Jana Ballette

Do you know when someone has had a passion since their childhood? I had several dream jobs when I was little, but as long as I remember, my biggest dream has always been to learn many languages. And the only reason why I say “many” is because I soon realized that I couldn’t learn them all. I used to play alone pretending that I knew so many foreign languages, even though I was just babbling nonsense.
I started studying English when I was ten in my home country, Italy, and I have never stopped.
After attending High School specialised in foreign languages, I studied for my BA Degree in Linguistic Mediation and I discussed my dissertation in April 2017. It was about a Colombian social dialect called “Parlache” used by low-classes speakers in Medellín. It was illuminating for me to study how this social dialect came to life and evolved throughout the years. I also gained experience as a translator whilst working for the website www.welcome-to-sardinia. I was also given the opportunity to practice in this field as a freelance by translating menus for several restaurants in the touristic area of Sardinia, Italy, to satisfy my eagerness for getting involved with languages, at any time.
Some time ago, I moved to Barcelona in order to improve my knowledge of Spanish and in a few years, I successfully completed a course in Proofreading and Style in Spanish and I reached the C2 Level DELE Certification.
Barcelona really helped me to achieve my dreams. Here, I started working as a translator specialised in Medicine for an Italian acupuncture doctor who teaches Neuromodulation in Spain. I translate course material and I also work as consecutive interpreter during the courses, from Italian to Spanish.
But the turning point of my career was when I started to learn more about Audiovisual Translation. I have always been interested in Audiovisual Media such as cinema, TV, videogames, internet and computer science, but I couldn’t figure out how to make it a career.
I could never stop studying, to be honest. I’m eager to learn new things and I think one needs to be always up-to-date in this field, it’s impossible to stop learning as Linguistics never stops developing.
Once again a fresh new start and I’m also about to get my Master’s Degree in Audiovisual Translation from ISTRAD.
At the moment, I’m working as a freelance subtitler for a few Netflix vendors. I also used to work as subtitler for a local Italian TV channel in the past. I have just started working as freelance videogames and software tester. All of a sudden I’ve realized I am living my lifetime dream.
I remember my first class of History of Cinema at the University. I had to explain to the teacher why I was interested in studying Cinema and not something else. I explained it was one of my passions, but I could not explain how I could have taken advantage of this knowledge in my future career. My teacher kindly told me that there were a lot of professional profiles in audiovisual field where I could work after finishing my studies in Linguistics and I only had to go ahead and find my place. I am very happy to realize that she was right and it has been my inspiring quote during the years.
For me, translating is a very unique and beautiful technique that let you enter new worlds: all the cultures that could be really close to ours but are unreachable because of the language barrier.
I think translators are anonymous heroes, without them the world would only be a bunch of closed cultures that are not able to evolve. I am very proud that I can now think of myself as part of this league of language heroes. I love my job and that’s the best business card you can provide.