InFocus Film School Blog

 

THE BEGINNER’S GUIDE TO BECOMING A GREAT VIDEO EDITOR FOR FILM, TELEVISION AND ONLINE CONTENT.

The 6 Keys to Being A Great Video Editor | InFocus Film School

Written by Rachel Kim

What makes good video editing?

This question is more pertinent than ever for everyone. Video-based social media platforms like Tik Tok and Byte, along with a host of mobile video editing apps, are encouraging an entire generation to become editors. As video content continues to reign supreme, the need for professional video and film editors is rising as well, with companies big and small trying to stand out from the crowd of user-generated content. 

So what is a video editor, exactly? A video or film editor is like a souped-up collage artist whose raw material (instead of magazines, photographs, and newspaper clippings) is footage.

The primary role of a video editor is to take all the footage that’s been recorded on set and assemble it in a way that best tells the story. An editor uses the properties of time, sound, and a variety of manipulation techniques to convey the narrative as seamlessly and accurately as possible.

 

https://vimeo.com/247242689

 

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USING CLICHES WILL DISRUPT THE PUBLIC’S VIEW OF YOU AS AN ORIGINAL OR UNIQUE FILMMAKER. WE LIST 7 OF THE MOST COMMONLY USED FILM CLICHES AND GIVE YOU ALTERNATIVES TO AVOID USING THEM YOURSELF.

7 Short Film Cliches | InFocus Film School

Written by Johnny Papan

 

Short films are as old as cinema itself. The Lumiere Brothers launched the motion picture phenomenon when they, for the first time in history, screened 10 of their short films to the public in 1895. At first short films were the only form of cinema being made. Most films didn’t exceed 10 minutes in length until the 1900s. The world’s first feature film, The Story of Kelly Gang, was released in 1906, 11 years after the Lumiere Brothers unveiled this groundbreaking new art form to the masses.

Today, short films are as prominent as ever. They’re a go-to launching pad for filmmakers and can be utilized as a proof of concept for longer films or to showcase an artist’s prowess in a quick and compact way. Thousands of short films are produced every year and production values can vary from cinematically exquisite to D.I.Y. home movies. That being said, regardless of production budget, a strong, well-told story is what truly matters. 

With so many films being made every year, you’re bound to see similarities. However, some tropes cross the line of comparability and have become outright cliches over time. If you are a new filmmaker or film school student who wants to stand-out amidst the sea of film festival submissions, here is our list of 7 cliches to avoid if you’re making a short film.

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Want to become a graphic and digital designer? Here are some tips to help you get started! 

How to Become a Graphic and Digital Designer - InFocus Film School

By Rachel Kim 

Graphic and digital design built the world we live in today. From the movie posters and advertising you see on the streets, to the cartons of milk you pick up at the grocery store, to the very structure of the social media platforms you scroll through in bed. Every day, you interact with something shaped by the mind and hands of a graphic designer.  

It’s no wonder that the demand for graphic and digital designers is so high. InFocus’ lead Graphic Design instructor Jaime Sandoval can’t keep up with the amount of work and offers that come in.

“I’m always saying ‘no, no, no,’ because there’s so much work. So, so, so much work.” 

Conan O'Brien no gif

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FOLLOW OUR IN-DEPTH ARNOLD RENDERING TUTORIAL STEP BY STEP.

The Ultimate Rendering Guide - InFocus Film School

Written by Miguel Rodriguez

 

3D animation has evolved the landscape of visual media forever. It gives us the opportunity to experience landscapes, structures and beings beyond our wildest imagination. Contemporary cinema uses 3D animation and visual effects in various ways, ranging from heavy-duty to so subtle you cannot even notice it. 

That being said, every monster, alien spacecraft and most building demolitions seen on film, television and video games are made with 3D graphics. All graphics must turn into images that can be edited, seen and shown. In order to achieve that, we rely on a process called rendering.

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AN IN-DEPTH ANALYSIS OF THE ARTISTIC APPROACH TO USING CAMERA LENSES AS A FILMMAKER.

Video Camera | How to Use Camera Lenses in Film - InFocus Film School

By Piper Courtenay 

If cinematography is the art of storytelling in film, then lenses are the tools. Lenses can affect the way a story is told. For budding filmmakers, understanding how to choose the right lens is imperative to building a relationship with the audience.  

For John Pozer, senior film production instructor and curriculum advisor at InFocus Film School, cinematography pivots around creating a flow between images. He asserts both camera placement and lens choices are paramount to that seamless consistency.  

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“The creative producer is inherently a filmmaker who also wants to write and direct,” Paulsson says. “They wear many hats but truly have an interest in telling and finding great stories through the language of film.”

What is a Creative Producer? InFocus Film School

By Ryan Uytdewilligen

 

For most movie goers, when the credits roll, the producer names are unrecognizable and their overall duty on the picture isn’t quite clear. But their involvement must be integrally important seeing as how they tend to be Hollywood’s richest and take home top prize at the Oscars, right?

 

The stereotypical image for many might be a tightly wound fat man in a suit, chomping down on a cigar and barking orders at frightened malnourished writers. But nothing could be further from the truth.

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UNDERSTANDING HOW TO LIGHT WINDOWS IS AN IMPORTANT SKILL FOR EVERY FILMMAKER. READ OUR COMPREHENSIVE INDIE-FILMMAKER’S GUIDE FOR WINDOW-LIGHTING TIPS THAT CAN BRIGHTEN UP YOUR GAME.

InFocus Film School - How to Use Lenses in Film

Written by Devan Scott

 

It’s the first day of your shoot. You arrive on location; it’s an interior. Daytime. You need to figure out how the heck you’re going to light this blank canvass of a room. Those of us tasked with shooting independent films have all been there, and those of you who want to shoot independent films will just as inevitably encounter this situation. Yet despite its commonality, this is one of the trickier situations you’ll be asked to shoot in.

Rooms are dark, surprisingly so! On film, an unlit room photographs much like a cave: mostly dark, with some bright points of light. In most rooms, these bright points are windows. They cut and control the real source of light: the sun.

How can we corral and enhance the sun to render rooms less cave-like, and more suitable to our storytelling needs? Here are some simple principles.

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Getting into a film festival is both the most beautiful and most intimidating experience for a filmmaker. Even the simple act of submitting is enough to strike one with anxiety, wondering if their work will be “accepted” in both a physical and emotional sense. Film festivals are the breaking ground for filmmakers, giving them the opportunity to launch a highly successful career. However, you are bestowed the task of outshining hundreds to thousands of talented filmmakers to catch the attention of festival organizers, producers, and an audience.

To maximize your chances of success, we have prepared a quick list of tips to help you navigate your way into the film festival circuit.

 

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Assistant Director / Assistant Directors on a film production set

By Johnny Papan

 

If films were the human body, you could deliberate that producers are the brains, writers and directors are the heart, cinematographers are the eyes, sound designers are the ears, and production designers are the lips that tell a story with decoration. These key creatives are the head of the anatomy that is a film crew.

 

But every well-functioning anatomy needs that core piece that connects and communicates with the entire nervous system. When it comes to filmmaking, this piece is the Assistant Director (A.D.), the spine of the production team.

 

“Without a good first A.D., your movie falls to pieces. I feel like you could
probably run a set better with a good first A.D. and no director
than a good director and no A.D.”

Natalie Portman, indiewire.com

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Sex, drugs, murder, profanity. You’ll see these elements play a part in films, sometimes all within a few moments. Aside from making points of reference for a drinking game, there are legitimate reasons that filmmakers are attracted to R-rated material. When done correctly, it can demonstrate the competence that comes from successfully navigating a creative challenge.

 

Today we’re going to focus on the sensitive subject of nudity and sex scenes, and how to handle them professionally on set.

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