Classes


Chicago Filmmakers offers college-level classes in film and video production. For newcomers, we recommend starting with Digital Moviemaking for a broad overview of the production process, then taking classes in various disciplines that interest you. Persons with experience in filmmaking may further their training with specialized courses and workshops. In either case, you will find a quality education similar to those found at accredited schools and universities, but for a fraction of the time and cost. Plus, you can become part of a filmmaking community that can support and sustain you for many projects to come. 

 

Please read our Class Registration Policies for more information.  

 

Upcoming Classes

 

Recording clean audio on location is a tricky job and often the Achilles' heel to many low budget productions. This workshop will cover audio recording and microphone techniques using professional microphones and state of the art flash memory audio recorders. Learn various recording techniques such as recording solo and group musical performances, interviews, sound effects and background room-tone, as well as sync and non-sync dialog for film and video. Topics such as microphone choice, booming, level adjustment, monitoring, sound physics, and alternative creative tools will be covered. Students will create an audio project using multi-track, timeline based editing software. This workshop is designed to bring professional production values audio/visual work and is perfect for film and video makers, musicians, journalists, and artists.

Session 2 – September 27 | Saturday, 10am – 4pm
Tuition: $145/130 Members
Limit: 6 students
Click here to enroll online.
 

This is our basic production course designed to cover key concepts and practices for making a film or video project. Topics include a thorough introduction to the professional DV camera, important aspects of lighting, sound, shot composition, camera movement, visual storytelling devices, working as a filmmaking crew, and editing. In-class demonstrations and exercises will allow students to work collaboratively on group projects as a digital cinema team. Prerequisite: Basic Macintosh computer literacy.

10 weeks: September 30 – December 2 | Tuesdays, 6:30pm – 9:30pm
Tuition: $595/580 members
Limit: 12 students
Click here to enroll online.
 

Achieve a million-dollar glow without a big budget! Creating great moving images is an art by itself. Learn how to use cameras and lights for a variety of applications. Digital camera operations will be examined in detail with an emphasis on imaging devices, lens options, shooting techniques, 16mm comparisons, and technical and aesthetic differences. Lighting fundamentals will incorporate camera strategies with the 3-point lighting philosophy and classic lighting styles. Students will gain proficiency on digital video cameras, complete several lighting exercises in class, and learn how to set up shots with a minimum of equipment and time. Prerequisite: None, but Digital Moviemaking or HD Camera Seminar are highly recommended.

6 weeks: October 2 – November 6 // Thursdays, 6:30pm – 9:30pm

Tuition: $325/310 members

Limit: 12 students

Instructor: Casey Puccini

Click here to enroll online.

You don’t need the permission of Hollywood to make your movie any longer.Come and learn how to make your film on the cheap. The first half of the course will spend three hours with a lecture discussing successful, common-sense micro­budget rules. The second half of the course will focus on student projects, seeking solutions for the projects students are currently working on, or about to work on. While the class will primarily focus on the writing for micro­budget, we will spend time on the subjects of budgeting, scheduling, Kickstarter, and distribution.

October 11 // Saturday, 10:00am – 4:00pm

Tuition: $95/80 membersLimit: 10 students

Instructor: Paul Peditto

Click Here to Enroll Online.

Students (ages 12-18) work with a professional filmmaker in a comprehensive hands-on experience to learn how to navigatethe entire moviemaking process. This course will cover all aspects of digital video production, from initial concept to finished movie. Students will learn about pre-production planning, storyboarding, cameras, lighting, sound, shot composition, and computer editing, and will work collaboratively on group projects. 

6 weeks: October 12 - November 16 // Sundays, 1:00pm - 5:00pm

Tution: $325/310 members 

Instructor: Joseph Lewis

Click Here to Enroll Online

Apple's digital nonlinear editing software has long been used by professional editors around the world. This course will provide students instruction on the complete process of digital editing on Final Cut Pro X, from logging footage to mastering onto DVD. Topics covered include basic editing, transitions, titling, sound, filter usage, and aesthetics. Students may sign up for 10 hours outside of class to practice during regular business hours. No previous editing experience is required. Prerequisite: Basic Macintosh computer literacy.

5 weeks: October 15 - November 12 | Wednesdays, 6:30 – 9:30pm

Tuition: $395/380 members

Limit: 6 students

Instructor: Jillian Hansen-Lewis  

Click Here to Enroll Online

This is our basic production course designed to cover key concepts and practices for making a film or video project. Topics include a thorough introduction to the professional DV camera, important aspects of lighting, sound, shot composition, camera movement, visual storytelling devices, working as a filmmaking crew, and editing. In-class demonstrations and exercises will allow students to work collaboratively on group projects as a digital cinema team. Prerequisite: Basic Macintosh computer literacy.

5 weeks: October 18 – Novemver 15 // Saturdays, 10:00am – 4:00pm

Tuition: $595/580 members

Limit: 12 students

Instructor: Bryan McHenry 

Click Here to Enroll Online

Want to translate your idea into a feature film? This course covers the fundamentals of writing a feature-length screenplay and is designed for beginning students and writers. Through screenings, outside readings, discussion, and critiques, students will engage with such issues as character development, dialogue, structure, narrative progression, and what to do with a finished screenplay. Students should use this course as a springboard towards generating the first draft of a feature-length screenplay.

8 weeks: October 20 – December 8 // Mondays, 6:30 – 9:30pm

Tuition: $395/380 members

Limit: 10 students

Instructor:  Paul Peditto 

Click Here to Enroll Online

 

Truth is often stranger than fiction, and there seems to be no better time than the present to become a documentary filmmaker. Discover the techniques and styles best suited for your documentary idea and then shape that idea into a work that can be funded and completed. This course will give you an overview of documentary forms and teach you how to research your project, write a treatment and synopsis, target interested funders, write a proposal, make a budget and prepare a shooting schedule. Students are encouraged to come to class with a specific documentary idea they wish to develop.

6 weeks: October 27 - December 1 // Mondays, 6:30pm - 9:30pm

Tuition: $325/310 members

Limit: 14 students

Inscructor: Julie Englander

Click Here to Enroll Online

This course will cover basic elements of directing and acting for the camera, including aesthetics, tone, text analysis, and controlling dramatic aspects of film through acting. The relationship between the director and the actor will be emphasized: building effective communication, evaluating performance, and understanding the rehearsal process from both ends. Students will work in groups to audition and cast actors, rehearse and plan the execution of a scene with scripts, floor plans, and blocking; and shoot scenes for evaluation.

6 weeks: November 5 – December 17 (no class November 26) | Wednesdays, 6:30pm – 9:30pm

Tuition: $365/350 Members

Instructor: Stephen Cone

Click Here to Enroll Online.

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Upcoming Shows

Fri, 09/26/2014 - 8:00pm
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Sat, 09/27/2014 - 8:00pm
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Wed, 10/01/2014 - 6:30pm
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Wed, 10/08/2014 - 7:00pm
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Sat, 10/11/2014 - 8:00pm
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Wed, 10/15/2014 - 6:30pm
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Sat, 10/18/2014 - 8:00pm
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Sat, 10/25/2014 - 8:00pm
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Wed, 10/29/2014 - 6:30pm
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Sat, 11/01/2014 - 8:00pm
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