Video Systems Manager Steve Hill has recently joined the MVS team bringing over 25 years experience to our operation. Hill has been working the Olympics since 2002 in Salt Lake City and then Vancouver, London, Sochi, Rio De Janeiro and is now heading to Pyeongchang, South Korea to work as a specialty camera jib and crane operator for the Half Pipe, Aerials, and Moguls events.
We had the chance to ask Steve some questions as he was preparing to travel:
Q: What do you have to do mentally to prepare to work at the Olympics? How is it different than Corporate AV work for MVS?
A: All of the Olympic Games have been a good experience for me. I have contacts and friends all over the world. People do not realize how much really goes into the Olympic Games.
The contract is signed a year ahead of the games. Lots of steps and forms need to be filled out, uniform measurements, time scheduled for three weeks, two travel days, 15 hour flight, and getting the proper extra warm weather gear for the mountain experience.
Generally hardest part of the games is standing outside at night in a cold environment. During the games everyday seems to blend into the next.
Doing three events means there is a lot of repositioning of gear with little time to rehearse and put on the show.
To prepare I just try to make the opportunity a memorable one. You get to meet people from all over the world and work with them. It is not something everyone gets the chance to do. I had the chance to take my son with me to Sochi Olympic Games as My Jib Assist. It was a great experience for me to watch him see a world outside of his limited experiences.
Q: Are you more excited to travel internationally for work or does it cause you concern and why?
A: I enjoy traveling. I believe that it makes you a better person. International travel is the best. The people and cultures are new and exciting to me.
Any concerns would be a waste of energy. You need to be aware of yourself and surroundings. Make sure you do not offend or be the stereotypical American.
Try to be an Ambassador and prove that Americans are good people. The more I travel the easier it is to appreciate the world and my home.
Q: What is the coolest gig you have ever done besides the Olympics?
A: I have had to chance to do so many cool gigs. I ran Jib for Red Hot Chili Peppers Concert. I have worked Jib camera for an Ultimate Fighting Show in Hawaii. I was working in Paris, France during the final stage of the Tour De France. Got to see the last laps at the Avenue des Champs-Élysées
Not the coolest, but an interesting Gig was when a Producer, Cameraman and myself went around the world in 9 days. We started our trip from Salt Lake City and flew to Tokyo, Japan and rode the bullet train. The next flight to Sydney, Australia was to shoot at the opera house. Next we flew to Aukland, New Zealand to an Alpaca ranch. Then back to Japan for the night off then to London England to shoot at Big Ben. Then back to Salt Lake City. I think we were in the airplane flying more than we were on the ground.
Q: Any advice for aspiring Video Production professionals out there?
A: Things change so fast and your time is important. Make the best use of it.
Have a passion to learn and make the most of your time. If you don’t like to take some criticism this maybe wrong job for you. Love what you do because it is what you will be doing most of your waking hours.