Most of us have heard about how it’s cheaper and easier to make content these days. There is also an increasing need to be versatile and up to date with the latest gadgets to stay in the game.

So how does a filmmaker stand out from the rest and make a regular income off this increasingly competitive environment?

Well, Mark Marchand, Canterbury Filmmaker thinks there’s a simple answer.

How did you become a filmmaker? Was it a hard grind or did you fall into it?
It was sort of a natural progression for me. I studied graphic design and visual communication with a strong interest in photography also.

The interest and skills in photography slowly became more film & video focused, as cameras like the 5D mkII came out and I’ve been operating in this field ever since.

If you had to explain what you do to a 10 year old. What would you tell them?
“I make movies”. They would then immediately look at me with a glow in their eyes, as if I directed the latest Transformers movie. I’d then just roll with their assumption.

“They would then immediately look at me with a glow in their eyes as if I directed the latest Transformers movie.”

What sort of projects do you work on? Anything we would have heard of?
I mainly work in the commercial & corporate realm directing and shooting everything from TVCs to videos for trade shows and web advertising etc. I’m just finishing up a music video for Elly which was funded through NZ on Air so you may see that pop up soon.

Is there a character stereotype for the job you’re in?
Not really. I find this industry has a broad range of personality types from many different walks of life. One thing that runs consistently with us all is our obsession with new gear!

“…the trick is not to put too much importance on all that though.”

How has your part of the industry changed since you started?
The evolution of the technology and accessibility to it has been huge in the last 5 years. I think it’s given a lot more people the opportunity to develop and push their style and also get it seen easily.

Professional grade equipment is a lot more affordable which is awesome, the trick is not to put too much importance on all that though and focus on developing a visual style and using that to tell compelling stories.

What do you think is the future of your industry and how will it affect the people working in it?
There seems to always be a focus on the technology side of things. What’s the latest and greatest, and the old “Oh that camera only does 4K? My iPhone can do that”.

Story and the craft of filmmaking always prevail and I’m sure that will continue. I think the essence of filmmaking will stay the same and the technology we use has changed and will continue to change and that’s fine.

“The ability to visualise something based on someone’s description is pretty key.”

What equipment are you currently using and why?
I managed to get my grubby mitts on one of the first URSA mini Pros from Blackmagic Design. I’m loving this camera due to all the functionality it offers and the beautiful image quality for such an affordable price. It’s a great workhorse.

What do you think makes a good filmmaker?
A good imagination. The ability to visualise something based on someone’s description is pretty key. Also being adaptable is crucial. I’ve never worked on a set where everything went to plan. There are a lot of variables in filmmaking so being able to adapt to a changing situation is really important.
For someone wanting to do what you do, what is your advice?
Always have a personal project on the go. Something that develops your own style. This is something I’m consciously trying to do more now as it keeps you excited about what you do.
Why did you join Freelance Directory?
As a freelancer I want people to be able to find me easily. Freelance Directory seems like a great tool for doing that.