|M Aug 26||Discuss & Demo: Expectations; Strategies for Success; Group Communication; Film II - From Competence to Proficiency
Viewing Analytically: Moleskine
|W Aug 28||Discuss & Demo: Researching Content
Participation: Crew Contract. Download, complete, and submit a Crew Contract. Use Microsoft Outlook to input and share your schedule with the other members of your group (0300p)
Participation: Ideation Generate and present elements of preliminary topic research. Take rigorous notes of classmate feedback.
|M Sep 02||Labor Day: No Class|
|T Sep 03||Last Day to Drop-Add|
|W Sep 04||Discuss and Demo: Researching Form
Group Assignment: Collaboration Infrastructure. Establish a file sharing protocol for your group through Google Docs. (0300p).
Individual Assignment: Paintings & Music. Choose ten paintings and no fewer than three songs that are in some way evocative of your film. Bring them to class.
Participation (in class): Paintings & Music. Share the music and paintings with the members of your group. Together from your collaborative pool of images, decide on a half-dozen that will guide your film’s composition, lighting, and color. Then share your musical selections. Upload the group-selected works to your shared Google drive for inspiration.
|M Sep 09||Discuss and Demo: Researching Comps; Industry Technical Standards
Reading: The Redbook. Familiarize yourself with the PBS Redbook Technical Operating Specifications. You may find yourself least conversant with the book's audio specifications. Read so you can quickly locate relevant sections in an open-note quiz.
Individual Assignment: Comps. Find two documentary films you think are comparable to the one you’d like to produce this semester. They do not need to be same subject as your film. At least one should be a model film to which you might aspire. The other may have errors you’d like to avoid. Be prepared to share a representative two-minute excerpt of each film with the class.
|W Sep 11||Discuss and Demo: Scripting the Interview; Pre-Production for Editors
Participation: Curiosity. (1) After scanning reputable websites on the topic, bring to class at least three urls and three ideas for asking good interview questions. (2) Upload 20 well-written interview questions to your group's shared Google drive (0300p).
Group In-Class Assignment: Preparing to Edit (0530p).
|M Sep 16||Discuss & Demonstrate: (0300p) 3-point interview lighting.
Discuss & Demonstrate: (0430p) Interview Technique. Bias and viewpoint. Prepared conversational storytelling versus "gotcha" checklist interrogation. Location scouting, mise-en-scène.
|W Sep 18||Discuss & Demonstrate: (0300p) Routing wireless lavalieres to field recorders for split-level redundancy. Stationary booms and wildcat sound.
Individual Assignment: Shot Lists. Upload to your group's shared Google drive a list of 20 essential visual images your film should include. Be prepared to discuss/defend them in class.
|M Sep 23||Discuss & Demonstrate (0300p): Shooting, synchronizing, and editing multi-camera interviews.|
|W Sep 25||Discuss & Demo: Teams will discuss specific concerns for impending shoots, paying rigorous attention to the feedback of their classmates
Group Assignment: Releases (0300p). Producers will submit copies of completed personal and location releases.
Group Assignment: Festival Plan (0300p). Producers will submit a three-festival entry plan via FilmFreeway.
Group Assignment: CamLight (0300p). Based on test footage employing multiple cameras and settings, cinematography teams (camera operator & gaffer) will submit equipment lists and scale lighting plots.
Group Assignment: Audio (0300p). Based on demonstrated competency recording split-level dialogue in class with lav and boom mics, audio recordists will submit an equipment list.
Group Assignment: Edit (0300p). Editing teams will organize post-production work: naming bins, designing timelines, and importing test footage at multiple project settings.
|M Sep 30||Workshop: Location Shoot
I do not expect that you will be able to shoot your entire documentary in two class periods. Rather, I am reserving these class periods for project work. I will be available to visit any filming location within easy driving distance of the school, with priority given to groups who have reserved my time in advance.
|T Oct 01||Reading Day: No Class|
|W Oct 02||Workshop: Location Shoot|
|M Oct 07||Group Project: Dailies (0330p).
Participation: Peer Evaluation (0330p).
Group Assignment: Window Burn (0500p).
|W Oct 09||Workshop: Logging & Transcription. Use this studio period to divide the raw A-roll footage among members of your crew for transcription. Combine their individual sections into a single comprehensive interview transcription with accurate timecode notations.|
|M Oct 14||Group Project: Principal Photography (0330p). Each cinematographer will submit a file/footage log to the professor (as a .pdf) as evidence of completed principal photography. Each video file should be accompanied by corresponding audio files.
Group Assignment: Logging & Transcription (0330p).
|W Oct 16||Group Project: Paper Edit (0330p).|
|M Oct 21||Group Assignment: Assembly Edit (0330p).|
|W Oct 23||Group Assignment: Rough Cut (0330p).|
|M Oct 28||Workshop: Post-Production|
|W Oct 30||Group Project: Visual Lock (0330p). No extensions. Late work may earn partial credit toward your final semester average. However, if your group’s visual lock is submitted after the deadline, your film may not qualify for campus screening at the end of the term. The film’s producer must secure the instructor’s approval of your film before class begins. You may not proceed to any successive phase of the project without this approval. Footage will be graded as an Adobe Premiere timeline saved to your group partition. No changes may be made to the running time of your film after this date.|
|F Nov 01||Last Day to Withdraw (1159p)|
|M Nov 04||Discuss & Demo: Color Correction & Grading. Waveform analysis; basics; creative "looks"; color wheels, skin tone matching and the vectorscope "flesh line."|
|W Nov 06||Discuss & Demo: Audio Editing. Checkerboarding; clips, tracks, submixes, stems, and masters; Essential Audio.
|M Nov 11||Workshop: Post-Production|
|W Nov 13||Discuss & Demo: Titles, Graphics, and Credits. An overview of Legacy Titles, Essential Graphics, After Effects dynamic links and Photoshop file imports.|
|M Nov 18||Group Project: Color Correction, Grading, & Graphics. (0330p).|
|W Nov 20||Group Project: Dialogue Edit (0330p). Each group will screen the dialogue edit of its film. The group’s designated dialogue editor must secure the instructor’s approval of the film before class begins.|
|M Nov 25||Group Project: Score (0330p).
Objective: Well-chosen music is placed in the timeline to reinforce overarching themes and select moments of emotional or rhetorical intensity.
Assessment: This project grade will be averaged with other group project scores.
During today’s class, each group will screen the music edit of its film. The group’s designated music editor must secure the instructor’s approval of the film before class begins.
|W Nov 27||Thanksgiving: No Class|
|M Dec 02||Final Exam: Audio Mix (0330p)
Objective: Stem mixing ultimately balances dialogue, effects, and music for clarity and dramatic effect. A large auditorium sound system may reveal imperfections which might otherwise go unnoticed.
Assessment: This culminating project grade will be averaged with other final exam scores.
Each group will screen a final mix of its film in Doucette 119. Copies will be submitted to the professor as an Adobe timeline saved to the group partition. The sequence will only contain a video mixdown and a two-channel audio bounce. The instructor will open and evaluate one sequence only.
|W Dec 04||Final Exam: Marketing (0430p)
Objective: A suite of marketing materials and an intentional screening plan connect your film with interested audiences.
Assessment: This culminating project grade will be averaged with other final exam scores.
Producers will present (1) a FilmFreeway receipt demonstrating entry into no fewer than three strategically-chosen film festivals (previously approved by your professor); (2) a 300 dpi 11x17 poster for your film as both a layered .psd (with fonts) and a .pdf.; and (3) a Vimeo url for a 30-second trailer of your film. Submit one copy of each to D2L's "Marketing" assignment folder. Store a second copy of each on the server at this file path
smb://anim-stor1 >> studio >> final >> marketing
|R Dec 05||Final Exam: Distribution (1159a)
Objective: An approved final edit is exported for exhibition in various venues, including Vimeo and submission to the university’s bi-annual film festival.
Assessment: This culminating project grade will be averaged with other final exam scores.
Export a final version of the film using Adobe Media Encoder in the H.264 format, with a preset of “Match Source – High bitrate.” The name of your film should be the name of the most recent sequence. Submit one copy to D2L’s “Post” assignment folder. Store a second copy on the server in the subfolder at this file path
smb://anim-stor1 >> studio >> final >> export
|M Dec 09||Final Exam Review (0245-0445p)|
|W Dec 11||Final Exam (0245-0445p)
Participation: (0245p) Peer Evaluation
|R Dec 12||Participation: Public Screening (0800p). A film isn't a film until it's shared with an audience. Your presence is required.|
- employ research as a basis for generating and discovering a non-fiction message that can be effectively communicated through digital video and audio.
- articulate the aesthetic and ethical challenges common to processes of documentary production.
- identify and engage in the pre-production activities that govern digital filmmaking: budgeting, scheduling, storyboarding, and location scouting.
- integrate transcribed interviews into a documentary script.
- articulate the responsibilities of and engage in various crew positions: producer, director, writer, cinematographer, gaffer, editor (video), colorist, audio recordist, and editor (audio).
- articulate the principles that shape the grammar and mechanics of digital audio signal processing, editing, and mixing.
- articulate and practice the principles of project organization which facilitate collaboration in post-production.
- store and distribute a finished digital video.
- direct and respond to the direction of others.
- support creative collaboration with safety, protocols, and etiquette, in the studio and on-location.
- learn principles and terminology of media project planning and management.
Coursework will be weighted as indicated:
|Quizzes & Assignments||10%|
Assignment grades will be based on the following scale:
Late work can earn no more than a maximum of 60 points. Work is considered late if it is submitted (or, in the case of e-mail, time-stamped) after lecture begins on the due date. If, because of extreme and prolonged sickness, you miss a deadline and are able to substantiate a claim of incapacitation with a note from a reputable doctor or College Health Services, the grades of your remaining assignments will be given greater weight to compensate. Otherwise, you will receive a zero for the assignment. Examinations must be taken when scheduled.
Responding to students’ desire for the most immediate feedback on their project work, grades and comments are typically reported online, usually within seven days of submission. It is therefore the responsibility of students to regularly consult my.edinboro.edu for the most current report of their grades.
Participation will be evaluated throughout the semester by professor and peers based on student contribution to class community. Assigning the grade, I am chiefly concerned with the following questions:
- To what degree and in what ways does the student demonstrate respect for his/her audience and co-laborers?
- To what degree and in what ways does the student model dependability and responsibility?
- In what ways has the student participated in work load, idea generation, and leadership — apart from the work necessary to complete his/her individual assignments?
- Of what value are the student’s criticism and suggestions for improvement valued by his/her peers?
The classroom setting is such that not all needs can be met within it. I encourage you, therefore, to visit my office often. It is my pleasure to discuss grades, attendance, notes, lectures, or anything else which will make you a better student. Your grades can only benefit from regular communication with your professors. I will gladly work with you to arrange meeting times convenient to us both. Feel free to contact me:
- by e-mail at email@example.com [good].
- by phone or voicemail at 616.498.4336 (49.VIDEO) [better]. A phone call is generally preferable to text messages.
- in person [best]. My office is Doucette G3-M, but I will often be found wandering the ground and first floors of the building.
I will respond to most messages within 12 hours.
If you write a good essay or fail a math exam, you do so as an individual. But the success of a video production is often a collaborative endeavor that begins with attendance. You jeopardize any group project for which you show up late (or not at all). Reflecting the emphasis Cinema professors place on collaboration, strict attendance is required.
Students are expected to attend each and every class meeting in its entirety, and will be penalized for late arrivals and early departures. Class absences are excused for medical reasons, university activities approved by the appropriate vice president or designee, and/or for personal exigencies. University activities appropriate to be considered as an excused absence include but are not limited to: scheduled athletic events, cultural events, academic competitions, etc., in which the student is a participant. Other appropriate situations include: military duties, auto accidents, death in immediate family, medical emergencies. Verification of such absences may be required by the instructor, and the student is responsible for make-up work as required by the instructor.
I’ve got tickets to leave early for spring break. Can I reschedule work to accommodate my travel plans?
Classes will not be held on holidays officially recognized by the college. All other days of the term are fair game for lectures, quizzes and assignments. Those students who plan to leave early for or return late from holiday breaks may not reschedule exams or other work.
Can I take class notes on my iPad? Can I film a lecture? What are the professor’s expectations for electronic etiquette?
You’re encouraged to use smart phones, tablets, and laptops in disciplined ways which accomplish the work of the course. It’s considered rude, however, to engage in private communiqués (facebook, twitter, IMs, texts) during class.
The classroom is a protected space where together students and faculty rehearse ideas that are often not yet ready to be shared with the wider world. Effective teachers adapt course content for a narrow audience of students, tailoring discussions on the fly to circumstances of the moment. Exchanges are necessarily fraught with controversy, challenge, and misunderstanding. Please safeguard the learning enterprise from surreptitious audio and video surveillance. Do not film, record, or share, audio or video images of anyone without a signed personal release.
Oops. My phone started ringing in class. Probably Mom calling…
The professor reserves the right to answer any cell phone call received by a student during class time. From a practical standpoint, you’d hate to ruin an otherwise fabulous take on location with a Kanye West ringtone.
Because there are sometimes no “right” and “wrong” answers in this field of study, I am open to a certain amount of discussion with regard to the grade awarded any given assignment. Appeals should be made in a timely fashion, within two class periods of grade notification/posting. Appeals should be made face to face (not by phone, in writing or by e-mail) and offered with rhetorical and presentational clarity.
Appeals are more likely to be successful if students have solicited the professor’s input on at least two intermediate versions of the project (see “Feedback & Revision,” above).
- Cheating. Behaviors including, but not limited to, use of unauthorized notes or reference materials during examinations; copying answers from another student’s paper during an examination; the unauthorized possession of academic materials, including exams; the unauthorized exchange of course assessment materials, including exams; the unauthorized exchange of information or collaboration regarding tests, or other course assignments; aiding another to engage in cheating; and/or all other acts of academic dishonesty that any member of this academic community would reasonably understand to be a breach of this academic integrity statement will be considered cheating and an act of academic dishonesty.
- Plagiarism. Plagiarism may be defined as the act of taking the ideas and/or expression of ideas of another person and representing them as one’s own. This includes, but is not limited to, using ideas or passages from a work without properly attributing the source, paraphrasing the work of another without giving proper credit, and/or the sale, purchase, or exchange of papers or research. It is the student’s responsibility to know what plagiarism is and to properly cite the work of others. If a student is in doubt, it is their responsibility to resolve any ambiguity prior to submitting the work. Plagiarism is nothing less than an act of theft, and, as such, is subject to University disciplinary action.
- Copyright. While plagiarism involves appropriating someone’s ideas without credit, copyright infringement is taking or altering someone’s original created work without paying. Copyright enforcement is subject to a number of variables including the lifespan of the creator and his/her heirs as well as corporate ownership of works made for hire. Fair warning: burgeoning filmmakers often wrongly believe they must pay other creators for work used only if their film turns a profit. Not true.
The standards of integrity and the penalties of dishonesty apply equally to
- ideas, words, and speech
- visual images, recordings, performances, and files
- audio recordings, performances, and files
- all electrochemical means of storage and communication
- use of computing facilities and resources in violation of copyright laws
I will vigorously pursue prosecution of academic dishonesty to the very limit of sanctions allowed by the college, up to and including failure of the course and expulsion from the college. I will just as vigorously work with students to prevent even unintended lapses of integrity.
While student media producers retain copyright ownership of their respective work, enrollment in this course constitutes your permission to let the college, the department, the professor, their representatives, and successors, exhibit and distribute for promotional purposes those media projects submitted in fulfillment of course assignments. Without any effect on your grade you may withhold or limit such permission by indicating your wish to do so in a note to your professor signed, witnessed, and dated, before the course’s drop date.
If you need access to Doucette Hall after it has been locked for the night, call the Edinboro Campus Police at (814) 732-2921 (the non-emergency number).
I really like using the editing software on my laptop. Can I edit class projects in my dorm?
To maximize opportunities for collaborative learning, the college offers Cinema production instruction in a pedagogically-informed, server-based post-production environment. When student teams edit video and audio projects from shared files to common workflow standards, they are learning organizational and interpersonal skills that will benefit them in the workplace and in other relational settings. While we understand and support students’ preference for many different hard- and software combinations, project work for Cinema classes should be done on facilities and equipment in the Doucette Hall.
How might a disability affect my performance in this course?
The college offers services to meet the accommodation needs of students with many types of disabilities. The Office for Students with Disabilities (OSD) provides services to students based upon documentation of a disability and a request for accommodations based on this disability. Please refer to Policy A008 (Reasonable Accommodations for Students with Disabilities) which may be found at this link.
Cinema lab aides are available in Doucette Hall G-6 (hours posted here) to check out equipment for class projects. It is often advantageous to alert them to your equipment needs several days in advance.
Governed by the following priorities, equipment and facilities are available to those students currently enrolled in cinema production classes:
- Priority shall be given to equipment loans which support class project assignments and faculty scholarship initiatives.
- Production equipment will support in-class instruction as well as out-of-class project work. Return deadlines will be carefully monitored.
- Certain equipment is designated for use by each class. Thus, cameras, lighting, and grip equipment set aside for advanced instruction may not be available to students in introductory-level courses (and vice versa). Not even cinema production lab aides should assume free access to all equipment.
Students may borrow equipment according to the following schedule. Equipment should be returned no later than one-half hour before closing time.
Equipment due on Labor Day or Reading Day may be returned the following day without fine. Equipment cannot be checked out over Thanksgiving, Winter, or Spring breaks.
There is one-day waiting period between equipment loans.
Students who return equipment late will be fined at a rate of $10 per day, per piece of equipment. Cinema Access Cards will be held until all fines are paid. Fines may be paid in person during open hours at the Equipment Room by check or money order made out to Edinboro University.
Instruction, scholarship, and maintenance priorities govern occasional exceptions to the more comprehensive version of these policies found on Film Equipment Rental Data Sheets, available from cinema lab aides.