Sessions – Production

Day 1 Sessions

Understanding & Mastering Light
Speaker: Kevin Ames
Light is the paint and the camera is the canvas onto which it flows. Just as painters have to know how to use paints and brushes to realize their art, photographers want to understand light and how to control it to make truly successful photography video or still. This in-depth program will explain the qualities and properties of light, contrast, color and lighting styles. It combines on-screen examples with demonstrations to give participants a working knowledge of light.
The Details Matter: Having the Right Paperwork for Your Production
Speaker: Rachel Longman

Overlooking the paperwork you need for your production can cause you to make many mistakes on set putting you in danger of breaking the budget or worse, missing the shot. There are important documents you need to ensure that you have everything ready and prepped for your shoot day, from communication to permissions. This course is taught by Rachel Longman, an experienced producer/director from RHED Pixel who works with Fortune 500 companies, government agencies, and nonprofits. In this session, Rachel will walk through the paperwork you need to you protect yourself and your production.

 
Directing Actors for the Best Performance
Speaker: Maxim Jago

Lights, camera, sound… Wait! Before you perfect the technical skills required to capture a powerful performance, you need to bring that performance to reality. Whether you are working with an Oscar nominated world-class cast, the CEO of a company, or a documentary subject, you need a specific set of skills to direct their performance.

Actors often learn techniques to compensate for a lack of direction. Save them the time and effort (and your film!) by providing the guidance they need to fulfil their potential as performers – to tell the story with authenticity and emotional honesty, to add emphasis to the right words, to feel the beat of the scene, to listen and respond by being present in the moment, and to bring the words to life in a way the camera can capture.

Truly, your subject is the most important part of your production.

In this intensive deep dive into directing performance, you’ll learn the key facts your subject needs to perform, whether they are presenting the news or conveying an authentic emotional performance.

  • Learn the language of actors.
  • Learn how to hold the space, so your cast feels safe to explore the emotional terrain of the script.
  • Learn how to help an inexperienced speaker present information clearly.
  • Learn how to give your cast genuine emotional responses to the script.

At the end of this session, you’ll have more confidence, the right vocabulary, and new skills to help your subjects give you the performance you need to make an amazing film.

How to Effectively Direct a Drone Shoot

Drone shots are ubiquitous and often overused in TV and film. Effectively using drones first requires understanding the general operational requirements of different types. This presentation will discuss how to use drones effectively to enhance your production value, how to get the shot you need through effective directing techniques and realistic shot expectations, and understanding shots from a drone pilot’s point of view. In addition, we’ll look at limitations of each class of drone and when you should step up or down in size and number of operators.

Topics covered:

  • Finding a pilot who can get the shots you need.
  • Selecting the drone: Don’t send a quad to do a hexcopter’s job. While drone selection is usually the drone pilot’s purview, it’s important to recognize how your format of choice and operational environment affect drone selection and crew size.
  • Understanding the platform: How external elements such as vehicles, actors and locations affect set-up, timing and shot selection.
  • Why cost is not your first consideration. Identify your shots first then select the drone.
  • Movement is your friend: identifying the most effective shots and techniques for your production.
  • Communicate your vision: Using terms and language that drone pilots understand.
Micro-Lighting Systems: Small, Packable, & Powerful

Lighting has dramatically changed in the past decade, and budgets often do not take lighting systems into account, space is minimal, and speed is required. Optimizing every scrap of brightness while creating the proper mood and ambience is critical whether it’s for interview, talking heads, corporate presentations, training, or education. Great lighting doesn’t need to come on a truck and certainly doesn’t need to be expensive. This session not only discusses and demonstrates lighting that can be carried in a overhead-sized backpack; we’ll dive into actual demonstration of how to use these lights for talking heads, and more. Attendees are encouraged to bring cameras (mobile devices are great for this!) to capture the overall scene during training.

Producing an International Documentary
Speaker: Tony Bari
Documentary is a true to life medium of storytelling, that has many variables that can prolong, condense, or cause you to reevaluate the project depending on how dynamic the subject is. This will be a showcase with examples that highlight and breakdown ideas on what is capturing, or what is crafting a moment and keeping the integrity of the subject. 
 
Explore some of the technical recipes for ideal and practical situations to start development on projects or in collaboration with an existing project. Identifying the concepts in pre-production planning, blocking out the shoot on location, reviewing footage in the field, to bring back great material for post production.  With a discussion on finding the happy medium working around the differences in culture, language, and appreciation for the look of your image along with the impression your story leaves behind.
Calling All Video Pros: Using Mobile Phones in Production
Speaker: Nick Harauz

Learn how to shoot great-looking video with an iPhone or Android device. Mobile devices have transformed video production, making it possible to capture new angles and perspectives without a large crew or lots of additional equipment. In this session, Nick Harauz will share techniques for shooting talking heads, compelling B-roll, and capturing slow-motion and time-lapse footage from unique vantage points. 

Attendees will learn: 

  • The fundamentals of shooting great looking footage with your phone
  • How to prep you phone for filming
  • Things to consider when in production
  • Staying organized on your phone to your desktop
  • Useful apps and gear to enhance production value
  • Phone and Tablet apps to edit your footage on the fly
Scripting for Video
Speaker: Amy DeLouise
The best videos start with a blueprint for impact, and that plan is a script. Learn tools, strategies, and tips for writing branded video content. Learn how story arc applies to nonfiction, how to incorporate interviews, the best format for an animation script, and how to manage the dreaded rewrite process. You’ll come out of this workshop ready to tackle your next video scripting project.
What Color is Your Light? An Exploration of CRI, TLCI and SSI
Speaker: Gary Adcock
When LED lights first came on the market, they revolutionized TV and Film Production, We all talked about how great they were, then we found out our measuring system had some pretty serious holes. Join Gary Adcock as he talks about the differences between using the established Color Rendition Index (CRI) vs the newer Television Lighting Consistency Index (TLCI), the Academy’s SSI (Specularity Similarity Index plane and what each of those resources say about the other.
The World in One Backpack: Shooting Travel Documentaries for Months on the Road
Speaker: Valentina Vee
How do you pack for a job that’ll take you to the other side of the world for weeks or months? What do you bring, how do you plan, and how do you organize it all? As someone who has spent much of the past 3 years shooting documentaries overseas, I have had some pretty interesting gigs. I’ve gotten stuck at night in the sand dunes of Dubai and walked through the Ghanian jungle with a village chief. I’ve shot in the open sea, on an active lava field, and through a monsoon – picking up lessons along the way. In this session, I open up my personal vault and share those stories and lessons with you.

Day 2 Sessions

Becoming a Certified Drone Pilot
Speaker: Luisa Winters

Are you asking yourself what you need to do to become a licensed pilot of commercial drones?

Certified Pilot and Remote Pilot Luisa Winters takes you through the content specifications of the test you need to pass to become a certified commercial drone pilot.

Although main topics will be covered in this session, attendees will still need to study further to pass the test to gain this coveted certification.

Topics to be covered:

  • How to gain certification
  • What you need to know
  • What to do once you pass the test
  • How can you make money with your drone
  • And much more…
Managing Data On Set and On Location
Speaker: Kevin Ames
Digital files — data — is the new film. Like film there are numerous pitfalls that can can make these delicate digital bits useless. This session covers strategies and best practices for preserving data. Topics include memory cards dos and don’ts, storage media selections — hard drives or SSD,  backing up data on set, location storage and transportation procedures as well as making backups and archiving.
Effective Producing: Falling with Grace
Speaker: Rachel Longman

In this session, we will learn techniques to turn a mistake into a situation that can benefit you in the future.

Based on the nature of our industry, mistakes will happen. How you handle them decides if you will have another try. Not every failure is a complete defeat. In this session, we will learn techniques to turn a mistake into a situation that can benefit you in the future. This course is taught by Rachel Longman, an experienced producer/director from RHED Pixel who works with Fortune 500 companies, government agencies, and nonprofits.

An Intro to Phantom High Speed Cameras as a Storytelling Tool
Speaker: Megan Donnelly
This course will give you an overview of how to use Phantom cameras as a tool from both creative and technical perspectives. Phantom High Speed cameras are some of the most sought-after tools for slow motion shots. This class will give you a basic understanding of the Phantom cameras’ capabilities as well as the considerations that should be discussed on a high-speed project, including lighting requirements, workflow, and crew.  An Intro to Phantom High Speed Cameras as a Storytelling Tool will provide you with a thorough understanding of the Phantom’s creative possibilities, and Directors, Producers, and Cinematographers are encouraged to attend.
Maintaining Consistent Color On-Set
Speaker: Kevin Ames
The color of light on a set is as important as the right exposure. Understanding color temperature, how to measure and control it at the light source is the key to minimizing color adjustments in post. This class shows how color is measured, how it works and how to balance it for the best footage possible. Attendees gain an understanding of color temperature that includes measuring it. Also explored is controlling the color of light sources — LED with adjustable color temperature, lights with fixed color temperature, using gels for color correction and balancing lights to the same color to make grading easy.
Mobile Filmmaking – The Rise of Mobile Phones for Acquisition

With the release of the multi lens iPhonePro, mobile filmmaking has taken a leap forward. Join Gary Adcock and Special Guests to discuss some of the groundbreaking new ways phone based journalism and film production will change media forever. In addition to tools and techniques, we also plan to do an in-depth look at the latest releases from Filmic Pro on both iOS and Android and how one application changes the way you create content for social media.

Through the Lens: Shot Composition Techniques

Increase your production’s value by changing the way you look through the lens. Tell your story creatively and effectively. By choosing the right positions, angles, and lenses you can build powerful, emotional, and consistent scenes. This session is designed for the Producer/Director who needs to keep all aspects of a production in mind while composing the perfect shot.

Audience: Producers/Directors/Shooter who need to create strong images and make compelling film/videos while keeping the overall production and its audience in mind.

Directing Camera Movement
Speakers: Rey Reyes & Nic Somera
This course will cover the “why” of camera movement and stabilization. As filmmaking cameras have evolved over the decades, they have advanced from mechanically complex heavyweights housed in immobile booths, to lightweight, ultraportable devices barely larger than a still photo camera. With so much cinematic power packed into such a small package, the ability to express the story through camera movement is now more of an expectation. Directing Camera Movement will focus on the effects that various kinds of camera movement have on narrative storytelling and cinematic grammar. You’ll gain an understanding of human perception as it relates to movement, and the various techniques and equipment that can be deployed to move the camera effectively, as well as how to collaborate effectively with Camera Operators, Cinematographers, and Directors to realize their cinematic vision.
SuperMeet Live! Virtual Events and Live Streaming

Join Dan Bérubé for what’s new & happening with the SuperMeets and for a timely talk with Alex Lindsay on virtual events and live streaming. We’ll take some Q&A and also raffle off a few prizes!

As virtual events and live-streaming take centerstage, many in the video and event world are trying to catch up. Learn how to plan and build medium to large scale systems for live event production. Topics will include system design, building for flexibility and redundancy, and how to get the highest quality video for your investment.

Directing Documentary Films

Speaker: Maxim Jago

It’s usually true that media production is best planned backwards – beginning with the completed project in mind and arranging a roadmap to achieve it – and this can be impossible when directing documentary films, right?

Join filmmaker Maxim Jago, director of the feature-length documentary film, “Trust Me: Working With Richard Foreman,” to explore the challenges, hurdles, and opportunities for directors of documentary films.

Topics include:

  • There is always a story but how do you find it?
  • How can you pivot and respond when you discover the story you want to share?
  • What makes for compelling content?
  • Explore the terms: What is the difference between a drama documentary, and a documentary drama?
  • Key differences between directing fiction and documentary film
  • What happens when you get into post-production
  • Visible and invisible documentary filmmaking approaches
  • Working with your subjects
  • Technical challenges
  • How can you know if your film works?

 

Bring all your creative, subject matter, and technical challenges for the Q&A!

Audio for the Producer/Editor (Preditor)
“Sound is 70% of what the audience sees” and often the achilles heel of most video camera operators and in today’s world of the one-person-camera-crew it can’t be! The first step to bettering your sound recordings when you go-it-alone is to have the proper microphone system, not mounted on your camera, and the knowledge and techniques to make it work with ensured quality. In this session you’ll learn what mic(s) work best as a camera-mounted, handheld, lav, or boomed microphone. Whether you are using a full-on shoulder mounted pro video camera, smaller hand held type came, or DSLR there is a right and a wrong mic choice. Understanding how the mic works and how to shoot to capture the highest quality ambience and dialogue will not only better your sound recordings, it will also improve your visuals and the overall quality of every production you work on. This session will present a variety of microphone types, placement, quality of audio, common pitfalls, and recording options via various mics plugged into the room sound system for an interactive experience.

Day 3 Sessions

Directing Real People On-Camera
Speaker: Amy DeLouise
How do you make non-actors look and sound their best on camera? How do you make a post-production plan for interview-driven content? In this popular workshop, you will gain strategies and secrets to making high-impact video content with real people on camera.
Live Streaming: Building a Remote Studio
Speaker: Jem Schofield

In this session Jem Schofield of theC47 will take you through his journey of how he has repurposed a small space in his house and turned it into a live streaming studio for content creation, panel discussions and to provide educational & consulting services to his clients. He will discuss camera choices, lighting, audio and how to properly create a professional result on a modest budget.

Topics will include:

  • Choosing and treating your home studio space
  • Camera considerations
  • Lighting your studio
  • Microphone choices
  • Multi-camera switching solutions
  • Using a teleprompter for effective communication with clients
Fixing it in Post (and Also in Production)
Speaker: Abba Shapiro

“We’ll fix it in post!” These are the words that make every producer and editor cringe in fear. But understanding how to avoid problems in post while shooting and what can easily be fix during the edit, you can save a lot of time, money, and frustration. This session will cover some of the best practices you should do BEFORE you hit the post suite and what can be solved easily during the edit.

Attendees will learn:

  • How to make SOUND decisions during production so your audio doesn’t become a nightmare
  • When and why to shoot LOG footage…and when not to
  • Why you should always shoot at 4K if you can
  • Things that can be easily fixed in post

Audience: Producers, Directors, & Editors who want save money and sleep better at night.

The Art of Finding the Right Location
Locations are easy to find, but is it the right location for your production? It’s important to find an environment that sets you up for success. Your location is the first talent you cast for your video production or photo shoot. Even with perfect actors or models, you still need the perfect setting to tell your story. In this course, we will walk through how to begin creating your goals for your location, how to identify any production obstacles, the process of securing your location and the techniques to effectively scout locations. This course is taught by Rachel Longman, an experienced producer/director from RHED Pixel who works with Fortune 500 companies, government agencies, and nonprofits.
Maintaining Wireless Connectivity On–Set
Speaker: Gary Adcock
As production advances faster and faster towards the future, maintaining control and continuity of your image on set and in post is essential. Join us as we discuss ways to better maintain your wireless signals in the cluttered 2.4GHz and 5GHz ranges when you and your crew are fighting signal overlap from car fobs, room sensors garage door openers, plus sound and picture, we will offer some insight to some best practices, tricks and techniques to get the most out of your wireless connectivity onset.
Beyond 4K: What’s Next in Acquisition
4K, UHD, HEVC, h.265, XAVC are new words in the production language and they carry some very different meanings than most might expect. In this session, we’ll examine what new technology brings forth, how color space, gamma, compression, and even frame composition may be different in 4K and higher resolution. We’ll dive into how to stream 4K *right now* and how to best serve it up to your clients. We’ll also cover potential pitfalls and treacherous territory in the new-world post-production process, along how to work with the potentially much larger, more highly compressed formats. If you’re not shooting 4k, you soon will be and you’ll not want to miss this very dynamic, popular session. 6K and 8K are a component of this discussion.
Understanding Full Frame and Large Format Cameras and Lenses
Speaker: Gary Adcock

When it comes to understanding the needs and requirements of shooting at larger and larger frame sizes can seem confusing, even daunting. Now that Sony and Panasonic have joined RED, Sharp & NHK in the 8K revolution, join Gary Adcock, Arri’s Art Adams and a special guest offering some thoughtful guidance and insight on the wide variety of available optics from as we discuss what the evolution of Large Format cinematography and what that means for all filmmakers.

Directing Short Non-Fiction Videos

Speaker: Amy DeLouise

Join documentary director Christine Steele for an in-depth discussion on directing short, non-fiction content. Christine will share techniques she employs, including crafting effective story treatments to serve as a blueprint for content creation, from the early stages of development all the way through post-production. Topics include personal vision, persuasion, visual and audio exposition, and directing story progression using lighting, framing, color design, interviews and backgrounds. Templates, links and software options will be suggested for managing the complex process of non-fiction content creation, with emphasis placed on staying creatively focused while managing practical and technical concerns.


Lessons and take-aways:

  • Creating Non-Fiction Treatments and Shot Lists
  • Creative Planning for Style Design and Story Progression
  • Risk Management Protocols
  • Ethical and Journalistic Guidelines
  • Practical Resources for Documentary Directors
Freelance Directing: Essential Lessons Learned
Speaker: Valentina Vee
How do I make a living as a freelance director? What kinds of skills are required? How much do I charge? How should I deal with clients? How do I get hired? Get the answers to these questions and so much more by learning from the mistakes of someone who’s already gone through it all. We will go over case studies and lessons learned, so you know what to expect and how to approach your own career.
Using and Applying LUTs
This course will cover the theory and practical applications of LUTs for both technical and creative purposes. Many of the latest camera systems offer either Log or Raw recording and output modes that give us the most possible information out of the camera. These features are great at keeping the original camera ‘negative’ as clean as possible, but at the same time Log images must be transformed to appear correctly on displays, as well as to reflect the author’s creative intent. This is where the use of Look Up Tables (LUTs) comes in — transforms that allow you to manipulate your image and create a look without affecting the camera’s original files. Using and Applying LUTs begins with a focus on types of LUTs, LUT combinations and layering, and tools used for on-set LUT creation, before delving into creative LUT design and how to apply them in post-production environments.
Drones in Journalism, Broadcast & Commercial Production
Whether you are flying (or want to fly) a drone for journalism, broadcast, or commercial video production, understanding the abilities of this cutting-edge technology and using best-practices is a must. Join this session with powerhouse Douglas Spotted Eagle, and learn the tips and tricks used for pre-planning, setup and production in the field and how to bring it all together for an amazing finished piece. This session is designed to inspire you to try new and creative ways in aerial video and photography where a number of finished pieces will be shared with the audience. Bring your deeper questions about sUAS at work within the entertainment industry as the discussion will include creative third-party solutions and a discussion on future opportunities working with this new technology.

Day 4 Sessions

Understanding & Mastering Light
Speaker: Kevin Ames
Light is the paint and the camera is the canvas onto which it flows. Just as painters have to know how to use paints and brushes to realize their art, photographers want to understand light and how to control it to make truly successful photography video or still. This in-depth program will explain the qualities and properties of light, contrast, color and lighting styles. It combines on-screen examples with demonstrations to give participants a working knowledge of light.
The Details Matter: Having the Right Paperwork for Your Production
Speaker: Rachel Longman

Overlooking the paperwork you need for your production can cause you to make many mistakes on set putting you in danger of breaking the budget or worse, missing the shot. There are important documents you need to ensure that you have everything ready and prepped for your shoot day, from communication to permissions. This course is taught by Rachel Longman, an experienced producer/director from RHED Pixel who works with Fortune 500 companies, government agencies, and nonprofits. In this session, Rachel will walk through the paperwork you need to you protect yourself and your production.