Short Film Production Workshop: Learn by Making a Short Film

525,00550,00

Level:
Beginner - No previous experience required
Language:
The course is taught in English
Dates:
Sat. Feb. 18 & Sun. Feb. 19 – 09:00 – 16:00
Sat. Feb. 25 & Sun. Feb. 26 – 09:00 – 16:00
Location:
Space Meduza, Skalitzer Strasse 80, 10997 Berlin, Germany
Contact:
alex@berlinfilmcommunity.com

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There is no better way to learn the basics of filmmaking than by actually doing it. In this very hands-on 4 day workshop I will teach you the basics of filmmaking in the most effective and fun way possible, by actually getting your hands dirty making a short film. You will learn the fundamentals of filmmaking by going through the entire process, performing various roles on set such as director, camera operator, lighting technician and sound recorder.

This workshop will have a very limited class size of 8 people. This ensures that everyone gets the personal attention that learning so much information requires, as well as to allow for a decent amount of time so that you can try each of the different roles. I have tailored this course to make it flexible enough to accommodate people with absolutely zero experience as well as for people who have done a bit of filming. This 4 day workshop is different from my 2 day workshop, the First Step Filmmaking Workshop: Make Your Own Film, in that it goes deeper into additional aspects of filmmaking, such as lighting and sound which couldn’t be included due to time constraints. We will also work as a group to make one short film together instead of everyone shooting their own film.

There will be three days of instruction and practical exercises and 1 shooting day. To be able to effectively get through the monumental task of shooting a short film in 1 day, we will be working from a prepared script that is very short and simple to shoot. This will allow everyone to work with the actors, shoot with the camera, modify the lighting, and get a grounding in the way a set works. All the equipment and actors necessary for the short will be provided.

After we finish the shoot, you will get all the video and audio files so that you can review and edit the footage on your own. Please bring a hard drive with at least 50gb of free space on the last day of the course. While editing is an extremely important part of filmmaking, this course is designed to give you a grounding on the pre-production and shooting of a short film and 4 days just scratches that surface.

This course will be super informative, but also fun. I will throw a lot of information at you, but it will be mixed in with some groan worthy dad jokes along the way so you have that to look forward to.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to me at alex@berlinfilmcommunity.com.

Story - Putting pen to the page

Story is the bedrock of any short film. If you don’t have a good story, no amount of dazzling visuals or great editing will save you. I will teach you the basics of how to write an engaging story, which we will see in action as we review our already prepared script. We will plan out our shoot using a shot list and storyboards that we will create together.

Directing - Running the Show

The director is in charge of all the decisions large and small. However, they can, and in my opinion should, often rely on the expertise of the heads of the different departments to make decisions that will help tell their story. The one thing that no one helps the director with is working with actors. This is one of the most important aspects of directing.

I will give you advice on how to work with actors as well as lessons from my life on set that will help you avoid mistakes as well as find your unique voice.

Camerawork - Telling the story visually

Camerawork theory and tools will help us translate the written word into a visual story using building blocks, such as composition, shot size, blocking, camera movement, and shooting for the edit. We will use this knowledge to break down our script into the different shots that best tell our story.

Lighting - Directing the attention and setting the mood

Lighting is an integral aspect of filmmaking that conveys emotion and mood and can direct the eye of the viewer. I will cover the basics of lighting theory and practice and specifically tailor the information to give us options to light for our script as effectively as possible, using the equipment which we will have on hand. 

Sound - The unsung hero of film

Sound is often overlooked by beginning filmmakers, but poorly recorded sound is something which audiences will not tolerate. Recording good sound is extremely important, and in my opinion even more important than the image. You will learn the basics of how to record clean sound including some theory behind sound recording from a professional location sound recordist.

Story – PUTTING PEN TO THE PAGE

Story is the bedrock of any short film. If you don’t have a good story, no amount of dazzling visuals or great editing will save you. I will teach you the basics of how to write an engaging story, which we will see in action as we review our already prepared script. We will plan out our shoot using a shot list and storyboards that we will create together.

Directing – Running the Show

The director is in charge of all the decisions large and small. However, they can, and in my opinion should, often rely on the expertise of the heads of the different departments to make decisions that will help tell their story. The one thing that no one helps the director with is working with actors. This is one of the most important aspects of directing.

I will give you advice on how to work with actors as well as lessons from my life on set that will help you avoid mistakes as well as find your unique voice.

Camerawork – Telling the story visually

Camerawork theory and tools will help us translate the written word into a visual story using building blocks, such as composition, shot size, blocking, camera movement, and shooting for the edit. We will use this knowledge to break down our script into the different shots that best tell our story.

You will get the opportunity to work with a cinema camera, follow focus, and all the gear you would normally find on an indie film shoot.

 

Lighting – Directing the attention and setting the mood

Lighting is an integral aspect of filmmaking that conveys emotion and mood and can direct the eye of the viewer. I will cover the basics of lighting theory and practice and specifically tailor the information to give us options to light for our script as effectively as possible, using the equipment which we will have on hand. 

 

Sound – The unsung hero of film

Sound is often overlooked by beginning filmmakers, but poorly recorded sound is something which audiences will not tolerate. Recording good sound is extremely important, and in my opinion even more important than the image. You will learn the basics of how to record clean sound including some theory behind sound recording from a professional location sound recordist.

 

Requirements

  • A pair of work gloves in the event that you may handle hot lights.
  • A hard drive with at least 50gb of free space for the audio and video files.

No previous filmmaking experience is required and you do not need to bring any of your own camera equipment, though feel free to bring it along if you like.

If you have any questions or would like to learn more about the workshop, reach out to me at alex@berlinfilmcommunity.com.

Schedule

EMPTY

Saturday Sep.  7th – 10:00 – 18:00

  • The basics of visual storytelling
  • How to use lighting to set a mood.
  • Camerawork on set
  • How to record audio
  • Q&A
Day 1

Saturday Feb. 18 – 09:00 – 16:00

  • The basics of visual storytelling
  • What it takes to direct
  • How to use lighting to set a mood.
  • Camerawork on set
  • How to record audio
  • Open discussion of working on set
  • Q&A
Day 2

Sunday Feb. 19 – 09:00 – 16:00

  • Practical exercises using our camera, lighting and sound equipment
  • Everyone gets to work with all the gear
  • Homework for Day 3 & 4
  • Q&A
Day 3

Saturday Feb. 25 – 09:00 – 16:00

  • Creating a shot list, storyboarding, and camera diagrams
  • Lighting diagrams for the different scenes
  • Shooting plan for Day 4
  • Further work with camera, lighting, and audio gear
  • Q&A
Day 4

Sunday Feb. 26 – 09:00 – 16:00

  • Working with actors
  • How to work on set
  • Shooting the script as a group
  • Everyone gets to perform all roles
  • Quick review of footage
  • Downloading of footage to drives
  • Q&A

Schedule

Day 1:
Saturday Feb. 18 – 09:00 – 16:00

  • The basics of visual storytelling
  • What it takes to direct
  • Camerawork on set
  • How to use lighting to set a mood
  • How to record audio
  • Open discussion of working on set
  • Q&A

Day 2:
Sunday Feb. 19 – 09:00 – 16:00

  • Practical exercises using our camera, lighting and sound equipment
  • Everyone gets to work with all the gear
  • Homework for Day 3 & 4
  • Q&A

Day 3:
Saturday Feb. 25 – 09:00 – 16:00

  • Creating a shot list, storyboarding, and camera diagrams
  • Lighting diagrams for the different scenes
  • Shooting plan for Day 4
  • Further work with camera, lighting, and audio gear
  • Q&A

Day 4:
Sunday Feb. 26 – 09:00 – 16:00

  • Working with actors
  • How to work on set
  • Shooting the script as a group
  • Everyone gets to perform all roles
  • Quick review of footage
  • Downloading of footage to drives
  • Q&A

About the Workshop Leader

Hi, I’m Alex DePew and I will be your guide on this filmmaking adventure. I have been working in the film industry for over 16 years and have led many filmmaking workshops. I absolutely love teaching beginners the ropes. I get tons of joy when I see someone light up as they make a connections between what I am teaching and something they have seen in a movie. And when they apply that knowledge to their own film it is a thing of beauty.

I am a Cinematographer and Gaffer working primarily on short films, music videos, and commercials. Before coming to Berlin I worked on both large and small sets in various roles. I have worked with all kinds of cameras from old school 16mm film cameras up to the Alexa Mini and I have worked on the lighting for no-budget shorts, up through high budget ad campaigns. I grew up in New York City and got my start in film there. I worked my way up the ladder, first as a one-man-band, where I produced, shot and edited content for small commercial projects. Then eventually I moved onto larger commercials in the camera department as a camera assistant. I moved to New Zealand for a few years where I continued to work on ever larger projects including commercials for Samsung, New Balance, Corona, Adidas and a host of other large companies. All the time I was always working on the skills I would need to become a good Cinematographer by shooting shorts and helping directors realize their visions.

Together with Linda Paganelli, we run the Berlin Film Community, a community of filmmakers and people interested in film. We host events such as the Pitch & Planning Session and Drink, Watch, Talk. We are over 16,000 people strong at the time I’m writing this and I am very proud to be a leader of this community. Helping to teach as well as connect the next wave of filmmakers with each other so they can get their first films made is a great source of joy for me.

If you have any questions or would like to learn more about the workshop, reach out to me at alex@berlinfilmcommunity.com.