12-Week Evening Filmmaking Workshop

Film Workshop at NYFA’s Film School

The 12-Week Evening Filmmaking Workshop is ideal for individuals who want to learn directing, visual storytelling, lighting, and sound in a flexible evening course format. Designed for students with little-to-no filmmaking experience, this intensive workshop is held in the evenings and is suited for working professionals and those who have other commitments during weekdays.

Since the workshop is extremely hands-on, students will build the confidence to lead as directors by creating short films in only a few weeks. Students should expect an immersive experience where they are treated as aspiring filmmakers, as they will dedicate most of their free time to developing and refining their creative and technical skills. Through interactions with classmates and working collaboratively on class projects, students can build horizontal networks for future potential collaborations.

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Workshop DescriptionWorkshop Name: 12-Week Evening Filmmaking Program

At NYFA, students learn the four primary elements of filmmaking: writing, directing, cinematography, and editing. Following a lecture-style approach, students attend classes in-person 3-5 days a week for the first 5-6 weeks (may vary). After lectures, students participate in classroom exercises to execute and practice what they learn.

Students write, produce, direct, and edit three original short film projects during the workshop, using cameras, lighting packages, digital editing software, and sound recording equipment (provided by NYFA) to create compelling short films. Student group members rotate roles for each group project, ensuring everyone gains experience in all important functional roles of a film crew, including the Director of Photography, Assistant Camera, Gaffer, Director, and Assistant Director.

As this is a rigorous program students should expect to commit 3-5 evenings a week for lectures, as well as weekends for filming. There will be additional time needed outside of class and during weekends to work on projects. At the end of the course, students screen their final films, which are open to be viewed by cast, crew, family, and friends.

As a benefit of the program, students may meet with instructors for one-on-one consultations to receive critiques and feedback. Students have full access to the NYFA library, online streaming services, screenings, editing labs, prop room, and discounted pricing for Backstage, AVID Media Composer, and Final Draft. 

NYFA offers the possibility to learn filmmaking from anywhere through various online filmmaking workshops.

To learn more, see NYFA’s Course Catalog or request more information.

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Class Details

This film course is the core of the 12-Week Evening Filmmaking Workshop. Students are introduced to the language and practice of filmmaking. Students learn the concepts to help achieve maximum psychological impact by studying the director’s decisions in camera placement, blocking, staging, and visual image design. Students are challenged to think comprehensively about their film projects in terms of the economic realities of low budget student production. By the end of this course, students will have prepared, planned, written, directed, edited, and screened three short films.

Hands-On Camera
In this film course, students undergo intensive training in the use of high-definition digital camera, and their accessories. Students learn the basic fundamentals of using a camera for videocapture utilizing the latest in digital technology. This course provides the student with enough knowledge to deal with basic production camera issues and make creative choices that best represent the story.

Hands-On Lighting
Through hands-on workshop and video tests, students learn fundamental lighting techniques. This course presents students with various lighting types including key, fill, backlight, kicker, and diffusion. As students progress through the course, they learn how to support the mood of the story with lighting choices and experiment with expressive lighting styles.

This film course presents students with multiple aesthetic approaches to editing video. Students learn how to apply concepts such as temporal continuity and spatial continuity, as well as less traditional discontinuous editing techniques, to their work. The course also discusses the psychological and emotional effects of editing on the overall story. Additionally, students learn to operate digital editing software, which they use to edit their own films. Classes are supplemented with individual consultations at the computer.

This film course introduces the core concepts and language for visual storytelling. The intersection of story structure, theme, character, tension, and conflict is examined through detailed scene analysis and in-class exercises. In-class discussion provides students with constructive analysis and support. Students are encouraged to tell their stories visually, rather than relying on dialogue.

Production Workshop
In Production Workshop, students are split into shooting crews of 3-4 people to work on exercises in the field. Upon completion of each exercise, the instructor screens and reviews the footage and discusses any outstanding production issues that the students may have had. These workshops are designed to facilitate the students’ individual projects.

Screening Films
In this film course, students screen their completed film assignments in class for instructor and classmate feedback. Constructive criticism is based on the student’s application of technical and aesthetic principles learned during in-class hours, and how well those techniques function to achieve the student’s goals.

Sound Design
This is a comprehensive film course that details the process of sound design by providing concepts, technical information, and hands-on demonstration. Students are instructed how to build a soundtrack for their final films.

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The 12-Week Evening Filmmaking Workshop is a part-time workshop typically held in the evenings on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays from:

  • New York campus: 7:00 PM to 9:30 PM EST
  • Los Angeles campus: 7:40 PM to 10:20 PM PST
  • Miami campus: 7:00 PM to 9:30 PM EST

Depending on the program, students are expected to join Saturday production classes for hands-on camera exercises and maintain availability to film on weekends throughout the duration of the course. To learn more, request information.


This course requires the following software and equipment:

  • External hard drive (generally costs $30-$200)
  • An SD Card

Film School

Manuel Garcia-Rulfo  

Manuel Garcia-Rulfo


Lucy Luna  

Lucy Luna

Screenwriter | Director

Tracy Oliver  

Tracy Oliver




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Please note: Equipment, curriculum, and projects are subject to change and may vary depending on location. Students should consult the most recently published campus catalog for the most up-to-date curriculum.