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Creative Arts & Design×

National Film & Television School Masters Degrees in Cinematography

We have 2 National Film & Television School Masters Degrees in Cinematography

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The NFTS is the only UK film school where you can specialise in cinematography for 2 years at MA level. -The only specialist 2-year Cinematography course in the UK. Read more
The NFTS is the only UK film school where you can specialise in cinematography for 2 years at MA level.

-The only specialist 2-year Cinematography course in the UK.
-Three stages, bluescreen and greenscreen facilities.
-Shoot live action and animated films.
-Students use 16mm, Super 16mm and 35mm film, digital video and HD cameras.
-Unlike other Schools, all production costs are met by the school.

We welcome EU/EEA Students. Those accepted onto courses starting in 2018 will have their fees guaranteed at the UK rate for both years of the course. Postgraduate students can apply for a loan to help with their studies via the Student Loans Company Loans. A £ 10,000 loan is available to contribute to course and living costs. The Post Graduate Loan is only open to EU/EEA and UK Students who normally live in England. It is not currently available to Scottish, Welsh or Northern Ireland Students. Find out more here: https://nfts.co.uk/fees-funding/funding-guide

COURSE OVERVIEW

This course commences in January each year. This course explores the many ways in which the cinematographer participates in the collaborative process of translating screenplays into meaningful and stimulating films. Exercises, workshops, masterclasses and productions, supported by critical and analytical study of the history and development of cinematography, give students a solid foundation in the art and craft of their future career.

The aim is to improve and expand the students' technical knowledge and skills using all of the above mentioned methods of image capture.

Cinematography graduates are in demand in the UK, Europe and the US and go on to work in both film and television. Recent new graduates have found work as 2nd Unit DoPs on feature films, and have shot commercials, episodic television series and documentaries for Channel 4, Granada and BSkyB, as well as short films and TV programmes for a variety of independent production companies.

CURRICULUM

Creative expression is developed alongside technical expertise. As well as film, training in High Definition, Digital Cinema and Digital Post Production is an integral part of the course. Visual storytelling is emphasised alongside the art of creating mood and evoking emotion through the right combination of composition and lighting. Working closely with students of other specialisations, student cinematographers have a creative involvement in fiction, animation and documentary films, commercials and multicamera television, lighting and shooting several productions during their time at the School.

During the course students will be provided with tutorials, seminars, screen studies, workshops and master classes with specialist tutors and visiting professionals. All workshops and master classes are mandatory. Through Tutorials students will be guided towards finding their own criteria for self assessment and finding their own individual challenges. The aim of the tutorials is to encourage the student to get the best out of themselves through discussions and critiques with their peers and through an awareness of self. While supportive overall, tutorials will have an element of critique and challenge. They should allow the student to step back and reflect on their own work.

Seminars will deal with stylistic approaches, principles of optics and photographic and video theory. Special attention will be given to the importance of relationships and interaction with other specialisations, like directors, editors, designers, sound and post production. Also, regular seminars and lectures will be conducted on Screen Art. Screen Art is crucial to broaden students' critical understanding of the art of cinema. This need is satisfied by providing systematic screenings, special events, seminars, discussions and analysis. These happen throughout the two year course.

Workshops and Practical Exercises are designed to teach most aspects of traditional and digital cinematography - cameras, lenses, grip equipment, originating materials (film stock/tape), light meters, location lighting, studio lighting, day for night, night for night, filming in moving vehicles and also film grammar, crew roles, studio protocol, laboratory procedures and special visual effects. The aim is also to develop responsibility and professionalism. This is supported and overseen by the teaching staff, who aim to challenge and nurture the student’s talent without undermining their independence.

Production Exercises provide a valuable experience in that they enable the student to work as part of a creative team. The cinematographer is able to utilise the skills and knowledge acquired whilst taking part in Workshops and Exercises.

Unlike other Schools, all production costs are met by the school. In addition you will be given a cash Production Budget. NFTS students are engaged in more productions as part of the curriculum than any of our competitors.

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This new diploma course is designed to thoroughly equip students with the skills required to foster a successful future career as a Film or Television 1st or 2nd AC. Read more
This new diploma course is designed to thoroughly equip students with the skills required to foster a successful future career as a Film or Television 1st or 2nd AC.

Participants will learn from practical hands-on workshops and through on location and in studio experience on a range of drama projects. This will ensure that participants leave the course with the practical experience – and at least six film credits - for continuing their professional career.

The 1st Assistant Camera (1st AC) and 2nd Assistant Camera (2nd AC) roles are amongst the most skilled jobs on a film crew. The 1st Assistant Camera (Focus Puller) is responsible for focusing and refocusing the camera lens as actors move within the frame of each shot, as well as running the camera crew. 2nd ACs (Clapper Loaders) are responsible for loading and unloading the film magazine or digital media and completing all camera sheets.

This course gives you the opportunity to work as a 1st AC in a safe environment and to gain the valuable credits required to move on in your career.

COURSE OVERVIEW

Both the 1st AC and the 2nd AC are critical to the success of any film or television drama production. Being part of the camera crew is exciting, varied and demanding, requiring many skills to be successful.

To do this role, you will need to:
-Be calm and level-headed
-Work well as part of a team
-Have organisational and time-management skills
-Be able to work to a deadline
-Pay close attention to accuracy and detail
-Be a good communicator
-Be adaptable to changing circumstances
-Have a positive attitude
-Cope well under pressure
-Have stamina for hard work

Recently the BFI identified Camera Crew and 1st ACs and 2nd ACs specifically, as a skills shortage area. More need to be trained, particularly ACs with experience of both film and digital. In addition, 2nd ACs need the opportunity to ‘step up’ and develop their 1st AC skills.

CURRICULUM

This course has been developed due to industry demand and combines practical experience on film shoots with NFTS student directors and cinematographers with practical hands-on workshops by working 1st and 2nd ACs.

The course consists of six months of focused production work and tuition, broken over a 12month period. The course is divided into three sections.

Section 1 (January/February)
In Section 1 you will be taught about the various cameras, lenses and other related equipment, learn about the core work of both the 1st AC and 2nd AC. There will be intensive workshops on ‘pulling focus’ manually, camera loading, completing camera sheets, marking up the clapper board and changing lenses. Students will work on two films shot on the Ari Alexa.

Section 2 (Late June/July/to mid August)
In Section 2 the focus is twofold, translating the skills learnt in Section 1 into a larger setting, whilst also learning new skills in areas such as remote ‘focus pulling’ and the 2nd ACs relationship with the DIT. Students will again work on two 'Graduation' films. These are large scale projects with crews often in excess of fifty people. In addition to working on these films students will also undertake a number of additional single day specialist workshops to flesh out their understanding of particular techniques or technologies.

Section 3 (September/October)
The final section of the course is focused on working on film. There will be a specific focus in this section on working with film stock and liaising with the lab re: processing. Section 3 will culminate in each student working on two NFTS films shot on Super 16 as both a 1st and 2nd AC.

In applying to this course you therefore need to be available to attend the School in January, February (Section 1), from mid June, July through to mid August (Section 2) and then September, October (Section 3). In special circumstances, the 3 modules can be completed over a 2-year period.

During the three teaching sections students are expected to be at the School five days per week. In periods between each teaching block students should pursue their own professional work to develop their experience.

NFTS BENEFITS

Course participants will have full access to the NFTS facilities including: Cinema Club, Screen Arts and NFTS Masterclasses.

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