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The Many Faces Of Learning Film
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Like all careers you want to have some sort of training when you get into film making. It’s an art like drawing and painting and many people get training in that. It’s also very technical and technical schools are in abundance in this country. But film is one of those things that you can learn from a lot of different sources. From practice, going to college, working on films, and studying books. Each method has its pros and cons.

Making movies is one of the best ways to learn to make movies, everyone always says “practice makes perfect” and that’s the idea behind this. You make a Movie; learn what worked and what didn’t. Then you make another one, and learn from that. The process continues like that. All film makers use this method but rarely as the only way to learn. It’s great because you can learn at your own pace and make your own movies and make your own mistakes. It’s fun and liberating to do this. But every movie you make costs money and without some guidance you can keep making the same mistakes without knowing what the problem is.

Film schools are everywhere, especially in the Los Angeles area there are tons of film schools and every other college has a film program. That makes it very easy to get in to film school. This has a really good side to it but also a big downside. The plus side to it is the contacts you make, usually the professors are industry professionals and that is an invaluable asset. Also the students will be growing in their careers together so they can form lifelong relationships more easily than those that don’t go. The downside is the cost, film schools are generally expensive 20,000 or more per year of study. That adds up to a lot. One more thing is you get out of the school as much as you put in to it. If you try to make the most of it you’ll get a lot out of it. It's simple as that.

The most invaluable training you can get in film is getting on set and working on films. This is different than making your own film because instead of being in charge and blindly moving ahead you are a follower. You get to see what people are doing on their own projects and learn from their mistakes instead of your own. And if you play your cards right and work hard they’ll invite you back on other projects. So in addition to getting hands on training you also get to network and build working relationships.

Everyone in the film industry owns a lot of books on the subject because they are incredibly useful. In books you can find training in many different subjects that you generally find in classroom environments. If you study them properly you can learn a large portion of what you would learn in a classroom for a small fraction of the cost. The tradeoff here is that you don’t get a degree, you don’t get to meet people and you don’t get any practical experience but it’s a good way to get a start on your studies.

So you see there are so many different ways to study film, each with its own benefits. It’s the combination of the four that create the ideal training ground for film making. If you miss out on any of the methods you soon find that you’re lacking in your training. And in such a competitive industry you need to do anything you can to get a leg up on the competition. Thank you for reading and good luck!

Street Talk

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