Filmmaker, digital strategist and technology geek Jamie Andrei was this week the guest artist for the first in a special new series of professional development workshops for our Curious Creators.

Jamie has built a successful career producing commercial video and digital content, and as an account director for some leading Australian creative agencies. He now runs his own company and has worked with the likes of Collette Dinnigan, the Museum of Art And Sciences, TEDx Sydney, China Australia Millennial Project, ACES UTS, Stirring Change, Flowers For Everyone and Product Hunt.

He shared some valuable insights with our aspiring filmmakers and writers, about making a living from their work.

Jamie took them through some of the useful steps, and pitfalls, he has learnt from his experience of working with clients and establishing a successful creative business.

“I think framing failure is key for young minds, bumps and hurdles can be distracting or devastating. Being prepared, have a bit of a plan and keeping your eyes open for risks all helps navigate the work,” he said.

“I am so excited to come down and share my skills. It’s not often that I get asked to do this kind of knowledge transfer − the kind I wished I’d had when starting out.”

Curious Creator Adam McPhilbin said it was particularly useful hearing about Jamie’s approach to gaining work and keeping clients.

“We spent quite a bit of the session discussing how to get your work noticed, how to ‘get a foot in the door’, and presenting professionally to clients. One of the key things he made me think about was the potential YouTube offers for displaying your showreel and building a social media presence that can create new work opportunities,” Adam said.

The session kicked off a series known as the Professional Quarterlies that has been introduced into our Curious Creators program this year.

They are aimed at further enhancing the economic and employment skills development within the program.

In particular, they will give the participating Curious Creators a better understanding of the commercial aspects of Australia’s creative industries and a framework for assessing their own skills and aspirations.

Through the process they will become better equipped to develop an online profile CV and showreel, plot a professional pathway, learn about traditional and new arts funding options and sharpen their skills for dealing with clients and understanding their needs.

Our Curious Creators program produces significant economic benefits for Western Sydney, while developing the artistic and community leadership potential of these talented young people.

They gain experience and casual paid employment while working alongside our professional artists on the private client commissions that have provided 40% of CuriousWorks’ income over the past five years.

Almost all of the 19 young people who have participated in our Curious Creators program over the past three years are earning part or all of their income from arts and media production skills developed with CuriousWorks. Three have used the experience to gain entry into tertiary arts, film or design courses. You can read more about the positive impact of our work here.