Thomas Smyth
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Thomas Smyth (Film Skillet Filmmaker) - Ballymoney Antrim Ireland

Industry Role:
After 25 years as a designer in the construction industry, l found myself on the redundancy scrapheap. Thankfully l had a cunning plan, l have always been a fan of the movies especially behind the scenes, so l decided at the age of 46 something to change my career path and became a mature student studying TV and Film Production at my local NRC. It was as if someone had suddenly pressed the on button, l loved it. After writing, editing and directing several video assignments l rediscovered my enthusiasm and creativity that had been absent for a long time. Although l have excelled in my assignments, it was my skill at prop and special effect prop making that l got noticed. This is nothing new as l had been set designer and prop maker for a local charity pantomime group on various productions from 1999, but now it could be a possible career. My writing, Directing editing and effects are the skills l want to develop as l feel these are the strongest elements of my career change. All the props l have designed and produced for various projects have been made within a very small or nonexistent budget, using everything from masking tape, wire coat hangers and what used to be referred to as ‘sticky back plastic’ to liquid latex. Using the internet, books and my own creativity and film knowledge l have recreated props and effects props for numerous productions of my own as well as others. For example after posting photos on a social website l was asked by YELLOW FEVER PRODUCTIONS to design and operate special make- up effects and props for their production of horror flick SPLASH AREA. This has lead to developing effects and props ideas for future productions including an untitled Alien style project. More recently to gain behind the scenes experience in the TV and film industry as l have worked as a background artist on productions such as Game of Thrones and have managed to develop my own props based on the ones l have used and seen on set again towards an idea of my own. My years as a design technician have not been wasted as this has given me a valuable insight into solving design issues organisation deadlines. It would be my ambition to work within the film and TV industry to develop these abilities further and to build a career that l relish. Thomas J Smyth

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Film Credits

Film clip
Film
Role
SPLASH AREA (2012)
Actor, Props maker and special make-up effects crew
Ghosts of Us (2012)
Actor
BEACH (2011)
Writer, Director animated props creator