Syllabus 2014-15

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Room: K-104
Instructor:  Ms. Goya
Phone:  441-3798 (Office)
Class Website:
Mondays at 2:45pm in K214 (open office hours and by appointment)
Tuesdays at 7:30am in K104
Thursdays at 3:05-4pm in K104
Fridays at 2:30pm in the Art Pavilion Lower Ceramic Studio

Level I:  Students need to have successfully completed Film Production Level 1
Level II and above:  Advanced Film students need to have successfully completed Film Production Level 1

Course Description:  The scope of student filmmaking in this course will include narrative, documentary, commercial and video art genres and acting for the camera. All work will be executed and discussed within the aesthetic framework of fine arts. The course will cover the entire process of film production, from pre-production: screenwriting, storyboarding, treatments, casting and rehearsal; to production: principal photography, blocking, framing, lighting, art design and audio; to post-production: beginning to advanced editing techniques, effects, sound design, scoring, screening and distribution.
In addition to all course work, students will be encouraged to submit work for public screening and required to submit for consideration at least one film to the spring MPSA Media Arts Festival. Digital Media and Theater Arts Certificate students will be expected to create an e- portfolio of their best work for year-end review.

To promote cross-disciplinary work, students will be encouraged to collaborate on projects with MPSA acting students. Students may have opportunities to consult with guest artists such as film actors and directors. Field trips may include visiting local television and film sets.

Film Competitions and Exhibitions
Projects for this class qualify for entry into various local and national student artist/filmmaker competitions and exhibitions.  Here are a few competitions and exhibitions you will be required to submit work too:

Scholastic Art (local and state art competition/scholarship opportunity) ||
Reframe (annual MPI Media Arts Festival) ||
Hawaii International Film Festival ||
Olelo Youth Xchange ||

Student Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of this course, students shall be able to:

a)     Demonstrate an understanding of media literacy through the creation of moving images that are examined through a historical and theoretical context
b)     Demonstrate proper use of basic film terms
c)     Develop appreciation for filmmaking as an art form, film production techniques, and the creative process;
d)     Demonstrate effective use of audio, video and animation equipment and programs such as Premiere, Flash, After Effects, and/or other audio/video production software
e)     Demonstrate a personal style and vision throughout project work;
f)      Maintain a digital portfolio of work created throughout the course;
g)     Participate in class discussions and provide written critiques of films and peer work that are constructive;
h)     Develop and employ proper production planning methods utilizing project storyboards, scripts, treatments, schedules, etc.;
i)       Collaborate and support peers throughout the creative process to create high-quality films;
j)       Demonstrate creativity by producing film projects suitable for school publications and/or exhibition.


All work is graded out of 25 total possible points.  See back for grading rubric.
60% | Projects:  Each project will be graded on technique, originality, effort, craftsmanship, attitude, and participation/effort. Provide a digital documentation of all analog and digital projects completed for the class and provide documentation of additional projects completed during the class.

20% | Participation:  (BAP:  Behavior, Attitude, Participation)  Proper use of class time; staying productive during class, exhibits positive behavior and attitude, and manages time effectively during class.

20% | Written Work:  Provide thoughtful responses to writing assignments and notes from certain presentations and demonstrations.

Excessive tardiness or absences will result in a full letter grade deduction for each reporting period.

Classroom Expectations
Points will be deducted from your current grade for not meeting each of these daily classroom expectations and will be noted in your daily assessments.

  • No eating in the classroom.
  • No texting/phone calls.
  • No playing video games or watching non-educational online videos (Hulu, YouTube, Facebook, etc.).  There should be no split screen/dual screens use (iPad-computer) watching shows, etc.
  • You may listen to music during production/studio time with headphones via your own music player, GrooveShark, Pandora or similar.  No watching music videos.
  • Viewing, downloading, using, and/or creating inappropriate content in class and for projects will not be tolerated.  **Inappropriate material includes the use or depiction of offensive language, violence, sexual references, drug use, and all other content identified at the teacher’s discretion.  

Course Overview
Schedule and content subject to change.

Semester 1:  Fundamentals of Film Production through Narrative Storytelling
Topics:  Story, Shots/Moving Image (Cinematography), Editing, Lighting, Sound, Screenplays.
Genres:  Silent era, Visual Narratives, Environmental Film, Crime Thriller, Spaghetti Western, Documentary, Film Noir
Film Screening List:  La Jatee, Man with a Movie Camera, Baraka, San Soleil, Koyaanisqatsi, Un Chien Andalou, The Red Balloon, Battleship Potemkin, The Good The Bad and The Ugly, Rope, music videos of Chris Cunningham and Spike Jonze, Nanook of the North, Salesman, Sunset Boulevard, Chinatown, music videos by Michael Gondry, Ghetto Life 101 (radio documentary), Bronx Stereotypes (TFI student films)

Fundamentals of Film Production
__The Still Frame and The Story:  Still-Image Film with Non-Digetic Sounds
__Cinematograpy via The Moving Frame:  ”Alien” Documentary Film
__The Long Short Film:  Editing Concepts 1

continuation of film production fundamentals…
__The Countdown:  Sound and Lighting
__Character Motivations and Realities:  Screenwriting

via Production Teams:  Short Films (Competitive Categories)
__Story Forms:  Monoscene, Apocalypse, Deconstruction, Montage (TBD)
__Character Studies:  Fictional Interviews/Dialogue/Monologues
__Narrative Short Film 1
__Narrative Short Film 2

Semester 2:  Non-Narrative Storytelling
Quarter 3:  Experimental Storytelling
Genres:  Introduction to Non-Linear; Avant-Garde and Structuralist
Film Screening List: Run Lola RunMeshes of Afternoon, Mothlight, Wavelength, music videos by Tobias Stretch and choreography by Pina

Quarter 3 Projects
__Positive and Negative:  Scratches on Digital Film
__Full Calculation:  Intentional Space between the Spaces
__Non-linear and/or Non-Narrative Short – Short Film 1
__Non-linear and/or Non-Narrative Short Film 2

Quarter 4:  Special Topics
Film and Filmmaker/Artist Screening List:  Jan Svankmajer, Hitchcock, Iginio Lardani, Saul Bass, Journey to the Center of the Earth, Muybridge, Lumiere, Dickson first sounds, Tony Schwartz and Studs Terkel (radio documentary)

Depending on time we will cover an assortment of special topics in film that may include the following film techniques and concepts.

Quarter 4 Projects
Acting for the Camera
__The Scene:  Monologue
__The Scene:  Dialogue
__Character Studies:  Developing Character Relationships
__Blocking and movement for the screen and stage
__Eye-Line Match Edits

__Title Sequence Animations
__Traditional Animation Techniques
__Non-Traditional Animation Techniques

Sound Design
__Digetic and Non-Digetic/ Voice Overs and Natural Sound Editing
__Radio Documentary

Basic Workflow:  For every film project assigned for class you will be expected to following this basic production workflow.  Here is an example of how each project should be approached individually and in group assignments.

History and inspiration (watch films related to concept being introduced)
Critique and analyze (use of film terms in writing and discussion)
Research/brain storming/writing
Treatments (outlines for organization and active to do list)
Storyboards (panels, shot list, unscripted written plans)
Rehearsals/staging/blocking/test shots/screen tests/prep work

Camera work, light, and sound – mise en scene

Critique and analyze (use of film terms in writing and discussion)

Sample Grading Rubric

 SCALE 0 to 5

Excellent Good Average Poor Fail Did not complete
5 4 3 2 1 0





How successful was your progress and time/project management?  Did you come to class prepared and ready to work? Did you stay on task?  Did you distract your fellow classmates from staying on task?


0    1    2    3    4   5Additional Notes:


How well does your design demonstrate a strong, creative/original and clearly considered concept? How well does it match your written proposal?  Did you express your concept as planned? Did you go beyond the basic


0    1    2    3    4   5Additional Notes:


Did you utilize the elements of art in a creative way?  Was it in a controlled fashion?  Did you apply any principals of design?  Did you consider and experiment with other creative options?


0    1    2    3    4   5Additional Notes:
TECHNICAL CONTROLHow successful was your skill and control of materials and tools of the production of your finished piece?  How successfully does your assignment go beyond the basic technical requirements? 0    1    2    3    4    5Additional Notes:


Overall look:  did you submit all the required elements?  Was your work presented in a professional high quality?  Does your craftsmanship shine through in this project?


0    1    2   3    4     5Additional Notes:
___/25 pts


Did you communicate with your teammates on a regular basis?  Did you contribute your fair share of the work?  Did you work as hard as you could of to make sure the final product was what you collectively envisioned?


0    1    2   3    4     5What grade do you think your project, as a whole, deserves?What grade do you think you deserve for your contribute to your final project?
 SCORE:  out of 30 points for applicable team projects. ___/30 pts














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