I recently had the pleasure of working as a tutor with actor and creative Patrick Dickson at the Footprint Theatre Film School in Pambula, NSW.
Footprint Theatre is a touring community theatre group that has played a big part in energising the theatre scene on the South Coast.
Thanks to the tireless work of founder Lis Shelley, Footprint has also branched out into running film schools during the school holidays.
This year the program was opened up for the first time to to adults and ran over a week with the support of South East Arts, with industry practitioners that call the South Coast home as tutors. Courses ranged from “Script from Scratch” with David Stocker, a much-needed course on "Making your Film Sound Great” with Brent Occleshaw from Gooseboy, “Making a Music-Based Film” with Toni Houston, and “Filmmaking With Your ipad/iphone" with Lis Shellyl, who also led two editing sessions (one with iMovie, the other with Premiere Elements.)
Our course was entitled “Framing the Story” – and it was a packed two days, with the tutors having as much fun as the participants.
On Day 1, after discussing various aspects of how a film tells a story, the two groups of students went into preproduction, workshopping and fleshing out a set “skeleton scenario” with their imaginations, and then scouting and choosing locations and working out the practicalities of art department and prop requirements.
On Day 2, the two groups shot and edited a short film to be shown at the end of the day. Everyone had a chance to be in front of and behind the camera.
Patrick skillfully interspersed the discussions and workshopping with games and exercises that got us out of our chairs and psychological comfort zones and interacting with each other.
No matter how much of an auteur you are, filmmaking is always a team effort, requiring communication, empathy and awareness of where the other person – cast, crew or client – is at in that particular moment. It’s also a physically demanding industry, with long hours chasing the light or subject and requires endurance and staying power. So if you’re thinking of becoming a filmmaker, get fit!
For me, the two days were a reminder of the fun and creativity that is filmmaking – sometimes as a pro you tend to forget some of the most important, basic things.
So a big thank you to our students – your enthusiasm, creativity and imagination, paired with your tenacity and technical fearlessness were truly inspiring.
Published by: Hiromi in Uncategorised