Too often, film courses give equal attention to theory and “theoretical practice.” Students are likely to leave knowing a lot about how to compose a shot, or keep to one side of the director’s line, but comparatively little about how loud and short a video needs to be to share a bill with rock bands, or how many Ikea china balls it takes to properly light a DIY green screen.
But this spring, video artist Jimmy Joe Roche is pioneering a class at Johns Hopkins that takes a realistic look at the practice of filmmaking. Baltimore Filmmakers will introduce students to fourteen “working video artists and filmmakers from Baltimore,” artists will be able to speak directly about the real obstacles to creating and screening work with budget and time constraints.
Guest filmmakers will include Sondheim finalist Stephanie Barber, local celebrity Matt Porterfield, Erin Gleeson and Ben O’Brien (makers of the internet puppet telelvision show Showbeast), and others.
Roche hopes the course will give students a “deeper connection to the community in which they live” and even get them thinking about “regionality” in video and film, a novel concept in an age when so much of the video art we interact with comes to us from the regionless internet.
The class will be held at Hopkins’ Homewood campus and is also open to MICA students.