“It’s the best education possible!”

Our intern, Duncan Fay, is learning a whole host of skills that are both useful to completing his Media Production degree at Bournemouth University, and to making his own films and getting a head start on a career. We had a quick chat over a coffee in the studio to find out how things were going.

“Working at FTH has given me access to so many ideas, techniques and approaches. Seeing how FTH run its productions so effectively has meant that I’ve modelled my own film-making in the same way – with the pre-production, physical production and post-production all planned and managed in a similar way. I’ve been able to gather so much insight on the correct way to do things within the commercial industry.”

The film industry is competitive, so it’s great to be able to help Duncan see how things work from both a commercial and creative point of view.

“I have been involved on a lot of FTH projects over the last six months, and loved every second! For me, the highlights include my first ever production with them, working with De’longhi shooting a video for their latest coffee machine. This was a real eye opener, and I felt that even running or being a production assistant is something you can’t teach – you actually have to do the job. I was awful the first time, because I had no idea what I was doing! But everyone here has been so supportive, taking their time to show me and talk me through things.

On the latest shoot with Raymond Blanc, I was the Assistant Camera Op and Production Assistant. I looked back at that first shoot with FTH and thought how far I had come – my confidence has grown a lot. In fact, I’ve been a runner on a few sets outside of FTH recently, but since they taught me the basics, I always follow their guidance, and I owe that small yet HUGE success to them, no matter where I am.”

We are so pleased that Duncan feels he’s learned practical skills that he can go on to use in his career. For us, making videos is about the perfect blend of process and creativity. So understanding that a great process can keep things efficient without compromising on the creativity of the story or the shoot is really important.

We wondered what other skills Duncan feels he’s learned here…

“I have gained so many useful skills with FTH. In particular my people skills and confidence.

I have also had the privilege of using their cameras, like the Sony FS7 and Sony A7iii. These cameras are massive and very complex so take a while to master, but going home, doing my own research and asking the guys questions about it hopefully means I’ll get to use one on a shoot one day. I am still learning more and more every time they get me involved with stuff.”

So, all things considered, would Duncan recommend that students do an internship if they can?

“Doing an internship is single-handedly the best decision I could have made to progress my education and career. I came to FTH thinking I would just sit in the corner and just watch what they do. But I had an interview with Dan and Matt and they were so keen to get me involved, and help me with my education despite their very busy schedules. Nearly six months down the line, I have progressed so much – in fact I even sat in a lecture last week thinking to myself, I already know all this stuff, all thanks to FTH.

When I become the Director I want to be, my FTH t-shirt will be framed and up alongside all the other awards I plan to win. So yes, be pro-active and go looking for an internship – it will all pay off. There is so much more to learn.”

It’s so great for us to be able to give Duncan a taste of practical film-making and to see his passion – and his ambition – grow. We’re looking forward to the freebie set passes when he’s in Hollywood!

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