Filmmaking

Students examine current trends in the industry and explore their personal creative process as they learn film production from concept to product. In a very hands-on approach, turn your concept into a screenplay and your screenplay into a film.

Lights!…Camera!…Action!

TAP Camp offered a hands on approach to film, as opposed to just analyzing movies and having a more formal classroom approach. I have definitely pushed my comfort zone from only working with genres I was very familiar with to working with genres and artistic styles I wouldn’t have expected.

-Sarah Skees, Film Major, 17, 2 yrs at TAP Camp, Female

 

Filmmaking at TAP is the most immersive and complete summer program of its kind in the state of Texas. In just a few short weeks our students take a simple idea of their own choosing and develop it into a completed film.

Our classes begin early in the morning and run well into the evening covering all the stages of the creative process. The students receive guidance and critique from the faculty at every moment of the day. All students are required to collaborate with their peers in a multitude of roles as it is impossible to take on the elaborate endeavor that is making a movie without the help of others.

Whether your joining us just for fun or as the beginning of your filmmaking career, the summer intensive program will leave you with a fully-realized short film of your own that can put you well above the typical university filmmaking applicant.

Philosophy

We believe that the best way to become a filmmaker is by actually making films. With this emphasis on physical creation we require all students to perform all key positions that are found on a professional film set.

Every student will Write, Direct and Edit their own personal short film. In order for every film to be a success we employ ALL filmmaking students on EVERY project. This ensures that every student will rotate and perform key crew positions such as Cinematographer, 1st Asst Cameraman, Key Grip, Sound Mixer, Boom Operator, Production Designer and more.

Curriculum

We are extremely proud to report that our return rate for students has increased every year with this past summer seeing a student return rate of 80%. In order to ensure that every student is challenged to do their best work we now offer a couple different enrollment options.

Our Rising Filmmaker Introductory Camp is a one-week program available for any and all students with NO prior experience necessary. It is scheduled immediately preceding the commencement of the Advanced Filmmaker Production Camp so that beginners can be prepared for the advanced camp if they choose to stay and make a professional short film.

Our Advanced Filmmaker Production Camp is offered for students who have either previously attended TAP or have taken film courses elsewhere that have given them the basic introductory information necessary to begin work on a film project (these could be other summer programs, high school courses, or our own Introductory Camp). We require these students to have the basic introductory knowledge so as to not hold back those students who have prior experience in digital filmmaking.

RISING FILMMAKER INTRODUCTORY CAMP – ONE WEEK
Sleep-Away: June 4 – 9
Day Camp: June 5 – 9

If you love watching movies and television but have no clue how to even get started, then this course is for you. This week-long introduction to filmmaking is intended to give campers a basic understanding of the craft and art of creating a digital film.

Campers will learn the basics of filmmaking and gain an  understanding of film production technology, equipment operation, terminology and techniques. Our approach will come through the analysis of short films, feature films, screenplays and a series of hands-on exercises. Students will leave with the knowledge of how to break down a script, how to work with actors, how to develop a shooting strategy, and how to effectively juxtapose shots in the editing room.

This week serves as either a stand alone week for beginning filmmakers or a pre-requisite for brand new filmmakers registered for the three-week film production camp.

ADVANCED FILMMAKER PRODUCTION CAMP – THREE WEEKS –  June 11 – July 2

Our advanced program is designed to emulate the professional world on a condensed timeline. We breakdown the three-week program into the three phases of commercial film production: Pre-Production, Production and Post Production. *To only attend the 3 week camp, an application with video submission is required. See How to Apply for more details!

WEEK ONE – PRE-PRODUCTION

All students are required to ‘pitch’ their ideas to the faculty and their peers. Once the student has received feedback on their initial pitch, he/she will breakdown the story beat by beat with fellow classmates ensuring all story elements are clear and interesting.

Students will then take the outline they have created and put it into professional screenwriting software for further evaluation. After several sessions of notes, the screenplay will be locked and ready for pre-production.

Hands-on training in camera and sound equipment will be provided and students are allowed to ask for special equipment for their project at this time. The faculty will do everything in their power to provide the students with special equipment if applicable to the project at hand.

Collaborators will be assigned to every student. At this point the students will rotate their attention from project to project focusing on their assigned roles to each production. Though there main focus will be on the project they pitched, all students should be ready and willing to give their focus and energy to their fellow classmates’ projects as it relates to their assigned role.

Filmmakers will audition the Acting majors throughout the first week and choose the appropriate cast for their film.

At the conclusion of Week One all students will have their own project written, scheduled, cast and storyboarded. They will also be prepared to execute their fellow directors needs when it is their turn to create a short film.

WEEK TWO – PRODUCTION

This is what the entire first week was preparing for: the shoot. Each director will receive one full day devoted entirely to their film.

Each student will show up ready to work in their appropriate field for that day ranging from Cinematographer, Sound Mixer, Boom Operator, Production Designer, 1st Asst Camera, etc. This ensures that every film student leaves the program having been exposed to and responsible for a major aspect of every single film.

Actors will be golf-carted to set from their normal rehearsals and filmmakers will be responsible for getting all the shots they need in the time allotted.

At the conclusion of this vigorous week of filmmaking we will take one day off completely and go have fun at the cinema to see a few current and classic films.

WEEK THREE – POST PRODUCTION

The last week is spent in the editing bays where we will put together the final product. This is where all the hard work pays off.

Each student will be assigned their own editing bay and cut their film on Adobe Premiere’s professional editing software. Upon completion of a first cut, the project will be screened for student and faculty feedback. This process usually takes 3 or 4 times for the faculty to approve of ‘picture lock.’

Upon approval of picture lock, the students will then embark on sound design for the film. We provide a library of professional sound cues, FX and music samples for the students to choose from.

The films are then screened for the Film Showcase on the final day of camp for all students, parents, and local Austinites.

*To only attend the 3 week camp as a first time student, an application with video submission is required. See How to Apply for more details.

Film Screenings

All films are screened on the final day of camp

On the final Sunday of camp, each of the original films produced will be premiered in the main theater in front of campers, staff, parents, and Austinites.

*NOTE: All campers for TAP Junior, TAP Senior, and TAP Advanced are required to audition at the beginning of camp. Auditions are held for many reasons. The staff will get the opportunity to know all the campers and their strengths and weaknesses in all types of performance. Additionally the staff will be able to make casting decisions about the final showcase, place campers in the correct class levels, and make sure that all classes are challenging and appropriate. All campers will participate in multiple sections of the audition. The audition process will be conducted in a professional and encouraging environment. It will be fun, but we are expecting your personal best. Visit Placement Auditions for more information.

So, you’ve already registered…

Now that you’re done registering, make sure you look over what you need to prepare here.