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Everything posted by tvp

  1. I did and I like it! They have a "Fuck Off" thread. We need a "Fuck Off" thread.
  2. I have to agree, especially with the first statement here about posting stuff out of context. I can't tell you how many times I've been shown some spot on YouTube at a gig and asked to "make it like that". Many times it's because the client has told the company they want it to "look like that one spot with the..." and been very adamant about their request. Adamant meaning, their attitude is "make it like that or we'll kill the job and take it somewhere else". Unfortunately in this economy, most people aren't in a position to reply back, "...go ahead and take it somewhere else". -Just saying.
  3. There's some truth to this statement as well. Especially at certain over priced private art schools where there is no real oversight in the hiring process and no real oversight of how department heads run their departments. It isn't always the case though. Aside from teaching, there are a lot of fields where people get hired as a result of being friends with someone, including actively working as a designer and / or animator in motion graphics. I disagree with what you're saying here in the last part of the line above, but whatever.
  4. I disagree and it's "they're" not "their". Here's a link to help you out with that: http://www.wikihow.com/Use-There,-Their-and-They're
  5. You and me both brother. That doesn't sound weird at all. It tells me you have some substance as a human being. Los Angeles is a tasteless vapid cesspool of egotistical, selfish, self centered individuals and being the "entertainment capital", that's what it attracts from all over the world as well. Unfortunately, in the LA market, motion graphics is invariably a part of the entertainment industry. The idea that a teacher is somehow someone who failed at professional life or "gave up" is the biggest load of crap. I've known plenty of teachers that are at the top of their respective fields and teach on the side to give something back. (Of course in LA, in Mograph, for some individuals who might be construed as falling into this category, it's more about head hunting for the next wave of graduates, than anything else.) That said, even if you're not at the top of your field and you teach that field on the side, that doesn't equate to being a failed professional. Yes to the first question and no, you're not crazy.
  6. Did you state that payment was to be no later than "net 30" in your booking confirmation? If not, then unfortunately, they are going to take advantage of that. They always do. There have been many threads here about booking confirmations, payment, EORS and so forth. I'm sorry to hear that you're dealing with this, but learn from it and do something about it with future bookings, no matter who it is. Also, all of your invoices should say "All invoices are due upon receipt." at the bottom of the invoice. That and the net 30 booking confirmation translate to: this is due the day I give it to you via email or whatever and you have a 30 day grace period to pay it. End of story.
  7. That soooo does not surprise me. I have enough stories to bitch all day about being low balled if I didn't have better things to do. Or rather, attempts to low ball me. When I was a noob I had a place in LA offer me a staff job for 35k, so the 50k in present day NYC, for mid level people, does not surprise me in the least. What a bunch of assholes.
  8. This is a great answer. Seriously. On a completely different topic, I also checked out your web-site and I have to say, I like your work, Dave.
  9. http://www.indeed.com/salary/q-Motion-Graphic-Designer-l-New-York,-NY.html
  10. There's another one here- www.la3d.net.
  11. Hover over artists while they try and work, like you don't trust them to do their job. Be condescending to artists in a very subtle, indirect manner. Talk incessantly about how you don't know anything about any of the technical aspects of the work artists are trying to do while you hover over them. Act like you're an art director or a creative director, even though you're the producer and you've never even taken a type class. Give artists verbal direction but refuse to send or copy them on any emails documenting that direction, so that you can always turn around and deny that you told them to do something regarding said direction, avoiding any blame for mishaps from those higher up in the chain of command. Mismanage projects and do everything in your power to blame the artists working on said project for your mismanagement. Have a subtle bitchy tone in your voice towards everyone except those with the power to fire you or have you fired. Low-ball artists on their rates as much as possible. Evade paying over-time and Employer taxes on pain of death, by using EORS and other shady business practices like intentional Employee misclassification. Make sure you always get artists to agree to net 45, net 60 or net 90 payment agreements even though no payment should be greater than net 30 and those checks your crappy EOR is sending them should in reality, be coming every two weeks; because who really cares if they need to eat and pay bills like everyone else. If they die of starvation and / or go bankrupt you can always just get a new one the next day. Manipulate newer artists just out of school into low balled rates and fail to mention that your company uses MBO or Yurcor EORS that are going to double tax them, making them pay your Employer taxes, and charge them a 5% to 10% processing fee on that crappy flat day rate you just got them to agree to. Get artists to agree to flat day rates with no over time compensation. Never specify how many hours per day artists are to work for the flat rate and then demand that they work 12 to 16 hour days once they've signed all of your shady work agreements. Try to pressure artists into signing your contracts without reading them. Put artists on hold whenever possible, even if you know there's a 90% to 99% chance you aren't going to use them. Ever. Tell artists you'll call them back or email them back by the end of the day or "shortly" and then never call or email them back. When it comes to artists, stick to the tried and true philosophy of "Turn 'em and Burn 'em". If anyone ever questions any of your shady contracts, project mismanagement, employee misclassification, refusal to pay over time, use of EORS like MBO and Yurcor, etc.. make sure that you infer that you can have them "black listed" by making some sort of off hand remark about what a "small industry it is" or something to that effect. Hell, do that on a regular basis any way just to maintain an atmosphere of underlying fear. Sometimes you'll see Creative Directors use this one too. In this case, follow their lead and enjoy the process of intimidating people. Remember, it's a fucking privilege for those peons to work 16 hour days with no over time at your mograph / vfx shop. Treat all artists like they're a dime a dozen and it's your God given right to treat them like shit. Remember that most of them are spineless with low self esteem and no business sense. The ones that aren't are so few that they're easy to get rid of and replace.
  12. The intro doesn't bother me animation-wise and I couldn't even say off hand what tutorial Adam is saying you 'ripped it off' from. The music is not really doing anything for me. I would try and find something else. Stay away from cheesy synths that sound like they come from a porn flick. I don't feel like I need to see the first clip where you're showing that you shot some stuffed animals on green and keyed them, put a cg background in and made one wink at the camera. If you want to show the wink at the camera as a vfx shot, then go ahead I guess, but just show me that and cut to the next. Also, it's not a strong enough clip to start a reel off with. The Impresa Simplice clip is way too long. I would just show the part with the paper flying up and the cubes coming down and then cut before you see that radial wipe you used on the graphic element. The city fly though could be shorter too. Like say, use only :31 to :34 in your current timeline. Next clip, cut to show only :38 to :42. I would lose the clip after it with that game show looking thing. Shave a second to a second and a half off of that abstract background / stage looking thing you have at the end. Your logo and info type on the intro and outro could be smaller and and more centered on the outro. On the outro it looks like it might be out of title safe. That big blank spot to the right on that bar you have going across isn't really good use of negative space.
  13. I have yet to work a union job, but that classification as a "day hire" sounds shady. That sounds like an at will / freelance position. I would read the fine print on any contracts / work agreements they want you to sign, very carefully; especially if you already have a good staff job. If they want to woo you away from that, they should be offering you more money and job security. I don't know about the money part, but "day hire" doesn't sound like job security. Don't take anyone's word for it, get everything you want / need in writing.
  14. Just a reminder to LA freelancers to register your City of LA Business Tax Renewal certificate. www.finance.lacity.org Renew by 2-28-2011 or get screwed with fines, courtesy of the City of LA.
  15. No, no- sorry, monovich, I didn't mean for it to "sound" like that. All I meant was that if you're on site, with 1099, aside from being illegal misclassification, they really aren't doing you any favors. So, in my mind, who cares if they hire you as a 1099 if they aren't going to pay you OT for all of the hours beyond 8 that they will expect you to work, i.e. 10 to 16 hour days. If you're off site and working on your own equipment, setting your own hours and you're not under their direct supervision, then that's a different story.
  16. Sure. The line they typically tow is that if you are incorporated they will 1099 you. That's been discussed in detail on this site and Motionographer. So, I'm not sure what your point is by mentioning that. If you're on site, using their equipment or equipment they rented and you're under their direct supervision, they should be paying you via W-2 (I-9, for State in California) and contributing their share of Employer taxes and paying you OT beyond 8 hours in a day. As stated in other threads, the truth is that the Feds don't give a crap if you're incorporated or not, if you're working on-site, with the employer's equipment, under their direct supervision. YOU'RE NOT AN INDEPENDENT CONTRACTOR IN THIS SCENARIO WHETHER YOU'RE INCORPORATED OR NOT. YOU'RE A TEMPORARY EMPLOYEE IN THE VIEW OF FEDERAL LAW. Typically what the shops do is lie on their taxes and say you were off site, etc. They may even have you sign some twelve page contract stating you were off site, which is basically forcing the freelancer to sign something that is lying to the government because they know the freelancer needs / wants the work, so the contract is signed under duress. It's tax evasion and evasion of paying compensation. Pure and simple. That's why, safe to say at this point, it's pissing off most of the freelance community in this industry, especially with regard to the EOR schemes and not paying OT. But like I said earlier, people can sit around here and discuss it all they want. Until you call one of those whistle blower numbers and do something about it with how you respond when you're asked what your day rate is, it will continue. To reiterate, the only way it will change is if 1.) Freelancers start quoting their rates based on an 8 hour day and with OT compensation, if the day goes over 8 hours. 2.) I think the Feds and the State need to step in and make shop owners obey Labor Laws. 3.) Freelancers need to call those Federal and State Whistle Blower numbers and report every shop that's screwed them out of OT and made them sign up with an EOR. Many have already done this, so let's hope it continues. I personally would love to see all the shops I mentioned get a letter from the State and Feds telling them their illegal business practices need to cease with regard to OT and EORs and 1099 misclassification and they need to pay back pay and taxes to / for all of the freelancers they screwed out of both over the last decade.
  17. Well, if they're 1099 you illegally, which a lot of places still do and is the lesser of two evils between that and EORs, then you can still write stuff off. I've found that if you're freelance, it works out best if you have W-2s and a few 1099s to get some write offs. That way, you pay some taxes, get some contributions to your FICA, Medicare, etc. from temporary employers and get to write some stuff off that you wouldn't get to write off if you are strictly W-2. These days though, I'd rather be all W-2 / I-9 (in California) and not have to worry about an audit. When I say W-2, I mean NOT UNDER AN EOR. EORs are BS, in case anyone missed that. Still though, in LA, I work mostly on site for shops and networks. I don't go direct with clients, yet. I just may start though. All the shops I mentioned have been screwing people out of OT and / or Employer tax contributions by either misclassifying them as 1099 or the more recent use of EORs, since day one. Regarding the "bring your own work station" phenomena: I've seen ads for places that want you to bring your own work station, yet work on-site under their direct supervision. That isn't the norm and it's a bunch of crap. Moreover, it's something I would avoid. Who in their right mind would want to cart around a tower, monitor, etc and leave it at some shop with people you hardly know? How can you not know that is going to be a rotten deal from the beginning? If they don't have a box for you to work on, then they can rent one and pick up the cost themselves. They should have known enough to know they would need an extra box or two when they bid for the job. If they did know and are still asking people to bring their own box, then you can bet they're probably not that scrupulous. They probably won't pay you in a timely manner either. If they didn't know they would need an extra box when they bid for the job, then there's a good chance they don't know what they're doing and that's a nightmare for those of us who do, should we be working for them. Even then, it's no excuse. Know what I mean?
  18. Yeah, I was able to save the cached page of the last time it was cached, but not the entry where he gave a detailed breakdown of how much money a freelancer is losing by not charging OT after an 8 hour day, which is the law in the State of California. I would like to know why he deleted it, so if you're reading this VFX Law, please let us know somehow.
  19. These links were great. I'm not sure why the person who posted them, deleted them. Maybe they got a death threat or a "you'll never work again in this town / industry" threat? -Neither would surprise me. Basically, the linked pages highlighted the laws regarding OT pay and the fact that you're not exempt from OT compensation as a commercial artist. They also encouraged people to base their rates on an 8 hour day and charge for OT, which is in fact, the law. They also gave a breakdown of how much money you're getting cheated out of by not being paid OT compensation. I've been doing this sort of thing for awhile now: whenever I'm asked what my rate is, I always say that it's $XXX.XX for an eight hour day. If it's a place I really want to work at for one reason or another, I may say 8-10 hour day to soft sell it. 8-10 hours, means including lunch so it ends up being 8.5 or maybe 9 hours tops of actual work, because I will take a lunch and not sitting at my desk either. I find that when I soft sell it as an 8-10 hour day I still end up leaving by 7:30 pm for the most part. So it ends up being 10 am - 7:30 pm with an hour lunch between 1 pm and 2 pm. When I base it on an 8 hour day, I still take a lunch, but don't bill for that hour, i.e. I work a full 8 hours and the ninth hour is lunch or in other words: 10 am to 7 pm with a lunch from 1 pm to 2 pm. I'm at the point where I don't really care to stay until 8 pm or after. I don't care how great the work is that the shop turns out or how "rock star" they are as a (sweat) shop. I also don't do MBO / Yurcor or any other EOR scheme. I'm not into paying a fee to work and then paying Employer and Employee taxes. If that gets me less work for wanting to be treated fairly with regard to regular work days, not wanting to pay a fee to some third party company just so I can work, having an employer contribute their share of taxes to my compensation and getting over time compensation when over time is worked, then so be it. It won't take much for the industry to change if you stand up for yourself as a freelancer. Stop working 10 or more often 12-16 hour days for Blind, Stardust, BNS, Logan, Imaginary Forces, etc. without OT compensation and tell places like Superfad, Roger and BNS who all use EORs, to take a hike with their lack of ethics. In fact, here's a link to a list of shops using EORs- UNETHICAL Unlike the places I mentioned above, there are other shops and networks out there that work people normal 8 hour days and don't use EORs. They also do good work. These places also typically pay in 2-3 weeks or less. I know, because I seek them out and work at them. I think it's great that people in our profession are communicating on boards like this about this and other problems in our industry. However, you can bitch all day on this board and other industry sites about getting low balled and not getting paid OT, but until you start standing up for yourself when you're asked what your day rate is, by putting 8 hour limits as what you base your regular hours and rate on and telling these places you don't do EORs, you'll continue to get screwed. -That, and write to your State and Federal Representatives about all this crap. If everyone stands up for themselves then the problem will go away. Until then, it won't and the people who run the shops I mentioned by name and others like them, are just laughing their asses off at you and this board while they're counting the cash they're screwing you out of.
  20. While I can see bringing a laptop in to fill in any gaps in software and plugins the place might have, there is no way I would transport a tower or an iMac or whatever, to an onsite job, just because the shop didn't put the cost of renting a box for the job into the bid. That just tells me that they under bid the job and / or they're insanely cheap and / or they don't know what they're doing. And if anyone of those is the case and it probably is, I'd be worried about if and when I would be paid. Sorry to be a downer, but I've seen jobs like this posted here and on Motionographer and I just roll my eyes and think "fuck off". If they don't have a work station on site and you have one at your home office, then I agree with the other person that responded here- they should be willing to let you work remote and just do weekly meetings over the course of the job's production timeline. None of this: "bring your own tower / monitor work station to our studio". That's BS.
  21. Please learn the difference between "your" and "you're" and use them correctly.
  22. tvp

    Pic agency

    Yes, yes. But are they good to work FOR?
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