Just under a year ago, I graduated from a BA Film and Animation course. Since graduating, I’ve been lucky enough to meet some great people and work on some fantastic stuff. But, whilst in thought the other day, I realised how much I would do differently if I could go back in time and start my three years again. So, I thought I’d share some thoughts on that note.

Get as much industry experience as you can

Make use of non-term times to gain experience with companies. Email companies/studios who interest you, call around, take on a couple weeks experience here and there. It’ll help you find what area you fit into best.

I interned with Raindance the summer before my final year and learned so much, that’s when I realised I should’ve done more. The experiences I’ve had since leaving university have really given me a true insight into the industry, I’ve made really great contacts and there were quite a few roles I never knew of!

Keep making short films

Experiment with different genre’s, work with different people, go out and about with a camera (even if its just a phone) and create things. It’ll help you with all kinds of techniques and make you a much more confident person.

I was always kind of too worried to do this, scared that I’d create something terrible, but later realised it doesn’t matter if it’s terrible. I guess it’s a time that you’re allowed to create things that aren’t so great. I definitely wish I made more < 5 minute films.

Go to as many networking events as possible

Meeting people with the same interests, people who have had tonnes of experience in their fields, people you could potentially work with, and keeping in contact with them is so vital. Everyone is super kind at these sort of events. Have confidence and remember that if they didn’t want to speak, they wouldn’t be there.

I didn’t do this at all until my third year, mainly due to the fear. But, now I’ve been to quite a few, I’m so much more confident in networking with people.

Build on social presence

It’s how people find you. Put your work out there, add people you meet and want to keep in touch with, write/talk about things you’re interested in, take advantage of Instagram, Twitter and Facebook groups, Hiive’s Swarms, Shooting People etc.I’m still trying to get to grips with being good at this, but know it helps and wish I started a while

I’m still trying to get to grips with being good at this, but know it helps and wish I started a while back!

Try a bit of everything and make full use of university facilities

Again, don’t be scared to just try things, even if the idea isn’t too great, it’s all a learning curve. I had such great facilities in the university I went to and really wish I took more advantage of these and taught myself as much as I could have. Don’t be hesitant.