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Training &

Spring DocLab 2013

About the course

Want to start making your own documentaries?

Get the skills and make your own documentary with DFG's DOCLAB - an intensive two week training and documentary lab. Learn to shoot, direct and edit your own documentary over two weeks in London.

This truly intensive workshop is for people prepared to eat, sleep and breathe documentary for a solid two-week period, absorbing the production process whilst making your own documentary film. You’ll gain theoretical and technical knowledge, and engage in debate with fellow doc lovers during this unique training course. Working in small groups with individual tuition, you'll also get extensive practical experience. You'll learn to work independently, as well as in a small crew, both invaluable skills for contemporary documentary filmmaking.

Location: DFG, 4th Floor Shacklewell Studios, 28 Shacklewell Lane, London

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DOCLAB is taught by award-winning industry professionals that give you the skills you need to pursue your career in documentary filmmaking. You will gain essential technical skills on industry standard tapeless HD cameras, sound equipment and digital editing on Final Cut Pro, as well as developing your skills as an interviewer, director, developer and producer.

Through making your own documentary under the expert guidance of your tutors, you will gain knowledge of and insight into the documentary production process, and you will also get pointers on how to get into the documentary industry.

The course is a highly interactive combination of formal information delivery (tutor lectures plus handouts), workshops (evening discussion groups), screenings and practical group and individual exercises. Each participant will develop, create, develop, shoot, edit and direct their own film.

During the first week you are given solid technical training on operating cameras and editing on Final Cut Pro. You are given tasks to complete under staff supervision and in your own time. Thus becoming a confident self-shooter, interviewer, director and editor

Evening sessions include screenings and critical discussion seminars, as well as a development workshop. During the screenings you will watch and discuss a wide variety of documentary films to help you view films more critically and expose you to the huge variety of genres and platforms that fall under the umbrella of documentary.

For the development workshop you will bring your idea for a three-minute film and put it through a development process, moulding it into a workable short film idea that you will make during the second week of the course. The workshop will cover issues such as what makes a good documentary idea, storytelling, style and target audience. You will then take your idea away and continue to develop it into a pitching proposal to be pitched in a simulated pitching session later in the week. These sessions are designed to give you some of the key skills needed to develop, write, pitch and fund your documentary ideas.

During this first period you will also cover production management issues such as legal requirements, and production planning.

The second week is spent making your three-minute film. On the final Monday the Lab draws to a close with a workshop on how to get into the industry, covering some of the pitfalls inexperienced filmmakers make, different avenues to use to get into the industry and how to get your films made, followed by a screening of the finished films.


Course details:


DFG, 4th Floor Shacklewell Studios, 28 Shacklewell Lane, London, E8 2EZ


This course has already run.
Please check out details of other related courses to call us on
+44 (0)20 7249 6600 / e-mail for more details.

What did people think of this course?

"Doclab catapulted me headfirst into the world of documentaries. A whirlwind of inspirational teaching, a fantastically steep learning curve and lots of fun. I got more out of it than I could have ever imagined." Jacky Bahbout, DocLab Participant

This course was absolutely brilliant. It exceeded my expectations. I really appreciated the level of teaching and the dedication shown by the tutors and staff. Everyday was a great learning experience." DocLab participant

"I think the course is excellent. The staff are bloody marvellous, dedicated, caring, powerful and capable leaders." DocLab Participant