Screen and Broadcast Workshops 2011

Tuesday 7th & Wednesday 8th June

Edit Workshop With Mark Jenkins

Mark is a creative, award winning film editor involved in cinema for over 25 years, with 15 years film editing experience in drama and documentary, six BAFTA Scotland awards, a further four nominations and numerous international film festival awards.  He is a film editor, filmmaker and film educator living in Stromness, Orkney, with 15 years experience of film editing in drama and documentary and 14 years experience in film and editing education.   Since moving to Orkney Mark has also set up a film library, a free lending resource. 

This workshop was open to aspiring editors who were already fully proficient in the technical skills needed to operate the editing software, Final Cut Pro.  The workshop was an opportunity to editorially look at how to tell the story and learn what a fundamental difference the edit can make to your finished film.   Each aspiring editor got a set of rushes from films that Mark has worked on and therefore have already been cut by him for broadcast.  The challenge was to cut together this story/sequence (max 5 minutes) and achieve the same level of engagement with the story as Mark did with the original.

Carlochmuir TV Drama Writers' Workshop

Mick Martin has written for film, theatre, TV and radio. His stage commissions include The Life & Times of Young Bob Scallion, A Weekend In England, Happy Birthday Hayley  & Once Upon A Time in Wigan, which after initial production at West Yorkshire Playhouse in 2003 undertook two sell-out national tours. He was formerly writer in residence with Major Road Theatre Co and has written for West Yorkshire Playhouse, Exeter Nortcott, Mind The Gap, Pilot, Red Ladder and many others.

For television he has written episodes of Dream Team, Ballykissangel and Crossroads. He has also written for radio, most recently contributing to BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour series, Writing The Century.  He has worked as guest director and part time lecturer at universities and colleges across the country.

Marcus White’s Directing credits include Howard’s Way, Emmerdale, Casualty, The Bill, Taggart, Peak Practice, Urban Gothic, Monarch of the Glen, Dream Team, Mile High and Jeopardy.  He has also received numberous awards and nominations from Bafta and RTS (Royal Television Society). He is an avid educator and has taught TV and Film Technique at The London Actors’ Centre, RSAMD and RADA in association with the BBC. He has also sat on the TV Advisory Panel at the National Film and Televsion School as well as working with Bafta Events promoting new talent in the industry.  Marcus is from Kingussie, an influencing factor in the setting up of his company Can-U-See.

Writer, Mick Martin and Director, Marcus White, from Can-U-See TV, worked with writers in the Highlands and Islands for 18 months developing a long running serial drama for television. The drama is set in the heady building and development world in the Highlands – bringing, passion and intrigue to the north.   

This was a two day workshop and attendance was by invitation only.

Wednesday 8th June

goNORTH Festival Fringe:  From Script To Screen

This full afternoon workshop went through each of the major production stages in producing drama for television as a live process.  Working with our media partners we brought a breadth of professional talent to The Ironworks, never before seen at the goNORTH Fringe, to deliver our very own written, shot and edited scene using BBC Scotland’s River City as the backdrop. There was also an opportunity for one of our participants to be the star of the show and act alongside our professionals.

The workshop covered the following areas:

Script Writing – working with the MA in TV Fiction Writing at Glasgow Caledonian University, Ann Marie di Mambro of River City fame was the lead writer on the day bringing the denouement of this scene together with her usual flare and excitement.  This was an interactive session and participation was encouraged.

Front of Camera – Libby McArthur is a household name with her portrayal of Gina in River City.  She imparted some of her acting tips to help our hopefuls get ahead.  We also created the opportunity for participants to act alongside Libby and some of the rest of the cast of River City in our very own episode of River City.

Directing – this is where the creative vision behind any good drama is realised, in the directing – visually portraying what the writer conveyed in his words. Our participants learnt about the thought process, blocking, coverage on a shot, retakes and outtakes, and all the tricks a good director employs when under pressure in the soap world.

Editing – this is where at all comes together and where we find out if we’ve shot enough footage.  The creative skill employed by an editor is often undervalued and here we learnt about how to skilfully cut together even the most lean of rushes.

We also covered Producing, what the Director of Photography does and looking at Special Physical Effects – that’s explosions, models, snow and rain and special props to you and I.

Thursday 9th & Friday 10th June at Eden Court

Screening Programme

For the first time were proud to present a full programme of short films almost exclusively made in Highlands and Islands by Highlands and Islands filmmakers.  Working with our content partners we presented a programme of the best of the FilmG short film competition on the big screen from all of its three years.  Some of the filmmakers attended to do Q&As at the end of these programmes.  

We also featured a selection of Bridging the Gap short documentaries made in collaboration with the Scottish Documentary Institute and some of the UK Film Council’s Digital Shorts as well as showcasing some of the most successful filmmakers in the Highlands and Islands in these schemes.  We are also featuring curated programmes from Bafta in Scotland, Glasgow Film Festival and the Sheffield International Doc Fest, running at the same time as goNORTH this year, presenting us with some exciting new ways of collaborative screening. See the full screening programme here.

Thursday 9th June

BBC Scotland Radio Drama Writing Workshop

BBC Scotland Radio Drama has established a strong track record producing a wide range of drama for Radio 4, Radio 3, Radio Scotland and Radio 7. Working with writers in Scotland and beyond, the department's output is both original and international. Over the past ten years the department has been involved in developing new writing for radio, some of which has led to first radio commissions for a new generation of writing talent from Scotland including, Gregory Burke, Louise Ironside, Linda Cracknell, Louise Welsh, Simon Little, Maggie Graham, Andy Macdonald, Melanie Garrett, Lorraine McCann, Laura Marney, Zoe Strachan, Iain F. MacLeod, Nick Underwood, Merryn Glover, Alistair Rutherford, Hannah McGill, Clara Glynn and Nick Thorpe.

We were proud to work with BBC Scotland Radio Drama in presenting the half day workshop at goNORTH.  It was aimed at emerging and established professional writers who were already working in other media:  poets, prose writers and dramatists as well as screenwriters. Kirsteen Cameron, Producer in the Radio Drama department lead this intensive half day along with stalwart and very talented radio and screen writer Chris Dolan.  This was a unique opportunity to get in at base level with the professionals in this industry who not only develop talent for the industry but have the commissioning remit too. This workshop was part of a series of planned events in collaboration with the BBC Scotland Radio Drama department, with a view to developing our own Highlands and Islands voice for the airwaves.

VIsual Impact Broadcast Equipment Showcase

Visual Impact are Europe’s leading supplier of broadcast equipment to the production community, employing 130 people who are based out of 20 offices in 10 countries covering UK, Europe and South Africa. Clients include BBC, Granada TV, ITV, Sky, RTE, Hat Trick Productions, Carnival Films, Red Productions, Vertigo Films, Open Mike, Hotcam Ltd and BHP. Visual Impact are a BBC approved supplier and both sales and service departments are accredited by all the major manufactures including Sony, Panasonic, Canon, Fujinon, Vinten and Sachtler.

They offer equipment sales and rental to NLE consultancy and hire, standards conversion and spare parts supply to duplication and studio hire.  Recent credits include:  District 9, The Firm, Lark Rise to Candleford, Paradox, Torchwood, Hotel Babylon, The F Word, Hell’s Kitchen, X Factor, Oceans, Blue Planet, Lost Land of the Jaguar, Football World Cup, Winter and Summer Olympics.

Visual Impact brought a selection of their top-of-the-range camera and grip equipment, including jibs, track and dolly, for our Highlands and Islands practitioners to get some hands-on experience and to dispel the myths about what a best boy really is.

Special Physical Effects Showcase

Artem Ltd has over 20 years industry experience in designing and producing physical special effects including models, miniatures, prosthetics, sculpture, animatronics, atmospherics, special props and pyrotechnics for film, television, commercials, museums and live events. With extensive workshop premises in West London and Glasgow, Artem is ideally positioned to cover location and studio shoots across the UK.  Recent film credits include: Aliens, Prometheus, X-men, First Class, Captain America, Outpost, Black Sun, Unknown, Ironclad and The Eagle. 

Using the interior and exterior space at The Ironworks, this showcase impressed the most industry-savvy. We saw some of the end results of their work, from films, television, commercials and music collaborations, with an outside exhibition of many different effects commonly used in these genres. It was explosive to say the least!

Radio Packaging Workshop With Dabster Productions

Dabster Productions was established in January 2006 as an independent radio production company. From the beginning MD Richard Melvin has been involved in innovative and original programme making for a wide range of clients including Radio 5Live, BBC Radio Scotland and The Guardian. Their most recent success have been Amnesty's Secret Podcast, Live At the Udderbelly, Live at The Stand Comedy Club Podcast – obtaining in excess of a million downloads, Live at the Guilded Balloon Show and an Insider’s Perspective on Amy Macdonald for BBC Radio Scotland.

Richard and his team built on the succces of our 2010 podcasting workshop in developing the technical and editorial skills to produce the goNORTH radio broadcasts. Participants were introduced to all the main elements of putting together radio content ready for broadcast, from researching, scripting and recording audio to editing and packaging it for delivery,  This was a hands on, learn on the ground experience for our trainees.

Friday 10th June

From Mull To The Masai Mara:  An Insider's View On Wildlife Filmmaking

Nigel Pope is one of the UK’s leading Natural History Producers and has created a wide range of popular and successful brands ranging from Springwatch to Big Cat Diary. In 2011 he worked on a landmark series on the Natural History of the West Coast for BBC Scotland. In this session, Nigel explored the fascinating world of Natural History filmmaking and discussed how field-work, specialist cameras, work-flow technology and a radical approach to story-telling can create ‘must-see’ television about the Natural World.

The session included clips from Big Cat Diary, Secret Life of Elephants and new rushes from the recently commissioned West Coast project.

MA in TV Fiction Writing at Glasgow Caledonian University with Shed Productions

Television is where the vast majority of practising screenwriters work and where there is an abundance of writing slots and creative opportunities. This award has been developed in close collaboration with the television Industry and wholly with its screenwriting needs in mind.  Students are taught by both academic staff and top TV scriptwriting practitioners. This programme forges an exciting new partnership between industry and education to produce the next generation of market-ready scriptwriters. Crucially, graduates will be capable of script development within the constraints and opportunities presented by a competitive global market for television drama.

Ann Marie di Mambro and Chris Dolan along with other literati from the TV drama world, delivered hands-on writing training and whetted appetites for a career in the drama writing world. Students from the Highlands and Islands who are currently on the course were in attendance to answer questions about their experience.

Scotland Directs

Scotland Directs was a year-long programme of events celebrating directing talent in Scotland. The initiative was being spearheaded by BBC Scotland’s Television Drama department and Amy Roberts, Script Editor, attended goNORTH to introduce us to some of the cream of Directing Talent in the UK and beyond. We found out what it takes to be a director, learnt through the experience of honoured director-guests.

Launched earlier in 2011, Scotland Directs featured a range of events including a talent search, masterclasses and workshops aimed at new directing talent in Scotland and BBC Scotland's Film Club, dedicated to screening the work of new filmmakers. BBC Scotland teamed up with a raft of industry professionals to bring their expertise to aspiring directors. This was the networking, fact-finding mission to beat them all for anyone interested in directing for television.

Women In Film And Television Industry Interview with Karen Dunbar

Women in Film & Television is the premier membership organisation for women working in creative media in the UK, and part of an international network of over 10,000 women worldwide. Members come from a broad range of professions spanning the entire creative media industry. WFTV were delighted to again host an event at goNORTH and in 2011 they developed the WFTV Events in Scotland. We talked to well-known comedienne, Karen Dunbar iin an informative and insightful session looking at her career and discussing the promoting and nurturing women’s interests within the creative industries.