Taking the intimidation out of video with your smartphone at WaterFire with David H. Wells
This workshop is for people who want to learn to make better videos with their smartphone and create engaging short video stories on any subject. Techniques and strategies presented can be applied to filmmaking in any format, but in order to focus on strategies for better videos, and not the technology we will be working with smartphones.
WaterFire Providence’s outdoor Festival will provide the backdrop for this primer on video storytelling using your smartphone captured video and audio. The Festival will provide ample subject matter to practice the techniques presented in this workshop that can later be applied to make better travel, family, or work videos.
In this workshop you will put the concepts and techniques presented into practice, creating an edited short film from video and sound captured with your smartphone at PVDFest. Classroom instruction will provide participants the opportunity to use readily available software to put the capture and editing techniques presented into practice to turn their captured content into a final video to be screened at the end of the workshop.
Course expectations and Outline
Equipment Needs: Attendees are expected to provide their own Smartphone and Laptop
Pre Session: Review prerecorded Introduction & instruction to be viewed before arriving in Providence.
Session One: Classroom and On the Street at WaterFire with instructors for planning & review strategies, followed by shooting on the street independently
Session Two: Classroom Instruction: Selecting files, Review Software for Editing and Edit your film. The workshop wraps up with a Screening of each participants final film.
The prospect of making short films may seem daunting and overwhelmingly complex, but it’s not. As photographers, you already have many of the skills necessary to be successful with moving images. You know how to compose a frame, how to use the best light available, and how to work with digital-imaging technology. You also own a highly portable, easy to use, incredibly high quality video making camera with great built in image stabilization, it’s in your smartphone. This class is aimed at artists who want to make videos with smartphones, telling brief visual stories, by recording video and sounds on their smartphones and then editing them together into short videos, of anything of interest, be that of your travels, your family, your work, etc.
The introductory material will be provided ahead of time, while in person classes will be held at the Rhode Island Center for Photographic Arts. After Saturday’s classroom session each student will begin working on shooting for a short film as we move outside to film the action at WaterFire from about 2pm until about 9pm. WaterFire will provide a broad range of activity to capture and form your story around. To get the most out of this weekend workshop, students will be provided a series of videos to watch before class, to help them get up to speed on various parts of filmmaking. These pre-recorded videos will focus on tools as well as on storytelling techniques.
One of the most important lessons of the workshop is to use your photographer’s eye when capturing video in order to shape that viewer’s experience and the narrative by using the kind of camera work techniques which photographers already know.
Before Saturday 10/2: Watch provided pre-recorded videos on film making tools and techniques, including strategies for editing/organizing final film output. Familiarize yourself with video controls for your specific camera/phone, (a web search may be helpful) paying particular attention to the pre-class instruction. Practicing video and audio gathering as per instructor’s pre-class letter will make for a more productive workshop experience. These pre-recorded materials need to be viewed before arriving in Providence on Saturday.
Saturday 10/2: In person, classroom introduction and follow up on lessons in pre-recorded videos. An introduction to the gear, strategies, subject matter with a walk through WaterFire for location scouting, and plans for recording video and audio on the street. The evening session will be spent capturing footage at WaterFire on your own. David Wells will be available to field questions and advise, but this is your chance to capture the performers and spectators at WaterFire in downtown Providence, Rhode Island.
Sunday 10/3: David will lead you through downloading/editing/organizing the newly captured video and audio. Sunday’s class will start at 9 am, with a focus on organizing and renaming clips to a useable naming convention. Then we will discuss reordering duplicates of the selected clips into the first order for making a rough cut of the film. After a 1 pm lunch break the class will dig into the software for video editing, then the students will work on their short films.
The workshop concludes Sunday evening with a screening the edited version of each student’s film.
To succeed in filmmaking you need two things, an experienced teacher and filmmaker to guide you through the transition from still photographer to filmmaker—and then you need to dedicate the time to practice. In this class you will be provided with a small dose of each to get you started. Lead by David Wells, who creates videos full-time, for personal projects and paying clients, you will learn how to create a dramatic and visually compelling short films maximizing ambient sound and compelling motion visuals.
About David H. Wells is an award-winning visual storyteller who has worked as a newspaper photographer, a freelance magazine photographer, and most recently a filmmaker. He creates still and moving images for clients such as Bryn Mawr College and Aramco World, and his personal and grant-funded projects have been supported by the Fulbright and Alicia Patterson Foundations. Magazines that have published David’s work include Fortune, Time, Life, National Geographic, Newsweek, and The Sunday New York Times, among others. His films have been shown at festivals worldwide, in Bangalore, New York City, Rome, and San Francisco.
Pre-recorded Content: To be viewed independently before the first meeting
Pre-Workshop session: Watch provided pre-recorded videos on film making tools and techniques including strategies for editing/organizing final film output. Familiarize yourself with video controls for your specific camera/phone, (a web search may be helpful) paying particular attention to the pre-class instruction. Practicing video and audio gathering as per instructor’s pre-class letter will make for a more productive workshop experience.
Saturday October 2nd, 9:00am – 9:00pm
At the Rhode Island Center for Photographic Arts & on the street at PVDFest
9:00 – 1:00pm Live classroom introduction and follow up on lessons in pre-recorded videos
1:00 – 2:00pm Lunch Break
2:00 – 5:00pm On the Street at WaterFire with David for planning & strategies
5:00 – 9:00pm Continue outdoors to capture footage at PVDFest on your own
Before Sunday’s session:
Download and organize audio and video into folders
Sunday October 3rd, 9:00am – 7:00pm
At the Rhode Island Center for Photographic Arts
9:00 – 1:00pm Classroom Instruction: Selecting files and assembling in software
1:00 – 2:00pm Lunch Break
2:00 – 5:00 Review Software for Editing / edit your film
5:00 – 7:00pm Film screening and class review of the final version of each student’s film.
Who is the workshop designed for?
The workshop is designed for photographers who are interested in improving their video production and storytelling
Where is the workshop?
This workshop will take place in person at the Rhode Island Center for Photographic Arts & on the street at WaterFire in Providence, RI. Prerecorded instruction will be provided in advance of the introductory zoom session.
How much does it cost?
The cost of the workshop is $250. You can purchase your seat in the workshop below.
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