Learn the cinematic language of shot design and composition to tell effective and emotional stories.

Oct 28, 2024 - Nov 1, 2024

Levels: Intermediate, Advanced,
Workshop Fee: $2295
Workshop Duration: 1-week (Monday-Friday)
Workshop Location: On-campus
Class Size: 16

JULY session SOLD OUT! Email [email protected] for waitlist.

Camera position, movement, point-of-view, lens selection, and scene coverage are all critical elements in telling effective visual stories. This one-week workshop is for emerging filmmakers, cinematographers, and directors who want to focus on the use of the camera in cinematic storytelling.

Students learn the language and grammar of shot design, composition, camera placement, and movement. The subtle differences in camera operating styles and their effects on the viewer are addressed through exercises and screenings. Films will be analyzed in the context of how various DPs may approach their shot design.

Classroom lectures cover film dynamics, screen direction, and the role of the camera in the story being told. Students work with scripts as they break down scenes, plan coverage, and prepare storyboards and shot lists. Working as a professional camera crew, the class blocks and shoots dramatic sequences with actors. Dailies are assembled in editing to help the students discover where their coverage is working most effectively. In the latter half of the week, directors and cinematographers come together to create final pieces. Students leave with a working knowledge of scene design and a full understanding of the role the camera plays in the filmmaking process, and its potential for being the driving force behind emotionally impactful stories.


“My experience here has reawakened my creativity and passion to make my movie.” JC Chandler, Maryland Heights, MO

“The Workshops is a unique and wonderful place, the experience of learning here feels so natural you don’t even know it is happening.” Ed Ballinger, Allentown, PA

“You won’t regret your investment in this great class. This is the class that will teach you the grammar of film.” Wei Zhou, Mountain View, CA

“It was the best workshop I attended this summer. It alters the way you look at films.” Shirsha Thakurta, Mumbai, India

Please note: An hour-long training session on Set Etiquette and Safety will be required of anyone registered for a workshop that involves production. Students only need to participate in this session once during their time on campus.

Image Credits:  Alexis Ostrander, Matt Dixson, Devin Altobello, David Martinez

Instructor: Steven Fierberg, ASC (Teaching Jul 15-19, 2024 - Register here)

Steven Fierberg is an award-winning cinematographer, receiving an ASC Award for best cinematography and a Latin Grammy.

Steve has created the ‘look and feel’ of some of the most successful series in television, including The Affair (Golden Globes Winner, Best Drama), Emily in Paris (Golden Globe nom), Entourage (5 Golden Globe noms), Once Upon a Time and Attila (ASC Award Winner for Outstanding Cinematography).

In addition, Steve created the look for HBO’s new season of ‘In Treatment, ABC’s hit Once Upon a Time and NBC’s cutting edge cult classic Kingpin. He shot pilots for Mark Mylod, Bryan Singer, Darren Star, Jason Moore and Sanaa Hamri.

Ashley Connor - Profile Picture

Instructor: Ashley Conner (Teaching Oct 28-Nov 1, 2024 - Register here)

ASHLEY CONNOR is a New York based Director of Photography who was featured alongside Rachel Morrison, Agnès Godard and Reed Morano in Film at Lincoln Center's Female Gaze series; a program highlighting the work of 23 groundbreaking female cinematographers. 

Nominated for a 2019 Independent Spirit Award for Josephine Decker’s MADELINE’S MADELINE, she has leant her unique breadth of style to a genre-spanning list of features including Desiree Akhavan's THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST (Sundance Grand Jury Prize 2018), Daniel Scheinert’s THE DEATH OF DICK LONG (Sundance 2019), Harry Wootliff’s TRUE THINGS (Venice 2021), and Lena Dunham’s SHARP STICK (Sundance 2022). She shot Nida Manzoor’s wire-fu/comedy POLITE SOCIETY, produced by Focus Features and released nationwide in April of 2023 and most recently wrapped production on Zia Anger’s MY FIRST FILM for Mubi.

In addition to Film and Television, she has lensed music videos for popular artists including Maggie Rogers, Mitski, Jenny Lewis, Angel Olsen, Sharon Van Etten, MGMT, Beach House, and Caroline Polachek as well as ad campaigns for brands like Mango, Dove, and Gucci.