HOW TO: Become a Professional Media Producer in Canada
Updated: Feb 13
SO, you wanna be a PRODUCER?
Media producers come in all shapes and sizes. If you make anything... and I mean ANYTHING then by definition you are a producer. However, there is a certain echelon, a level... a quality where a production becomes consumable, relevant and enjoyable, isn't there?
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The Blair Witch Project showed us that this line is a fluid one where an audience is willing to compromise visual quality for rich storytelling aspects. However, we cringe at a poorly shot film with bad sound and weak acting, so there is a line, let's be clear. Where that line is ends up being quite subjective, yet, a standard has emerged in the industry where in order to call yourself a "professional producer" you'll need to develop refined skills, a sharp eye AND ear, an ever-evolving business acumen and the willingness/ability/mania to check off a lot of boxes on countless to-do lists. So, sharpen your pencils.
To be a skilled producer is to understand what you and/or your audience wishes to see and make them not regret investing their time in your product. To be a great producer is to elevate you and/or your audience to new heights of understanding, elation, action, compassion, community, etc. This is a lot easier said than done. As a producer there are buckets of sweat-equity and many long hours that go into making a piece breathe. After all, as a producer you are either completely or partially responsible for every aspect of production from it's pre-development, through production and all the way until many years, even decades after the production is completed and distributed. So where do you start? What are some milestones? What skills should you be developing on your way to your first production(s)?
I'm Changing it up a bit.
In this entry I've decided to change things up a bit. Surprise, it's a #video! I had the lovely opportunity to sit down and discuss my producing journey with a former U of L classmate and current BCIT graduate, Bailey Bates. He had some great question that really made me think.
Bailey is, himself, delving into the world of production out in Vancouver, BC. He's a skilled actor, a kind and compassionate man and an ambitious creator with a lot of potential. Bailey used one of his final class projects as a welcome excuse to interview me and pick my brain regarding my journey towards becoming a recognized Canadian media producer with the CMPA (Canadian Media Producers Association). It was kind of nostalgic, reminiscing about where it all began and what led me to where I am today. Also, great to catch up with an old friend and share some wisdom.
Bailey asked 5 key questions that I feel any emerging producer should be asking themselves. I was happy to help out another passionate artist and old friend and I hope this recording provides a few anecdotes, take-aways and inspirations to propel other budding producers towards their next production or to take those first steps on their producing journeys.
without further ado...
Settle in for a 30 minute interview with Bailey and myself as we discuss the long and winding road I've travelled towards launching and operating HatChap Productions Inc.
I sincerely hope this video is helpful and leads to renewed inspiration and energy for your work. If you have any questions or just want to chat feel free to reach out in the comments down below or shoot me a message via email or a form on the site. I'm happy to answer your questions and do my part to build the next generation of media producers.
For more information about the CMPA (Canadian Media Producers Association) and how to join go to: https://cmpa.ca/