A Newbie’s Experience at the New York Film Academy

A Newbie's Experience at the New York Film Academy

Kyla Mitchell, Staff Writer

After recently revealing my interest in film making and screenwriting, it was time for me to go ‘live the dream’. Or at the very least, dip my toe in the water at the New York Film Academy’s Two-Day Holiday Film Making Camp for Teens. On Friday, December 27th I arrived to find approximately 45 plus students in the theater with their proud parents. Although nervous, I was excited about the opportunity to improve and learn new writing, directing, producing and editing skills.

Quickly after the introductory session, we were split in two sections: section A and section B. I was excited to be placed into section B with an instructor full of experience and eager to share with his class of 16 students. We said goodbye to our parents and made our way to the fifth-floor classroom. From there we eagerly and quickly learned about framing, lighting, and how to utilize the camera we would be using for the next few hours. This being my first time ever in this environment, and a novice filmmaker and screenwriter, I found it interesting and easy to understand the content. Now that we knew how to use a camera, we were split again into an even smaller group to shoot and edit our short, silent film. Each crew was given a prompt for the basis and creation of our film. My crew’s prompt was “no two people are the same.” It was now time to shoot. Each of us were able to act in and direct our film while being set free in the streets of New York City searching for interesting content. At 5 pm, day one was complete and we were finished shooting.

I arrived at 10 am the following day and I couldn’t wait to make the finishing product. We were instructed to make two versions of the same film in order to see two different interpretations and perspectives. So, two of us edited one version and the other two edited another. At the end of the day students hosted family and friends at an actual screening in the same theater we were just sitting in the day before. Although this camp was only two days, I was inspired to further explore my passion in film making and I encourage others to also ‘dip their toe in the water’.