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LA Internships for Cinematography

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Hey everyone!


I will be attending Emerson College's LA campus fall of 2017 and we are required to hold an internship for the semester. My focus is cinematography, and am particularly looking for internships that pertain to it. However, this has so far not been an easy search. Most internships I see are "entertainment" or administrative internships.

I'm not worried whether it's paid or not, and certainly do not mind internships that require office duties and tedious workloads. My one desire is to find a place where I can at least learn something about the craft and industry.


So far, interning for Shane Hurlbut or Panavision is about the best internships I could find. No doubt I could put in time at a rental house, but I've seen many say that time could be spent better elsewhere.


Anyone have experiences or suggestions for finding said internships or any that are cinematography based in LA?



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I don't think Shane is ever around by the way, so even though his facility is a veritable toy shop and I love the guys over there, I don't know how much you'd learn about cinematography. Panavision is similar, they're just a rental house so unless they'd send you out to set with equipment and allow you to hang out there, I also don't see how much you'd learn about cinematography.


I mean truth be told, I'd love to have someone like you come work on my films over the summer. I have a bunch of recent college grads who I work with, giving them great opportunities to shine and help build a reel. It's hard to be at school AND be on set for a 12hr day, so that's why during the school year it's hard to really get the hands on experience you need to grow.


When the semester wraps, shoot me a line and I'll let you know what's going on over the summer. I'm suppose to be shooting two features this year, including one of my own and I need all the help I can get. It would be a great opportunity for a young DP to get VERY hands on and work with some great people.


I'm an Emerson grad as well... originally from bean town. It's always fun to reminisce about Boston. :)

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Hey Tyler!


Thanks so much for the advice - I spoke to a friend of mine who is currently working for Shane and said it's got a lot of practical learning and hands-on to it. I may also keep searching for smaller production companies to see if I can come on as something more general - but at least production involved.


I surely will be contacting you! I saw your Celluloid Dreaming site, and have to say I'm in love. I grew up with just digital and in all purposes have only done digital shoots. But no matter what, digital will never compare to film... I'm waiting for the day I get a gig that will allow for film. It's sad to see so many of my peers toss film to the side in frustration. I really hope it lives on.

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I suspect in LA it isn't that hard to work on a million little short films. Exhausting, possibly, and probably more than a little exploitative, but possibly worthwhile. I don't know, I live 6000 miles away.

You're not far off. :)


Jacob, there are very few cinematography internships in LA; the two you've mentioned being the biggest.


I recommend expanding your scope of internship; have you looked into interning at a color grading facility for example? Knowing how to color a film will incredibly help you as a DP.


I also recommend looking into interning at a VFX company; more often than not DP's are needing to know VFX.


Interning at a camera house is great because you'll be able to meet AC's, play with the gear, and open up a network connection. But, go beyond cameras.


Here's a link to nearly all of the rental companies in LA:




Try contacting these rental companies, and don't be afraid of the smaller ones like ProHD or HD Optics; they still have working professionals and clients who may need crew.

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