Workshops designed for public access and
independent media arts centers.
> Images and Sounds: An
introduction to media literacy
One 3 hour meeting
Tim makes a film of the class while its members are responding
to provocative quotations. The film becomes the basis for
discussion of the difference between image and actuality.
Later, a student acts as a model for an image, and the five
senses are employed to further distinguish between person
and image. The effect of sounds on images, the superimposition
of images and and the juxtaposition of images are also demonstrated
This workshop is ideal for new video producers, and has been
made a pre-requisite for production at the Boston Neighborhood
Network. In addition, Tim has adapted it for middle-school
students at the South Area Solomon Schechter School, at YO
TV in New York City, and at Swampscott High School.
> Editing Styles and Techniques
Two 3-hour meetings + one editing lab
Students are introduced to the history and current principles
of film and video editing by viewing and discussing excerpts
ranging from Eisenstein's Potemkin to recent documentaries,
narrative films, music videos and commercials. Among subjects
discussed: continuity and discontinuity in narration, geometry,
color and movement; transitions (cuts, wipes, fades, dissolves);
symbolic cutting (Hollywood and Russian montage, etc.). After
the first session, students will be assigned to do a two-minute
video edit of either documentary or fiction material provided
by the instructor. In the second session we view and critique
these edits. Prerequisite: basic acquaintance with cuts only
editing. Limited to 12 students.
Styles and Techniques
Two 3-hour meetings + one camcorder checkout
Students are introduced to historic and contemporary styles
of camera work in both documentary and fiction filmmaking
through excerpts from Hollywood and off-Hollywood films, as
well as commercials and music videos. Between the first and
second sessions, students are assigned to shoot a short scene
in video using a script or subject provided by the instructor.
They shoot it at least two of the styles discussed in the
first session: "telephoto/close-up," "wide-angle/deep
space," "day-for-night," "cinema-verité,"
etc. In the second session, we view and critique these styles
and their effect on the look and meaning of the scene. Prerequisite:
completion of at least one previous video. Limited to
for Documentary Films and Videos
Two 3-hour meetings + one editing lab
In the first meeting, students examine the uses and abuses
of commentative, synchronous, ambient sound and music in classic
and contemporary documentary films. Various expressive uses
of sound will be shown and analyzed: as reinforcement, as
counterpoint, in the creation of locale, in the shortening
and lengthening of time, as glue to hold disparate images
together in montages, as emotional intensifier. Between the
first and second sessions, students are given an image sequence
along with various kinds of sounds, and will be asked to combine
them in a two-track or three-track audio edit. The second
class examines each of those edits in detail for the effect
of the sounds on each other and on the images. Prerequisite:
basic familiarity with two-track audio insert editing. Limited
to 12 students.
of Documentary Styles and Techniques
Two 3-hour meetings
Students watch and discuss excerpts from documentaries ranging
from Nanook of the North to MTV's The Real World. Emphasis
will be on historical and cultural influences on contemporary
documentary styles and techniques and their esthetic and ethical
implications. Among the filmmakers whose work is shown and
discussed are Robert Flaherty, Dziga Vertov, Esther Schub,
John Grierson, Basil Wright, the Maysles Brothers, Dusan Makavejev,
Alain Resnais, Jean Rouche, Kidlat Tahimik, Maximillian Schell,
Muffy Meyer and Ellen Hovde, Kevin and Pierce Rafferty, Jayne
Loader, Barbara Kopple, Ross McElwee and Roger Moore. Limited
to 14 students.
Two 5 hour sessions
A more intense weekend version of the History of Documentary
Styles and Techniques.
Heads: Interviewing Styles and Techniques
Two 3-hour meetings
In the first meeting, students learn through demonstration
a series of skills, including: choosing a location, evaluating
its acoustic properties; selecting and locating microphones,
establishing rapport with the subject, asking effective questions;
composing the shot; shooting for maximum editing flexibility;
and lighting effectively, both outdoors and indoors. Students
are then given interview assignments, which are critiqued
in detail during the second session. Limited to 12 students.
Prerequisite: completion of at least one previous video.
CD-ROM production workshop
In collaboration with Marla Olsberg, who secured funding from
the Massachusetts Cultural Council, Tim designed a series
of media literacy and production workshops in which middle
at the South Area Solomon Schechter Day School learned how
to analyze and record images and sounds in order to make a
CD-Rom about the L'Chaim project. Designed by Jane Cohen,
the school principal, L'Chaim had twenty sixth, seventh and
eighth graders interview holocaust survivors on how they had
re-constructed their lives since 1945, with a view to discovering
positive lessons from the experience that could empower contemporary
Jewish youth. The images and sounds made by the students were
then put into an interface designed by Tim and Karen Ellzey,
with assistance from David Cheda. Jasmin
Sung created PC and Mac CD-Rom masters from which 300
copies were made with the assistance of Simon Olsberg and
the Caliper corporation. The CD's were then distributed to
L'Chaim supporters at a celebratory event in May of 2002.
Plans are currently (2004) underway for a L’Chaim II
led by Marla and Natasha Freidus of Creative Narrations. (www.creativenarrations.net).
Eight 3 hour sessions over two months.
A seminar created for the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture.
Currently being adapted for local university classes. Contact
Tim for details.