is an online collaborative production company founded and owned by Joseph Gordon-Levitt. It is also a television show on Pivot, sporting the tagline, ‘A new kind of variety show.’ The show received the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Creative Achievement In Interactive Media – Social TV Experience in 2014. The production company uses video, music, literature, photography, spoken word, screenwriting, graphic art, etc. from artists who have submitted to the website from around the world to produce books, short films, music videos, etc.
Pronunciation: It’s “HitRECord” as in you are pressing a record button NOT as in a Hit Musical Record.
How I got involved: I was introduced to the company in June 2011 when Joe did an interview promoting one of his recent films. He highlighted the company and its purpose and I looked further into it. With a minor in Media Production I came into the company with a background in editing and filming. As such, I serve primarily as a cinematographer and editor and occasionally branch out to perform voiceovers, illustrate, create music, act, and anything else that interests me. I have my cinematography from live venue shoots with Joe featured in Season 1 of HitRECord on TV and my graphics and in front of the camera work featured in Season 2.
Why I started doing something outside of SA work: When I saw a request for audio remixing I contributed my work to that first piece. From there I just kept up with it participating and expanding out of my comfort zone into various productions fast forward to four years later. I wasn’t intentionally doing this outside of student affairs it just happened to be the result.
How I make my hustle: Whenever HitRECord puts out a monetized production, such as a book, TV show, or vinyl record, from the money generated in that single production 50% of it goes back into the company and the other 50% is distributed to the contributors of that product based upon their work used. Sometimes these are one-time payouts and sometimes they are recurring. For example, if we bring a film we created to Sundance the artists that contributed to that production get paid once for it but for something like a TV show or a book as long as it keeps generating money you keep making money in royalties. For example, as long as DVD sales keep occurring, in which my work is featured, I am always guaranteed a check, which is great. Nevertheless, at HitRECord we have a saying: its nice to receive money but it’s not about the money, its about the art itself as a lot of time and energy goes into creating these works and if you are doing it solely for the money you will be unsatisfied.
Does this make you a better SA Pro? Absolutely, there is a lot of creativity and storytelling involved in HitRECord. Similarly, in HigherEd creativity and storytelling is a must. As one continues to advance in leadership, having practice in storytelling helps in a number of ways: selling yourself as a candidate, promoting your department/school when recruiting students, fundraising, and interacting with campus partners and community members, for example. Storytelling is at the heart of leadership. Additionally, I’ve been able to use my media background in creating promotional pieces featured during open house; created material for professional staff recruitment season and performed in university theater which was an amazing experience!
This post is part of our #SAsidehustles series, which focuses on the SA pros with a second passion. These Student Affairs Professionals transition their mental and physical energy into a project that acts as both an emotional release and some level of supplemental income. From Etsy shops to horse braiding, these stories are bound to make you want to find your “by night” side hustle. For more information, check out the intro post by Tom Krieglstein. Be sure to read the other posts in this series too!