Whoosh! Whoosh! Whoosh!
Small pebbles flew into the air. Flecks of grass jettisoned towards me. There I kneeled moist dirt pressing against my jeans. I tightly held the camera attempting to keep up proper shot framing amid the harsh conditions. A red signal flashed on the camera- 3% of battery life remained. The furious wind quickened its’ pace. Closer. Closer. I never imagined this experience; but, here, in front me, it hovered-the WAVY 10 News Helicopter.
I sat in my very first collective promotions meeting. When I began my internship, the entire team found themselves amidst a producing storm for both the Super Bowl and Olympics. Although the Olympics are still going, the immediate rush drastically died. The entire promotions team sat at their desks as Kristen checked in on people’s projects. This was a tremendous learning experience. Even though everyone works on separate projects, Kristen communicated with the team collectively and further inquired about each person’s upcoming assignments. She even told the team her personal projects and took on extra work to get a spot done on time. Kristen displayed a strong example of leadership within a highly collaborative art by valuing each person’s work, providing feedback for improvement, and by assigning projects based on each person’s strengths.
As Simone finished her summary of her upcoming projects, Kristen turned towards me. “Zak, I’ve got a project for you,” she said. In addition to working on a commercial for Simone, Kristen asked me to work with the graphics department helping to catalog. Immediately, I corresponded with Marcos-a producer in the graphics department-and received the details about the massive project. My creative juices flowing, I went back to my desk and designed my own Excel sheet according to the specifications of the project. Even though an undertaking, I am thrilled to work on this project throughout the rest of my internship.
“Would you like to help out with an upcoming shoot?” Mike asked. “It’s a spot for our chopper.” I replied with an enthusiastic, “Yes!” Loading the Transit with gear, Eric, Jason, Rob, and I headed out to a small airport in Suffolk. Unloading the equipment, the WAVY 10 helicopter flew in and landed on a small strip. Greeting the new pilot, Eric, and Jason set up for an interview showing me their process. In addition to the interview, Eric and Jason also needed b-roll of the helicopter. I thought I would observe Jason and Eric. However, Jason handed me our second camera and said, “Just get wide coverage and Eric will get the primary close-ups.” Excited, I eagerly set up and filmed wide shots of the helicopter flying back and forth.
I have heard countless intern horror stories from a plethora of individuals. Interns, often, are glorified coffee runners. However, interning at WAVY is different. Instead of neglecting interns, Mike, Eric, Jason, Simone, Mark, Kristen, and the rest of the WAVY staff give me opportunities to grow professionally and intellectually. This week certainly solidified this aspect. Whether designing my own Excel sheet or operating a second camera for a large promotional shoot, each experience is an environment, in which I learn from my mistakes and take pride in my work. At the of the day, instead of being the one to give caffeine stimulants through coffee runs, I am the one being given intellectual stimulants through experience.