There are many places you wouldn’t expect to find a video production business: the surface of the moon, the bottom of the Marianas Trench and Vidlin in Shetland.
From his home in this scattered settlement Simon Thompson can look out of the window of his edit suite, down the green-banked voe towards the northern islands of Yell and Fetlar. And the Arctic Circle.
I’m making it out to be more remote than it is. In fact, it only took Simon 30 minutes or so to make the journey from Vidlin into Lerwick for the interview.
He started his career as an NHS nurse. Then he took a course in TV production and down the line spent time working in a production rentals house.
He became skilled enough in setting up and configuring Avid edit suites, that he was sent to Pinewood for certified Avid training.
Since then he’s worked as a freelancer to the broadcast and corporate video production sectors, and spent three seasons in Peterhead with the onshore production team behind Trawlermen.
But that’s not the inspiration for his move to Shetland. That happened years earlier. And now he’s there, with a family.
In this week’s IADF podcast Simon talks about his tech background and the decision to go ‘rural’.
Simon is currently touring the UK with the Hansel of Film, Shetland’s contribution to the Cultural Olympiad, in which a film-festival comprising locally-produced shorts tours venues in more than 20 cities and towns across Britain.
You can follow the progress of the project at the Hansel of Film Facebook page.
If you entered a film and it was selected then it was Simon who had the unenviable task of preparing all the entries for playout on so many different venue and cinema systems.