Words: Ciarán Howley
Images: Griffith College
The college is launching 12 new courses designed to prepare future filmmakers, photographers and visual artists for a rapidly changing and demanding industry.
Following more than 20 years of educating some of Ireland’s finest graduates of filmmaking and photography, Griffith College has launched its new faculty of Creative Arts and Screen Media with a range of Level 6, 7 and 8 courses focused on new media. 12 brand new courses have been developed to prime students with a deeper understanding of the conceptual and practical elements of producing film, photography and visual art.
The faculty will provide students with state-of-the-art equipment, mentorship from the industry’s finest and a wide range of skills to keep up in the competitive creative industries.
Budding filmmakers and photographers can expect a range of next-gen courses covering everything from screenwriting and concept development to practical photography, cinematography, directing, special effects and more.
Filmmaker Tanya Doyle is the Head of Faculty at the faculty of Creative Arts and Screen Media. Doyle will be bringing a lifetime’s worth of experience to her governing role of the programme, as creative director of her own independent studio Marmalade Films and the award-winning director behind the Radharc docu-series.
What’s more, she’s vocal about the courses’ intertwined industry links; in the creative industries building a strong network is key to a long and successful career.
“The creative industries are built on personal relationships and creating networks. Many of our lecturers are working industry practitioners who bring current industry insights into the classroom and also bring our students out on location or to post production houses, so they can meet people and gain an insight into how the industry works. As part of our BA in Film, TV & Screen Media Production we have a structured work experience placement in our level 7 and level 8 programme to assist students in gaining a foothold in the industry.”
Lecturers at the Creative Arts and Media faculty are not only experts in their respective fields but scouted from a wide variety of disciplines. According to director of the Photography programme Sinéad Murphy, this is to give students a layered foundation of knowledge and skills.
“We teach the practical and technical skills alongside the theory behind the medium. We believe in learning by doing. At the heart of what we do is story-telling, we want our students to not only have the ability to initiate concepts but to have the technical ability to create the content and see the idea through to the end. Our graduates not only know how to initiate a concept but are accomplished in the technical expertise to create the work around it.”
While practical skillsets are a necessity for today’s graduates, she adds that creative collaboration is essential to the ethos of the courses.
“From the beginning, our students work together, learn how to take feedback on board, and give presentations to their peers and tutors on their ideas. We strongly believe in providing our students with the tools necessary to enable them to stand out in the field.”
Quality filmmaking requires quality gear. And it’s fair to say students will have their pick when it comes to the top-notch equipment on offer.
Students at the faculty will have access to a fully equipped TV studio, photography studios, a wide array of cinematography equipment, camera equipment for loan, access to editing, colour grading and audio editing suite, on-location sound recording equipment, darkroom and processing room and, crucially, direct connections with the film and photography industries.
Know nothing about filmmaking or photography? That’s not a problem, as the syllabus for a programme at Creative Arts and Media at Griffith is designed for everyone from industry professionals looking to up skill to enthusiasts with any level of experience.
With guidance from some of the industry’s top professionals, these programmes begin from scratch and over the course of one to three years to produce excellent directors, screenwriters, photographers, cinematographers and more.
Visual media graduates from Griffith College in the past have gone on to work with BBC, RTÉ, Virgin Media Television, TG4, Fox Searchlight Pictures, Element Pictures and Universal Pictures, while photography graduates have created work for the likes of Canon, Google, Sports File, OPW, Rolling News and The Library Project, and more.
This thriving and growing faculty is an excellent film, TV and photographic education provider, with graduates proving themselves by winning awards nationally and internationally – namely Best Documentary Film at the Galway Film Fleadh, Best Film at the LGBTQ+ Toronto Film Festival and Best Documentary at the Irish Film & TV Awards
Emerging visual artists have also won mentorships with the Gallery of Photography Graduate Awards and RADAR in conjunction with Photo Ireland and Inspirational Arts.
For the creatively minded still unsure about what to put on their CAO next year, Griffith College’s industrious new programme is one to pencil in. The faculty also offers the courses as a part-time night course to mature applicants, with advanced entry options available for anyone with industry experience