There I stood amidst the brumal weather. The immense weight of the camera system pressed against my arms but I did not feel it. An overwhelming joy flooded my entirety. I had longed for this moment since the first day of my internship. For on March 9, 2018, my vision, a once creative idea on a simple white piece of paper, now possessed life.
Vast fields of daffodils swept by in a yellowed blur. The clock read 10:30 am. I looked into the back our vehicle and admired the incredible amount of equipment. The car stopped in a residential driveway, and I stepped out, warm sunlight embracing my entrance.
Although I have been on a myriad of shoots with the promotions team, this shoot was different for two reasons. First, I had become familiar with the equipment, which allowed me to work efficiently and gave me confidence in setting up the gear. This revealed a simple truth.
Although I know film equipment, I always need to be learning different pieces equipment to expand my knowledge. By continually learning and understanding industry material, I can cultivate a more efficient shoot, ultimately serving the story.
Second, the news is often a dark industry ridden with heartbreaking stories. However, instead of promoting heavy stories, we shot an interview about a woman sharing her victory over an incurable disease. Never did I think that I would gain the opportunity to work on a redemptive story that would influence the lives of thousands watching the interview.
Simply, I had the chance to illuminate the darkness through the simple role of operating a camera.
A bluish glow highlighted the rim of my glasses. I stared at the computer. “How can I make this even better?” I thought. For the past eight weeks, I have been writing and producing a 30-second spot promoting WAVY’s lifestyle reporter, Symone Davis.
Although both Kristen and Mike loved the idea, the beginning of the script felt off. “You ready?” a voice called. I turned around to see Eric. “I think so, but would you mind looking it over with me?”
Although Eric had a plethora of projects that day, he looked through the script offering suggestions for improvement. After finalizing the details for the shoot for the next day, Eric walked me into our equipment room. Patiently, he showed me how to stabilize the camera system, which takes roughly hour to set up correctly.
One thing about this experience stood out.
Simply, Eric believed in my project. Yes, he could hijack my idea and completely change it. However, he didn’t. Instead, he gave me his time and experience to help my concept thrive. Such an experience was valuable. For instead of merely feeling like a lowly intern, Eric treated me as a fellow creative dreamer.
We waited. Then it happened. The sun moved behind a batch of clouds acting as our natural diffusion. With haste, I picked up the camera system and Symone took her spot on the bridge. “Action!” I called, and Symone walked towards the camera as I dollied backward.
Although keeping my thoughts on achieving proper framing, a sense of over-whelming pride flowed through me. I heard the lines that I had written. I saw the shot I had envisioned. My story is coming to life.
Never would I have imagined five years ago that I, a scrawny 17-year-old who never had created a video in his life, would see his idea spring to life and eventually air on television for a multitude of viewers to see.
And, though I drove to the shoot as a 21-year-old intern working as a Promotions Intern, I drove away as excited as that 17-year-old boy on the day that he discovered his love for storytelling.