1st Edition

Understanding Design in Film Production
Using Art, Light & Locations to Tell Your Story

ISBN 9781138058705
Published March 5, 2019 by Routledge
256 Pages 45 B/W Illustrations

USD $44.95

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Book Description

Great visual storytelling is possible on a minimal budget, but you have to spend a lot of energy thinking and planning. In Understanding Design in Film Production, author Barbara Freedman Doyle demonstrates how to use production design, cinematography, lighting, and locations to create an effective and compelling visual story, even on the tightest of budgets.

Featuring in-depth interviews with production designers, set decorators, construction coordinators, cinematographers, costumers, and location managers talking about the techniques of their craft, it provides you with a feel for what everyone on the visual team does, how they think and plan, and how best to utilize the knowledge and skills they offer.

This book guides you through how to find, secure, and manage the best locations, how to create and dress a set, and how to make old look new and new look old—all on a tight budget. With insights from experts at the top of their field, sharing how they plan for the real-world application of large-scale ideas, you’ll be able to see ways to apply their techniques to your own smaller-scale productions.

Understanding Design in Film Production is a practical, hands-on guide for any aspiring filmmaker who wants to understand the basic principles of visual design in order to create exceptional looking films.


Table of Contents


SECTION 1-Understanding Design In Film

Chapter 1-What Is Your Movie About?

Chapter 2-Some Components of Visual Design

Chapter 3-The Vision - and Collaboration

SECTION 2-The Collaborators

Chapter 4–Designing, Building, Painting

Chapter 5–The Decorator

Chapter 6-Locations

Chapter 7-Lighting and Picture

Chapter 8-Costumes and Props

Chapter 9-Visual Effects and Animation

Chapter 10-Why All This Talk About Authenticity?

SECTION 3-Your Low Budget Film or TV Project

Chapter 11-Putting All This Together

Chapter 12-Planning Your Project: Building it, Finding it, or Both?

Chapter 13-Shooting Your Film on Distant Location

Chapter 14-Your Process

Chapter 15-Practical Matters: Location Agreements, Permits, Insurance

Chapter 16-How to Be Your Own Location Manager

Chapter 17-What You Need to Do What You Want: Demystifying the Budget

Chapter 18-Learning the Craft: Starting Out

Chapter 19-Doing What You Want with What You Have: Student Films

Chapter 20-Visual Storytelling in Making the Sale

Chapter 21-Entering the Profession

Chapter 22-Suggested Viewing


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Barbara Freedman Doyle began her film career as the assistant to the Senior VP of Worldwide Production at Tri-Star Pictures. She continued to work her way up the freelance production ladder as a production coordinator and production supervisor on projects for CBS, NBC, Disney, TNT, Showtime, Hearst Entertainment, Hallmark, 20th Century Fox, Morgan Creek Productions, and Alcon Entertainment. She is the current Professor of Producing and heads the College to Career Program at Chapman University's Dodge College of Film and Media, and is a former Associate Dean of Production at the American Film Institute. She continues to consult on production for narrative and documentary film projects.


‘Much information covered that is of value to nearly all crew members, especially camera, lighting, producing. Succinct and written in a crew friendly manner.’

Roger Carter, DP and instructor of film production, cinematography, lighting and camera workshops

‘This book is a really comprehensive look into the workings of film and television production. It covers design, techniques for visual storytelling, departmental interactions, best practices in the industry and has a number of professional accounts that lend it a unique, personal take on collaborating effectively and making the most of your script.’

Margaret Goddard-Knop, SPFX Artist and Propmaster