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October 16th, 2018

The Mill is a creative culture made up of talented individuals from different backgrounds. They work tirelessly to perfect their craft and hone new techniques, whilst inspiring and collaborating with those around them. 

The Mill Spotlight Series highlights artists, technologists, producers and everyone in between, delving into their passion projects. 

This week we sat down with Mill+ Line Producer Tia Perkins to find out more about her role within Production and where in the world it’s taken her. 

Your job takes you around the world – what are some of the most inspiring places you’ve traveled to?

I would have to say Buenos Aires was pretty inspiring, from the tango on the streets at night to the great food, and overall architecture; Buenos Aires is definitely on my top 3. However, recently working in Morocco and even Australia last year had their perks as well. It’s really cool to go somewhere that you wouldn’t necessarily travel to yourself or on your own and experience working with people in the same industry; it gives you such a sense of perspective.

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Tell us about some of the highlights of your role.

As a Line Producer, the main highlight for me is helping my Director accomplish their vision. Being at a company like The Mill, we know our Directors personally and each of their personalities or styles individually. I love working with people that I respect and respect me just as much.

Travel is definitely a highlight! A shoot on the road has a much different vibe than a shoot locally in NY.

My team! The other highlight is definitely being on the Mill+ team. We have such a sense of family and I’m happy coming to work knowing they will be there and that we are bound to laugh, share articles and debate every day. We have a special group of people for sure.

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What are the key differences between a post and a live-action producer?

One of the key differences is how clients see us. My bids have rates for the crew, wardrobe, stage rentals, equipment rentals etc. these are easy to explain and are rarely questioned. Clients tend to understand how physical costs of wardrobe and cameras break down more easily, where-as with post, it can be harder to grasp the concept of CG modeling and how long this process can take.

Another key difference is timing. My jobs, once awarded, takes 2-3 weeks on average from start to finish. Due to the tight turnaround and strict schedules, it’s crucial to ensure each shoot day goes off without a hitch (or to have a contingency plan if a hitch does occur). A post producer (most of the time) is able to spread out their resources and budget over a longer period of time, so there usually isn’t as much pressure on one particular day.

What’s your advice for anyone starting out in this role?

Definitely be patient with yourself. This industry is hard and you have to learn to navigate it. Learn the basics before you try to bite off more than you can chew. Ask questions, be honest and know that mistakes will happen. The producer you’ll become is all in how you grow.