With the guidance of an accomplished experimental filmmaker, go past boundaries to see the medium anew.

There are no available registration dates at this time.

For one week, engage in the creative filmmaking process and focus on the expressive properties of the film form as you develop your unique voice and technical capabilities.  As we immerse ourselves in thriving forms of experimental filmmaking, participants will be encouraged to challenge and trust themselves in the process of learning through making something unfamiliar.  

Experimental film is an umbrella term referring to an array of extraordinary non-commercial film works, made with innovative aesthetics, techniques, and forms (from first-personal cinema, direct-on-film work, experimental animation to expanded cinema performance).  Started by some of the first filmmakers, this film practice has been sustained by artists and directors captivated by the film form, and who inventively employ its distinctive properties to craft singular and complex experiences for audience members.

Demos, hands-on technical exercises, discussion, and feedback sessions will support workshop participants’ individual work.  Short viewings will inspire, give context, and illustrate successful use of the techniques taught in the workshop.  As experimental film is most often made by a single creative person, we will cover both production techniques and approaches to editing.  Highlighted experimental film forms include expanded cinema, films constructed one frame at a time, subjective filmmaking, and camera-less film.  Participants will work with DSLRs, portable devices, found 16mm film, optional personal equipment, and our environment during exercises and independent production time.  Toward the end of the week, we will investigate filmmaking at the editing table.  How does a maker build a solid structure for their unique film work, that keeps the viewer engaged while challenging and surprising them?  

Your instructor will meet with participants individually to give feedback and guidance on individual work, concerns, and questions.  She will provide honest, supportive criticism, that will help filmmakers craft and clarify their work to be articulate, impactful, and true to their message or intentions.  Participants may bring short in-progress works or samples if desired.

By being attuned to the moment: in your mind, your senses, and in the beautiful and inspiring environment surrounding Maine Media Workshops, you will discover aspects of creative filmmaking that support the production of meaningful, affecting films.  Whether artist, documentarian, narrative or experimental filmmaker, this workshop will give you the opportunity to expand your proficiency in filmmaking and film language.  You will bring home a rough-cut or footage, new technical know-how and insights to enrich a project in progress, or to develop something completely new.  And you might become reacquainted with the joy of surprising yourself.  

Maine Media provides: 

DSLRs, tripods, sound equipment, editing stations, and basic materials and equipment for 16mm camera-less filmmaking.  


If you already have portable filmmaking items or equipment, you are encouraged bring them for your individual work if you desire.  This might include your favorite DSLR, a 16mm camera and film stock, 16mm found footage, a tablet and stylus, or tripod mount for your device.

Leave the week having expanded your vision of what filmmaking can be.

Images courtesy of Jennifer Reeves

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Instructor: Jennifer Reeves

New York-based filmmaker and media artist Jennifer Reeves (b. 1971, Sri Lanka) has made 20+ film-works, ranging from short experimental films to full-length expanded cinema performances and experimental narratives.  Named one of the “Best 50 Filmmakers Under 50” in the film journal Cinema Scope, Reeves’ work has shown extensively from the Berlin, New York, London, Sundance, and Hong Kong Film Festivals to the Whitney Museum, Robert Flaherty Seminar, the Museum of Modern Art, and at microcinemas and music venues around the world. Reeves writes, shoots, directs, and edits her films, investigating and elaborating themes of mental health, feminism and sexuality, the natural environment, and human rights issues.  Reeves infuses her work with distinctive direct-on-film and optical printing techniques she has developed over her 30+ years of filmmaking.  By constructing subjective, visceral, and personal cinematic experiences, Reeves invites viewers to immerse themselves in luscious, intricate, unfamiliar cinematic territory. Reeves’ new Expanded Cinema triple-projector performance film THREE PROJECTIONS FOR GLORIA is at the ready for better touring conditions since the pandemic postponed its 2020 Premiere.  Jennifer is currently editing her experimental documentary, supported by the Princess Grace Foundation, which highlights women freedom fighters, their battles, legacies, and their relevance today.  At the center of CELIA, DID YOU KNOW? is Cuban revolutionary Célia Sanchez (1920-1980), but the story is an international one reaching outward to revolutionaries from countries with significant connections to both the themes in Celia’s life, and her homeland Cuba (Spain, the United States, Russia, South Africa, and Viet Nam.) Reeves’ past works include her acclaimed experimental feature THE TIME WE KILLED, which earned her the FIPRESCI International Film Critics’ prize at the Berlinale, an Independent Spirit Awards nomination, OutFest Artistic Achievement award, and more.  Her film performances, including collaborations with composer/performers Skúli Sverrisson (WHEN IT WAS BLUE) and Marc Ribot (SHADOWS CHOOSE THEIR HORRORS), have been performed at such venues as the Sidney Opera House, Toronto International Film Festival, the Wexner Center, REDCAT, Era New Horizons Film Festival in Poland and New York’s Le Poisson Rouge.