Learn efficient research methods, and how to make the most of vintage clips, and rights and clearances

Archival material is the backbone of any historical documentary. Vintage footage and photographs give us the visceral connection and sensual texture that connects us with the past.

This workshop covers the entire archival process from research of footage, still photos and fine art, to the ordering process and clearing rights, as well as issues surrounding copyright, public domain and fair use.

Students learn efficient research methods, how to make the most of the National Archives and other public resources, and the most sensible approaches to using commercial stock footage.

Whether your interest is local stories or broad national or international topics, you can make the most of your budget while developing archival as a substantial and meaningful dimension to your film.

This workshop is taught by an Emmy Award-winning Archival Image Researcher, Rich Remsberg. Remsberg works regularly on American Experience, NOVA and other PBS productions, as well as programs for National Geographic, History Channel, museum exhibits, and independent films. He is the author of Hard Luck Blues: Roots Music Photographs from the Great Depression.



Rich Remsberg

Rich Remsberg is an Emmy Award-winning archival footage and image researcher. While most of his work is for feature documentaries, museum exhibits, and PBS signature series, his credits also include IMAX films, video games for Activision, and development projects for MIT. 

His own short films have screened at Slamdance, the Walker Arts Center, and the Bowery Ballroom, and he is the author of two books, most recently Hard Luck Blues: Roots Music Photographs from the Great Depression. He has served on the faculty of the Library of Congress' American Folklife Center Field School, was a frequent collaborator with the electronic music duo, The Books, and is a regular contributor to Esopus Magazine and NPR's online feature, The Picture Show. 
A native Midwesterner, he now lives in North Adams, Massachusetts. 




Course Dates

Sep 17 to Sep 23



Class Size