A positive attitude reaps rewards

From directing the video for Lewis Capaldi’s number one single Someone You Loved, to working with ITV and Google, alumnus Phil Beastall is looking forward to his latest role after 15 years of industry experience.

Phil has just become Creative Director for Squashed Robot in Cheltenham, a creative content agency working in video, photography, animation and design.

Phil’s own creative journey has flourished, with highlights including his Christmas film ‘Love is a Gift’ being watched by over 100 million people around the world and shared over 200,000 times on social media.

He was interviewed on ITV’s This Morning and Good Morning Britain, and following this was asked by Good Morning Britain to write and direct a film for their 1 million Minutes Christmas campaign.

And before leaving school, he knew this was the industry for him. He discovered University of Gloucestershire while looking for a predominantly practical course.

“Some of the other courses I had looked at were more theory focused but the University of Gloucestershire’s course was 70% practical. I was also left feeling inspired when we were introduced to the course by Dave Dalby – course leader at the time,” he said.

“I chose Video Production because I was really interested in exploring video and film a bit more. My brother created an end of sixth form film which I helped him with back at school, and it got me really excited about the prospect of making more content.”

Phil loved the community feel that Cheltenham offered, and made good friends who became housemates.

“They were on the same course as me, so we shared similar interests and spent a lot of our time making wacky and weird films, some of which are better off catching dust than anyone ever seeing them!”

After graduating, Phil applied for a role as a Video Editor at a local company and was fortunate to get the job. While everyone else was heading home for the summer after graduating, Phil stayed on in Cheltenham and started his first full time job. 

Phil found that his he was able to build a lot of confidence at University, particularly in the third year.

“With the course being so practical, we were allowed a lot of freedom to create the content we wanted to make. I went from someone who didn’t know what he wanted in the first year, to a confident third year with a clear, creative voice.”

And for anyone considering university, or who is currently studying, he believes a positive attitude holds the key to success.

“With all the skills and abilities, if you come with a bad attitude you’ll struggle to get work and build long lasting relationships. Whereas, if you approach every job with positivity and enthusiasm you’ll be remembered for longer. Any skills you might not have, you can learn, but what can be harder is dropping the ego, getting stuck in and working your socks off, sometimes in roles you don’t want to be in.”