective that I haven’t heard before, disregarding its simplicity. Her solution to this problem is to simply get a good insurance for the equipment she uses. Besides that I should of course still take good care of my equipment, but it eliminates some forms of stress and could answer my sub-question in a different way.

And finally Anna helped to become more familiar with Hackingtosh systems to replace a fully apple product, though this is still something I need to research into and I’m not sure if this is actually a good choice for my hardware set-up.

Notes on Field Research

Dojo Bali Coworking is a well-known co-working space located in Canggu, Bali, and offers lots of extras besides good Internet. One of them is the ability to meet other entrepreneurs, freelancers and digital-nomads. Today Dojo offered a workshop called Mastermind, and I decided to join it for my research. The idea of the workshop is to get together and share a problem that you are currently struggling with professionally, after which everybody has the opportunity to share ideas, tips and visions together in order to solve said problems.

As this was my first time attending an event like this I decided to share a problem and see what results it will give me. As I felt my research so far has been really focussed towards the commercial side of my working field, I tried my luck a little to push it towards the artistic side, where I eventually want to be working in mostly.

To start, 4 questions were given, to establish a general idea of the problem per person. After a small introduction of everybody attending the people who wanted to share a problem recited their answers to the questions. Mine were as following:

What are you working on?

I’m trying to find out how to earn money with my artistic vision. My end goal is to be lucrative purely with artistic (music) videos. I’d have to start more commercially, but I still don’t see the bigger picture of how to become an artist.

What’s working?

My editing and video skills are developing and being appreciated a lot.

What’s not working?

Getting a big audience

Understanding how I can earn money with it

What do you need help with?

Maybe getting in contact with someone whom is successfully doing it already

The feedback I got on my problem was actually really helpful and constructive. As each person only had 5 minutes to receive advice, the points are pretty concise, but helpful nonetheless:

-Put my videos on Vimeo, make the transfer to that channel as its much more focused on the niche of video art than Instagram is.

-Make something special for a channel I’d like to get attention from.

-Put more energy into actually meeting likeminded successful artists, ask their route of success. Spend a whole day of sending out cold leads and email at least 100 inspiring people I’d like to learn from.

-First find and build a good audience: 1000 people that will do anything for you, after that everything will be easy.

Finally I got in contact with 2 really interesting leads that can bring me in contact with organizers of big film festivals for a film I made and want to release at a film festival. I got their contacts and reached out to them.

5th of February 2018 – by Vadim Popowsky

Today I attended a lecture in the Dojo co-working community about social media tools and hacks for marketing. I attended this course to hopefully get some more answers and insights regarding my sub-question about the tools that are essential for a digital nomad, especially since its so important to sell your own products on social media these days.

The following is a sum-up of the notes I took and the tips I got from the lecture:

  • Co-schedule, Hoot-suite: tools to manage more than one social media channel
  • Only apps Vadim still uses and validates are ‘follow cop’ and ‘snoopreport’
  • Most of Instagram bots and apps are dying out because of Facebook taking over with the API’s being more closed and removing a lot of possibilities to gain information and collect statistics and data for the apps
  • Buying likes and followers is still possible, though maybe not the most successful way of gaining validated followers anymore
  • Facebook is still a pretty big platform that a lot of people use, maybe I should invest more time into finding out if I should grow a Facebook page. Toolkit for Facebook extension is a tool that allows you to easily post and manage multiple groups and events
  • Steem social is an app designed to gain followers on instagram, but one attendant of the lecture pointed out that it incudes the option to automatically send out Direct Messages on Instagram to whoever likes your content. I could add a personal message to for example ask them to share my profile if they like it. This might bring more interaction with my followers

Personal conclusions:

After the lecture I realized how I was surrounded with entrepreneurs with companies that often have pretty big audiences and customer pools to work with. I might be wrong for the future, but right now it feels like they are focussing on a much more commercial and bigger approach to their products and services than I want/need to do. I think that the phase I’m currently in with my products doesn’t ask for a huge marketing operation to get noticed. So investing a lot of time and energy in the usage of social media bots and hacks to gain audience does not have the highest priority right now.

Even though it would be nice to gain a much bigger audience as an artist, it would mean that I would have a full time job to get the marketing strategy working. And because of me working alone and not having the capital to outsource this yet, this seems to me like something I should not put too much energy in just yet. In stead its more important to me to organically let my social media platforms grow as I’m currently already doing, and in the meanwhile focus on creating content.

During my visa run in Singapore I met a woman named Anna Pesavento. We met on 19th of January at 16:45 pm local time. I first saw her in the lobby of the Marina Bay Sands hotel. I saw she was using the same camera as I’m using and I was curious what she was working on. We started talking and she actually turned out to be of great value for my research. Here are my notes of the conversation:

  • I was happy to see her using the same camera as mine, proved to me that my camera is a good camera for professional video productions
  • She used a prime lens and told me she almost always uses prime lenses and recommended me to get experienced with these kind of lenses more
  • The stabilizer she used was a Zhiyun crane and she was very happy with it
  • She has finished 2 film related studies: Bachelor of Filmmaking arts and the annual post-secondary Entertainment Business Management Program at the Vancouver Film School
  • She is heavily focussed and passionate about documentary filmmaking
  • She has experience as cinematographer/filmmaker in the following countries: America, Austria, Canada, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Serbia, Spain, UK.
  • She has had a screening of a short film at the film festival Oberhausen

But perhaps the most valuable lesson I got from the conversation was that she had worked at the German company called Native Instruments. She was the fixed video producer for the company and has done many productions for it. She told me she had gained a big network because of that and a lot of experience that helped her to do what she does now. This made me realize that for me it might be a better choice to first work for an interesting company that can offer me the room to improve my skills and network before I start as an entrepreneur travelling the world. She is currently setting up as a travelling freelancer like I’m trying to do. But the difference is that she is a lot older and has a lot more experience and a bigger network to begin with. This conversation made me think about the possibility of me making it myself very difficult by starting with this entrepreneurship way too early.

I asked Anna if she would be interested in helping me by letting me interview her about her business model for my research, and she agreed.

When starting up this research, one of the things I found to be important was to find out how co-operations worked if multiple freelancers and creative people got together to collaborate on projects. I have been working on a lot of projects, but pretty much all of them were personal projects without any other professionals involved. This resulted in the fact that I was heavily under-experienced regarding communication between people in professional projects, whether it is as a freelancer or as an employer at a company. I wanted to find out in what structures and with what agreements freelancers around me worked when they’d collaborate.

I approached this question with the intent of doing field research; I wanted to talk to freelancers to find my answers. I met Nicki Silvanus online after I posted a video I made in a Facebook group called ‘Canggu Community’. Nicki works as a freelancer and mostly gets jobs in the fashion and travel photography business. Her company is called Under a Palm Tree, and can be found at www.underapalmtree.co. She contacted me asking to collaborate on a project, and I decided to use this opportunity to ask her some questions about such collaborations.

We met in front of a club called Pretty Poison on February 24th, at 8:00 a.m. to shoot Jen (@theincrediblejen), for a clothing brand Nicki had contact with. Jen is a model and she happily agreed to be photographed if she could get a few pictures in an outfit of her choice as well. While the photo-shoot took place, I gave myself the task of shooting some behind the scene shots with the Boomerang app for Instagram. While we worked together I talked with Nicki and asked her about her experiences of the structures and agreements in collaborations like this. For example I tried to figure out how she would determine how the revenue of a project would be split up if she would collaborate with a different photographer.

Conclusion

In conclusion of this field research I noticed that its way too difficult to determine the structure of co-operations in creative projects as it turns out to be far too elaborate to successfully research. It’s depending on far too much factors in a collaboration to clearly be able to state how a co-operation would work exactly. All collaborations are different and are shaped by who would be part of the collaboration. And therefor the answer is fluid and can only be partially answered by actually experiencing the collaborations first-hand. I concluded that spending time and energy into finding out how collaborations would work, would be too much waste of time during my research, since I am going to find this out automatically once I actually start participating in the creative markets as a travelling AV-freelancer.