Brighton Film School student Shannon Bafundila, shares her top tips on how to get ready for university life and film school…
Congratulations on your acceptance to Brighton Film school. Before you know it, September will be here. Before you get too carried away in the sun (or the rain), now is good time to start thinking about getting ready for Film School.
A cliché tip but entirely necessary. Even if you already think you are the next Spielberg watching films can not only give your ideas on a script for pitching but it’s also good way to find interesting shots for your shot list. Moreover, you can also reference them in your work.
Make sure not to neglect independent film and of course short films. Don’t rule out Non-Fiction books either, they are also a great way to spark ideas for scripts and your less likely to get distracted from a notification pop up.
Play Around With A Camera
Even those of you who aren’t looking to be in the camera department. Basic knowledge of camera will be essential at Film School and in the industry as a whole. If you can’t get your hands on a DLSR, play around with a digital camera or your smart phone, gather some footage and edit it together. Take it a step further and make an experimental piece or a micro short. That way you’ll have a good idea what you need to work on and what workshops you should be attending.
Get A Bigger External Hard Drive
I got a 1tb hard drive and even that was spreading thin even with my laptop storage. Knowing what I know now, I would have invested in a bigger hard drive so I’d say at a minimum get a 2tb external hard drive. If you can go even bigger, do it.
Living Away From Home
If you have the opportunity to live in Brighton there are lots of property sites available. The earlier you start looking the better. You’ll also have the opportunity to apply for university-managed accommodation through the University of Brighton if you want that ‘halls of residence experience’.
I avoided the estate agents as they charge so many fees. I wasn’t fussed who I lived with so I went looking on Spare room and Gumtree (yes Gumtree). There are gems out there. I’ve never paid anything over 500 a month including bills for a double room (yes, I did have a bed frame) and l always lived with 2 or less people. Always make sure they have a contract in place before handing over any money. They are lot more relaxed arrangements you can make with a landlord but that is at your own risk.
I’ve always been good with money but an easy way to make sure you don’t blow your first student loan drop in the first week is to open another bank account solely for necessities like rent, phone bill, utilities, groceries, travel e.c.t.
In Brighton most of the time walking takes about the same time as the bus so I’d suggest walking everywhere. It saves you travel money and its good exercise. Be sure to get a pair of decent running or sport shoes so your feet don’t strain. Furthermore, they come in handy when your running late.
The charity shops in Brighton always have cool funky finds so be sure to check them out to liven up your wardrobe without stretching out your bank account. They are also a great place to source costumes and props for your projects.
Extra money is always a good thing especially if your student loan doesn’t cover all of the bills. Bar jobs are always available and a lot of students end up working in the local cinemas. I preferred to stick to my temping agency as they offer work in Brighton. They pay well and I get to choose when I work which is convenient when you’ve got deadlines. The agency is called Beauty Consultancy Bureau and they cover fashion, beauty and perfume.
Thing To Do In Brighton
Outside of your studies there is a lot to do in Brighton. An obvious spot is the pier. You can go on the rides, grab an ice cream or just relax on the beach. Definitely an upgrade from the park. Further down the beach is the Marina where there is a cinema, bowling, Karaoke nights and even Asda.
There is an abundance of clubs and bars to have a great time in. My favourites are the Hobgoblin, in the summer they sell alcoholic slushies which are a dream. The outside is better than the interior area but you’ll figure that out fast if you visit. Another favourite is The World’s End which is less than a five-minute walk from the film school. Every Tuesday they have a games night with vintage game consoles and you get to feel like your 10 again.
There are so many options to eat in Brighton and even now I haven’t had the chance to try them all. Independent places I’d recommend trying out are Burger Brothers, Swallow house (Chinese takeaway) and Pinocchio.
That should be everything you need to be prepared for Film School and be sure to take advantage of the amazing opportunities Brighton Film School offers. Good luck and see you at the Oscars,
Shannon Bafundila x