Lighting Director, Set Design, Video Tech (1977-78)
In 1977 Manhattan Cable TV designated 3 video facilities in NYC as "Local Injection Points" (LIP's) that produced local origination programming. Soon after I arrived in the city, I was lucky enough to be taken on as Lighting Director / Set Designer and occasional Production Director on the fulltime staff. (There weren't many paying jobs available in the upstart medium at that time.)
The Value Proposition
- For many of us who were committed to local programming, one of the challenges at this time was to "Do well by doing good".
- Automation House was an opportunity to gain professional credibility while also doing really interesting work;
- I forged long-term relationships with colleagues who saw the exciting opportunities that were opening up with the birth of new media.
Cable TV Roots
In the early 60's pre-eminent labor negotiator Theodore Kheel established Automation House in order to for "people to adjust in a rapidly changing world of automation and helping the individual to have a sense of participation in the society in which she or he lives."
Kheel's forward-thinking insight was to take advantage of emerging technologies (affordable video) and bandwidth (cable TV channels) in order to do some social good.
What We Did
As a low-end video production facility, Automation House was perfectly positioned to be the point of implementation for anyone who was looking to develop new channels.We got to work on a bunch of 'em, as well as cutting-edge productions in the arenas of arts and politics.
For many of us who were committed to local programming, one of the challenges at this time was to "Do well by doing good". Automation House was an opportunity to gain professional credibility while also doing really interesting work, s.a.:
- Arts programming
- Community advocacy
- "Industrial video"
- Corporate training
- Local commericals
MTV first appeared right around this time.