Hi! My name is Susanna and I am about to start my sophomore year at John Cabot University. When I chose my major in Communications, I was not sure what I was getting myself into. This major covers a vast range of fields, such as advertisement to journalism, to cinema (which in turn have more sub categories). Like each Communications’ students, I have had no idea which road to embark on. In brief, I had to take some courses before understanding what thrilled me the most. And so this was just the beginning of my academic journey.
Last semester, I enrolled in “Foundations of digital video production” class, with Professor Thomson: without a doubt this course was the most hectic yet helpful course that I have ever taken during my two semesters at JCU. Thanks to this course, I understood what to focus on during my studies. The purpose of the course is to teach the process behind video production, from writing to the screenplay, from filming to editing. When I realized that I had no idea on how to write a screenplay or that I had never used a professional camera and that I did not even know the name of one program for editing purposes, I said to myself: “this course will be a disaster”.
However, this has been the most entertaining course where I learned, above all, the practical side of filmmaking, even though it is inevitable to avoid problems during filming at times. In fact, each group had to present a short film of 5-10 minutes at the end of the course. An ambitious project when you are a beginner. Among the problems I ran into, was when a noisy and loud motorcycle did not let us properly record the sound and one of the actors did not show up. The most memorable moment was when we should have shot a romantic scene by candle light and the hair of the main character caught on fire. All these particular situations have motivated our capacity to solve problems in the fastest way possible. This project also had us have a great laugh (at the end of the project I mean). For each problem we bumped into, we found a solution and during our whole time spent making the short film, we learned something new.
At the beginning, I did not believe that I would have been able to memorize so much information all at once. I have to thank my professor and his amazing patience, as well as the senior students that helped me gain the best possible experience during the lessons. Through this course I realized that I love to create a story and let it grow and become more complex. I love to take care of the smallest details and I like to work with people as passionate as me. I have also understood that working in a team is not always easy, but this is a skill that is essential to acquire!
Certainly this course has provided me with more energy and I have realized the path I wish to pursue: which is my own path: cinema and video making. I cannot wait to attend all the other courses that JCU has to offer in this field , such as the TV Studio Lab or Editing course; Remixing and Critical media practice course; and all the workshops aimed to teach me how to write a screenplay!
Susanna Di Martino
Class of 2019
Read the Italian version here.