Have you ever heard the phrase: “When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.” Even though this sounds silly and mystical, finding a filmmaking mentor can accelerate your career.
A filmmaking mentor is a role model who takes an interest in your success. He or she may offer encouragement, advice and influence which will help you get closer to your goals. Your mentor will be there to answer questions.
How A Filmmaking Mentor Can Help You
After college, I wasted lots of time sending a resumes and cover letters to every film and video company I could think of (and getting no response). One day I landed an interview with a guy named Joe. Joe gave me my first job in the motion picture industry, mopping floors.
The job didn’t pay well, but Joe was willing to teach me everything he knew. He coached me through the easy times and pushed me through the tough times with unrelenting encouragement. And while Joe taught me a lot about writing, directing and producing, it was his values and his encouragement which influenced me to create a higher standard in everything I do.
When I planned my move to New York City, Joe made some phone calls. He connected me with a friend who then connected me to another friend who offered me my first job.
Months later, I was working on a feature. Things were going well, until they weren’t. For whatever reason, our the entire project fell apart. And suddenly, I found myself in New York with no job, no money and lots of bills. I thought this was the end of my career.
After getting fired, I called Joe and he was kind, but firm. He simply said:
“Quit crying and start looking for your next opportunity.”
It wasn’t too long after, that Joe was diagnosed with terminal Cancer. Prior to his passing, he shared one more thought that’s been rolling over and over in my mind ever since. He said:
“You never know which ripple will hit the shore first.”
Whenever I’m hit with new challenges, I play those words over and over in my mind. And those simple thoughts have helped me overcome many rough patches. Through this practice, I have conditioned myself to find opportunity in every obstacle.
If it wasn’t for Joe’s mentoring, I would have never gone to NYC. I would have never experienced getting fired or feeling financial uncertainty. And I would have never recovered. Consequently, I would have never made the move to California, produced features or written these words.
Finding a filmmaking mentor can help you accelerate your career. Mentors have been there. They reach out and help you grow as a person. And I believe mentors are essential for success.
If the idea of having someone to talk to is helpful, you may benefit from my one-on-one filmmaking coaching. Through our conversations, we can come up with a plan to get you from where you are to where you want to go.