Graduating: Expected May 2016
Major: Television w/ creative advertising minor
I had the chance to sit down with one of Columbia’s television majors, Rudy Schieder. He was a perfect candidate for Arts Agora. From washing cars to building his own company, here are some of his tips and advice to making your own dreams come true, and of course he wouldn’t be where he is now with out his great education form Columbia College Chicago.
Stephanie Falaschetti: So far while attending Columbia, who has been your favorite professor?
Rudy Schieder: Matt Till, who I had for introductory courses my freshman year. I really enjoyed learning from him because he was professionally driven and cared about quality just as much as content. Matt always pushed his students to question why they made certain creative decisions to help them better understand their logic behind creating their visual work which led to students beginning to learn how they could better put their visions to life. Matt was a great professor to have my first year at Columbia because he pushed me to be more professional and disciplined. There were days when I didn’t feel like hearing how I needed to be more disciplined and professional but now I’ve realized that being disciplined and professional stems from having a strong passion in the work you do. If you truly take your work seriously and want to become a better media maker, discipline and professionalism are key ingredients to growing and learning.
SF: How did everything start?
RS: My first job was drying off cars at a car wash back in my hometown of Buffalo, NY. My current boss came around doing employee satisfaction interviews with employees and I remember being one of the only employees that volunteered to talk with her about my job. During the interview I mentioned how I owned a video camera and had a good amount of editing experience. She mentioned that she could possibly use a video guy to help make human resource training videos and said she would be in touch. There are two lessons to be learned from this. The first is that you should never refrain from telling people what you do. Don’t wait for an opportunity to come to you, make one happen. The second lesson I learned from this is to give everything you do your all. If I had blew off the interview like many other employees did that day I would never have opened a door to many future opportunities. Fast forward 3 years and I am essentially the media department of Delta Sonic Car Wash which has over 25 locations across NY, PA, and IL. I’ve directed commercials, shot training videos, and have snapped thousands of photos which have found their way to billboards, websites, and banners. Working this job provided an environment for me to grow and become better and better at my craft.
In 2012, I founded Schieder Media, a multimedia production company. In the past two years, my team and I have filmed concerts, commercials, brand films, music videos, and even a mini-documentary. We’ve taken thousands of photos and have designed beautiful websites. The company continues to grow as do the people who work for it. Schieder Media is still a very young company so I wear many hats and take on a good portion of the workload while overseeing the development of new business, production, and distribution. Possibly the most exciting news I can share about Schieder Media is that we’re currently working on becoming a contractor for Moshcam, which is a company based out of Sydney Australia that films and releases live concerts. They’ve worked with everybody from A$AP Rocky to Slash. I’m currently waiting to hear back on the possibility of filming Foster The People’s sold out show May 16th at the Riviera Theatre, which would obviously be a huge opportunity and success for Schieder Media.
SF: How has your education from Columbia made this possible?
RS: I fear the world in which I never attended Columbia… because I’m most likely sitting in my parents basement watching Netflix and thinking I know everything in that universe. Coming to Columbia was a healthy wake up call that the world of media production is not as simple as having a DSLR and some color filter presets. Being at Columbia I’ve become obsessed (in a healthy manner, mostly..) with creating the best looking visuals possible. I think it’s important for students to find and experience this spark of passion because it will be the drive they need to push harder to become more disciplined and refined media makers, which in turn will lead them to creating better and more powerful work. The only way I’ve experienced any growth or success in my creative life has been by immersing myself in my work and trying to take on as many projects as humanly possible. View your creative talent as your craft, and don’t ever stop learning.
To keep up with Rudys most recent projects make sure to follow him on the web!
Interview by Stephanie Falaschetti