Monday, 24 May 2010

And what do you do for a living?

Saturday evenings are my Doctor Who evenings and involve telling everyone in the house to be VERY quiet while I get on with watching, first, the actual episode, and then Doctor Who Confidential.

After watching the latest episode of Doctor Who Confidential I was amazed by what some of the production crew get to do for a living. As they were going through some of the behind the scenes work that goes on in creating Doctor Who there were people with all manner of jobs. From ‘TARDIS-wobbler’ to ‘Gate-clicker’; some of the behind the scenes jobs are immense.

The fist job that started my “wow! Awesome jobs!” rant was the people who get to create the masks for the Doctor Who monsters. I love my art (kind of a surprise for those who don’t know me seen as I’m such a science and maths nerd) and I think being able to create out-of-this-word masks and make-up would be an amazing career. This is the sort of job you don’t get into if you don’t enjoy it but if you enjoy it, you would totally be in your element.

The next job that amazed me was being a Foley artist. Imagine answering “what do you do for a living?” with something along the lines of “I bash together and rattle random object to make the mundane sounds you hear on TV shows such as a door closing.” The Foley artist for Doctor Who seemed to love her job and was really into explaining how she uses a wrench to make the clunky handing sounds of the screwdriver and how the sound of soil needed a sheet to increase the volume. I think this is such a bizarre job: sitting in a room all day, clicking and clunking things together to replace and enhance the sounds in the filming. This wasn’t the first time I’d come across Foley artists on behind the scenes programs but every time I wonder how on earth they got such a job. Is there a section of the classifieds that says “Foley artist wanted” or do TV people go around looking for promising percussionists who could become Foley artists? Also, can you get a degree in Foley artistry? I’m sure if I said to my careers adviser that I want to study to become a Foley artist she would pass me over to the counsellor (regardless of how nice our careers advisor is!) To be a Foley artist is such a weird and wonderful job and is, by far, one of the oddest jobs you could have.

Also in Doctor Who Confidential, in trying to make the TARDIS look like it was falling that little bit more authentically, they had people ‘shaking’ the pipes near the roof of the TARDIS. Imagine going home and being asked “so what did you do at work today?” and your answer being “well, one of my colleges tied some fish line to bits of the TARDIS and I pulled some of the bits of string while Matt Smith pretended he was falling over in a wobbly TARDIS.” Now that would be a job where you never know what tomorrow will bring!

DFTBA, Terrie, I have not forgotten!

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