Meeting Topic: CRAS Graduate Panel
Moderator Name: Greg Steffus
Speaker Name: Joseph Jensen - Southern AV, AV Tech - Nashville Brian Armstrong - Supervising Sound Editor at Atomic Sound - LA Eric Rennaker - Bedrock LA, Engineer\Manager - LA Andrew Monheim - Andromiden Studios, Owner\Engineer - LA
Other business or activities at the meeting: N/A
Meeting Location: Conservatory of Recording Arts & Sciences 1205 N. Fiesta Blvd Gilbert Az 85233
Our students heard real life experiences from four successful CRAS graduates. We heard from people who went out into the world, and earned a name for themselves in the audio industry. Our guests shed some light some of the rises, and pitfalls of being a professional, shared stories, and gave us some very helpful tips on the fields we are about to enter based on what they have encountered.
One topic of discussion were Professionalism. Which was defined as being humble in your tasks, weather it be cleaning toilettes, scoring film, getting coffee, or producing a chart topping hit, your attitude is your reputation. Always be observant and stay informed, because deadlines for projects can change in a moment's notice, paying attention to detail, and always be prepared by assuming that nobody has done their job correctly, thus preparing you for any set backs. Communication is super important. Nothing will hinder your career faster than a lack of communication. Starting by advertising and representing your work with pride and confidence. You never know who you are sitting next to on a bus, or standing next to in line at any public place, and following up on possible job leads. Also, once you are hired for a job, keeping an open mind with how your client works. Be gentle with how you interact with them, do whatever necessary to get the best take you possibly can from the artist(s), be clear with how you speak, and always do some pre production before you begin a session. Maintaining relationships is the only way to keep a steady income, so chase your opportunity, and don't allow your name to be forgotten. Always be ready for the next level, always be ready and willing to make transitions, and do what you do to the absolute best of your ability, and never let 'em see you sweat. Keep a cool head under pressure, and know your role in studio politics.
Another topic covered was Finding work, between work. Keep organized, and know how you will pay rent when you are not working for a few months. Be open to freelance as often as possible. Competition is fierce, and now days anybody with a laptop is a producer/ engineer, set yourself aside from faux engineers by putting time and effort into pleasing your client. Like it or not, us as engineers, will eventually Encounter Failure at one point or another. At these moments, we learned that the best way to handle it, is gracefully. Own up to your mistakes, learn from them, and get right back up after you fall.
After a very informative presentation, we then had the opportunity to have a Q&A session with our grads, and hear a list of highlights throughout their careers, the benefits of joining a union, and the importance of constantly editing your resume as you progress.
Written By: Jim Naron