DOCUMENTARY PRODUCTION TFM 540
INSTRUCTOR: MARK FREEMAN Office: LT 171 C
Office Hours: Wednesday 2:45—3:45 p.m. and by appointment
This documentary video production workshop emphasizes nonfiction field production.
The workshop combines theory, history and practice. Hands-on demonstrations, guest presentations, screenings, readings, lectures and discussion prepare students to produce a documentary video production. Students gain production experience working individually and in groups. Classes include an emphasis on research, pre-planning and writing skills as integral components of video production.
Students will be able to:
- Write a treatment and/or script for their documentary productions.
- Write a critical analysis of a significant documentary.
- Produce an exercise, which demonstrate competency in core documentary skill areas: e.g. interviewing, hand-held camera use, editing, etc.
- Produce an original 8-10 minute documentary production intended for festival exhibition.
Students will be graded according to the originality of their approach to the medium,
technical competence, as well as over-all understanding and progress demonstrated in assignments, projects and discussions.
- Degree of Difficulty. How ambitious, imaginative and challenging is the production? Is it Intriguing? Compelling? or Predictable?
- Organization. How well organized and efficient is the production team? Is there evidence of thorough pre-production and planning?
- Technical Competence. Is the production well executed? Are the video and audio elements well integrated? To what degree does technique heighten or diminish the overall impact of the program?
- Audience reception. How was the program received? Did it have its intended effect on viewers?
Participation: In class /Crewing on Projects 1 and Final Project
Preproduction “3 project assignment”
Including Documentation (Please note points will be deducted for documents not
delivered in class according to the schedule below. Additional points may be deducted if
documentation is not included with the delivery of the final project.)
Students should be especially careful to avoid “borrowing” from internet sources and each other. There will be “ zero-tolerance” for plagiarism. Cheating or plagiarism will result in an “F” for the course and a report to the office of Student Rights and Responsibilities. Be sure to cite all of your sources with page numbers and url’s as appropriate.
For Students with Disabilities
If you are a student with a disability and believe you will need accommodations for this class, it is your responsibility to contact Student Disability Services at (619) 594-6473. To avoid any delay in the receipt of your accommodations, you should contact Student Disability Services as soon as possible. Please note that accommodations are not retroactive, and that I cannot provide accommodations based upon disability until I have received an accommodation letter from Student Disability Services. Your cooperation is appreciated.
Access, Affordability, Intellectual Freedom, Inclusivity, and Diversity
The CSU has affirmed its commitment to ‘protecting access, affordability, intellectual freedom, inclusivity, and diversity for all students… including supporting DACA students.’ Discrimination, harassment, or retaliation against students, faculty, and staff on the basis of race, religion, gender, sexuality, disability, nationality, immigration status, and other categories of identity is prohibited. If you have concerns about your status at the university, please visit http://studentaffairs.sdsu.edu/EOP/ for information or contact the Dean of Students or the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs in your College.
Grades A-F with plus and minus.
DUE DATES FOR ALL FILM PROJECTS ARE FINAL. LATE PROJECTS RECEIVE
Documentary Voice & Vision By: Kelly Anderson and Martin Lucas (DV&V)
The Safari platform authentication is a little wonky. You will have to select Not Listed at the top of the institution drop down and put your SDSU email address in the box, and it will let you in
The Library offers free access to Kanopy and Film Platform. If you log into the library with your SDSU account you may not have to create separate accounts on these services. You will need access to view films in and outside of class time.
Kanopy and Film Platform
From the library home page (library.sdsu.edu) where the search all is, click the top tab that says databases. Then you can either search for Kanopy by name or click the Databases A-Z link. If you click the link, you can either search for Kanopy or click K. Once you see Kanopy listed (it’s officially Kanopy Streaming media) you can click on the link and it will ask you to sign in. Once you’re signed in, you will have access to all our Kanopy subscriptions.
Reading Packet (RP)
Documentary Editing by Jacob Bricca; Focal Press, 2018.
Directing the documentary Rabiger, Michael. Amsterdam; Boston : Focal Press, 2014
Documentary Storytelling for Video and Filmmakers, Bernard, Sheila.
Documentary Media: History, Theory and Practice, Fox, Broderick.
The Documentary Film Makers Handbook: A Guerilla Guide, Jolliffe, Genevieve.
Documentary Film: A Very Short Introduction Aufderheide,Patricia.
A New History of Documentary Film, Betsy McLane. Continnuum International Publishing Group Inc., 2012.
Please inform the instructor of any dead links
Activist Video witness.org indymedia.org http://papertiger.org/
http://www.burningwell.org/ http://www.archive.org/details/prelinger http://www.princetonol.com/groups/iad/links/clipart.html http://www.revostock.com/ http://digitalcollections.library.yale.edu/ http://openvault.wgbh.org/
Audio and Music
Login as “Sound”
Password is “TFM”
The SFX library is only open to computers in the SDSU network due to copyright issues.
http://www.mobygratis.com/film-music.html http://www.freesfx.co.uk/ http://www.filmsound.org http://www.findsounds.com/ http://freesound.iua.upf.edu/index.php http://www.freeplaymusic.com/ http://www.versusmedia.com/ http://www.sounddogs.com http://www.pdinfo.com/index.php fearlessrecords.com http://incompetech.com/m/c/royalty-free/
Transcripts Convert the audio to MP 3 or .wav
Dropbox.com http://yousendit.com/ TransferBigFiles.com FileDropper.com
CLASS FORMAT Field Production
This course requires students to participate in fieldtrips, research or studies that include
coursework that will be performed off-campus. Participation in such activities may result in accidents or personal injuries. Students participating in the event are aware of these risks, and agree to hold harmless San Diego State University, the State of California, the Trustees of the California State University and Colleges and its officers, employees and agents against all claims, demands suits, judgments, expenses and costs of any kind on account of their participation in the activities. Students using their own vehicles to transport other students to such activities should have current automobile insurance.
Each student should budget approximately $100-200 for production costs. Students are
expected to supply all materials necessary to professionally complete their productions.
Students will work in groups of three. Each group will produce three exercises. That is
each group member will have primary responsibility for producing, directing and editing their own pieces with the assistance of the other members of the group. One measure of satisfactory “class participation” is the degree of cooperation each group evidences in the crewing of these production. Crew work should be reflected in the on- screen credits.
For the Final Project students will work together as Producer, Director, Camera, Sound and Editor.
For each final project, prepare a Workplan. This is a timeline describing weekly plans
and reasonable expectations of measurable progress by the end of the semester. This workplan will be the basis of a class contract. It will be used for student assessment purposes. This workplan is due in class Week 3.
INTRODUCTION Brainstorm Groups
(DV&V) Chapter 1
Please complete the following and turn in each element in a stapled packet. Your materials should include the number and letter of each segment as listed below. Due in class next week.
- A.) 1, 2 and 3 A description of 3 possible topics you are considering for your
B.) Describe your rationale for choosing to develop one of the stories. This should include a thoughtful consideration of the pros and cons of each idea.
C.) 1,2,3,4,5 List five or more questions you have about your topic.
D.) Present the research you’ve done and what you have learned. Reference at least
2 sources. These sources could be books, articles, newspapers, internet sources (but
not wikipedia), etc.
E.) Describe your approach and the theme for this documentary.
Be prepared to pitch your chosen topic.
WHAT IS DOCUMENTARY
(DV&V) Chapter 2
RESEARCH, WRITING and PREPRODUCTION
(DV&V) Chapters 3 and 4 and “Filmography” for Doc Analysis suggestions.
Oral & Written Reports on Preproduction Interviews
Each student in each group should identify and contact a content expert who can provide context for your documentary. This could be an SDSU professor, other expert or a community member. Summarize your interview in writing. The summary should include who you spoke with and when, a list of your questions, and direct quotes of at least 3 relevant bites that could be used in your documentary.
Doc Contract and Proposal Template
By the third-class meeting each group will prepare a workplan/timeline describing weekly plans and reasonable expectations of measurable progress by the end of the semester. This workplan will be the basis of a class contract. It will be used for student assessment purposes.
OVERVIEW/REVIEW OF BASIC FIELD PRODUCTION TECHNIQUES Camera Sound Lighting
(DV&V) Chapters 6,7,8,9,10,11, 12,13,14 and 16 — Review
Treatment and/or Draft Script Due
INTERVIEWS IN THE FIELD
Directing and interviewing techniques
(DV&V) Chapter 15
In class Production Exercise
Budget and Shooting Schedule Due
VOICE, ETHICS and AESTHETICS
(DV&V) Chapter 5
Trafficking in Reality DVD
ACTIVIST and COMMUNITY BASED DOCUMENTARIES
(DV&V) Chapters 17, 18, 19, 20
RP Documentary Storytelling
DIRECT CINEMA and CINEMA VERITE
Screening: Cinema Verite: The Defining Moment DV015
Shooting Log Due
Week 11 Spring Break
FINAL PROJECTS WORK-IN-PROGRESS SCREENINGS
(DV&V) Chapters 21, 22, 23
Rough Cut Final Projects Due Transcripts Due
Sign up for individual meetings with instructor
GROUP MEETINGS WITH INSTRUCTOR REGARDING FINAL PROJECT
GROUP MEETINGS WITH INSTRUCTOR REGARDING FINAL PROJECT
GROUP MEETINGS WITH INSTRUCTOR REGARDING FINAL PROJECT
FINAL PROJECTS DUE May 6, 2020
Please prepare a qt.mov of the complete film on a thumbdrive that will be retained by the instructor. Format the drive for Mac OS.
The production book should include all reports, assignments, logs, transcripts etc. that were assigned during the semester. Please see the syllabus.
Each student should also include a detailed report in a sealed envelope. Describe the process of producing your final project, your contribution and the contributions of your teammates and reflections on how you met your learning objectives for the class. Suggestions for the prof are welcome.
You are expected to attend the SDSU Filmmakers Showcase on May 12 or 13th.