Daniel Stevenson

After almost 15 years in broadcast TV, I found myself craving some variety. The long haul of TV productions didn't lend itself to innovation or the pushing of creative boundaries, it's full of great people and is fantastic ground for learning to tell a story - but it's a slow burn. I want to tell stories that rip through the internet creating ripples of interaction (and action!) behind it. Work that leaves viewers with something new - whether it's a new understanding, a new desire to contribute - anything that stays with them beyond their initial viewing. For me the beauty of short form comms lies in the word 'short'. Brevity is a hard marker - only the best ideas, the best writing, the best images, the best editing make the final cut - and they've all had to fight for their right to be there. There's nothing more satisfying than making something that has light and shade, colour and movement - something that just 'works.' In any project, collaborating with clients is where the magic really happens. No-one knows the finished video product better than they do, my job is to help them get there. The best clients are those that give clear direction, are prepared to try something new, who enjoy the creative process, enjoy problem-solving, and who welcome my contribution to their vision.

my core skills

video producing

script writing

producer-editing

shooting

interviewing

Q & A

Whats the best thing to happen to you in your career to date?

In 2016 I was given the opportunity to supervise the production of two one-hour episodes of the reality building show Alaska Flip 'n Move. This involved leading a team of around 30 crew over 6 weeks in Alaska. It was an incredible challenge both logistically and creatively in one of the most amazing locations I have ever been.

What does a typical work week look like for you?:

When I'm not on a paid gig I am either actively marketing myself to new potential clients or learning new skills and techniques. I treat freelancing as a 9-5er, sure there's flexibility where there isn't in full time work - however the rewards of freelancing (which I see as rapid creative development and network building) only occur when you take your role as you own boss and motivator 100% seriously.

Describe your working environment in a few sentences..

Currently I have carved out a home office with tonnes of plants, my desk sits beside a large window and the sun comes in all afternoon. I have designated areas for bookshelves, gear storage, and record keeping. I face a white wall where a Japanese print hangs above a couch, heater and shelf containing two Maiden Hair Ferns and an unidentified water lily!

What sets you apart from other freelancers in your industry?

I'm very transparent in my invoicing. I designate clearly what is being charged for gear hire, expenses, and then my rate. I also come to every job hoping to learn, as well as hoping to teach.

What are the tools of your trade?

I edit with the Adobe Suite - mainly in Premier and After Effects. When I shoot I use the Sony A7iii or the Sony FS7. I light with a Creamsource MINI+ or Kino Flo, two or three LEDs.

Do you collaborate with others? If yes, how does that works?

Yes - my last pro bono gig involved collaborating with a musician song writer and a graphic / motion graphic artist. I was the producer and director and collaborated with the designer to develop a visual technique to suit the client's message. From there I recorded a terrible song on my guitar with me singing, and sent it to the musician who rewrote it and made it amazing.

Whats been the biggest freelancing lesson to date?

Communication is key - I always try to keep it friendly and respectful, but at the same time it must be thorough and honest. Problems aren't problems unless they come as a surprise!

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