MA Film graduate, Jaime Sotelo, recounts his time studying at Edinburgh Napier University
What was your background before doing your master’s?
Before coming to Scotland to study at Edinburgh Napier, I studied a BA in Communications and Audiovisual Arts at Universidad Salamanca, Spain. I then spent time studying in Italy and Uruguay, before completing my MA in Fiction for Television and Film: Direction and Production at Universitat Ramón Llull (Blanquerna), Barcelona, Spain.
What encouraged you to study at postgraduate level?
I had already completed a MA in Film in Barcelona, but I wanted to further my knowledge in film, and more specifically, film audio.
Why did you choose to study at ENU?
After spending some time researching courses, I found this one included a lot of practical work, which interested me straight away, so I applied for it.
What are your favourite parts of the course and are there any highlights?
I really enjoyed meeting people who were very passionate about films and the whole process of filmmaking, with great ideas and very interesting minds. Speaking with them, meeting for a coffee or beer, and chatting about films and scenes, working on projects together and filming them. Filming those projects was the best part of the course.
During the course I was a sound recordist for projects that we filmed on location in Scotland, Spain and Romania, nothing could beat that!
Any challenges during your studies and what you did to overcome these?
To be honest, everything came quite straight-forward.
Students and lecturers alike were always very nice, and everyone was very focused - probably because we all had a background working in film, we all wanted to be on top of any challenges from the very beginning.
How did you find the transition between undergraduate studies/ work to doing your masters?
I loved the fact that our MA was very practical, it really focused on how to make things, how to make films. It also gave us a theoretical perspective, but it was mainly a course focused on practice, which I had never really done before.
What did you do after completing your master’s?
I currently work as a Sound Recordist for film and TV. I’ve worked on brilliant films with great talent, both behind the camera and on screen.
I’ve been fortunate enough to work with artists such as David Tennant, Michael Gambon, Gabriel Byrne, Elisabeth Moss, Anna Paquin, James Norton, Ewen Bremner, and terrific production crews.
I also work on TV, at the moment I’m working on a BBC show “A View From The Terrace”. I’ve worked on it since it started and now we're about to start season 3. I’ve also just wrapped up a Netflix original series, and I work on documentaries, commercials, and corporate materials.
But, for me, it is not about big names, it’s about sharing moments with very talented people, both cast and crew, making what we like the most, films. Enjoying all those experiences and learning from them, that’s the best. Every day is different, and that’s something very unique and particular that we should be proud of.
Would you recommend the course? If so, why?
Definitely, the course teaches you a huge variety of film production techniques, not only in your specialisation, but also in other areas, which is key to understanding how this business works.
What advice would you give to anyone considering this course?
Just go for it. It’ll open doors and will make you feel like you’re really part of it. Of course, it’ll be tough once you’ve finished the course and don’t really know how to get started in the industry, but you’ll already be involved, even if you don’t think so at that stage, opportunities will come and you’ll be ready to learn from them.
Just enjoy all the time you share with your friends and don’t be afraid of using all the cameras, lights, and sound gear that Edinburgh Napier provide, experience all of it, it’ll be worth it.