UCL Faculty of Arts & Humanities


From Page to Screen: Getting Started with Video

Bartek Dziadosz and Lilly Ford led a 5-day short course available to students focussed on getting started with video.

Lead Speaker: Bartek Dziadosz and Lily Ford, Derek Jarman Lab

Bartek Dziadosz is a filmmaker and director of the Derek Jarman Lab. He has a PhD in theory of editing from London Consortium and Birkbeck, University of London. He collaborated on the series 'The Seasons in Quincy: Four Portraits of John Berger' (2016) and directed ‘The Trouble with Being These Days’(2013). He teaches on a number of courses in critical practice.

Lily Ford is a filmmaker and historian. She produced ‘The Seasons in Quincy’ (2016) among other Derek Jarman Lab films, as well as directing and editing ‘Chasing the Revolution’ (2021), ‘Dear Ella’ (2020) and ‘A Humbrol Art’ (2018). Her book on the history of flight, ‘Taking to the Air,’ was published in 2018. She enjoys teaching film skills and has taught on many Jarman Lab courses.

Short Course - From Page to Screen: Getting Started with Video

Lead speaker: Bartek Dziadosz and Lily Ford, Derek Jarman Lab

From June 2021

This course showed participants some short cuts from page to screen. Students were taken through the basic skills of planning, shooting and editing, enabling them to produce a two-minute video by the end of the week using a smartphone, a computer and a hard drive, but no specialist filming equipment.  

Student Testimonials

Germaine Leung 

I thoroughly enjoyed the From Page to Screen course. It was well-structured and Lily and Bartek provided such thoughtful and detailed guidance. The small-group setting meant that we were able to benefit fully from the one-on-one tutorials and working space too, where we all worked independently on our own project during the Zoom call to motivate one another and reach out instantly to Lily and Bartek whenever we needed help. It definitely pushed me to get back into a creative headspace!  

Laura Martin 

I found the From Page to Screen course extremely valuable and would recommend it to anyone with an interest in film making. Bartek and Lilly were so welcoming and encouraging. They offered very helpful advice for getting started with film as well as, made everyone feel included in the course regardless of their level. The classes were enjoyable with a pleasant and relaxed atmosphere. I managed to acquire a lot of skills, in the span of a very short amount of time. I particularly loved the video editing portion of the course as this taught me skills that I will be applying to future endeavours in this field. I am grateful for the opportunity to have been included in this course. 

Mitzy Quinto-Cortes  

This course was totally amazing, from the contents to the one-to-one tutorials! I always wanted to learn about film making, and the course gave me the tools to understand the process step-by-step and to produce a film in a week time! Thanks Lily and Bartek! 

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Short-form video content is now a mainstay of our daily feed. It is a powerful way of communicating research and ideas, all the more so while Covid restrictions prevented us from being in rooms together. It is also a first step towards finding funding or a platform for a longer film. 

At the Derek Jarman Lab we are fascinated by film as critical practice, using the camera, sound and the digital scalpel as tools to build stories and ask questions. As well as working with academics and researchers, we encourage students to interrogate their environment with camera and microphone. The city has been a point of focus for our teaching – we can discover and share so much by just looking around and scavenging records of our urban explorations. But the digital media landscape is of equal interest. Screen capture means we can share our individual journeys in the digital realm. Videographic criticism interrogates and analyses these experiences.

Filmmaking does not need high production values to have an impact, but it does need good ideas. Students came to this course with an idea for a 2-minute film that is possible to film and edit in a matter of days. The location for the film may vary from a digital desktop to a physical one, from your kitchen to your local park. You may choose to feature a character, in visuals or just in voiceover (this could be you or a collaborator). You should consider props, stills and found footage. You may find family or friends who are prepared to be in the film, speak or play music for it.

Limits can be productive. We will point you towards a number of successful films that make a virtue of their scant resources, and guide you through the translation of your idea into visual material for editing. We’ll provide guidance on rights and working with copyrighted material. You will learn the basics of editing on the free software Blackmagic DaVinci Resolve. By the last session, you will be ready to screen your film to the group.

See a few examples above and below of videos made by participants of our short courses:

  • Plaques of Bloomsbury’ by Matthew Barrington (4-day course in essayistic filmmaking)
  • Stay’ by Katherine Mitchell (online course ‘Audiovisual Practice as Research)
  • Beauty’ by Athena Spillius, Mia Gane and Catherine McCauley (3-day course in audiovisual practice for sixth-formers as part of the Hidden Persuaders Project at Birkbeck)
  • Secret Pittsburgh: Enter the City’ by Jessica FitzPatrick (4-day course in essayistic filmmaking at University of Pittsburgh)