My name is Simon Guy and I am a former Camera Trainee Apprentice with Sgil Cymru. But these days I am a freelance Camera operator working on a variety of productions.
I started my apprenticeship with BBC Wales working as a trainee for ‘Casualty’ and then ‘Pobol Y Cwm’. Back then my duties included cables and batteries, and I made sure I did the job well. After finishing my apprenticeship, I was lucky enough to be offered the position of full-time camera assistant for ‘Pobol Y Cwm’. During that period, I learned the importance of organisational skills and how to work with people, no filming block was the same as I worked with different directors, camera operators and crews in general.
After a couple of years, I was moved into the operations department at BBC Wales. This meant more variety for the type of productions I worked on. I started camera operating on the news and sport, and studio shows like ‘Crimewatch Roadshow’ and ‘Wales Live’. During the next few years, I focused on gaining knowledge and crafting my skills, including learning to operate the jib. I was eventually promoted to the role of full-time camera operator in BBC Wales.
As we came to the end of our time at BBC Wales Broadcasting House in the Llandaff area of Cardiff, there was an opportunity to work on the migration to the new BBC building in the centre of Cardiff. I jumped at the chance to do so, and my involvement in the project was to create shots and moves using the robotic cameras to work with automation in the news galleries and studios. This experience became so valuable, not only in learning new technology but working under high pressure and time constraints during a global pandemic.
After completing the project, I decided it was time for me to venture out into the freelance world. So, in April of this year I left the BBC and became self-employed. Doing this has been the most exciting part of my career so far, not only am I able to work on a wider range of programmes, but I am also meeting new people almost every day. Since going freelance I have even had the opportunity to direct, which was a very exciting experience.
It is fair to say that none of this would have been possible without Sgil Cymru and the fantastic people who work there…Convincing a village boy from North Wales that he could have a career in this wonderful industry.
Thank you very much.