A Life in the Day of a Splicer: Mark Slobodian — Splice

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My alarm goes off...
At 7:30am, but I don't usually surface from my bed for another hour. I've just moved to a place close to work so am now relishing my lie-ins before my arduous 10minute commute.


I'm responsible for...
Making stuff look sexy! As a colour grader, I'm one of the last steps in the creative process. It's my job to help bring a director's vision to life through the use of colour and contrast, creating different 'looks' and playing with colour palettes to help draw the audience into the story by evoking certain moods and emotions.


I got my job...
I started as a runner in Soho back in 2010. I was fresh out of university and at the time intending to get into 3D animation. One night I was clearing up one of the grading suites and the colourist there showed me his work. I was instantly taken in by colour grading, it felt like such an organic and creative process.

Grading is one of the hardest roles in post-production to break into as it takes years to hone your craft and work your way up the ladder as an assistant. It wasn't the easiest of journeys at times, but I wouldn't change it.


My typical day...
Usually, I'll always check ahead to see what I'm working on during a given week, if it's a new job I'll make contact with the director or series producer and discuss their vision for the project. If it's a broadcast job I'll grade the pretitles for the show before the client comes in with what I think works, then we'll watch it back, make changes if necessary and continue on with the rest of the show. With commercials it's similar but usually, we'll pick a hero shot of the spot and create a base look for that, then go back to the beginning.


My most memorable work moment...
Seeing my name on the telly for the first time was a great feeling and to be honest, it never gets old. Knowing that millions of people are enjoying something you collaboratively worked hard to create makes it all worthwhile. Specifically though, one of my first jobs at Splice was Sidemen, a series for YouTube Premium - the whole team put in a tonne of effort, we got to be really creative and had some very happy clients.

Another memorable work moment is when I cremated my toast and the entire building had to be evacuated. Whoops.


The worst part of my job...
The biggest challenge I think we face as colourists is time constraints. Time is money. Trying to get the best out of the footage whilst juggling a multitude of camera formats and controlling the room all within a sometimes tight timeframe is something that takes practice, patience and people skills. Generally, though there aren't many negatives to my job, I love it!


After work...
I've been playing drums for nearly 20 years and am currently in a noise rock band with a couple of old uni friends, this year we've put a lot of effort into our first EP. I'm super excited to chuck it on Spotify, share it about and get gigging. Other downtimes would most probably be the pub, I like my beer. I am usually found at a local watering hole with other Splicers.


My plan B...

One of my friends works for Metal Hammer, he gets to go to SO many events for free and hang out with childhood heroes, which seems like an absolute dream. If I had to do anything else it would be in the metal music industry.

Mark is a Colourist at Splice and joined the team in 2014.