Courtney Nicolson

Writer/Producer, Sportsman Channel

Nicolson was hired at the network as a production assistant in March 2011 and swiftly moved up the ladder—even skipping a rung in the process—to today’s role of writer/producer. She tackles all aspects of promotional video shoots, from budgeting to producing to writing copy. She’s amped about the amazing gear that’s available to producers these days. “We are seeing a huge leap in high quality footage as cameras become smaller and easier to use in the wild,” she says.

What makes you most excited about this industry as you advance in your career?

The thing that makes me most excited about the industry as I advance in my career is the accessibility of high quality and affordable production equipment and technology. In the past few years we’ve seen professional filming and editing equipment become financially accessible to a wider group of creative people, and the result has brought us not only new and amazing works but has raised the bar for everyone else in the industry. Specifically in the world of outdoor television, we are seeing a huge leap in high quality footage as cameras become smaller and easier to use in the wild, as well as some of the amazing gear that brings us those beautiful one of a kind shots in precarious places.

What would be your ultimate dream job?

You know, the question of “what would be my ultimate dream job” is not one that I can answer. Nor do I want to be able to answer. For me, my career has always had a definitive direction, a path that I blaze whole-heartedly, but I do not fixate on a destination. I started out in the independent film industry, never dreaming I would discover my passion for television. I transitioned from on-set production to the network side and through various roles before returning to my true passion of writing. I think if every year of my career you asked me that same question I might have a different answer. My focus is to work hard, pursue what I am passionate about, hone my skills, and seek out and seize great opportunities.

Who has been your biggest mentor and why?

My biggest mentor has been my Creative Director here at Sportsman Channel, Michael Magnotta. Michael’s policy for our department has always been that no one has to wear just one hat. Ideas come from everywhere, and everyone. When, as production assistant, I asked if I could take a stab at writing and editing my first promo he gave a big thumbs up. When I began to take on more writing assignments he helped me to grow as a writer. Michael’s support of my career path change from production supervisor to writer/producer was essential to make the switch, and he has been there on the other side to ensure that I have all the tools, support and mentorship for success.

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