Video above: The fall of the ATN tower (shot by former 7 camera colleague Barry Armstrong) Demolition of the studios made way for a high-rise development.
A (very) brief history
‘Videotape’ was the buzz word, most of the shows were pre-recorded as the old kinescopes eventually became redundant. Staging was fun even though the hours were pretty awful. Some of the shows I worked on as a stage hand back then - The Town of Make Believe, Mavis Bramston Show, My Name’s McGooley, You Can’t See Around Corners, Today Show, Beauty and the Beast, Pick a Box, Bob Crosby Show (my first ‘live’ show as a stage hand), Romper Room, It’s All Happening, TV Tutorial and the Bathurst OB (Gallagher 500 back then).
After progressing through the ranks of studio camera operation at 7, I became a director with Artransa. Just before the advent of Betacam, I shot and directed an expedition with the ‘Dick Smith Explorer’ to Antarctica. “One Antarctic Summer” was a highlight of my career.
It was time to move on, despite Artransa purchasing the first Betacam in Australia. The rest is pretty much history. Corporates, 2nd Unit on a telemovie, various documentaries involving local and world travel and a new camera once every 3 to 4 years. The switch from analog to digital being the biggest change in technology. Had these cameras been around when I started - wow, what a difference they would have made.
Even though I still retain a basic lighting kit and utilise Sony’s FS7 (HD and 4K), around half way through 2015 I exited my regular gig with thoughts directed for a break. I’ve been very fortunate as a freelancer, even now I’ll still do jobs for clients that I’ve worked with for over thirty years. Not that there’s all that many now.
Reckon this is (was) still the best job in the world :)