August 17th, 2021
29 years old
Italian food but not Risotto
I’ve been Everywhere - Johnny Cash
Bobcat / Butterfly
Hrs of sleep needed to function
0 for himself, 7 for the sake of others
In this blog we will be introducing you to the brain behind the operation, the one that started it all, our boss-man Tom Ellis. Working from our headquarters in York, Tom keeps the technical side of the company running smoothly and with his background in the industry, there's no one better suited and more qualified to do so. Tom was an enterprising kid finding ideas in everything. He eventually went on to graduate from University of Ravensbourne, and found himself in the fast-paced, team-based world of sports production. Tom has never shied away from the projects that some may deem ‘too weird’, ‘too much hassle’, or ‘too far away’ and has jumped at every opportunity to expand his portfolio.
Tell us a little bit about your journey into the tech / production industry.
“At school I always did every and any project I could in video form. I remembered submitting language assignments in the form of short films. I had two great media tutors who included me in a lot of business decisions at a very young age, even (somehow?) advising on a media studio integration in year 11. At university, I used the facilities there to run my own smaller enterprises. One, Visual Fighters, an MMA production company, saw us produce content for Sky TV Channels!
After University I went to work on the World Cup in Brazil, where I got a taste for sports production. Sports production is unique in the sense that everyone is working on one clear goal - to bring an event to the masses. I'd slipped into the world of reality TV whilst at University, which was inherently negative, and decided I’d stay in Sports production. I focused on replays, using my editing skills on the fly. I eventually left to train replay ops in Afghanistan. After that I went freelance and worked on an insane variety of productions, always taking the offers that people couldn’t really be bothered to do for whatever reason. Lockdown took me in a different direction, but one that allowed me to utilise the skills that both myself and others possessed in fast-paced sports production”
Tell us a bit about how Tell came to be.
“When the Pandemic hit, I was getting calls from agencies I'd previously worked for on in-person events, who were now interested in virtual events and remote production. I hadn't had much experience in this field (yet) but I slowly started to learn and innovate with the equipment I had around me. Things spiraled from there and the company began, putting together some interactive virtual pub quizzes and ESport events. At first, it was a small network of friends who had lost a lot of work during the pandemic, but as things grew we took some office space, employed people and are excited to grow more!”
What is the best piece of advice you’ve received in life?
“In terms of advice I’d give myself, learn when to scale. Don’t rush it, and if you actually stick at it then it’ll grow with you at its own pace.”
What is your specialism?
“Doing weird jobs in unexpected places! I once flew to Pakistan for one weekend with half a ton of equipment and a load of footballers including Ronhaldino, Pires and Anelka!”
What secret conspiracy theory would you like to start?
“I was a big fan of the one about the pandemic being an excuse to change the batteries in all of the birds and I'd like this to stay. It makes me giggle.”
What celebrity have you been told you look like?
“I once walked into the Premier Inn in Stratford, London and the receptionist thought that the actor Tom Ellis was staying - he’d even told his brother that he was. So by a process of dreams and lucid science: Tom Ellis.”
Tom is passionate about ensuring that Tell remains a workplace that encourages its employees to be at the forefront of their profession by prioritising what they’re passionate about and what they enjoy doing. Juliana, our production coordinator has known Tom for 7 years, since they met working on the World Cup in 2014. She says that immediately it struck her how much of a natural businessman Tom was, and how he’s always been able to strike up business ideas out of the blue. She says “he’s non-stop… doing a hundred things at one time”, proving how dedicated and driven Tom is to see Tell succeed.