Keep it up.
It has always been difficult for filmmakers to find work. Heck, it was tough even before the pandemic slowed the industry down. But there is hope on the horizon. Even today's most influential cameramen struggled out of the mud.
A typical example? Hoyte van Hoytema, a cameraman who has shot Her, Ad Astra, Interstellar, Dunkirk and Tenet, to name a few.
Before van Hoytema became a cameraman for many of the world's leading filmmakers, he was shockingly unemployed and "sat in his apartment in his underwear for years".
Check out what he has to say in the video below.
He says that oddly enough this could be used as an advantage over other filmmakers / filmmakers who apparently had easily opened all the doors for them in their careers.
If you persist in what you really strive for, there is a lot you can learn and develop in other ways. Van Hoytema says that after all this period of unemployment, it has built an insatiable and incredible hunger for hard work.
That being said, you shouldn't just sit around doing nothing. He says you should be extremely proactive. Do everything in your power to make a living, learn from the success of others, maybe make that giveaway short that you normally wouldn't just do to make connections. As Tony Robbins said, "the path to success is to act with massive determination."
"… if you have the patience and the means to cope with the harsh reality of unemployment for a very long time [after] you will eventually become a full-blown DOP," says van Hoytema.
It's not just Van Hoytema with a history of lack of work, there are countless examples of hugely successful filmmakers with similar backgrounds. It's just good to know that all of the hard work you put in will eventually pay off.
Let us know your favorite tips from the video in the comments below.