Videographer and photographer Nicola McHugh worked on several short productions before making her dream a full time job.
Based in Belfast, 30-year-old Nicola is currently behind the camera working on a short film as well as a new photography shoot. She has also gathered experience as a trainee on a well known television show.
Get To Know More About Nicola:
How did you get started in the industry?
“I’m still getting started in the industry, I have worked on a few short productions and gradually met people who have been willing to take me on as their trainee or second shooter. It’s only in the past year I have started shooting my own events professionally. Taking pictures and telling stories has always been a passion and a hobby, but it’s only recently I have been able to say it’s my job.”
What genre / style do you create in?
“I try not to confine myself to a genre, art is about experimenting and trying new things, the joy of trying new genres is finding new and different ways to create.”
What would you be best known for?
“I’m best known for working behind the camera, definitely not in front!”
What would you consider your biggest achievement?
“My biggest achievement to date is to be able to say I worked as a trainee on a well known tv show, it was a great experience and hopefully I can continue to forge a career in this industry, this is only the beginning.”
What would you consider to be the biggest lesson you’ve learned in your industry?
“I have learned that you have to accept that you will always be learning, each new job brings new challenges and that’s what makes it such an exciting industry to work in.”
What has been your biggest challenge to date?
“My biggest challenge was working out how to take that first step. I wasn’t a very outgoing person before so it took a lot to put myself out there and push for jobs and I am definitely still learning the ropes of the industry and getting to grips with everything, so I’d say that this is still my biggest challenge to be fair, but I’m still working on it so that’s a good sign I think.”
Tell us a little about your personal life, are you married, kids, hobbies etc?
“I have no kids of my own but worked with children and young people for several years here in Belfast and also onboard a cruise ship. I love music and play the bodhran, but also like to stay active by fencing.”
Tell us about your most recent work?
“My most recent work is an experimental short film which I was the focus puller on as well as shooting some of the pick up shots, it’s in the editing stages so watch this space.”
PLUG !! What would you like us to tell people about?
“I am working on a short film later in the year, it’s an arty one and is currently in pre production but I think it’s going to be a good one, also I have more photos coming out of a shoot telling the story of an elf with dark and light counterparts.”
If you had to describe your work to someone who has never heard of you what would you say?
“I’d say my work is always maturing with each new project, but it always reflects the story that is being told.”
What’s the funniest experience you’ve had in your business?
“It’s a bit of a strange one but I once worked on a short film with a scene in a bathroom and we all sat in the bathroom discussing how we would light the toilet. It was all a bit strange.”
What would your advice be to young people hoping to pursue the same industry?
“I’d say not to give up, I’m 30 and still only getting started, but I left it late to make the decision to make it a career rather than a hobby. There are some great opportunities out there, you just have to be determined and brave enough to go for them.”
Anything else you want to tell people about yourself or your work?
“If you want to contact me to film / photograph any events or projects, you can contact me via email firstname.lastname@example.org or find me on facebook and instagram.”
Who do you look up to and why?
“I’d have to say Andrew Lesnie as his work on the Lord of the Rings trilogy is what cemented my love for film and my desire to work in this industry.”