Special Topics / General Interest



Interviewing for Story (Online)
 


Interviews form the basis of most documentary projects, and what creators are able to unearth during interviews often has a profound effect on what they’re able to produce in the end—the more fruitful the dialogue, the richer the finished product. In this course, students will learn interviewing skills, including how to research and prepare, formulate questions, and ask effective follow-ups, as well as how to transcribe and edit, figure out what the story is, and otherwise make use of the content they glean. In addition to analyzing and discussing interviews and pieces that make use of them, students will practice interviewing on their own and explore different ways of bringing the material they gather to life. By the end, students will develop—and receive feedback on—a written profile or an audio, video, or captioned-photo project that incorporates the interviews they’ve conducted. They will walk away with the skills to interview effectively and the confidence and ability to tell deeper, more compelling stories. (12 hours / All levels)


Please note: This course is offered in an online format and will not meet at CDS but will instead take place in regularly scheduled virtual sessions.

NOTE: There will be NO CLASS on Thursday, October 31.


Christina Cooke is associate editor at the daily food-policy website Civil Eats and a Durham-based freelance journalist who writes about people, place, and culture for venues including the New Yorker, the Atlantic, the New York Times, and the Oxford American. Previously, she worked as a staff writer for the Chattanooga Times Free Press. Cooke finds herself drawn to tell stories at the fringes of society, about people who are offbeat and unconventional, passionate and obsessed. She holds an MFA in creative nonfiction writing from Portland State University and is a graduate of the nonfiction writing program at the Salt Institute of Documentary Studies. christinacooke.com



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WR192SP20
Center for Documentary Studies
Virtual Classroom
Cooke 2/20 - 4/2 Th 07:00 PM - 09:00 PM $300.00 View

Documentary and the Three-Act Structure Workshop (Onsite and Online)
 

Documentarians are storytellers. Engaging audiences means developing strong narratives, clear subjects, and taking the viewer on a journey. This requires understanding the desires of a modern documentary audience and the structural tools that can help meet those needs. In this class, learn how three-act, Hollywood-style narrative structure may be applied to documentaries for maximum impact, and dissect film clips for the structure’s elements. Discover its application to your work, uncovering how to produce more resonant, more entertaining, and ultimately more memorable documentaries. Learn how structure helps you deliver more commercially viable documentaries, as well as how it can inform production concerns like budgets, timelines, and physical resources. Added value may be gained in pairing this course with Writing the Documentary Script. (6 hours / All levels)


Josh Dasal is an Emmy-winning film and television director-producer-writer, video marketer, and co-producer of the podcast, ArtCurious. He has created/consulted for outlets like Discovery Channel, PBS, Sony Screen Gems, and director Wes Craven, as well as producing content for businesses like IBM, ADP, and the North Carolina Museum of Art. He began teaching at the Center for Documentary Studies in 2010, and served as an instructor at UNC-Chapel Hill and Missouri State University. Josh holds a master’s degree from the University of Southern California School of Cinema-TV in screenwriting, and his work has screened at venues including the Mann Theatres on Hollywood Boulevard and the Director’s Guild. He is the founder of Kaboonki, a video and podcast production firm.



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VI152
Center for Documentary Studies
Room 201
Dasal 3/21 - 3/21 Sa 10:00 AM - 04:00 PM $180.00 View

Everything But the Film: The Business of Documentaries (Online)
 



This online course is for students who want to produce a feature documentary and test the waters in the industry. Students should already have a concept in development or be working on a film. The objective of the class is to learn about the doc filmmaking business by diving into all the different stages necessary to make a documentary film, except for actual production. Students can partner up or work on their own. We use examples from students’ current work and industry professionals, apply for grants, create budgets, watch each others’ trailers and give feedback, apply to pitch forums, and pitch each other (often). We will examine and possibly launch crowdfunding campaigns, learn about the industry players, and discuss the myriad distribution options available today. Special guests will be invited to join us. The following topics will be covered: concept crystallization, securing a protagonist, polishing your pitch, budgeting and fundraising, pitching to broadcasters, grants, crowdfunding, equity investments, crewing up, bookkeeping basics, industry who’s who--sales agents, distributors, producer’s reps, consultants—social media and other impact campaigns, pitch forums / trailers / networking, release forms and contracts, post-production basics, festivals, and distribution.


Sara Nodjoumi is an independent film producer and festival programmer. She produced When God Sleeps, co-produced by ITVS, executive produced by Motto Pictures, Catapult Film Fund, and Fork Films, and supported by numerous foundations including the Sundance
Institute, Jerome Foundation, and NYSCA. The film premiered in competition at the 2017
Tribeca Film Festival and went on to win a number of international awards including the Golden Heynal Award for Best Music Doc at the Krakow Film Festival and Most Valuable Film of the Year from Cinema for Peace in Berlin, in addition to being shortlisted for a German Academy Award in 2018. When God Sleeps has played at over sixty festivals all over the world. Nodjoumi is currently working on the release of her latest feature documentary Reggae Boyz about the healing power of soccer and music in Jamaica. After delighting audiences from Berlin to the Bahamas and earning a nomination for best feature documentary from the German Television Academy, Reggae Boyz had its U.S. Premiere at the 2019 Brooklyn Film Festival where it won the Audience Award. From 2004–2009, Nodjoumi worked at the Tribeca Film Festival as an associate programmer and she is currently the artistic director of the New York Sephardic Film Festival. She also produced the feature documentary The Iran Job, which was released theatrically and on Netflix worldwide. In Germany, the film was shortlisted for a German Academy Award. For The Iran Job, Nodjoumi managed two of the most successful campaigns in Kickstarter’s history. In 2016, she was invited to attend the Sundance Creative Producer’s Summit, and in 2017 she was an IFP Cannes Producer’s Network Fellow.



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BUSI101
Center for Documentary Studies
Virtual Classroom
Nodjoumi 3/4 - 5/6 We 06:30 PM - 08:30 PM $350.00 View

Family: Reinterpreting the Personal Archive (Online)
 


So often, photo albums and other repositories of memory are tucked away in basements or drawers and remain untouched, but the web of family is and can be a rich source of inspiration and analysis for artists and documentarians. This workshop is a stepping stone for new and seasoned documentarians to embark on family investigations, while becoming exposed to makers within the realm of documentary arts. Through group discussion and individual investigation, students will utilize writing, photography, and their personal objects to creatively interpret family archives. Past students have created projects based on folklore, oral storytelling, material objects, parallel family stories, archival photographs, and migration. Students will have the opportunity to discuss ethical practice when working with family, expansive notions of family, and the role of ancestry DNA in family work. (12 hours / All levels)


Please note: This course is offered in an online format and will not meet at CDS but will instead take place in regularly scheduled virtual sessions.


Kamal Badhey is an educator, photographer, and documentarian based in New York City. She is a member of the South Asian Women's Creative Collective and the Urban Photographers Association. She graduated with a masters in photography and urban cultures, Goldsmiths, University of London and in museum education from Bank Street College. Her work has been exhibited widely in New York City, London, Lisbon, Philadelphia, and Milwaukee. Portals and Passageways, a project of the South Asian diaspora traces her jeweler ancestors to a bazaar in Secunderabad, India. Kamal was a CDS Lewis Hine Fellow in 2016–17 and is currently a fellow for the Claremont Documentary Project. She is an educator at the Bronx Documentary Center and Parsons School of Design.


There will be no class on November 28 (Thanksgiving.)



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ST235o
Center for Documentary Studies
Virtual Classroom
Badhey 2/13 - 3/19 Th 06:30 PM - 08:30 PM $290.00 View

Independent Study
 
This permission-only course is designed for students to work with a mentor on one specific project, in any medium, in four two-hour sessions (or a mutually agreed-upon equivalent) over the course of four months. Dates and times arranged by the student and mentor. (Intermediate-Advanced/8 hours)

Please contact [email protected] to request permission for an independent study.

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ST300SP2020
Center for Documentary Studies
TBD
TBD TBD TBD TBD $500.00 View

Intensive Introduction to Documentary Studies: Ethics and Practice
 


This intensive, weeklong class is designed for distance students who are pursuing the Certificate in Documentary Arts and fulfills their introductory course requirement, but it is also ideal for any student wishing to get a grasp of the basic history and principles of documentary work. This course will feature a variety of guest speakers, including photographers, filmmakers, writers, and audio producers. We emphasize not only methodologies but also philosophies and ethics of fieldwork in different settings. Students will explore examples of fieldwork and at the final meeting will present project proposals of their own. These proposals may be the beginning of long-term documentary initiatives or simply a means to help decide on the direction of a future project. (38 hours)

Michelle Lanier is the newly appointed director of the N.C. Division of State Historic Sites and Properties. She was formerly the acting director of North Carolina’s African American Heritage Commission and Curator of Multicultural Initiatives with North Carolina’s State Historic Sites. She has been an instructor at CDS since 2000. She uses her background as an oral historian and folklorist to connect communities around personal narratives and cultural expression. She has traveled to Panama and Ghana to document African Diaspora funerary traditions, and her ethnographic work in a South Carolina Gullah community led to her role as a liaison to the Gullah-Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor. Growing up in a family that includes veterans of five American wars has inspired her current work, training students to collect veterans’ narratives.

Joy Salyers is a folklorist and a professional adviser on ethical and effective practice for individuals, organizations, and projects. She helps clients place an honest and compassionate assessment of themselves into the context of the systems within which they work. Salyers is also a writer, performer, and lecturer. She serves on advisory groups for several current documentary projects, and has taught in CDS’s Continuing Education program for more than a decade. See www.joysalyers.com.

Additional information:
The enrollment fee includes dinner the first night. Students are responsible for all other meals, housing, and transportation.

Section A
Taught by Michelle Lanier
Sunday, June 7: 5 p.m.–9 p.m.
Monday–Thursday, June 8–11: 9 a.m.–4 p.m.
Friday, June 12: 9 a.m.–6 p.m.

Section B
Taught by Joy Salyers
Sunday, August 2: 5 p.m.–9 p.m.
Monday–Thursday, August 3–6: 9 a.m.–4 p.m.
Friday, August 7: 9 a.m.–5 p.m.

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ST515SU20A
Center for Documentary Studies
Room 201
Lanier 6/7 - 6/12 Mo Tu We Th Fr Su Varied $600.00 View
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ST515SU20B
Center for Documentary Studies
CDS Auditorium
Salyers 8/2 - 8/7 Mo Tu We Th Fr Su Varied $600.00 View

Introduction to Documentary Studies: Ethics and Practice
 


This course is designed for students in the Certificate in Documentary Arts program or those who plan to enroll. The documentary arts—including photography, video, audio, and writing—encompass many genres and numerous means of interacting with the world and its people. Instruction will focus on methodologies as well as philosophies and ethics of fieldwork in different settings. Students will explore examples of documentary work and will present project ideas of their own in the final session. (20 hours / All levels)

 

NOTE: There will be NO CLASS on Thanksgiving, November 28.


Joy Salyers is a folklorist and a professional adviser on ethical and effective practice for individuals, organizations, and projects. She helps clients place an honest and compassionate assessment of themselves into the context of the systems within which they work. Salyers is also a writer, performer, and lecturer. She serves on advisory groups for several current documentary projects, and has taught in CDS’s continuing education program for more than a decade. joysalyers.com



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ST101PSP20
Center for Documentary Studies
CDS Library
Salyers 4/9 - 5/28 Th 06:15 PM - 08:45 PM $328.00 View

Introduction to Documentary Studies: Traditions (Online)
 



This course is designed for students in the Certificate in Documentary Arts program or those who plan to enroll; it’s also suited to non-certificate students with a general interest in interdisciplinary traditions of documentary work, with an emphasis on twentieth-century practice. Students will be introduced to a range of documentary idioms and voices, including the work of photographers, filmmakers, oral historians, folklorists, musicologists, radio documentarians, and writers. (16 hours/All levels)


Please note: This course is offered in an online format and will not meet at CDS but will instead take place in regularly scheduled virtual sessions.


Joy Salyers is a folklorist and a professional adviser on ethical and effective practice for individuals, organizations, and projects. She helps clients place an honest and compassionate assessment of themselves into the context of the systems within which they work. Salyers is also a writer, performer, and lecturer. She serves on advisory groups for several current documentary projects, and has taught in CDS’s continuing education program for more than a decade. joysalyers.com



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ST101ToSP20
Center for Documentary Studies
Virtual Classroom
Salyers 2/6 - 3/26 Th 07:00 PM - 09:00 PM $295.00 View

Writing the Documentary Script (Onsite and Online)
 
Your documentary films can be scripted! A well-written script can be key to structuring your film. Structure can make not only the difference between a bad film and a good film, but between a good film and a great one. To create a documentary that’s coherent in post-production, your pre-production needs to be equally coherent. One of the best ways to organize one’s research, explore new ideas, and more accurately plan for the unexpected is to write a documentary script. In this one-day workshop, students will learn the basics of writing the documentary script, including the conceptual and practical theory behind script construction, the role of story in documentary filmmaking, and proper A/V script formatting. We’ll learn the best ways to outline scenes and analyze existing A/V scripts for production and post-production needs. And we’ll use widely available script writing software which you will then use in practical exercises that demonstrate how to translate your written documentaries from script to screen. Added value may be gained by pairing this course with Documentary and Three-Act Structure. (5 hours/All Levels)

Please note: This is a hybrid onsite/online class. Distance students will participate via teleconference.

Joshua Dasal has taught at CDS since 2010. He is an Emmy- and Silver Telly–winning director, producer, screenwriter, and video marketer. A master’s graduate of the University of Southern California School of Cinema-Television, he has created projects and/or consulted for Discovery Channel, PBS, Sony Screen Gems, and director Wes Craven. He has taught filmmaking courses at UNC-Chapel Hill and Missouri State University, and his films have screened at venues like the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, the Director’s Guild of America, and USC’s First Look Film Festival. He is the owner and chief creative officer of Kaboonki Creative, a video production and marketing firm based in Raleigh.

Additional information:
To participate from off-site, a late-model computer, fast internet connection, and built-in camera are recommended, though not required. Students with less than optimal hardware or internet connections are welcome to take the course, though it may be difficult to participate fully.

There will be a one-hour break for lunch.

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VI146
Center for Documentary Studies
Room 201
Dasal 5/16 - 5/16 Sa 10:00 AM - 04:00 PM $160.00 View