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  • Underwater Cinematography Classes

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    The third semester MFA Cinematography students at New York Film Academy’s Los Angeles campus have been busy! Following their two weeks shooting on the Universal Soundstage, the cinematographers jumped right into the Underwater Workshop, learning tricks and techniques for capturing great underwater shots.

    The two-day workshop was taught by instructor Tom Boyd, one of Hollywood’s top underwater camera operators with credits including Little Miss Sunshine, Heroes, and Crimson Tide. Students began with a visit to Hydroflex, the industry leaders in underwater camera support, where they learned the specifics of how to use different underwater housings to keep the camera protected. They talked about the challenges of working below the surface and the optical effect that water has on focus, movement and composition. The students finished the day by learning about the proper safety protocols and prepping the equipment.

    After getting their hands on the gear during the first day, the students were ready for day two: the underwater shoot. The students worked in the pool at Aqua Adventures, shooting takes with a professional stunt diver. They photographed a scene that starts on the deck, but then takes the camera underwater to follow the actress as she falls off the edge and into the pool. With Tom’s guidance, the students learned how to approach this challenging scenario and nail the shot.

    The Underwater Workshop is a truly unique course offered in the MFA Cinematography program at NYFA in Los Angeles. Students have the opportunity to learn about creating images in a different environment while grabbing some great footage for their reels.

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    August 27, 2014 • Cinematography • Views: 10522

  • 15 Signs You Went to New York Film Academy

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    NYFA Universal Studios

    Whether you studied at the original campus in Union Square, SoHo, the new Battery Park building, Universal Studios, or one of the many locations around the world, if you attended New York Film Academy, you’ve probably developed some of these traits.

    1. NYFA Union SquareYou tell your friend to move slightly to the left or right while conversing with them.
    2. You’ve had your hands on the Canon 5D and the RED.
    3. You immediately know where someone is from based on his or her accent.
    4. Even if you hate acting, you’ve acted in at least a scene or two.
    5. You’ve discovered Hershey’s syrup can be used to film a bloody scene.
    6. You paint your living room wall blue or green so you’re able to film a ‘green screen‘ scene in your home.
    7. At the theater, you are too busy looking for mistakes instead of enjoying the movie.
    8. All of your school friends are actors, performers or filmmakers scattered all over the world.
    9. You’ve shot a scene using the fog machine.
    10. fog machineYou check to make sure you “hit your mark” at random places like the grocery check out, ATM or even McDonald’s.
    11. You have a complete NYFA apparel collection for all seasons: T-shirts, hoodie, track jacket…even a NYFA messenger bag to carry them in.
    12. You’ve met a famous guest speaker.
    13. You’ve said ‘FADE OUT’ at the end of a regular conversation.
    14. You’ve yelled “Cut” when a friend’s story goes on too long.
    15. You want to go back!

    Josh Brolin

    There may be countless other signs of a true NYFA student. We’d love to hear some of yours in the comments below!

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  • Cell Phone Photography Competition

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    cell photoDo you have an impressive photo or two on your smartphone that you want to show off to the world? Take a look at the Texas Photographic Society’s Cell Phone III competition where you can win cash prizes for your photos. The contest is open to all levels of photographers from amateurs to professionals. If you’re a New York Film Academy Photography student, this could be a quick and fun way to earn a few dollars. The awards are:

    • First Place: $250
    • Second Place: $150
    • Third Place: $100
    • Up to three Honorable Mentions may be awarded

    There is an entry fee of $25 for up to 8 images. In order to be considered, you must submit your photos by June 1, 2014.

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    May 12, 2014 • Contests, Photography, Student & Alumni Spotlights • Views: 4247

  • ‘Broken City’ Director of Photography Chats at NYFA Union Square

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    benseresin

    Last week, the New York Film Academy in Union Square hosted an exclusive Guest Speaker event with Cinematographer, Ben Seresin. Ben has been a member of the British Society of Cinematographers (BSC) since 2010, and the American Society of Cinematographers (ASC) since 2011. He has worked on the films Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, World War Z, Pain & Gain, and more. With over twenty years in the business, Ben has worked with many of Hollywood’s top directors. Recently, blockbuster director, Michael Bay, has chosen to work with Ben on Transformers and Pain & Gain.

    On Wednesday, NYFA screened Ben’s film, Broken City, an action thriller starring Mark Wahlberg and Russell Crowe. While the movie sounds like a big Hollywood film, Ben says he had to work on a bit of a low budget. He admitted having to film major scenes in the course of a day. His goal was to shoot the noir in a contemporary way and to make New York City feel more like a home, as opposed to the glorified movie set it is so often portrayed as. Ben also noted that Russell Crowe was the most technical actor he’s ever worked with. “He had a great sense of the camera.”

    benseresin2

    One of the topics of the conversation between Ben and moderator John Loughlin was overshooting a scene, or allowing oneself to get wrapped up in the mechanics of filmmaking while on set. “Having a safe option can potentially be damaging,” said Seresin. “Compromises can be made if you over cover a scene. It can then be edited in many ways.” Ben added, “There’s a mechanical element that can distract you from film making. It’s dangerous if you get caught up in the mechanics. You lose sight of what’s really important.”

    His advice in avoiding this potentially damaging aspect of film making, “Try to stay detached. Be relaxed. Do not be stressed and trust your eyes.”

    Ben hopes to diversify his upcoming projects as he loves exploring all genres of cinema. We look forward to seeing more great work from Ben!

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    August 5, 2013 • Cinematography, Guest Speakers • Views: 6857

  • Showing The World Your Truth

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    Fito Pardo graduated from New York Film Academy in the late 90’s. Since then, he has gone on to direct short films and music videos, has worked as cinematographer on over 30 projects, and has found success as a photographer for publications worldwide, including Marie Claire, Vogue Japan, and National Geographic.

    Though he had loved films since his youth, Fito got little support when he expressed an interest in learning filmmaking. At his father’s insistence, he postponed his dreams of studying filmmaking. “I studied Administration for probably 6 months in one of the best universities in Mexico, and after the first 2 months I just knew it wasn’t for me,” he says. Eventually Fito started writing to film schools for information. After winning a partial scholarship to New York Film Academy, Fito was on his way to Manhattan. “I studied in NYFA between 1995 and 1997,” he says.

    “My experience was amazing. I had no idea how to use a film camera, so the workshops helped me understand what I was getting myself into…. At NYFA I learned how to write a script, how to be a cinematographer, how to be a producer, and how to understand all aspects of film. After NYFA, I worked with some Mexican production companies, opened my own production company called La Alcachofa Films, and started directing some interesting videos in Mexico. I directed some music videos… and did a couple of commercials for BBDO, Lowe & Partners, and some other agencies.”

    Fito shot his first feature film, El Fuego Inolvidable, last year. The controversial project explores the complicated state of politics in Mexico. The film has played at festivals and college campuses, with great responses from audiences. They are currently working on a distribution deal.

    “I am still in pursuit of more goals,” says Fito. “When I was working for National Geographic, I knew I accomplished one of my goals, but knew that it wasn’t it. My first feature film got the award of Best Mexican Film at the 2011 Oaxaca Film Festival, but I want more. Since I was kid, I always wanted to move people…. I have a condition. I am a stutterer, and I have been watching the world with different eyes…. All my life I have been limited in expressing my mind. Sometimes people don’t get it and just can’t wait for me to talk, so they go away. I think I show the way I see the world through my eyes, without my mouth. I believe this is what moves me: To show the world what my mind sees.”

    To learn more about our filmmaking program, click here.

     

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