I'm really interested in fashion film as a medium - and, more importantly, I've had more and more people ask me if I can make them. In fact, on a day course at the London College of Fashion last year, I was pretty much told that if you were interested in fashion photography today you pretty much HAD to also take an interest in film.
Technically, I could make a fashion film - my DSLR takes video, after all - but beyond knowing where the "on" switch is, I'm admittedly a little bit stumped. So, off I went to the Raindance Saturday Film School to learn some basics.
The day was essentially split up into five separate parts - scriptwriting, low-budget filmmaking/producing, directing/acting, breaking into the film industry and networking drinks. Despite thinking that there were certain parts that weren't going to interest me at all (e.g. breaking into the film industry), I was amazed to find that, without exception, every single part had elements I could relate to and apply in my own business practices.
The scriptwriting part covered some essentials on character building and gave me some great ideas for setting out storyboards, not just for fashion films, but for editorial shoots in the future too. It goes without saying that the producing part was of great interest to me as my budget on shoots is often low-to-"what budget?". What was particularly interesting in this section was the advice about sound, which is something new I'm really having to consider in fashion film-making (photographs don't have sound!).
The directing part was also interesting, but not in the way I expected. The section focused a lot on composing your shot which is almost portrait photography 101 - but, as it's main focus was also composing groups, and most of my recent shoots have involved a lone model, it was good to refresh my thinking and avoid things like this. But it also taught me about how actors/models feel when put into these funny "doesn't-feel-right-but-looks-great-on-camera" positions.
The breaking into the film industry part was the part I thought was going to interest me the least because my main interest lies with the fashion industry. However, even this section taught me some important lessons, including how to write a CV (newsflash - they don't teach how to do this properly at uni!!).
But the best opportunity the day gave me was the chance to networking, which took place in the way of drinks in the early evening (although I was chatting away during the breaks as well). Let's face it - film, photoshoots and fashion all require major elements of collaboration and it's certainly a case of who you know as well as what you know. This course not only represented the chance to learn something new but also the chance to get several hundred of people who all had at least one shared interest (filmmaking) together in the same area at the same time.
If you are even remotely interested in making a film at some point in the next twenty years, I highly recommend this course. It can be booked from here and the next course date is 24 January 2012.