Arts & Entertainment

Interview with a Senior head of Production Design

Every year, Huntington’s award-winning film program gives students the chance to work on senior projects, giving them a chance to experience what it’s like to work on a bigger-scale film. Each film has different departments for different aspects of the project, and each department has an upperclassman head. The head for production design on one of these projects was senior Valerie Dalton, majoring in film production. She was responsible for props, hair and makeup, and wardrobe for the film, as well as the overall artistic feel of the project. Val has been in this position before on four other films, making her used to the responsibility that comes with the territory, saying “It’s my favorite thing to do, so to me, it can be stressful, but it’s never a bad time. It’s always a fun time.” Being the head of production design gives you a lot of control on the film, as well as responsibility, which Val sees as a positive. The workload isn’t scary if you love what you are responsible for and enjoy doing it, “It depends on the position. If you don’t like sound and you end up being the head of sound, then maybe you’ll have a bad time, but if you love sound then you’ll have a great time.” However, there are some negatives that come with her job, like a lack of respect for how much work production design actually takes. Often, it can seem like you’re expected to produce outstanding results in a short amount of time with little to no outside assistance, which Val attested to, saying, “Sometimes you have people that don’t care about the department, so it’s hard to get them to do something to help you. Actually, in my experience, I’ve only recently been getting assistants to help with set design and things like that.” While the department can be overlooked, production design is an integral part of any film, and the people who run it are as devoted as they are tough.

 

 

 

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