Nicholas Mc Millian Believes in Pushing Past Frustration & Flourishing

Oct 22, 2019

Meet Nicholas Mc Millian. He is a Brooklyn-based freelance videographer, filmmaker and photographer who hails from Trinidad and Tobago. You can check out his work here, here and here.

Tell us about your work.

I’m the founder of Millianvision, a film and video production company committed to creating socially responsible content that uplifts, informs and inspires our immediate and global community. Before filmmaking, I was a fire officer back in Trinidad and Tobago for almost 12 years. But my passion was always storytelling. I always wanted to do film.

What are some of the biggest struggles you’ve faced as a freelancer? How did you overcome them?

When I made the choice to be a freelancer and left my stable, well-paying job, I realized that pursuing your passion is not as easy as it looks. As a freelancer, you are tasked with pretty much doing all the administrative stuff as well as the creative stuff. And as a father and a husband, it's very, very challenging to balance all of these things. But I somehow get around it because at the end of the day, I know I'm doing something that I love, and I'm doing it for me.

I think I'm pretty good at seeing the end goal. So, for me, that's where my focus stays. I visualize my end product. I have a vision for telling stories, specific stories, and whenever I start something, my intention is to see it through. So even if I'm tired, if I have no energy, I still try to find that little ounce of pizazz to try to get it over the line.

How has the Freelancers Union community been valuable to you?

It was very instrumental in my developmental stage. I was able to get free legal counseling, to sit with a marketing specialist and to network with other freelancers. In fact, I am now able to put together a complete production team just from being at the Freelancers Hub because I've met writers, fellow directors, producers, editors and videographers like myself here.

Do you have any tips or tricks you can share that might be helpful to other freelancers?

Being in charge of your own business, you have to be able to forecast periods where you're not going to get as many clients as you would like. That's when I try to distribute my skills in different ways, like offering web development and filmmaking workshops.

Another tip is something I learned in a stress management workshop here. We all experience getting frustrated when there's not enough clients coming in. What I learned is how to bring everything back down to zero, how to stay grounded, to stay connected to your true self and just keep going. Something as simple as getting up, walking, stretching, just being in connection with your body has helped me to really push past tiredness, push past frustration, push past the lack of an idea and be able to flourish.

More than one-third of New York City's workforce is freelancing, reflecting the wide-ranging diversity of the city. The purpose of Faces of Freelance is to shine a light on each unique, individual story in freelancing, and offer a platform on which it can further the conversation. Join the Freelancers Hub today and offer your own story into the conversation.