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Want to get into TV? Join the 4Talent session – July 9th

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Channel 4 and the National Film and Television School (NFTS) have teamed up to run a four-week series of masterclasses and training sessions for independent production companies and freelancers based in the Nations and Regions.

This 4Talent session is aimed at students and young people who are interested in a career in TV production. It will will provide practical tips and advice to get into TV production and hear from those taking their first steps into the industry.

This sessions takes place online July 9th, at 10am BST. Register here.


Source: 4Talent


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Get free film advice sessions from British Council Film

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Do you have a question about the film festival circuit or need help with your feature film’s international festival strategy? During lockdown the British Council Film is providing a series of free, bespoke one-to-one advice sessions to help you make plans.

About the sessions

The Council is offering 6 x bookable 1-1 sessions, each lasting 20 mins, available each week while the traditional film festival world is locked down. Sessions are bookable on Tuesdays and Thursdays with flexible times available, and will be scheduled to suit once you have been allocated a meeting. The surgeries are hosted by Rowan Woods, the BCF’s Film Programme Manager (Festivals) and are completely free to book.

The festival circuit is experiencing a period of great uncertainty due to COVID-19. The situation is evolving and there may be lasting changes that have yet to materialise. While it might be hard to provide definitive answers on what will happen to the remainder of the 2020 circuit, there are still some guiding principles that remain when thinking about how best to approach your festival strategy.

Who are they for?

These sessions are aimed at UK-based filmmakers who have completed or are about to complete a feature, and who do not currently have a sales agent on board. (Do note Short Support Salons for short filmmakers is also offered).

You are particularly welcomed if you are a filmmaker from a under-represented groups in the industry and who has not yet had festival experience.

British Council Film plans to offer each session with onscreen transcription and can schedule meeting times flexibly to suit those with caring responsibilities.

Sessions can be conducted on zoom or by telephone, to suit you. Each session will last 20 mins – and please note that Rowan will not be able to watch or read anything in advance.

How to Apply

Send some basic information about your project and a short note detailing what you would like to get out of the session.
You can book your slot here

Places will be allocated on a first come basis and you will be contacted via email to arrange a convenient time.

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Free creative courses via Open University

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The Open University allows you to learn about different aspects of culture and what it means to you. Whether you’re just starting out or looking to explore something new to reignite that creative inspiration, have a look at the below suite of free courses on Open Learn. If you create an account with OpenLearn and complete a course, you’ll be awarded a ‘Statement of Participation’, a free certificate to show that you’ve successfully completed a course. Here are a selection of courses:


Start writing fiction 
Have you always wanted to write, but never quite had the courage to start? This free course, Start writing fiction, will give you an insight into how authors create their characters and settings. You will also be able to look at the different genres for fiction.
Explore the course


Writing what you know 

Do you want to improve your descriptive writing? This free course, Writing what you know, will help you to develop your perception of the world about you and enable you to see the familiar things in everyday life in a new light. You will also learn how authors use their own personal histories to form the basis of their work.


Studying the Arts and Humanities
This free course is an introduction to studying the arts and humanities. It takes you through a series of exercises designed to develop your approach to study and learning at a distance and improve your confidence as an independent learner.


Business of Film
Making a film is a creative endeavour, but it’s also a business project. And just like any other business, most films are intended to make money. This free online course, The business of film, will show you how film production works. It has been created with Pinewood Studios – the leading provider of studio services to the global screen-based industries


Approaching Poetry
Do you want to get more out of your reading of poetry? This free course, Approaching poetry, is designed to develop the analytical skills you need for a more in-depth study of literary texts. You will learn about rhythm, alliteration, rhyme, poetic inversion, voice and line lengths and endings. You will examine poems that do not rhyme and learn how to compare and contrast poetry.


Art and visual culture: Medieval to modern
What is art? What is visual culture? How have they changed through history? This free course, Art and visual culture: Medieval to modern, explores the fundamental issues raised by the study of western art and visual culture over the last millennium.


Music and its media
This free course, Music and its media, examines some of the main ways in which music is transmitted. It considers how the means of communicating a particular piece can change over time; and how the appearance and contents of a source can reflect the circumstances in which it is produced.


Approaching Plays
Do you want to get more out of drama? This free course, Approaching plays, is designed to develop the 3 analytical skills you need for a more in-depth study of literary plays. You will learn about dialogue, stage directions, blank verse, dramatic structure and conventions and aspects of performance


World Heritage
This free course provides an overview of World Heritage, its political and cultural origins and the role of UNESCO and other agencies in identifying and listing sites.
Explore the course


Creative Writing and Critical Reading
This free course, Creative writing and critical reading, explores the importance of reading as part of a creative writer’s development at the postgraduate level. You will gain inspiration and ideas from examining other writers’ methods, as well as enhancing your critical reading skills.
Explore the course


An Introduction to Music Theory
Gain an understanding of the basic building blocks of musical theory and notation. This free course, An introduction to music theory, will introduce you to music staves, clefs, rhythmic and pitch values, rhythmic metre and time signatures.
Explore the course


Start writing fiction: characters and stories
Start writing fiction is a free course that helps you to get started with your own fiction writing, focusing on the central skill of creating characters.
Explore the course


Understanding musical scores
This free course, Understanding musical scores, provides a general introduction to how to understand a musical score, and insights into what professional musicians do with the notation that these contain. You’ll learn how to connect the notation you see with the music you hear, from short familiar melodies to a full orchestral score.
Explore the course


Recording Music and Sound
This free course, Recording music and sound, provides an historical introduction to music and sound recording in the creative industries and offers some guidance about making your own recordings.
Explore the course


For the complete list of courses, visit Open University here.


Source: Creative Industries Federation


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Effective Leadership for Creative Businesses

Creative England’s Future Studios Online Webinars

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In recent months, Creative Enterprise has been running Future Studios bootcamps. The aim of the programme is to provide business support to screen companies (film, TV, games, immersive and digital) with a narrative/storytelling focus. They are letting the public know that in light of the current coronavirus crisis, their last iteration of Future Studios is now online.

They have adapted the Future Studios programme by hosting a series of six free online webinars to support screen companies. The webinars ranging from 60-90minutes each, will run across 3 weeks from the 18th May to 4th June, topics include the future of storytelling, gaining investment, creativity, development and pitching.



Gavin James- Money, Deals, Business: Film and TV Financing and Distribution [90 minutes]

Tuesday 19th May at 2pm

In this session, we will cover what you can learn from film financing and film profit sharing, from two angles of streamer financing and traditional (independent and studio) film financing.  We will also look into streamer financing of series, traditional financing of TV broadcast series, as well as film distribution agreements and royalty reporting. To finish the session, we’ll look at what a collection account manager does, why you need one, and what a revenue waterfall looks like, and round off the webinar by giving some pointers about how to build a business plan for your enterprise, and maybe what potential investors will look for.

Sign up here.


Alison Norrington- The Future of Storytelling [60 minutes]

Thursday 21st May at 2pm

Alison will talk about the fundamentals of narrative across non-linear, immersive and experiential highlighting some core questions around emotional outcomes, building a storyworld, theme and experience design.

Sign up here.


Tim Reid- Developing Ideas: Creativity and Culture [90 minutes]

Tuesday May 26th at 2pm

During this webinar Tim will share with you his thoughts on what creativity is and how we can all get better at it. He will share a range of tried and tested tools and techniques, with stories, for how to tackle any challenge and have bigger, better ideas. And he will talk you through different ways of working that we can all steal from the world of comedy.

Sign up here.


Disruptive Thinking- Pitch Like a Pro [90 minutes]

Thursday May 28th at 2pm

How to pitch – during COVID-19 and beyond. Disruptive Thinking will be taking delegates through effective pitching techniques with guidance on how to articulate your business proposition clearly. Whether you’re pitching for a project or investment over video call, or just trying to succinctly tell somebody what you do, this webinar will provide you with a straightforward structure to follow. They will also be joined by Nick Ellis, founder of Halo creative agency for a 30 minute Q&A.

Sign up here.


Rachel Richardson-Jones [60 minutes]

Thursday June 2nd at 2pm

Film Producer and Festival Director talks about her career path, the leap from Corporate & Commercials to Feature Films and her decision to work within the genre sector in both Feature Films and the Film Festival GRIMMFEST. Insights into how she has survived in the low budget sector, the importance of attending initiatives such as Market Trader and the new ventures and models she and her team are embracing in these turbulent times. Why the launch of the production arm of the festival, Grimmfest films and most recently Grimmfest TV and how this is helping to keep her business sustainable and relevant.

Sign up here.


Stuart Blackburn- Pitch Perfect: How to Sell Your Idea [90 minutes]

Tuesday 4th June at 2pm

Pitch Perfect is about that crucial time when you’re trying to sell your show or film. The treatment is the sales pitch, the document that decides whether your project will ever see the light of day. There is no perfect formula, every show will be different and no two Producers or Indies will want the same thing. But, there is a structure that works, key elements that if you get right will get you one step closer to success. This session isn’t a lecture, it’s a chat, a discussion so your input is vital. We will also create time to address the impossible problem facing us all. How can our work reflect the ‘new normal’ when we may not know what that is for months.

Sign up here.


Source: Creative England


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Nikon Offering Free Online Courses

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Nikon is offering ten Nikon School Online camera courses free of charge for the entire months of March and April. Usually those courses run from $15 to $50.

It has expanded the offerings with its new Creator’s Hour events, where novice photographers can hear from some of the best shooters and storytellers out there.

The courses try to go where the audience is. Some are held as live events on Instagram, with Nikon’s so-called “ambassadors” offering live, personal advice. There are some pretty moments to be had, found with Nikon’s “Moments of Zen,” a collection of curated images seen on Nikon’s social channels.

During these unprecedented times when we are all looking for human connection, photography has the power to bring us closer together, even when we are apart,” said Jay Vannatter, executive vice president for Nikon.

For sure, we’ve never taken more photos, but it’s impossible to discover exactly how many photos are taken every year.  Estimates vary wildly, but Mylio, a photo organizing and management app, points to data from Keystone Intelligence that says an amazing 1.4 trillion photos will be taken this year. Those will be added to the pile of existing photos, so that this year the world will have saved 7.4 trillion photos.

Digital cameras, rather than smartphones or tablets, made up 10% of all photos in 2018, and that figure is going down, from 8.2% last year, and a predicted to be 7.3% this year. Big camera makers like Nikon and Canon have had a tough time. Ironically, it’s probably never been easier to take a really good photo with a real camera, but a smartphone is a lot faster and handier to use.


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Ark Media offers course on making smartphone films

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Ark Media is offering a free online course to help you film with your smartphone. Currently whilst their crews can’t be out filming at the moment they are still offering animation and quick edit services.

Plus we have developed our online training course – Filming With Your Smartphone. The course lasts 45 minutes and covers areas such as what videos work best, camera settings, framing, lighting and audio.


Join the course

You can access the course here. The password is: getthecourse

If you have any problems accessing the course, contact

If you are considering using animation? Here are a few examples from Ark Media to get those creative juices flowing

Contact Ark Media here for any guidance or support.


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Apply for Film Birmingham’s Working In The Locations Department Course – Deadline May 3rd

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Film Birmingham’s course An Introduction to Working in the Locations Department (WILD) will now take place online! We have waived the course fee so applicants can now benefit from the 6 days of in-depth training at no cost.

This course is delivered by Film Birmingham, with 6 sessions beginning on May 11th and spread over 2 weeks. It is designed to inform, educate and give hands on skills to the next generation of aspiring film and TV location managers. WILD will be led by top UK film and TV drama Location Manager Harriet Lawrence. Harriet has worked in location management for over 20 years and her impressive CV includes prime time TV shows Downton Abbey, Parks and Recreation and Dancing on the Edge and Hollywood movies The Personal History of David Copperfield, My Cousin RachelSuffragette and Burton and Taylor.

About the WILD Film Locations course:

The locations department has a wide and varied remit within a production. It extends from the creative beginnings of a script breakdown, working alongside Directors and Designers and scouting locations, to the logistical and detailed planning of a shoot. It enables all other departments to go about their jobs as smoothly and safely as possible. This film locations course will cover what to expect in this challenging, yet rewarding work environment.

It will give an overview of the industry, the different types of productions and then move on to the exciting challenges of scouting, planning a shoot and managing all aspects of the shoot day. The sessions will also outline some of the essential principles of health and safety, touch on some of the many things included in the locations budget and give tips on how to take great location recce pictures. This online training will be classroom-based, with details about a corresponding practical course to follow. Successful applicants will receive a link for the online course once their place has been confirmed.

Course Outline*

May 11th, 2pm – 4pm – Intro to the Industry, Communication and Script Breakdowns

May 13th, 2pm – 4pm – Scouting and Photography

May 15th, 2pm – 4pm – Planning the Shoot, Budget and Tech Recce

May 18th, 2pm – 4pm – working with the Designer. Cristina Casali and the making of The Personal History of David Copperfield

May 20th, 2pm – 4pm – The Shoot, Health & Safety / RAMS (Risk Assessment & Method Statement)

May 22nd, 2pm – 4pm – AD section

Please note this online course is based in theory and the corresponding practical course will follow at a later date.

*Participants are required to take part in all 6 sessions.

About Your Teachers

The WILD course will be led by award-winning locations manager Harriet Lawrence, who has worked in commercials, film and TV during her time in the industry. She was also the 2016 recipient of the Production Guild Inspiration Award. Supporting the course will be BIFA- and BAFTA- winning production designer Cristina Casali, who gained a Best Production Design 2019 BIFA award for her work in The Personal History of David Copperfield.

To Apply

25 applicants will be selected for the WILD Online Course. Film Birmingham welcomes applications from a broad range of participants; from new entrants with some production experience to those more established in the media industry.

If you are interested in being considered for the course, please complete this form. The deadline for applications is May 3rd, and successful applicants will be notified on May 4th.

Successful applicants will receive a link for the online course once their place has been confirmed.

For additional information, please email, with WILD Online Course in the subject.


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Conway Network offers free courses

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On Monday 23rd March 2020, the UK government announced lockdown for the country, closing most businesses including us. With these guidelines in place it forced Conway Network to cancel all of their classes, workshops and courses; put a hold on all events and projects and pause community engagement. Although this was an unsettling time for everyone at Conway Network it was important for them to innovate for the benefit of our customers…

Introducing ONForm – the new online platform that provides workshops, courses and one-to-one tutoring for aspiring creatives. It provides a platform for you to hone your craft, commit to your development and experience flexible training. This will launch on May 4th, 2020.

Stay tuned here.

Free webinar: Cashflow management and forecasting through Coronavirus

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Join Ward Williams Creative, accountants for the creative industries as they share advice and practical tips on long and short term cashflow management and forecasting through the crisis. This is the Creative Industries Federation’s latest exclusive webinar.

This webinar is for Creative Industries Federation members. If you are not yet a member, the Federation is offering free six-month memberships to all freelancers, self-employed workers, and microbusinesses to help support you through this difficult time. Click here for more information.


About the webinar

Cashflow management and forecasting through Coronavirus
Members only
3:30pm, Wednesday 15 April

You can register for the webinar here.


Source: Creative Industries Federation

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ScreenSkills launches free remote training

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ScreenSkills has launched a free package of remote and interactive training, online talks and masterclasses with industry leaders. These will support freelancers in upskilling and staying in touch with industry during these difficult times.

Leading figures from across all the broadcasters, indies and the new content providers have stepped forward to give their time to share insight and show solidarity with the screen industries workforce in this unprecedented period of lockdown. The new package builds on initial support in mental health, wellbeing and practical issues such as employment law that have been underway since the beginning of the week.

Announcing the extended programme today, Seetha Kumar, chief executive of ScreenSkills, said: “We know the big worry for many freelancers right now is the impact of lost jobs and income due to the Covid-19 crisis. ScreenSkills, with colleagues across the creative industries, has lobbied the Government to act and gave a cautious welcome to news of some financial support for freelancers.

“However, we thought it was important to play our part in making sure the industry and its workers stay as resilient as is possible in the circumstances. So we have built a range of online sessions – some offer practical guidance on issues such as employment law, others on skills from pitching and development to managing teams and others offering useful industry insights from executives, creatives and commissioners that we hope will be helpful for your return to work when it comes. Still others are just to help you get through the day.

“It’s a programme developed in haste with enormous support from our colleagues across the industry and will evolve in coming weeks. But it is being shared in a spirit of all doing what we can to support the amazing screen industries workforce during this hiatus in production.”

Training and support is being offered from the High-end TV Skills Fund with industry contributions and through ScreenSkills film team investing industry contributions to the Film Skills Fund and National Lottery funds awarded by the BFI. This builds on work kickstarted by the ScreenSkills Indie Training Fund who have been offering rapid response support including an employment and contract law surgery, business skills for freelancers and mental health and wellbeing sessions since Monday with more to follow.

Now the TV Skills Fund is investing contributions from BBC, Channel 4 and Channel 5 in a programme led by media consultant Donna Taberer of six sessions a day for forthcoming weeks including Q&A sessions on finance, business skills and working from home.

ScreenSkills Online Training Schedule

The schedule will be:

  • 10.00 – 11.15 – training workshops including storytelling, commentary writing, pitching and development and managing and leading teams.
  • 11.30 – 12.45 – industry great masterclasses with Simon Ford, Ken Loach, Tim Wardle, actor Con O’Neill, Rowan Deacon, Zac Beattie, Kate Thornton, Sanjay Singhal, Mobeen Azhar, Olly Lambert, Dan Dewsbury, Anna Hall, Amy Flanagan, Lisa Holdsworth, Pete Beard, Jon East, Nicole Taylor and Jenny Ash signed up so far.
  • 1.00– 2.00 – lunch with a commissioner. Enthusiastically supported by broadcasters, this is an opportunity to “have lunch” with a commissioner. Nearly 40 have volunteered including from: Channel 4 – Karl Warner/Kelly Webb Lamb/Phil Harris; BBC – Emma Loach/Jack Bootle/Tommy Bulfin; Channel 5 – Guy Davies/Lucy Willis; UKTV – Helen Nightingdale; ITV – Kate Teckman and Amanda Stavri; Amazon Studios – Dan Grabiner
  • 3.00 – 4.00 – talent manager takeovers. More than 60 talent managers from across the UK and the widest spread of indies will cover general career advice, networking, CV clinics, juggling portfolio careers, interview practice and how to manage you career and development plans
  • 5.00 – 6.00 – craft workshops and partner sessions with practitioners including James Green, Matt Rudge and Sophie Jones and music in documentary with film-maker Neil Crombie, composer Alex Parsons and editor Rupert Houseman. Sessions will cover presenting skills, how to get an idea out of your head and onto paper, guiding UGC in filming during isolation, improving your sound, diverse and inclusive casting, presenting skills and how to be a great freelancers and how to be a great entrepreneur.
  • 7.00 – 8.00 – peer-to-peer support sessions and socials.

There will also be mini writers’ rooms to support writers including first-time writers.


To Register

The detailed programme will be released a week at a time to allow everyone a chance to benefit.

All ScreenSkills events can be found in the directory here. Numbers will be kept modest in the first week of pilots but will be adjusted where possible after that to meet demand.

ScreenSkills politely ask freelancers not to over-book as we want to reach as many freelancers as possible. And if you need to cancel please let us know them we can release the place. They hope to record most industry great masterclasses and craft workshops and these will be shared at a later date for those freelancers who can’t make the allotted time or if sessions are over-booked.

In order to apply for opportunities, make sure you’re registered and logged in to your ScreenSkills account.


View all courses and register here.