Fully funded and partially funded places available

One evening per week, for six weeks online, over this course you explore the elements of visual storytelling through the preparation required for a creatively satisfying experience on set.

Using demonstrations and exercises you approach an example script to understand the preparation process and why it's so crucial. If you already have a well-developed script for a short film you can apply this learning to your own work and build your visual portfolio during the course.

Programme Overview

The course combines lectures, tutorials, examples and exercises that let you explore a visual approach to directing a short film script, following accepted industry practices. Through weekly assignments, you gain an overview of a director’s process in preparing for on set production. At the end of the course you will have created materials that can help you progress towards further study or development of a career in film.

Week One:

The Director's script breakdown
How to read a script as a director. Finding the core of the story, narrative point-of-view, theme and sub-themes of your short film. Genre, symbolism and visual metaphors. Breaking down the beats of a scene.

Week Two:

Screen Grammar
What types of shots enhance the story you want to tell? The impact of shot size and framing. The impact of lens selection and camera angle of view. Motivation for camera movement and the impact of moving the camera.

Week Three:

Rehearsing, Staging and Blocking a Scene Mise en scene
What it is and how to approach it. Rehearsing performance versus blocking action. How do you cast and prepare to work with actors? What language do you use and what are the common acting styles?

Week Four:

Production Design and Cinematography
Key creative relationships at the concept stage. Who does what, and how do they work together in pre-production to enhance the director’s vision. Lighting, shadow, texture and colour as storytelling tools. Mood boards as effective tools to communicate. The role that sound design will play to enhance the visual story

Week Five:

Pre-visualisation and Shot Planning
Building and communicating your creative vision. Previsualisation with storyboards, shot lists and lighting and camera plans. Methods and tools to develop the visual style of your film and communicate this to others.

Week Six:

On Set Direction
What happens when principle photography commences? What are the roles of the assistant directing (AD) team? How do you schedule an efficient shoot day while allowing for multiple takes and pickups? What is the role of a script supervisor and how do you ensure a smooth transition to the edit? How to prepare for directing on set.

Programme Facts

6 weeks – 1 evening per week

Every Thursday from 18:00 – 20:30


12th January 2023

20th April 2023


£0 with full funding*

£135 with partial funding*

*Funded and partially funded places are available for London residents who are 19 years old or older. We will confirm your funding status after an application is received.

Entry Requirements

Minimum age: 18
Minimum English Language level: Upper-Intermediate

Do you have a question about this course?

We’re here to help every step of the way. If you would like to book a call with a member of our Admissions Team please fill out the form linked.

Are you ready to Tell Your Story?

Our Tutors

Stéphanie began her career in story development at TF1 International and Canal Plus, worked as a story editor and screenwriter for French TV for several years, creating among others a Sci-Fi animated series for Luc Besson’s Europa Corp: VALERIAN & LAURELINE. Her first feature film, THE QUIET HOUR, a sci-fi thriller starring Dakota Blue Richards (The Golden Compass, Skins, Endeavour), premiered at Galway Film Fleadh, was nominated Best British Film at Raindance Film Festival, won Best Film at Kansas City Film Fest, sold to Sky Cinema and UK Amazon Prime in the U.S. and was distributed around the world. She is now producing THE LAST MOON, an elevated suspense horror film by Sean McConville (DEADLINE starring Brittany Murphy and Thora Birch).

Stéphanie Joalland,

Writing and Directing Tutor