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Looking for A Job in Light? Me Too! Here’s Some Lighting Industry Resources to Help!

those-were-the-droids

It’s no secret that jobs are right tight out there right now – even I’m looking for something full-time!  (Interested in something I have to offer?  Email me!)

The one thing that you have to remember when getting out there is that no matter what you do, you have to be diligent in the chase.  There are hundreds of thousands of other people out there looking for work, and if you don’t keep digging, you will find nothing.  And, if you’re having trouble finding a Lighting Industry gig, take inventory of your skills and look at other avenues.  What I find is that people who work in Entertainment have some of the easiest times transitioning to other fields either temporarily or permanently, depending on their drive to stay in Light or their dedication to the industry.  Sometimes you might find something outside of the realm of Entertainment Lighting and discover you just found a career worth keeping!

Me, however…  I love Light, so I’m destined to believe in this field until I’m completely penniless like Tesla at the end, or dead from a heart attack.  I did look at a few job postings at Raytheon and Lockheed Martin because I love some of the work that they’re doing.  Perhaps you might also look outside of the industry to see if there’s something out there you might be excellent at doing, there’s nothing wrong with it.  We live in a Capitalistic society, and money is the name of the game.  Sometimes you can’t always work in your chosen profession, but you have to work to live!

Here’s some excellent industry resources, updated pretty often.  I highly recommend making these your frequent daily stops if you’re like me and looking for work.

offstagejobs

OFFSTAGEJOBS.COM (used to be Backstagejobs.com):
This resource is absolutely one of my favorites, and there are jobs on here from administrative work and teaching gigs to designer and technician work, in all avenues and realms, including touring.  This is an excellent place for finding work – my first post-graduate school lighting design gig, which was with Sandy Duncan, Peter Scolari, John Davidson, and Eddie Mekkin, came from Offstage Jobs.

jobs-at-usitt

THE USITT JOB BOARD
USITT posts and hosts a Job Board that seems to be updated with relative frequency; most of the jobs on the USITT site are cross-posted in other arenas as well, so don’t be surprised if you see duplicate or multiple similar job postings.  However, this is a perfect place for lighting and entertainment jobs.  I highly recommend it!

artsearch

ARTSEARCHArtsearch is pretty much the go-to resource in the Entertainment and Theatre industry for work; people and companies post lots of higher ed jobs there, as well as design, technical, administrative, and the like.  It’s also subscription-based, which is a pay service, but they also put out a paper rag that most theatre departments and schools across the country subscribe to monthly.  if you’re a student, stop by the office and ask to see the copy!  If you’re not, do some google searching and see if you can find access.  Sorry to people who disagree out there, but if people post their passwords and logins online, they should expect for others to utilize them.  This market is tight, vicious, and predatory – there are lots of people vying for not lots of gigs.  If you want the work, go get the work.

higheredjobs

HIGHEREDJOBS.COM
Are you a professor, instructor, or someone looking to get into education in Entertainment or Lighting Design?  You need to go here, and nowHigher Ed Jobs is the place where most universities post their offerings – and please take me at face value when I say that not all people who write these job applications are people who are in our industry.  Use that nugget of knowledge from JOL to use your time to comb through the job postings with a fine-toothed comb.  Not all postings will be under the searchable query, you might have to get resourceful and use some of your read-skimming prowess and dig in with both hands to the categories of jobs on HigherEdJobs.com.

NOW HOLD ON THERE, NANCY GRACE…  BEFORE YOU GET STARTED…

nancy-grace-douche

 

There are also some places where you can find gigs related to Lighting, or maybe even in the Entertainment field – but also remember that you might not find exactly what you want, but that is no reason NOT to look when you DO NOT have a gig.  Some alternative places to check daily are:

simplyhired

Simply Hired – search query “Stage Lighting”
I’ve found some pretty interesting lighting industry gigs on SimplyHired in the last few weeks, and I recommend keeping this on your daily search list.  It’s a corporatized website with lots of jobs from all over the world, but like anything, you need to dig down and do some creative searching of your own.

edison-report

The Edison Report – Lighting Jobs
Another place with recent and updated lighting jobs from both the Architectural and Engineering subsets of lighting – if this is your thing, check it out.  But also let me remind you that just because it has Engineering or Architecture in the title, it does NOT mean you’re ineligible!  Perhaps you just need to tune your skills resume a little!

GE-lighting-jobs

General Electric – Lighting Jobs Worldwide
Sometimes the best thing to do is to check the manufacturer’s websites for Job Postings.  It is amazing what you find!  Right now, at the time of posting this, General Electric had about 95 jobs posted on its international job board!

indeed-jobs

Indeed Jobs – Lighting search
Another jobs search engine that will need to have your attention to dig a bit deeper in the queries for “lighting” related gigs, Indeed is a great place for job searching.  Especially for technical and managerial jobs.  You’d be surprised how quickly your skills from this industry might lead to some kind of a management or supervisor gig with excellent pay and serious benefits.  It’s definitely something that can’t be overlooked, especially if you already don’t have a gig!

careerbuilder-jobs

Last but not least – CareerBuilder.com search for Lighting Jobs
One of the places I always check for gigs is CareerBuilder – it’s yet another corporate jobs search site, but with some fudging around and creative searching, you can find some excellent gigs in the Lighting fields.  CareerBuilder has actually come through for some folks I know who work in Civil and Infrastructure Lighting in Wyoming, and it was an excellent gig.  Again, no job offering place is too good for you, you must be diligent and continue to look, and everywhere!

Other places to check out, become involved in, and constantly search for job offerings in Lighting – WEB FORUMS!  Everyone seems to overlook this very important fact, but getting involved in the industry is the best way to land the gig you want.  People are always looking out for jobs out there, and there are tons – literally – TONS – of forums out there that offer job postings.  A few of these include, but are not limited to:

  • The Light Network – a great place just to be involved, but also to get your resume and skills out there for the industry to see
  • ProLightingSpace – another industry forum to meet people, get involved, and keep your name in the mix!
  • TheatreFace – a more theatre-centric forum with lots of people involved in its maintenance.
  • Roadie.net Greenroom – for roadies and techs and designers alike, Roadie.net is centered around the road and working in Production.  Go say hello!

Did I miss some?  Probably.  Is this a great start in your job searching mission of awesome?  YES!

No matter what you end up doing, please take my advice and add these places to your daily job search sites.  I also really hope that you’re not without work for too long, being unemployed sucks hard!  I wish you the best of luck finding something gratifying in Light!

Time to Focus – The Realization of A Little Dark and Quiet

An excellent lighting discussion took place a few days ago on The Light Network about “focus time” for lighting designers and how it gets squandered by other departments – occasionally you just get whined at the entire time, if not bombarded by 120db of pink noise while you have people climbing around truss.  This specific conversation discusses entertainment lighting, but architectural lighting also has situations where dark and quiet are needed.  If you’ve been on the road and/or done lots of one-offs, you probably know the wonderment of trying to get dark time to either focus conventionals or update moving light focus palettes before the show whilst load-in is occurring.  You know, vital, aesthetic changing lighting production elements that need to be given time to be performed.  It’s not without resistance though – from being blasted by the PA while trying to communicate with electricians to people complaining about having work light.  Dark and quiet are our friends – but we’re the only ones.

Now don’t get me wrong – no matter what the genre of lighting design, when you have to interrupt the work or change the method of getting something done with darkness and noise suppression, it’s not always going to be a popular thing.  I do get a kick out of those touring situations where at 2 PM (or whenever PM) the lighting department gets dark and quiet onstage every day, yet people still bitch about it.

Tim Olson, a user at The Light Network, had a great comment about this very subject during the conversation.  I’ve pasted it below.  Thanks for letting me post this again, Tim!

I try to be accommodating during loadin when I can. I frequently do a focus with full house lights blasting away at me, but that only roughs things in and requires tweaking after you do get darkness, especially when you’re close to vid screens.

that being said, if you’re a stagehand and not used to having a flashlight and working in the dark, what world have you been in?

things that do matter: safety. if heavy stuff is being built on stage, they need to be able to see for safety reasons. practical: if full overheads will allow the work to be done in 15 minutes, and darkness would make it 2 hours – blast away w/the overheads, and go get a cup of coffee, or work on something else for a while.

audio – it NEVER FAILS, no matter how early or late I am, as SOON as I start focusing and need to be able to speak to the person in the lift or across the room, it’s time for the audio FOH engineer to put 120DB of pink noise in the room. maybe this is my own personal karma, maybe not. I will get in the engineers face if me or someone that works for me gets nailed when they are working in front of the PA. this can have long-term effects on personal health and is not acceptable in any way shape or form. Production Mgt has always backed me up in this.

I understand that MY attitude can set the tone of the room, therefore I always approach other departments with humor and respect, the same way I want to be approached. it’s a guarantee, if you come at someone with a full head of steam, defensive walls pop up and even if they listen and do what you want, they won’t like it and will find ways to mess with you. If my way of being promotes teamwork then that attitude is “catching”. if my attitude is “F U” than THAT is catching as well.

give it a test for yourself: the next time you find yourself thinking “that guy is a jerk” (which can happen in the first 2 seconds of a gig), try adjusting the way you think about someone. Recognize the power you have to set the atmosphere of the gig, and that if you start actively thinking that someone’s a jerk, you are re-inforcing THAT atmosphere all day. if you like working in a war zone, go right ahead.

when I catch myself going in the “he’s such a jerk” direction, I immediately start thinking things like,

“I bet he really wants to do a good job”
“I bet he really has some good skills”

that small of a shift in your thinking can change the entire room. give it a shot next time and see what happens.

The Light Network is a great place to belong if you’re a lighting professional.  LN folk are good folk!

Survey for Lighting Professionals

Hey lighting professionals:

A user on TheLightNetwork is looking for people to take her very short survey on the demand for lighting professionals across more than one field – in this case, stage, architecture, and film.  Have you got two minutes?  Take her survey!