John B. Moore Documentary Studies Collaborative
John B. Moore Documentary Studies Collaborative

Fall 2015 Classes


DS 251D 001 Documentary Filmmaking
Nicky Tavares
MW 9:00am-12:05pm , 4 credits

Documentary Production focuses on the critical and technical skills that support the production of non-fiction video. Basic shooting and editing techniques will be covered as well as an introduction to a wide range of production methods and creative strategies that encourage exploration in all aspects of the medium. Class time will be used for technical workshops, critiques, screenings and discussions. Throughout the semester students will propose, shoot, edit and present a short documentary video.

Sample Image
Tavares on the streets

DS 251C  Introduction to Audio Documentary
Adam Tinkle
TTh 9:40am-11:00am, 3 credits

In this course, students will learn the technologies, tools, and skills to create audio documentaries. Working individually and in small production teams, we will produce original sound works for radio broadcast and podcast. Closely linked to the development of our studio and field practice as audio recordists, editors, and producers, we will also listen to and critically analyze examples in the medium, ranging from classics of international radio art to today's most innovative podcasts. Analyzing the aesthetics, extrapolating techniques and getting inspiration from these exemplars, we will try our hands at varied ways of sculpting an audio experience, telling stories, and representing reality. The course assumes no prior knowledge of audio technologies, and should interest budding documentarians, writers, performers, and digital artists regardless of primary medium. Through a partnership with WSPN, students may have the opportunity to appear live on the radio to introduce, air and engage in a discussion about their projects. Note: an optional fourth credit is available for students to work, alongside the instructor, as a collaborative production team on the Skidmore-Saratoga Memory Project in DS-202A.

DS 202 001  DS Workshop:  Documenting Machine Project
Adam Tinkle
W 12:20pm-1:15pm, 1 credit
DS 202A, W, 12:20-1:15
This Fall, the Tang Museum hosts an exciting program of cutting-edge contemporary performance (including work from poetry, theatre, sound, dance, and way beyond) co-curated with Los Angeles' Machine Project and its founder, Mark Allen, a Skidmore alumnus. In Documenting Machine Project, students will produce and direct a mini-documentary work (in sound, video or multimedia) about one of the Project’s visiting artists, based on public performance and additional conversations and rehearsals/performances. In this workshop, students will use their existing production skills to build a media/documentary portfolio, and to engage with the Tang's exciting programming and visitors.  Students will attend weekly events in September, October and November with Machine Project's Director, the exhibition curator, and a visiting artist.  In the final third of the semester, students will complete their documentary projects.  The end result will be an archive/exhibit of all the projects as a collective portrait of the Tang's exhibition.
Prerequisite: DS-251 (any section, concurrent enrollment OK), past media technology experience, or permission of the instructor.

DS 302A 002 DS Workshop:  Archival Storytelling
Jordana Dym
Tu, 4:00-5:30, 1 credit
In this workshop, students will work with their own research materials or Skidmore Saratoga Memory Project partners to develop documentary stories from sound, visual and text-based archival materials. Workshops will cover basics of organizing and inventorying archival materials, identifying story ideas and materials, and preparing documentary project proposals. 

 DS 302A 001 Documentary Project (9/9-10/30)
Nicky Tavares
W 6:00-7:20, 1 credit
This course is for students interested in developing a documentary project based on existing or in-progress research in any discipline with the support of a documentarian and visiting practitioners in the field. Proposed projects may employ video, sound, photography, installation and/or media work. Students will workshop an individual short project through written reflections, rough cut screenings/presentations and group and individual critiques. Students will focus on finding an approach to form that suits both subject matter and their personal creative and academic goals. Students will also work with readings, technical workshops, screenings, exhibitions, and discussions. Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor.

Listening, Senior Memory Project
Senior Center Memory Project

  DS 381 001 Skidmore Saratoga Memory Practicum: Senior Center 60th
Jordana Dym, TBA, 1 credit
In collaboration with the Saratoga Adult and Senior Center, students will assist staff and seniors in finalizing a documentary project and conduct programming for the Center's 60th anniversary celebration in October and November 2015. Students continuing on in this Memory Project will work with multiple documentary forms, including oral history and video, as we plan for a gala event.  Prerequisite: Spring '15 DS 381.


DS-251B 001 Storytelling for the Screen
Nicole Coady, F, 10:10-11:50 am, 2 credits
The craft of storytelling for the screen will be honed through examining landmark films, documentaries, television shows and an assortment of new media.  We will put what we learn into practice through writing our own visual stories and class discussion. Over the course of the semester, students will learn the classic three act structure for telling a visual story.  They will develop skills in how to craft a compelling log line, as well as learn to create a skeleton treatment from which to build a story.  They will develop a final treatment which can be shared with other participants in the often collaborative work of telling stories through the various visual mediums available to 21st century storytellers. 
Nicole Coady: With over 20 years of screenwriting experience, Nicole Coady has written for such companies as MTV, New Line Cinema and 20th Century Fox.  In addition, she authored two video games for the top selling toy company MGA.  Currently, she is in preproduction on the feature film, The Twelve Dancing Princesses. She is very excited to pass on her years of industry knowledge on how to write successfully for the screen!