Filmmaking Workshops

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Whether you consider yourself a seasoned professional, an emerging filmmaker, or a beginner, Docs In Progress offers a range of adult education programs focused on documentary filmmaking. Beginners may want to check out our introductory production, pre-production, editing, and storytelling classes and webinars. Those filmmakers with more experience can find a variety of professional development workshops, bootcamps, panels, expert talks, master classes, and other programs focused on everything from taking your camerawork or editing to the next level to developing a fundraising strategy to honing your pitch. We also offer educational programs for youth and nonprofit organizations


UPCOMING WORKSHOPS:

 

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Copyright Basics | Thursday, January 6 from 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm | $75
Copyright Basics is the first of three workshops of copyright and licensing that you can take together, or separately if you're already familiar. In this first class we explore the history of intellectual property and specifically copyright law, as a starting point to understand license terms, the public domain, and rights holders. You'll learn about licensing archival materials/photographs, due diligence, and litigation risk. You'll also see how your own work is protected, with a new "small claims" board becoming available in Spring 2022 created by the CASE Act. As an informal resource for independent filmmakers, this workshop is not a substitute for legal counsel. For legal advice specific to your needs, we encourage you to seek advice from an attorney.

About the instructor: H. Paul Moon

H. Paul Moon (zenviolence.com) is a filmmaker, professor and attorney based in New York City and Washington, D.C. whose work concentrates on the performing arts. He teaches editing, and manages a network of online communities at focuspulling.com and docofilm.com that keep pace with new camera technologies and documentary news. Major works include "Sitka: A Piano Documentary" (sitkadoc.com) about the craftsmanship of Steinway pianos, and "Quartet for the End of Time" (quatuor.xyz) about Olivier Messiaen’s transcendent WWII composition. Moon's first feature, an acclaimed and award-winning documentary about the life and music of American composer Samuel Barber (samuelbarberfilm.com), premiered on PBS, and he is currently finishing another documentary feature about Western poetry (westdocumentary.com). His ongoing bicentennial multimedia works on poet Walt Whitman are featured at whitmanonfilm.com. Moon's latest film is an operatic adaptation of Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" (scroogeopera.com), awarded "Critic's Choice" by Opera News as a "thoroughly enjoyable film version, insightfully conceived and directed" with "first-rate and remarkably illustrative storytelling."

 

To register for the workshop, SIGN UP HERE.  

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Fair Use | Thursday, January 13 from 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm | $75
When do you need to get permission, and pay licensing fees? Are there exceptions to copyright protection? Learn when text, image and sound can be used free of charge in your documentary film. This workshop will explain the factors and prepare you for a potential claim. As an informal resource for independent filmmakers, this workshop is not a substitute for legal counsel. For legal advice specific to your needs, we encourage you to seek advice from an attorney.

About the instructor: H. Paul Moon

H. Paul Moon (zenviolence.com) is a filmmaker, professor and attorney based in New York City and Washington, D.C. whose work concentrates on the performing arts. He teaches editing, and manages a network of online communities at focuspulling.com and docofilm.com that keep pace with new camera technologies and documentary news. Major works include "Sitka: A Piano Documentary" (sitkadoc.com) about the craftsmanship of Steinway pianos, and "Quartet for the End of Time" (quatuor.xyz) about Olivier Messiaen’s transcendent WWII composition. Moon's first feature, an acclaimed and award-winning documentary about the life and music of American composer Samuel Barber (samuelbarberfilm.com), premiered on PBS, and he is currently finishing another documentary feature about Western poetry (westdocumentary.com). His ongoing bicentennial multimedia works on poet Walt Whitman are featured at whitmanonfilm.com. Moon's latest film is an operatic adaptation of Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" (scroogeopera.com), awarded "Critic's Choice" by Opera News as a "thoroughly enjoyable film version, insightfully conceived and directed" with "first-rate and remarkably illustrative storytelling."

 

To register for the workshop, SIGN UP HERE. 

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Understanding Fiscal Sponsorship for Documentary Film | Saturday, January 15 from 10:00 am - 11:00 am | FREE

In this 60-minute session, participants will learn:

  • what fiscal sponsorship is
  • the reason you as a documentary filmmaker may need a fiscal sponsor
  • what you need to apply for fiscal sponsorship
  • 15 things you should look for when choosing a fiscal sponsor
  • resources to find fiscal sponsors
  • becoming a fiscal sponsoree with Docs and the benefits

To register for the workshop, SIGN UP HERE.  

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Music Licensing for Your Film | Thursday, January 20 from 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm | $75
You've found a song that you want to use in your film. What next? In this workshop, learn about the laws and practices for music rights in your film. You'll see the entire music licensing process including actual contracts, consider the alternative to work with a composer, and watch case studies of music in film. As an informal resource for independent filmmakers, this workshop is not a substitute for legal counsel. For legal advice specific to your needs, we encourage you to seek advice from an attorney.

About the instructor: H. Paul Moon

H. Paul Moon (zenviolence.com) is a filmmaker, professor and attorney based in New York City and Washington, D.C. whose work concentrates on the performing arts. He teaches editing, and manages a network of online communities at focuspulling.com and docofilm.com that keep pace with new camera technologies and documentary news. Major works include "Sitka: A Piano Documentary" (sitkadoc.com) about the craftsmanship of Steinway pianos, and "Quartet for the End of Time" (quatuor.xyz) about Olivier Messiaen’s transcendent WWII composition. Moon's first feature, an acclaimed and award-winning documentary about the life and music of American composer Samuel Barber (samuelbarberfilm.com), premiered on PBS, and he is currently finishing another documentary feature about Western poetry (westdocumentary.com). His ongoing bicentennial multimedia works on poet Walt Whitman are featured at whitmanonfilm.com. Moon's latest film is an operatic adaptation of Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" (scroogeopera.com), awarded "Critic's Choice" by Opera News as a "thoroughly enjoyable film version, insightfully conceived and directed" with "first-rate and remarkably illustrative storytelling."

 

To register for the workshop, SIGN UP HERE.   

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Introduction to Documentary Production | 6 Sundays (Jan 23, 30, and Feb 6, 13, 20, 27) from 12:30 pm - 3:30 pm | $595 - $625

This hands-on class for new filmmakers focuses on how to plan, shoot and edit a short documentary. The class will introduce participants to screen language and sequencing and provide hands-on experience with digital video cameras and the Adobe Premiere editing system. Equipment and access to a computer lab will be provided.

Participants will work in small teams to produce a 3-5 minute documentary profile piece. Each team can develop their own subject or the instructor can assign a subject if needed.

In addition to learning how to use the equipment, work in a small crew, and plan and structure your story, the class will also focus on the interviewing process. Asking well thought out questions not only provides you with the information you’re looking for but also helps develop trust and rapport with your subjects.

Completed films will be screened at an upcoming Docs' Community Stories Film Festival.

About the instructor: Marilyn Stone

Marilyn Stone is the Visual Media & Imaging Specialist at the Montgomery County Department of Parks in Silver Spring, Maryland. She earned a Master of Arts degree in Film & Media Production from American University and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Wildlife & Fisheries Sciences from Texas A&M University. Marilyn’s academic and professional background includes eight years of collective experience in both documentary video production and photography with a focus on reconnecting viewers with nature and science through media. Her production and editing experience has allowed her to work locally with production teams and abroad as a run-and-gun filmmaker on a variety of collaborations for visual storytelling.

 

To register for the workshop, SIGN UP HERE.    

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Master Canva with Vinny Mwano | Wednesday, January 26 from 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm | $75

Many of us struggle with the design process—we don’t have the time or energy to learn photoshop or gimp. This is where Canva comes in. Canva is a graphic design platform, used to create social media graphics, presentations, posters, documents and other visual content. In this workshop, you will learn how to use Canva to bring your design ideas to reality, from concept to finalization. You’ll discover elements of how to build a professional brand that attracts the right people. We will look at the most recent trends in Canva and how to maximize on the free version of Canva to take your social media content, movie posters, presentations, Animated Stories for Facebook & Instagram, and pitch decks to the next level.

About the instructor: Vinny Mwano

Vinny Mwano is a Filmmaker, Photographer and Business Creative Marketing Consultant. He helps businesses create and implement video campaigns that increase sales and strengthen brand engagement. Vinny believes curiosity is what invites the audience to engage with marketing materials. Solutions offered within the marketing materials allow the audience to decide whether to buy or look else where. When Vinny isn't working with businesses, he is teaching photography, digital marketing and content creation to aspiring storytellers.

 

To register for the workshop, SIGN UP HERE.