Dead Pixels’ EP ‘Homegrown’ and DVD ‘Autumn Road. Core Media Productions on the music scene again.

Okay, it has been FAR too long since my last post! This post is a jump right into the present day with Core Media Productions. Dead Pixels have just released their EP Homegrown (19th November 2014), and we happened to be a big part of this fantastic project (Great excuse to get back on the blogging scene). We Directed and Produced their bonus DVD which comes with the physical copy of the album.10624989_10153252977398973_4129977337532908135_n

I first met the lead singer, Charlie Reader a couple of years ago through a friend of mine at University. A great lad with all the passion in the world for his dreams, this runs suit throughout the other members of the band in Jordan and Daniel Hollinrake. I cannot explain the respect I have for those in the creative industry who have so much passion for their careers that it almost seeps through their skin. The band are a trio with a very unique style. They are certainly not your average ‘band’. Nice lads, with a crafted mindset.

After bits and pieces of work with Dead Pixels they told us their plan for releasing their EP. They commissioned us to do an acoustic video session for a few of their covers and original songs, after seeing our previous successful acoustic video shoots. It was a great success and we finished the filming around Christmas day in 2013. Dead Pixels released their videos via Youtube and put themselves at a very good level in the music world right from the off.

A few months later we filmed their bonus DVD ‘Autumn Road’ named after the recording studio where they recorded their album with Nino Erico. We were very lucky with the weather on the filming of Autumn Road, the sun was cracking the flags and polished the film off well! Our whole working relationship with Dead Pixels so far has been an absolute pleasure. One of the best things about being a film maker is constantly collaborating with great talent, these guys certainly contribute to that! We cannot wait for the next chapter with Dead Pixels. Check them out on Facebook and if you would like to buy their EP you can do so on the link below. It can also be downloaded digitally via Itunes, spotify and pretty much any other major online music retailer!

http://deadpixelsofficial.com/

The MBC Awards

In October 2013 we directed and orchestrated the production of the MBC Awards, a star studded event located in the beautiful Hilton Hotel in Manchester, Deansgate. Myself and Tony were 21 years young when we did this job, pretty unbelievable when put into perspective- unheard of in the industry. The preparation for the event lasted around 6 months as anticipated. We had various
meetings in Manchester with The Nubian Times to discuss options/ideas for the event. In total we had a team of 15 that we interviewed and hired for the event. Our team consisted of myself and Tony Bessant Directing, a Technical Manager, Vision Mixer, Lead Camera Operator, plus various other camera operators, runners and more.

We arrived early on the day, a number of hours before any of our team were due to arrive. For a couple of hours we made sure all of the backstage was set and ready and revised the camera IMG_2195formations. Stoke City had a football match on the day and were staying at the venue, of course as a Liverpool fan it was nice to see the likes of Peter Crouch wandering about the place!

Our Technical Manager flew in on that day from New York and was shattered, she was our first member of staff to arrive and credit to her, she got stuck in straight away- prepping all of the gear for the night. By 4 o’clock our whole team had arrived. We started by giving them a tour of the venue and greeted them with a Core Media uniform and an itinerary for the evening. Our whole team were brilliant, absolutely faultless.

 

 

The rest of the evening flew by, it was a huge success attended by many high profile people including inspirational figures, businesses’, charity foundations and footballers. Cleo Higgins, Esco Williams, Mr Zipp and Eli Cripps performed live and Tony Morris was awarded ‘Presenter of The Year’ with other high profile names such as Rio Ferdinand also nominated for awards.

We had worked tirelessly for 6 months and it was all worth it, we were absolutely ecstatic with our performance as a company as well as on a personal level.

 

 

 

Run up to directing The MBC Awards

Whilst I was still at university The Nubian Times had been so impressed with our work that they called us and invited us to Manchester for a meal. We sat at the table and I ordered a fish salad, it was tasty- I drank champagne with that also. I can’t remember what Tony ordered but he also had champagne! We had no idea what we were in Manchester for until we arrived for the meal. The Nubian Times just threw it out there at us. They wanted to commission us to direct and orchestrate The first MBC Awards in The Hilton Hotel of Manchester, Deansgate- this was to be a massive gig full of high profile figures. We held numerous meetings and told them what we thought should happen production wise at the event and also gave them our opinion of what would work best. This was an opportunity we relished and we couldn’t wait to start.

First we produced a short promo for the event which featured Esco Williams, a MOBO Award winner who we had worked with before as well as Mr Zipp and Cleo Higgins both whom had been very successful particularly in Britain’s Got Talent and The Voice UK. It was great working with these artists, very known and talented people who were a pleasure to direct.

After producing the promo we were finally putting the final touches in place preparing for the event- we were about to direct a massive event which was basically unheard of for people in the industry at our age.

Working for Core Media Productions whilst at University- boosting our reputation.

In 3rd year of University myself and Tony Bessant worked around the clock and only boosted our reputation as a result- particulary in the music industry. We produced a music video for Jazz sensation Danny Pye in Parr Street Studios, a young lad with a disciplined and trained voice- an incredible vocalist! We also produced a music video for Luke Fenlon for his track The River which was shot in a unique location near the docks of Liverpool, it matched his track impeccably. We also produced a number of live acoustic sessions that year for local artists in Liverpool for which we were very well known for.

Acoustic set

A typical live acoustic set up

A contact of ours recommended us to The Nubian Times. The Nubian Times were a newly launched newspaper publication who were gaining a reputation and growing fast. We directed their launch night held in Manchester and created an after video of the night which they were absolutely thrilled with.

After working with The Nubian Times we spoke to a relative of Tony’s who used to work with the band Space, a reputable band from Liverpool who are famous for their hit track Female of The Species. We held negotiations with the band and we caught them at the right time, they were currently recording a new comeback album and had a track that they wanted a video for as promotional purposes for their new album! We came to an agreement and were invited to their private studio to shoot their music video for the track Frightened Horses. We took a friend of mine along Tom Reader, a good lad who was trying to get experience in the industry-he loved it too.

He managed to get a brilliant job after University working around the world recording entertainment which he put down to this Space shoot- good on him. It was unbelievable to work with a band like Space, we had already worked with many musicians before but these guys had been there and done it, they are very talented who knew exactly what they wanted from their video. Afterwards they gave us a testimonial which we are very proud of “It was a great experience meeting and working with Core Media Productions. They were creative, innovative and professional throughout. Their approach to our project was enthusiastic and imaginative and the end product was exactly what we were looking for.”

Shooting with Space

 

 

 

Determination, motivation and the hunger to succeed. Finding your passion.

If you work in an industry that requires plenty of hard work, grit and determination to succeed then you will appreciate this post. If you work in the creative industries you will definitely appreciate this post. Determination, motivation and the hunger to succeed are extremely important. In the Film and Media industry plus many of the other creative industries however it is absolutely fundamental- it’s compulsory. I believe everybody naturally has these attributes innate to an extent, some people just tend to exert them more than others. I also believe that every person can use them to the full extent depending on when they find their ‘passion’. You may be 50 years old until you find your passion, but when you do find it you will know deep inside how motivated and determined you can be- It can take you to places inside you that you never knew existed. It can be scary.

Fortunately for me, I found my passion at the tender age of 16. I have always thought outside of the box since being a child, had a specific outlook on life- I have always been a determined person. However, when I found film making it was clear to me I had found what I love doing. My natural flare to succeed and the mental existence of drive I had inside of me increased by a dramatic scale, taking me to the next level. It is clear when this happens, the important thing to do when you find it, is to take it in your stride and nurture it. I stand by the quote from The Pursuit of Happiness featuring Will Smith when he says to his son “You got a dream. You gotta protect it. People can’t do somethin’ themselves, they wanna tell you, you can’t do it. If you want somethin’, go get it.”. What I have experienced is that you will find your passion, it will become clear to others that you have this passion- some people will then try to shut you down. It has happened to me a number of times since discovering film making. I have proven people wrong time and time again. You need to protect your passion and your dream when you discover it. Luck, determination and natural talent combined together equals success. If you can balance these three, you will succeed. Luck is something you can anticipate; you can put yourself in a certain position and create your own luck- talent and determination is what happens naturally. What I have also found is that if you can collaborate with someone who has the same levels of determination, motivation and hunger to succeed as you do, the results are phenomenal. I have found this with my colleague and best friend Tony Bessant, my partner in crime. We are basically telepathic in everything we do, and the result of this has been extraordinary.

Personally

I’m a deep thinker and life in general fascinates me, being a selfless person I respect others around me more than most people. I discovered film making at the age 16, acting and creativity was always something I loved, along with creating stories and scenarios in my head. After completing my A levels, I studied at University and graduated meaning I am educated to degree level, even though I was advised as a youngster by a tutor that it wasn’t worth me trying for 6th form as it ‘Weren’t right for me’. I am now a Company Director at my own Film/Media company Core Media Productions LTD at the age of 22, along with Tony Bessant. Our hunger to succeed is greater than it has ever been before. The future is exciting. I wake up every morning and look at a quote on my wall which reads “I wanted to make it and I was gonna’ make it regardless of what anybody said”. This is a quote by Eminem, probably the biggest inspiration in life.

Summary

If you haven’t already found your passion, go out and try new things. It will become obvious when you find it, you will know deep inside. Push it to the absolute limit and keep your dream alive no matter what it takes, protect it. You will get to where you want to be. It will become a case of ‘when’ not ‘if’. Chase your dream and surround yourself with positive people who share the same levels of motivation, determination and hunger to succeed as you do. If someone tries to shut it down, ditch them- you don’t need them in your life. The best things don’t come to those who wait, they come to those who pick themselves up time and time again and strive to be the best.

 Do you have a passion? Can you relate to this? Drop a comment i’d love to hear your story!

Core Media Productions and 3rd year of University

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Myself and Tony Bessant had a worthy reputation which was growing fast- we were known as being talented in the Film/Media industry. Taking this into account we decided to create a brand name to work under which would give us identity. In 2011 we found ourselves sitting in my bedroom, having a cup of tea as usual coming up with different potential names. Mahogany Productions was one shout until we came up with ‘Core Media Productions’- our eyes both lit up and since that day it is what we have been known as.

When I reached 3rd year at university I knew it would be a very hard year academically, it was a very stressful time- but also things were happening for my career which were just too important for me to turn down and brush under the carpet. I graduated from University and Core Media Productions was set up as an official  LTD company, it was a success. We decided against a job in the Media or Film industry even

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though we both had credible offers we could pursue. We had huge ambitions with Core Media Productions and the determination to match it, we had gained vital experience throughout University so why not? We also had investment interest from a source which was exciting for us! Graphic designer Adam Reynolds produced us a logo which was to be the brand look of our company, we are elated with the work he has done for us and we will work with him again. We had another friend of mine I call V Man produce an animation of our logo, a Lithuanian lad who studied at University with me. He will always be a Lithuanian scouser to me. We have hired him again since and will do so again in the future no doubt. Core Media Productions were very active even whilst we were still at University. We managed to distinguish our time between studying and working for our company- doing what we love.

We transformed from being two students who loved film making to Company Directors with a fantastic reputation to uphold. We thrive off the pressure and will do anything necessary to chase our dream .

2nd year of University, film making and more.

My tutor in 2nd year of University for Film Production was Derek Murray, a very educated man and an award winning film director- he always came across as serious and always knew exactly what he was talking about. I developed a good relationship with him  and told him I was willing to work for him should he find anything I could help out on. He soon gave me a call and I was a camera operator for him, filming the Palm house Urban Music event in Liverpool. This was vital experience as it gave me an insight of how it is to work with someone else in the industry.

I worked on various other projects with Derek, one was a pilot project called ‘Made in Liverpool’ which featured a family and an in depth look of their heritage and lives. I was a camera assistant on this particular project as well as a sound operator. Working alongside Jeff Williams, a camera operator who Derek particularly liked to work with. Jeff was impressive and knew absolutely everything about the camera and how to deal with different situations in film making. He was at the time involved with Sky and travelled doing what he loved!

Throughout second year in university myself and Tony were now starting to gain a decent reputation for our work, we produced various small reports and documentaries on current affairs and managed to produce a short promotional video for professional boxer Johnny Quigley, an established sportsman who currently lives and fights in the USA and has been on international television multiple times. It was great working with Johnny, a scouser who could relate to us and vice versa. He is one of those people who wants to achieve and won’t accept anything less, I admire that! We also worked with a contact of ours to produce an interview video for Mr Easy, a Jamaican dancehall artist who is known throughout the world for his music!

Half way through my second year of University I worked for ITV. They inspected my CV and work history then employed me to work on The Jeremy Kyle Show. Working for this particular show was an unreal experience. I had the opportunity to experience how a television show is put together first hand and I was able to contribute to that. I couldn’t commit to ITV however as I was still at university which took up most of my time. I have to admit I was devastated telling ITV “No I can’t work those shifts sorry I am at University.” The main thing for me though was that ITV wanted me to work for them after University.