Online Filmmaking Classes for Teens

Hands-On Film Training at NYFA

Filmmaking is a craft that requires a creative eye, strong narrative storytelling skills, and a solid understanding of the creative and technical process. In NYFA’s online filmmaking classes, teens aged 14-17 get a comprehensive overview of how to create their own short films under the live supervision and direction of experienced industry professionals. During these innovative classes, students learn the essential techniques required to create memorable short films, building their confidence in visual storytelling and content creation. While the classes are designed to be standalone programs that may be taken individually, many students choose to take all three and gain a full spectrum of skills. Our online filmmaking classes are currently offered during the academic year as weekend sessions.

Module #1: The Subtext Film Class

In filmmaking, subtext is a critical technique for building suspense and developing characters. During this immersive online class, students learn to focus on the background and supporting visuals of the “mise-en-scene” or “telling the story.” Students choose a few emotions or an idea or a concept and are challenged to visualize the idea without using human beings in the frame. This enables the new film director to explore the myriad ways one can manifest subtext in the story being told without words, and an important and fundamental aspect of visual literacy for film.

Module #2: The POV (Point of View) Film Class

To be a compelling filmmaker and director, students must learn to communicate through strong visuals and dialogue, communicating the thoughts and feelings of their characters. In this hands-on, virtual class, students create a subjective film that demonstrates to us, the audience, how they are feeling and/or what they are thinking. Students can choose a specific character and situation, and then visualize that character’s point of view using a point of view shot. The story must be shot in a way that allows the audience to understand who the character is, how the character is feeling and what the character is doing – all the points of view shot.

If the students do not have anyone to act for them, they can shoot a film that implies an unseen presence – a ghost, their pet dog, a fly buzzing around the room – but still tell a story. Students can also be creative with inanimate figures such as Legos, stuffed animals or dolls.

Module #3: The Writing Challenge Class

Every aspiring filmmaker has a selection of their favorite films and characters. In this live class, students put their inspiration to use, taking their favorite character from a movie and continuing that character’s story – what happens next (the sequel) OR what happened before we met the character.

Alternatively, students may create their own character, develop the character’s traits, what the character likes, how the character behaves, etc., and develop a basic outline of the character’s story. This week and project are devoted to the important skills of character and story development that are of tremendous value to all writers and directors.

Program Details

Our online filmmaking classes are hands-on, filmmaker experiences designed to provide teens with the opportunity to explore storytelling through the art of film. The classes are available as Saturday sessions. Saturday classes run for four consecutive Saturdays. Students may enroll in all three classes or select and complete the individual classes. Students are not required to complete one class to attend the next. 


Read More


Read More