Meet the teenage Wakefield videographer-turned-entrepreneur who launched his business from his bedroom at the age of 14

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Meet James Thompson, a 16-year-old videographer and entrepreneur, who launched his business from his bedroom three years ago during the Covid-19 pandemic.

James, who is now a student of Wakefield’s new state-of-the-art campus at CAPA College in the city centre, began creating videos for his studies at Brigshaw High School in Allerton Bywater, Castleford, as a 14-year-old at the start of the coronavirus outbreak in early 2020.

The first video he created was for a school project that focused on supporting the NHS when hospital staff were on the frontlines dealing with the pressures of the Covid-19 health emergency.

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He then made a video encouraging people to shop at local businesses on the high street when lockdown restrictions eased. His teachers thought he was so good that the teenager began working as a digital marketer for the school.

Wakefield student James Thompson started creating videos as a 14-year-old back in April 2020.Wakefield student James Thompson started creating videos as a 14-year-old back in April 2020.
Wakefield student James Thompson started creating videos as a 14-year-old back in April 2020.

One of his teachers even asked him to film her wedding, which he gladly obliged.

James said: “My journey started back in April 2020 at the start of lockdown. I saw that people were struggling a lot and the NHS was under pressure.

"I initially made a video on the NHS for my high school, which racked up a fair few number of views, which I was happy with as a 13-year-old.

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"I was drawn to video editing as there were times when I was younger when I was editing videos. I edited a video of my family on holiday skiing just as a keepsake and when it got to April 2020, I wanted to do something to give back to the community.

James studies at the new state-of-the-art Capa College campus in Wakefield city centre.James studies at the new state-of-the-art Capa College campus in Wakefield city centre.
James studies at the new state-of-the-art Capa College campus in Wakefield city centre.

"Whilst it was not something I was entirely comfortable with, I was willing to learn and to progress. From that, I continued to do marketing for my high school, which tied into my GCSEs as I was studying business and media studies.

"During lockdown, I made a lot of free promotional videos for businesses – pizza shops, sweet shops, pubs – as I saw that they were struggling during lockdown. I got a lot of recognition for this and my own teacher asked me to film her own wedding.”

James, who taught himself to use Adobe Premier Pro and iMovie is now studying production arts and creative media at Capa College and continues to make promotional videos for local businesses.

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He added: “The course ties into my videographer work as it covers everything from filming, editing and colour grading. It also provides me with great links to people in the industry, as I am forever working with people who are doing what I want to be doing in ten years time.

James makes promotional videos for local businesses.James makes promotional videos for local businesses.
James makes promotional videos for local businesses.

“Telling a story through video is my favourite part of the course as well as video marketing.

“But the course offers a wide range of opportunities, I get to not only study videoing and editing, but I also get to learn about theatre production, lighting and sound. I think later down the line, I’m going to know what I want to do by the end of the course.”