summer

8 Summer Camp Packing Tips

Even if you packed weeks in advance, the morning before you head off to summer camp can be a stressful one as you check all your pockets and bags and wonder if there’s anything you forgot to bring. Maybe you won’t realize until a week into camp! By packing early and packing smart, you can do your best to avoid these stresses and focus on having the best time possible at your next camp. Here’s a few tips to help you pack for camp:

Check What the Camp Will Provide

Find out what will be provided for you at the camp by checking the camp’s website or the Packet you received after enrolling, or by calling your admissions counselors. That way you don’t have to burden yourself with redundant items. Packing light doesn’t just make your life easier; it helps you keep better track of everything you’re bringing.

Don’t Forget Shoes!

If you’re wearing a comfortable pair of shoes to travel on the day you leave for camp that are ready to fall apart, or are in a comfy pair of flip flops, you better remember to bring a better pair of shoes to survive the duration of your camp. Make sure they can survive some bad weather and will keep you comfortable—you’ll be on your feet most of the time because going to camp isn’t about sitting around playing video games all day!

Bring a Book

Bringing a book isn’t just a good idea for your trip to camp—it can a great way to unwind and relax in your downtime between camp activities. Even if you’ve brought your phone, a good old-fashioned book can do wonders. Taking your eyes off the screen and your mind out of social media can be exactly the break your brain needs at times.

Books on acting

Bring a Good Water Bottle

Staying hydrated in the heat or on a film set (which can get very hot very quickly under stage lights) is a must. New York Film Academy (NYFA) has water fountains scattered around campus, as do the parks you might find yourself in outside, so make sure you have a sturdy water bottle that can be filled at a moment’s notice.

Leave the Games At Home!

Whether it’s an iPad loaded with the best new gaming apps or a Nintendo Switch, there’s no reason to bring your favorite games to camp. Camp is about meeting new friends, learning new skills, and getting away from the trappings that surround you at home. You’ll be surrounded by fun, high-tech film equipment you can use to make your own movies, or if you’re attending NYFA’s Game Design camp, you can work on your very own video games! You may miss playing Fortnite with your buddies, but Tilted Towers will be waiting for you when you get home. You may even find the games more enjoyable after taking a much-needed break from them!

Make Sure You Have All the Gear You Need

Depending on which camp you attend at NYFA, you may need to bring certain items or types of equipment with you from home. Carefully check your camp website or check in with your admissions counselors to make sure you have exactly what you need, and don’t forget to bring everything the morning you head off for camp!

Bring the Right Bag

It’s not just important what you’re packing, but what you’re packing it in. Your bag should be large enough to fit everything with a little room to spare—just in case you need to add something last minute. It should be sturdy and able to hold everything you’re carrying, ideally with its own space for a water bottle so you can keep hydrated. Finally, you should check for any tears or holes—the last thing you need is something you remembered to pack falling out on your way to camp!

Make a List

Whether it’s a shot list or an annotated screenplay, lists are always a good practice. It’s also a great way to make sure nothing was left behind the day you leave for camp. For a week or two before you head out, start compiling a list of everything you’ll want to bring. When it comes time to pack, use this master list for a quick and painless packing session, and before you head out the door double check the list to make sure everything made it into your bags!

7 Activities to Beat the Heat This Summer

Attending camps at New York Film Academy (NYFA) will give you all sorts of new skills and experiences, no matter which program or location you choose. While you might be coming to make new friends with shared interests and learning a particular set of skills, you’ll still have time for extracurricular activities in the evenings or during your downtime.

Here’s just some of the activities you might find yourself doing at a NYFA Camp this summer:

Game Nights

Game Nights are a favorite for NYFA campers during weeknights, where you might find yourself trying new games or teaching your friends your personal favorites! The filmmaking industry can be competitive—but not nearly as much as a game of Monopoly!

Sightseeing

Depending on the location you choose for your NYFA camp, you might be seeing a brand new city for the first time. Organized sightseeing visits with your fellow campers and counselors will show you some of the coolest places these locales have to offer.

Sightseeing Hiking Tourist

Seeing New & Classic Movies

After a long day of working hands-on with some serious film equipment, a great way to boost your filmmaking skills in a different way is to watch the masters at work. By going on trips to local movie theaters to see the latest blockbuster, or watching a classic movie from before you were born, you’ll be able to enjoy yourself and pick up some ideas for your own projects.

Museums

Similarly, going to museums can be a great way to expand your knowledge and culture, inspiring your work in ways you may have never considered. Art and history come in many forms, and the wider your repertoire the stronger your own creativity will be no matter what your discipline.

Museum Art

Cool Places to Eat

Museums can be awe-inspiring, but they don’t always have the best cheeseburgers. Camp counselors will bring you to the coolest and most interesting places to eat around town. After all, what better way to learn a new city than by trying the local cuisine!

Beaches & Theme Parks

Most NYFA camps are held during the summer, so a trip to the beach is usually a great way to beat the heat, whether it’s enjoying the sea breeze or diving into the cool, refreshing waves. You can also expect trips to local theme parks where you can challenge your new friends at boardwalk games or see who’s up for the scariest rides.

Guest Speakers

One huge advantage to attending NYFA camps is having access to NYFA’s great guest speakers. Throughout the year, actors, directors, writers, producers, animators, photographers, and other luminaries from every discipline will come and speak to NYFA students. If they happen to be speaking during your stay at NYFA, there’s a good chance you’ll be able to learn directly from the greats!

Adam Driver

9 Movies Perfect for the Summer

Some movies just have a certain feel to them, and summer movies are no exception. Summer movies can evoke the feeling we had when the school year would end, or bring to mind summer imagery like beaches, sunshine, and fireworks.

The best part of summer movies is that you can watch them year-round, whether it’s in comfy air conditioning in the middle of July, or reminding you of warmer times during an ice cold February blizzard. Here’s some summer movies that will always bring the sunshine:

Jaws

The 1975 classic is the definitive summer movie, not only taking place on (and scaring people away from) the beach, but it was also the first summer blockbuster, making popcorn movies as much of a summer staple as ice cold lemonade. The shark-starring thriller also launched director Steven Spielberg and composer John Williams into the stratosphere.

Grease

One of the most famous summer love stories ever takes place before the musical film even starts, but watching the sparks fly all over again between Sandy (Olivia Newton-John) and Danny (John Travolta) makes this film an all-time classic.

National Lampoon’s Vacation

The ultimate road trip movie, Vacation was comic actor Chevy Chase in peak form as the head of the Griswold family on a doomed trip to theme park Walley World. The film, directed by Caddyshack director and Ghostbusters writer and star Harold Ramis, spawned three sequels starring Chase, as well as a fourth sequel that served double duty as a remake.

Lilo & Stitch

Academy Award nominee for Best Feature in 2003, the Disney film showcases the friendship between an adorable little girl and an even cuter alien creature. Even though the movie is animated, its Hawaiian setting will give you summer vibes while giving you all of the feels.

The Parent Trap

Both the 1961 and 1998 versions of the Disney family comedy are must-watches. Stars Hayley Mills in the original and Lindsay Lohan in the remake are perfectly cast in dual roles as identical twin sisters little ready to do whatever it takes to bring their divorced parents back together, even if it means pretending to be one another.

Dirty Dancing

The 1987 film tells the story of Frances (Jennifer Grey), a teenage girl who falls in love with her dance instructor Johnny Castle (Patrick Swayze) at a summer resort in the Poconos. The film spawned timeless quotes, heated dance moves, and iconic track “(I’ve Had) The Time of my Life,” which won the Golden Globe, Oscar, and Grammy for Original song. Nobody puts this movie in a corner.

Mr. Bean’s Holiday

Rowan Atkinson reprises his iconic role as Mr. Bean in a family-friendly farce that also showcases the stunning vistas of France. Along the way, Bean finds true love and helps a young boy reunite with his father.

Little Miss Sunshine

If you’re looking for a little subdued dramedy in your summer films, Little Miss Sunshine is probably for you. The road trip indie stars Toni Collette, Steve Carell, Greg Kinnear, Abigail Breslin, Paul Dano, and Alan Arkin (who won an Oscar for his role), and tells the story of an adorable little girl who wants nothing more than to win a pageant, and her miserable family stuck along for the ride.

The Great Outdoors

Another 80s vacation classic, The Great Outdoors shows off comedic greats John Candy and Dan Aykroyd as bickering, competitive in-laws sharing a summer cabin by the lake. Full of slapstick humor and barenaked bears, The Great Outdoors was written by John Hughes at the height of his Hollywood powers.

First Day of Summer: 5 Awesome Movies To Watch Before Starting Your Summer At NYFA

Are you starting a course at NYFA this summer and wondering how best to use your time before you come for class? Here’s a tip — celebrate the summer doing what you love: watching films!

Screenshot 2017-06-21 13.15.22

There’s no happier way to spend a summer afternoon than by watching an awesome film with popcorn and a cold drink. Here are some fun movies you might want to check out to beat the heat.

1. “The Sisterhood of Traveling Pants” (2005)

At first this may sound like the average teen movie: four girls who are going to be separated for the first time over the summer all promise to stay in touch with each other. While shopping, they come across a pair of jeans that fits each of them perfectly, and they decide to share the pants among their group over the course of their summer holidays.

Yet the traveling pants serve another purpose: to teach the girls important lessons and infuse their lives with magic, miracles and the things that matter. This is a film about love, heartbreak, identity and facing adulthood that you won’t forget too soon.

2. “I Know What You Did Last Summer” (1997)

If romantic comedies or drama aren’t up your alley, and you like the taste of thrill, this horror/mystery flick may be what you need.

Once again, we have a group of four teenagers. This time, they’re covering up a car accident. A year later, they are stalked by a murderer. Drawing from the urban legend of The Hook, this film’s got quite a cult following, with two sequels and a great soundtrack of rock songs to chill out to.

3. “Vicky Cristina Barcelona” (2008)

Of course, you can’t go wrong with a Woody Allen comedy flick. Here, two American women are on a trip to Barcelona, where they encounter an alluring artist who’s into both of them … as well as his ex-wife.

Complete with a beach holiday in beautiful Spain, polyamory and stellar acting, this film has a dreamy and intoxicating quality that’s perfect to watch in summer.

4. “Little Miss Sunshine” (2006)

If you like road trips, this film is a safe bet. Meet the dysfunctional Hoover family, who are convinced that the youngest member, Olive, needs to win a beauty pageant. To that end, they embark on a cross-country journey in a VW bus.

Hilarious and heartbreaking, this gem of a film was nominated for four Academy Awards and won two, including the prize for Best Original Screenplay.

5. “500 Days of Summer” (2009)

Not a summer film per se, but it deftly examines a lot of themes connected to our idea of an ‘endless summer’: true love, a perfect relationship, this period of joy we’re convinced shall never end, intoxication, childhood daydreams and so on. The film reverses the typical ‘boy meets girl and falls in love’ trope where the boy is hopelessly in love and the girl isn’t and is told in non-linear flashbacks.  This is a film about wanting something you can never have and being okay to live without it. Summers always end, but we need to keep on living and this movie will show you how.  

What’s your idea of a perfect summer? Are there any other films you need we should add to the line-up? Let us know in the comments below! Spend the summer studying visual and performing arts with NYFA.