My film-student daughter is currently working on her fourth movie gig – an indie zombie movie being shot here in Austin. While I admit to really not getting the whole zombie thing, I’m excited that she’s getting so many opportunities to do the work she loves. This time around she is the Production Designer/Art Director. When she started, I wasn’t sure what that would entail, but now that she’s in the midst of the work, I realize that she’s essentially a business analyst. Don’t believe me? Read on….
Project Kick-off: Before the first meeting with her director (project sponsor) she read through the script and made a list of scenes and locations that she would need to design. Then she met with the director, reviewed this list with him, and ensured that she understood his expectations, budget, and timeframe.
Elicitation: Next, she met with the other crew members to discover what their requirements were for props and visual design. She also went to the location where filming is to occur to make photographs and measurements and identify what furniture and decorations were already available.
Stakeholder Management & Communication: She identified that there were some gaps on the crew to perform key tasks, so she found some fellow students who were willing and able to work for free. She identified which ones were reliable and responsive, and is managing those relationships for the director so that he doesn’t have to worry about it.
Requirements Documentation: Based on what she discovered during elicitation, she planned the decoration of each set and made lists of items that would need to be created by the art team or procured. She estimated the cost of the materials required.
Requirements Validation: She had the director and other crew members review and approve her plans.
Requirements Management: As planning for the actual filming continues, there are changes to some sets and locations which she has to accommodate. Right up until filming is complete, she will have to adjust on the fly and still remain within the budget and deliver set designs on time so as not to delay filming.
So…if you think that being a business analyst is all about software, think again. Business analysis skills are applicable to every industry and creative endeavor. Even zombies!