Just taken part in the BBC Academy Design Trainee Scheme application process – working with 2 other industry professionals, we spent 3 days looking through 337 submitted portfolios to get down to the final 20 for the next interview stage. Great experience and what a wealth of diverse talent out there! Good luck to everyone who applied. And if you have questions about how to pursue a career in design in film & TV, please listen to my podcast for the BBC’s College of Production, talking alongside Costume Designer Howard Burden and Make-Up Designer Catherine Scoble: listen here.
Now online is The Still Life Experience – here you’ll find posted weekly a very unusual diary of life in the Art Department on my current project ‘Still Life’. But unlike Chic Fun Gory Silly this is written entirely by the work experience volunteers we have each week – the job, unedited, through their eyes. It is an account of what they do and what they learn, intended as a way to share the realities of a first time working experience for other students and graduates. It is also a way to help me and other designers make sure placements are providing an honest real-world insight and the right education of set design. For all those thinking about careers in film & TV Production Design, I hope this inspires you and prepares you for your first steps in the industry.
It all starts in the final weeks of prep, just before tech recces begin…
RANDOM – Winner of Best Single Drama at the 2012 BAFTA TV Awards. Well done to everyone involved, a huge thank you to Debbie, Kate & Polly for giving me the opportunity to work on an inspiring and bold project, and heartfelt gratitude to my team: Set Decorator Jo Berglund, Construction Manager Russ Daly, Character Buyers Beck Rainford, Charlotte Cooke and Fiona Albrow.
Here’s a snapshot of my process as Designer on ‘Still Life’ – the Look Book that is issued to all HoDs and Art Dept. Some ideas have remained from my interview look book but the resources/restraints of the job have led me to a different aesthetic.
My last two jobs ‘Random‘ (Channel 4, dir. Debbie Tucker Green) and ‘Holy Flying Circus‘ (BBC, dir. Owen Harris) have been nominated for a TV BAFTA in the Best Single Drama category – the odds are looking good! Congratulations to everyone involved and especially to my fantastic art departments – I couldn’t have done it without you. Awards are on Sunday 27th May so keep your fingers crossed.
Incredibly excited about starting work on a new film by legendary producer & director Uberto Pasolini (Bel Ami, Machan, The Full Monty), to be shot in & around London, entirely on location in May-July. My team will be small & unconventionally structured – I will be crewing up very soon, so if you’re interested in being involved with the Art Department, please don’t email – just call on 07813 785457 & make an appointment to meet – the face-to-face approach is always best! Here’s a glimpse of my interview look book for which I created a real photo album rather than my usual document format:
Spending these two days with Lisa was an experience I will never forget and hope to take this renewed enthusiasm, self belief and new ways of seeing with me into the future – Richard Ward
I have recently created a 2-day bespoke career training session for the Designer & Art Director duo Allset, with the aim of building their professional confidence and developing a tailored strategy for a more successful career path. Whilst being well-established in the industry they felt they were a little stuck in the world of low-budget promos, idents and commercials and were keen to get noticed by bigger names to move up and work on dramas and film – so they called me for guidance & using my own experience in training for Art Dept & Design, I structured a private course to improve their prospects.
The feedback has been incredibly encouraging and I can’t wait to repeat the course for other creatives. The course featured personal branding & marketing, website appraisal, vocal confidence, methods of working, art dept structures, budgeting, leadership & becoming a visual entrepreneur. CLICK HERE to read what Richard & Paula of Allset said of their experience.
I’m working on Ade Solanke’s play ‘Pandora’s Box‘, to be directed by Ola Animashawun and opening on the 9th May at the Arcola Tent in Dalston, London. Click here to find out more & buy tickets. Set in Lagos, Nigeria, the designs will evoke a truth to the culture & landscape but emote a greater truth to the audience through a bold colour palette & sculptural interior. Here’s my first look book shown to both the director & writer. Am hoping also to collaborate with fantastic Contemporary Knot & Textile Designer Emily Hiller.