Seasoned Hollywood cinematographer Mark Irwin successfully holds training at GMA Network

GMA Network successfully held a seminar for its techno-creative personnel under the mentorship of seasoned Hollywood cinematographer Mark Irwin, CSC, ASC – his first training conducted in the Philippines.

Exclusively held for GMA Network, the five-day workshop, which concluded on November 18, was attended by directors of photography and key technical staff from the Network’s Engineering, Public Affairs, News, Entertainment, and Post-Production departments with the special participation of Sparkle artists Aidan Veneracion, John Clifford, Waynona Collings, Charlie Fleming, and Bryce Eusebio.

With 50 years of experience in film, Irwin has worked on a wide range of films such as “Robocop 2,” “Scream,” “Old School,” “There’s Something About Mary,” “Scary Movie 3,” and a hundred more from different genres. He is a member of the Canadian Society of Cinematographers (CSC) since 1970 and the American Society of Cinematographers (ASC) since 1992.

“One of the things that I like about Mark Irwin is that he’s not secretive and he’s very much willing to share his knowledge,” said GMA Network Head of Studio and Remote Operations Jeffry Evangelista. “Even with his credentials, he’s still open to suggestions and to train people. There are also times when he encourages the participants to speak up, ask questions, and share their own insights on how they do things. Coming from the participants’ inputs, that’s where he would give suggestions on how to improve.”

“I could say one of the strong points that Mark Irwin noticed in our GMA participants is that they know what he is doing. Whenever he mentions a specific equipment, where to put it, and the manner of set-up, the people already know what to do. They are also quick on their toes since they understand the flow. The relationship between the facilitator and the participants was built during the workshop, wherein the discussions and interactions were easy,” Evangelista added.

Irwin, in turn, shared how his approach was in conducting the workshop. “Everyone has the skills and the experience and how to apply it. This is more of a filter class and your questions will be filtered through my experience back to you. I’m not this fountain of knowledge that just says, ‘there it is, take it or leave it.’ I want to apply what they need through what I can provide. So, the hard part for me is to know what people don’t know and fill in those blanks.”

“If I teach somebody how to swim and they don’t drown, then I’ve been successful. I’m not gonna go back and criticize their dog paddle. Keep working on it and that’s how you grow,” he assured.

This seminar was made possible through the coordination of GMA Network’s Supply and Asset Management Department with Hollywood film equipment provider Birns & Sawyer.

“One thing that led me to pick him to bring here is that he has knowledge not just in films, but also in broadcast. So, I said, it’s a good fit and I think it’s going to work. He’s traveled and he’s shot here in Asia, so he knows our conditions like the weather. We came here not to change anything, but to add confidence to them,” shared Birns & Sawyer CEO and Owner Mari Acevedo.

As part of the Network’s numerous ways of giving back to Filipino viewers, GMA has been continuously upgrading its equipment and enhancing its best practices to produce world-class Kapuso content.

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