Elements of Image Making

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Elements of Image Making: Alternative Optics, Processes & Techniques

On Hiatus until the Last weekend of October. Until then we will be pondering our existence and improving the way this workshop operates. We will return better then ever, and kick of our new form with a workshop on Hand Processing!!!!!!!!!!!


Elements of Image Making is a series of workshops investigating analogue film processes, structured around the open exchange of ideas, resources, and skills while focusing on teaching through facilitation.

Topics covered range from manipulations of found footage to new image generation using chemical, optical, and mechanical techniques. Our primary concern being the surface of film, we will treat it as a canvas. We will create and watch 16mm and super 8 films.

Initially concerned with tactile manipulations, we will make direct animations by drawing, scratching, and painting directly onto film. By focusing on texture, pattern, and rhythm we will explore projected light, experience and perception. Future workshops will move into the darkroom exploring: photograms, hand processing, handmade emulsions and tinting/toning.

Additionally we will invoke whatever mischief we can think of; we might bury film, throw it into a volcano, launch it into the atmosphere, bake it, burn it or sail it to angel island.

Prior film knowledge is not required but attendees with previous experience are encouraged to contribute their knowledge and experience at any level they feel comfortable with.

Every 4th Sunday

Participants are encouraged to bring any materials they think would be interesting to work with, including any aged film material or stock, but especially markers, paint, stamps, translucent objects or scratching elements, anything that may hold an interesting presence on film. All editing materials, projectors, and tools necessary will be provided.

Material Provided

  • Film and processing
  • Inks, dyes and markers
  • Scratching tools
  • Some Markers / sharpies; multi-colors
  • Salt
  • Cyrstal dust. bug parts. tiny fish. reptile skin.
  • Hole punches
  • Letraset
  • Stamps
  • Sandpaper, brillo pad, steel wool
  • Projectors and editing tools/supplies

Facilitated by :

External Resources

  • Helen Hill's Recipes for Disaster is a zine featuring lots of filmmakers from N. America talking about various direct film techniques. Super Awesome!
  • Film Farm Canadian independent imaging retreat operating for 20+ years.
  • HandmadeCinema.com Interactive concept map about the history, theory and techniques of handmade film.
  • Handmade Film Institute Situated outside of Boulder Co, hosts classes, workshops and retreats in handmade film processes, also features a plethora of technical info on darkroom chemistry.
  • delicious.com/jihalprin List of resources/articles about DIY cinematography; light meter use, optics, sound recording, processing....
  • Scratchatopia Montreal based filmmaker Steven Woloshen's Tumblr. Links/articles/awesome!
  • Antidote for a Virtual World by Ken Paul Rosenthal Comprehensive guide to hand processing reversal film.