DIRECTOR, WAY WARD FILMS
Bachelor of Digital Media 2012
Creativity and entrepreneurship have proved a powerful combination for Morgan Way. At just 25 years of age, Way has already cracked a notoriously difficult industry as one half of Way Ward Films – a production company he co-founded with fellow Bachelor of Digital Media (2012) graduate Sam Doyon during the final year of their degree.
"Sam and I just clicked,” he recalls. “We started directing and producing short films together, and a feature film in third year. Then we started the business side of it, and just kept rolling on from there. It's just not stopped; it's been great."
Way, who had always aimed for a career in film, says that receiving a $3,000 scholarship in 2011 from the Learning and Development Fund (LDF) was integral to realising his entrepreneurial dream so quickly. Originally from the Shoalhaven, the scholarship also helped lessen the financial burden of living away from home, allowing him to focus on creating and learning, and on setting the wheels in motion for his business.
“I used it to help with equipment purchases for the business and for our filmmaking ventures, so it really gave us a base to create better work with better equipment,” he says. “The scholarship gave us a head start; it allowed us to really push to make the high quality work that we wanted to make, and set in stone our creative style. That meant we could make a name for ourselves much more quickly.”
Since its beginnings in the university’s digital media labs, momentum continues to build for the start-up. The pair have now been in business for four years, and their hard work and passion is paying off: last financial year, they doubled their revenue. Way Ward Films counts the likes of the NSW Police Force, The Body Shop, First State Super, North Beach Pavilion and the Radio Doctors amongst their impressive and rapidly expanding client portfolio.
Way says that their body of work, and referrals from clients thrilled with the high quality product the company delivers, is helping them build a profitable business and a solid reputation. “What we do is deliver story-driven concepts and quality advertising. We do a lot of television commercials, and we're trying to produce the best quality version we can – and bring the best of Sydney-level production to Wollongong.”
“I think a big part of our success is about being driven and passionate about what we're delivering for our clients. We really take a lot of pride in our work. It's a hard industry for sure; you've got to be driven enough to keep knocking on those doors, and putting yourself out there with the best quality work.”
“I'm very proud of the business that we have created. We've built something from basically nothing; it's just been through hard work and dedication, and our passion for this industry.”
Having gained a leg up in the notoriously difficult industry through the LDF scholarship, Way pays it forward, providing inspiration and opportunities to others looking to emulate his success. He has given talks on entrepreneurship to alumni and students, and delivered lectures to digital media classes. Where possible, he also offers young people the chance to gain valuable on-set experience. “It's hard to get a foothold in this industry; it's hard to get an opportunity to see some of the work actually happening.”
Now, as the business continues to grow, Way is firmly focused on steering Way Ward Films to greater heights. “It's about building the business further, taking on more interesting clients – nationally and internationally. We’re looking at scaling up to take on bigger workloads, and offering ourselves as a top directorial team at Sydney creative agency level.”
Each year we reach out to our alumni and ask them to support the University’s Learning and Development Fund to ensure that university is accessible to all students. UOW is committed to helping all of our students graduate and the Alumni Appeal works toward that initiative by easing students’ financial stress.
Morgan Way was awarded the Learning and Development scholarship in 2011 and has leveraged it to complete his studies and build his own company, Way Ward Films. These are the sort of successes your participation in the appeal can accomplish.
Learn more about the Alumni Appeal