How to be a music video director: Adam Powell's story

Music video directors work with a film crew to make their creative vision for a song come to life.

Adam Powell is a music video director who has worked across many musical genres, including pop, hip-hop and punk. We've asked him to tell us a bit more about how it all works.

Scroll down for more information on skills, working hours and salary.

Music film director Adam Powell talks about how his passion for cutting film to music started from an early age.

What skills do I need to be a music video director?

It's a given that you will need to be passionate about music and making films, but there are other important skills that you will need to demonstrate as well. You will need:

  • strong organisational skills
  • to be confident using maths and budgeting
  • in-depth industry knowledge
  • the ability to think creatively
  • awareness of health and safety guidelines.

What to expect if you want to be a music video dircetor

What will I get paid? Your rate will depend on a number of factors: the complexity of the video, the location, the band’s budget and your experience. Fees may be agreed hourly or daily and contracts are usually freelance or fixed-term.

Where will I work? Most of the time you'll be on location or in an editing suite. What are the working hours like? Filming is often concentrated into intense one or two-day shoots.

What qualifications do you need to be a music video director?

What qualifications do I need? You might find a formal qualification in film-making useful, but its not uncommon to start your career in another production role, such as researcher or producer, and work your way up.

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