It’s Labor Day weekend – a time when most people frolic in the swimming pool, get drunk, barbeque and enjoy the last throes of summer before the rigors of school and work catch up with them. But did you know that without unions, we wouldn’t have this three-day-weekend to celebrate? I want to take time this weekend to talk about exploitation, and what led to the creation of these unions. Working in the film industry, you may encounter lots of different types of jobs – some union, and others, non-union. You need to be very, VERY aware of your rights if you work on non-union projects. Whereas the union has rules and regulations in place to protect you in the workplace, non-union work has practically nothing. You need to be forewarned about some of the shenanigans that people will try to pull – to know what is legal, and what is not! I will do my best to spell it out for you here.
Continue reading ‘Exploitation, or Have You Hugged Your Union Today?’
Dear Kristin: I am an aspiring costume designer, having switched careers from fashion design. I haven’t looked back since, and it’s been tough, but great. One of my next goals is to join the Costume Designer’s Guild. I have been hard at work finding my way onto any indie feature I can, to learn as much as I can and just continue to gain experience. I was thinking of applying to the Guild (when I feel ready and have some funds saved up) as an assistant costume designer, so I can learn under more experienced costume designers. Is it difficult to then upgrade to costume designer, once I have some union experience under my belt? I’m in no rush to design a union feature as a costume designer; I’m just wondering if I should apply as a costume designer and then just look for assistant costume designer jobs instead, OR if I should apply as an assistant costume designer, and then upgrade.
Continue reading ‘Dear Kristin: To Join, or Not Join, the Union?’