Olivia Rakowski

January - April 2017

Hello! My name is Olivia Rakowski and I am the Contender Productions Spring 2017 intern. The last four months at Contender Productions have been nothing short of amazing. I spent two days a week for about 6 hours each day constantly learning about Contender and the overall functions of a production studio. Prior to starting my internship, I wasn’t sure what to expect. After meeting with the Supervising Sound Engineer/Internship Facilitator, Roger, for the first time I could tell that Contender was going to be a great work environment for me. Roger, and every team member I met that day, was extremely welcoming and I was instantly excited to start this journey as an intern. 

When I started here, I knew absolutely nothing about the hard work and immense detail that goes into every part of the production process. Everyday that I came into the studio, I left feeling like I had gained so much insight on things from camera knowledge, set assembling, equipment necessities, data backups, After Effects and editing in AVID. The crew here allowed me to join them on-set for various commercials and they were always willing to help me get involved and learn in new ways. 

Being involved with or on-set for different brands such as The Florida Lottery, Pediatric Cancer Foundation, Metropolitan Ministries, GTE Financial and Pinch-a-Penny was such an awesome experience and it really helped me understand what it’s like to work with clients and be hands-on within the production process. One of the best parts of my internship was the ability to get involved with projects throughout the entire studio. There were not many specific tasks or rules that I had to follow, so I was able to work throughout the studio, learn from everyone on the team and get many different perspectives on production life.

A majority of my time was spent with Photographer/Lead Editor, Evan (above). He had a lot of responsibility within the studio and kept me constantly involved in everything he was doing. From learning the names and functions of almost every piece of equipment, AVID and Premiere Pro editing techniques, photography tips and his patience with my constant questions, I definitely have him to thank for most of what I have learned in the last 4 months.

The Studio Executive, Chanse, is extremely wise, intelligent and talented at everything he does. As a busy executive, I valued the time I was able to learn from him as it gave me a lot of positive insight on production and hard work in general. Roger, the Supervising Sound Engineer, taught me a lot about the importance of great audio as well as everything I needed to know about audio equipment. San, the Studio Manager/Senior Animator was also a great person to learn from. His efficiency and attention to detail was great to learn from (as well as his impeccable taste in Pho). Finally, Amanda and Melissa, Senior Editor and Lead Editor, taught me a lot about AVID and the editing processes that they go through on a daily basis. I always appreciated the new tactics and shortcuts I learned as well as the days that Amanda brought in her small dog to keep our days uplifted.

I am so grateful for this experience, the people that have helped me learn and grow as a student and all of the different projects that I have been apart of. After this experience, I feel like I know and understand so much more about production and advertising so that I can keep improving from here on out. This internship has pushed me in the right direction for my future and I know many doors will be opened for me because of it.

Thank you Contender Productions Team!