Should I major in my passion(s) or something more practical?

It’s all coming down to the crunch for me as I near 40.

I went to film school before and completed it. It wasn’t the best experience though. I was a drug addict in a very dangerous city at the time. I did enjoy my time going to film school though.

I’m considering going back to school at a University to study filmmaking. I have some sci-fi and dramas inside of me I still want to make.

But film-making, like all arts, is super competitive.

I can stay where I’m currently at and study computers, or accounting, and get a decent job. At least part-time.

Sorry this is so long. I would appreciate everyone’s input.

My biggest dream is to be a screenwriter/novelist. I want to be behind the scenes.

Take care :v:


Congratulations on completing film school, Montezuma! :slight_smile: If you’d like my suggestion, how about studying computers or accounting and working on screenplays/novels in your free time/retirement?? Or perhaps you could work as an accountant/computer person in the film/publishing industry?? I hope you get a lot of feed back on your thread. Whatever you decide, I wish you every success!! :muscle:


Follow opportunity.


I wish I could tell you. I’ve heard it said that “If you do what you love, you’ll never have to work a day in your life.” I recommend doing all the research you can on your possible film making. Get the most accurate picture of it you can. See if you have the resources to attain that.


I had that conversation with Princess Pixel last week. She threw that quote at me. Here’s the thing… Work by its nature is unpleasant, that’s why you’re paid to do it. If it was fun – like Disneyworld – they charge YOU to do it. Jobs that you have fun doing and that feel like playing? They’re statistical outliers. And even then, they’re VERY involved. You have to work over 80 hours a week in many of them. (My incredibly rare successful photographer friends never get downtime. Ever.)

Do I like being an insurance broker? I’m not wild about it. However, I am good at it and I like a job that I can stop thinking about after my 7.5 hour shift is done. It’s a large company and there are plenty of places to grow. With my technical training background, I can see myself doing insurance training in five years. That excites me, even if training about insurance doesn’t.


I think you should study something more practical. Trust me, I went the passion route; English Literature and History of Art and I regret it as it hasn’t led to anything exactly substantial. I may wind up a sales assistant. You can always study your passion independently. Especially for things like film studies, art, literature. You don’t need a degree for the liberal arts in truth…


Practical jobs are something that will never be fun. At least if you follow your passion there is a chance you will love it. And especially with film and youtube, there is a lot of chance for exposure.

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Thank you for the advice @Diana_Ross7 I agree. My film schooling, while it was a fun time, essentially was pointless.

After watching the video @velociraptor posted it kind of puts things in perspective.

I agree with you for the most part @anon1571434. However in my experience in film school, we had so many people in the same room that were 1. Type ‘A’ personalities and 2. All wanted to be the director of the project.

You can only imagine the typical drama that would ensue on our film sets.

You can still use those skills, but you may want to take the approach of developing an audience to sell to and then have them watch your videos with ads, or buy ancilliary products related to them. This is the incredibly successful business model of The Oatmeal, who is now a millionaire many times over.

I do some video production, but it’s not enough to live on. I’m the local who helps put together tourism videos for the local tourism bureau on contract, etc. It’s a bit of gravy that’s nice to have.


In addition to @velociraptor it might not hurt to get some marketing skills to promote yourself. The more you can do on your own the less you have to pay people to do.


I’m just trying to think of what to use the rest of my GI Bill for.

Going to a 4 year university would probably be a waste, since I only have about a year left in it. The trades (mechanic, welding, computers) are starting to look more appealing.

@anon1571434 that’s great advice, thank you. :slight_smile:

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My sister wanted to be a fashion designer her whole life.

I know most girls do, but she had always taken it very seriously.

When it came to college, my dad refused to pay for art school until she had gotten a “real degree”.

It was a major source of drama for years…

She got her bachelors in some sort of General Studies,

And eventually went on to a fashion merchandising school.

It was a real struggle for her to find fashion jobs in LA,

But she was able to support herself with a decent job that she only could have gotten with that degree.

Now she lives in NYC and works on a very popular Netflix show, it wasn’t handed to her, she really had to hustle for it,

But the point is she used a very practical back up plan in pursuit of her dreams.

Nothing says you can’t do both, you should protect yourself with a good trade before jumping into the abyss of a film career.

Not saying it wont work out, but even when a movie career does work out, it doesn’t always mean a ton of money. You NEED something to fall back on in that industry.


Lottery tickets!

Okay, seriously, trying to get a plumber is hell on Earth these days. There just aren’t enough of them. Someone with a great work ethic willing to apprentice would find the grants and opportunities to do so. Why pay for school when the trade will pay YOU as you learn? Especially when there is now a glut of unemployable college and university grads?


Exactly. Your sister sounds very smart for going a more practical route. There’s a popular saying in the film industry, I think it’s something like “Don’t quit your day job.”

LoL @ “Lottery ticket”

I dig it though. Here in the U.S. a lot of times the unions will even pay for your schooling and training. Good ideas here. Thank you again, @velociraptor.

Princess Pixel starts work experience at a local plumber next week. She aims to get her journeyman’s ticket within two years of graduating. After THAT, she intends to get an English degree by correspondence in the evenings while working at her day job. She thinks she could be an excellent screen writer. If that doesn’t pan out, though, she’ll still have a trade.


Contrary to Pixel’s belief, many college grads are employed.

Absolutely, but they have to have earned ‘useful’ degrees. Think STEM.


Did you look at the graph?