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

 

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: March 31 – May 19 // Tuesdays, 6:30pm – 9:30pm

Tuition: $395/380 members


Limit: 10 students

Instructor:  Paul Peditto

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This one-day seminar will explore the art of recording professional picture and sound in a documentary interview setting as well as interviewing techniques. Topics will include: preparing for the interview, equipment, lighting the interview, audio, camera placement, and backgrounds. Also: How to put subjects at ease! We will practice these techniques with multiple styles indoors and out (weather permitting) using current professional HD equipment.  

April 4 // Saturday, 10:00am - 4:00pm

Tuition: $145/130 members

Limit: 12 students

Instructor: Chris Peppey

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The secret's out: producers are the ones who make it all happen. Pre-production and proper planning are essential to successful filmmaking. Lectures and seminars will use real production case studies to cover budgeting, scheduling, casting, releases, permits, soliciting investors, script breakdowns, hiring crew, coordinating post-production, festivals and distribution. These topics are the most critical issues every filmmaker should address before beginning a production.

5 weeks: April 6 – May 11 (no class 4/20) // Mondays, 6:30pm – 9:30pm


Tuition: $245/230 members

Limit: 14 students

Instructor: Ed Koziarski

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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: April 6 – May 18 (no class 4/20) // Mondays, 6:30pm – 9:30pm


Tuition: $395/380 members

Limit: 6 students

Instructor: Jillian Hansen-Lewis

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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: April 7 – May 19 (no class 4/28) // Tuesdays, 6:30pm – 9:30pm


Tuition: $325/310 members


Limit: 14 students

Instructor: Julie Englander

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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 HD 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: April 15 - June 24 (no class 5/13) // Wednesdays, 6:30pm - 9:30pm

Tuition: $595/580 members

Limit: 12 students

Instructor: Tommy Heffron

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Special effects and motion graphics! Special effects have become a core part of film, television, Web, and interactive forms of entertainment. Green screen keying, manipulating video images, animating photos, moving title sequences, and 3D Z-axis animation are some of the standard techniques of today's filmmaking. This class will utilize Apple Motion and advanced Final Cut Pro X tools to introduce fundamental concepts in special effects and motion graphics. Exercises cover the above plus FCPX special effects, advanced compositing, motion design, animating typography, and an introduction to Motion's 3D Z-axis animation. This class does not cover 3D modeling and animation.

5 weeks: April 16 - May 14 // Thursdays, 6:30pm - 9:30pm

Tuition: $395/380 members

Limit: 6 students

Instructor: Mike Bohacz

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In an era of digital, real FILMmaking is still incredibly valuable, both for aesthetic reasons and professional flexibility. This workshop will cover many elements of DIY 16mm filmmaking that will allow you to engage with moving images as a physical medium. We'll teach you to shoot on Bolex cameras, film stock choices, getting correct exposure, laboratory processing, hand processing options, and found footage. Class price includes ALL film materials. Note: This class has a 2-week break in the middle to accommodate for film processing. 
4 weeks: April 18 - May 15 (no class 5/2) // Saturdays, 1:00pm – 5:00pm
Tuition: $495/480 members
Limit: 8 students
Instructor: Ian Curry
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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. Each student has the opportunity to focus on their own personal interests while building a well-rounded understanding of what it takes to make a movie.

6 weeks: April 19 - May 31 (no class 5/10) // Sundays, 1:00pm - 5:00pm

Tution: $325/310 members

Instructor: Joseph Lewis

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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.


May 2 | Saturday, 10am – 4pm

Tuition: $145/130 Members


Limit: 6 students

Instructor: Adrian Anguiano

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Upcoming Shows

Wed, 04/01/2015 - 6:30pm
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Sat, 04/04/2015 - 8:00pm
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Wed, 04/08/2015 - 6:30pm
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Sat, 04/18/2015 - 8:00pm
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Sat, 04/25/2015 - 8:00pm
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Wed, 04/29/2015 - 6:30pm
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