The Full Picture
Since I was 16 I have been essentially working. My mother had a small hotel that we lived and work in tirelessly. I'd wake up at 7am serve the breakfast then head out to my first job, an apprentice chef in the large and prestigious Balmoral hotel in the city centre of Edinburgh.
My life essentially took that path without me realizing it. Mindless12hr shifts, physical and mental stress along with hard work. One of the things that kept me going were the stories, the ones told in the kitchens from old gnarled and experienced seniors. Drug fuelled stories, stories of fights, deceit, love, celebrate interactions and more. I found I would daydream about telling these stories and how I felt it was a shame that they would disappear and not be told.
Life continued like this for years without a thought of my direction in life, and to be honest, I would always return to film and photography to express myself, even though I did not understand why.
Years passed, I added to those chef tales, and around my 25th birthday I met my partner, this is when I decided to move with her, to her home country, Hong Kong.
I easily found yet another kitchen job in Gordon Ramsey's 2 restaurants in the central island in HK . Long16hr shifts with 1 30min break was standard. I quickly found out that I had enough of cooking, I knew it was not fulfilling me in any way.
One late night after I had scrubbed down the kitchen I tiredly trudge to the metro. I would find myself drawing storyboards slumped against a seat close to the back of the train. I'd lose myself in the stories. How to frame, what to film and how to capture the story. I didn't know how to do it, only that I needed to. If I did not, the stories would still be there gnawing form my subconscious to my every day thoughts.
This went on for a while until I had enough, I quit the kitchens, took up what most ex-pats do, basic English teaching. 8hr a day with two 1hr breaks, I was paid and treated better.
I needed the time to try and explore what story telling meant to me while broaden my horizons.
I saved, bought my first DLSR and set out trying to improve my skills while traveling and living in Asia.
After a few years I decided to come home to Edinburgh and focus on developing my credentials, I took up college in efforts to enter University in the future.
I feel there’s 2 paths in film, first, the pure qualification rout into the film business.
The second, going out there and doing it yourself, I decided to do both and see where this journey takes me.
Right now, I'm in a diploma course in Edinburgh College and working part-time. I'm looking for my first Job in the film/TV industry and I'm excited to start telling stories.
When I'm not working, or studying, or learning Japanese, I listen to the no film school podcast along with Team Deakins Podcast, geeking out over prime cine lenses that I cannot afford, reading film scripts, planning small video shoots, figuring out how many different setups my nato rails can accomplish on my small camera rig, and, fantasizing about working with Wes Anderson, Rodger Dekins, and Edgar Wright to name but a few.