June 27, 2015

efficient blog


What can filmmakers do to make sure we’re not wasting our time?


There is never enough time to do everything planned.  But how can we avoid wasting time, and focus our efforts on things that really matter? This week I’m sharing two big principles that help me to get stuff done, as well as some quick fire practical tips.


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Find great locations.

You won’t have to work as hard with lighting, framing and set dressing if your location looks pretty good to begin with. Visiting three extra places before choosing could literally save you hours on set.

Separate work / casual.

The best way to do this is to work in a different space than you relax in. I’m strongly considering getting a laptop for Twitter and watching YouTube videos, so I can use my desktop strictly for work. If I want to go on Facebook, I’d have to leave the room and go on the laptop. That way, I won’t be working half heartedly while on social media.  Effective work, and effective rest.

Practice, Practice, Practice.

One of the things I still struggle to do quickly is lighting. But the more I do it, the more I can anticipate what my choices will look like. Every stage, from unpacking gear to learning your shortcuts in editing, can be practiced and will eventually save you time. The same goes for a full team – it takes practice before everyone can work together like a well oiled machine.



Simon Cade

Filmmaker, and host of DSLRguide. Since I was making my first film age 11, I have always been fascinated by the way films are produced, and the effect it can have on the audience.

  • as starting out as filmmakers we tend to waste time on procuring gear, whereas the wise Casey Neistat says story is everything. I agree 300% with that, but sadly that is learnt with experience and bad films at first.

  • Thank you, Simon, for the Extra Tips. I just finished watching your video “How Much Does Success in Filmmaking Cost,” and it seems the video [above], and tips are all great ways to keep the cost manageable.