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Bristol Experimental Film Workshops

Come along to see what Experimental Film is all about!  Filmmaking on the edges: interrogate your medium, change the perspective, wreck the lens, burn the frame, extend your senses. Work closely with experts in their field to learn experimental film practices and processes, including skills and methods in animation, sound, image, props, costume and set design, digital/analogue translations, different film gauges, projection/installation and exhibition, experimental film concept and context.

LEVEL: Suitable for ages 16+ and beginner to intermediate level

Sessions are on the following dates – full details below

SATURDAY 30th July   :    SATURDAY 13th August   :   SATURDAY 20th August

COST: £5/4 per workshop session

Workshops take place at BEEF’s current home: The People’s Republic of Stokes Croft, 14 Hillgrove St, Bristol.

SIGN UP: Email : with subject BREAK THE RULES! State which workshop(s) you wish to book a place on with your name, contact number, and email.

DAY ONE : Saturday 30th July  :  EXPLORING YOUR MEDIUM

This set of workshops may be taken singly or together. Close attention will be paid to the role of sound and the senses in experimental film, the advantages and creative applications of different film formats and the consideration of audience.

10-12 am: Elspeth Penny: Narrative – Communicating through Media 

A narrative is the unfolding of a structured communication to an audience. Story, genre, time, space, theme, style, plot, characterisation and dialogue, sound, movement, image. This workshop uses practical exercises to explore theme – and how a well worked out theme effects everything we communicate.

Elspeth Penny makes films, tv, literature, theatre…. always ideas led. An experienced creative workshop leader, Elspeth has taught for over fifteen years, including running an MA module in Narrative at Norwich University of the Arts, and loves to work with people of any age and level of experience.

1-3pm: John Hodgson: Antiquarian and Current Film Gauges                                  

Using 16mm and 9.5mm equipment and stock, this workshop will have a historical tone and will be combined with practical exercises.

John Hodgson began making films as a 1960s teenager, trying out various genres and modes including 9.5mm and 16mm film and analogue video.  We shall explore the history of some of these formats with examples of John’s work over the years.

4-6pm: Shirley Pegna: Sonic Hide and Seek – Exploring & Listening            

This workshop offers experiences of ear extensions, creative cooperation, enhanced listening, explorative clambering and tea drinking.

Shirley Pegna is a sound artist and musician based in Bristol and member of BEEF. She is interested in sound and vibration travelling through different materials, exploring it as a connecting agent over extreme long distances as well as for more localised sounding events.

DAY TWO : Saturday 13th August

12-4pm: Deborah Weinreb: Abstract film documents. 

A four hour workshop making short abstract film documents of Stokes Croft. You will be shown a range of visual inspirations. Go local to shoot and then we will review what has been captured. This session should prove to be fun, experimental and relaxed. No experience necessary. Please let us know what camera you have (smart phones are fine).  A small number of basic digital cameras can be provided on request.

Deborah Weinreb is a practising artist and photographer. In this context she is interested in how small amounts of visual information can illuminate a great deal.


1-3pm: Vicky Smith: direct on film animation                                             

Through the method of marking directly onto film, principles of animation such as metamorphosis, timing, sequences and motion analysis will be learnt. Experimental film factors of the single frame, rhythm, continuity /discontinuity and drawing sound will be considered.

Vicky Smith has been making animated films for 30 years and has exhibited work internationally. She has run many hands-on filmmaking workshops.

4-6pm: Alex Stevenson: filmic processes through improvised costume                                          

An exploration of filmic processes through improvised costume. With costume and film-makers Alexander Stevenson and Hannah Sullivan.

Alexander Stevenson mines information using processes usually associated with anthropologists, historians and researchers to create artworks, journeys and films. Huge fabric sculptures, live theatrical performances and costumed narratives generated from remote locations are just some of the outcomes of these interests. The work is informed by knowledge systems; how history is made and re-made through storytelling, objects and activities. Previously I’ve looked at how cultural activities, shared beliefs and personal myths can be appropriated, amalgamated, or re-presented.

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Creative Network

Mon, 11/04/2016 - Sat, 31/12/2016

Business development workshops due to start soon. The Creative Network team will be hosting regular business forums for anyone who works or wants to work in the arts and design.

We are a not-for-profit organisation with learning and development at the heart of what we deliver for creative and cultural professionals . It's run by a small team of dedicated professionals who will be launching with its first rolling programme of business forums for individuals who want developmental support to increase opportunities and income. If you are a start-up, self-employed, freelancer, or employee seeking to engage in the business dimmensions of your work then Creative Network is where you belong.


The business forums offer opportunities to meet up regularly and discuss business topics related to your work, your sector and explore business and charity sectors where your work may be a good fit. You'll map out your plans and together we feedback and review progress. We believe that continual face-to-face support is vital to thrive in your professional career whichever route you go.

Running a business or working as a freelancer takes dedication and lots of hard work yet at the same time you need to feel confident to sell and deliver. Creative Network evolved from the need to set up a learning and development community that provides low cost straight forward business training workshops alongside exploring artistic and cultural values. We run on a regular basis to ensure that professionals don't suffer from isolation - which can be detrimental to success - so the forums are as much about learning as well as developing positive momentum so that you feel motivated to get on and do your thing. Our aim is to help you gain clarity with where you're going and start discussions surrounding your creative development coupled with developing a business savvy approach. Find out more on our website

We run the forums on a membership basis where you'll benefit from face-to- face support, seminars, action learning with focused strategic thinking challenges, whilst at the same time growing your networks and forging interesting connections. If you are ambitious and serious about your own success then dedicate time to think about where you want to be within your work, and, we'll help you build confident strategies to move forward. You'll get qualified and experienced experts and peer-topeer critques to talk through and review your ideas as well as reflecting on progress.


Forthcoming cultural locations to run this programme are planned in Stroud, Bristol, Tewkesbury and Bath. Our first programme kicks off at Museum in the Park in Stroud. Other locations for January 2017, are at Create Centre in Bristol and The Roses Theatre in Tewkesbury. From June 2017 we will be running in Bath. Our learning and development community is open to all those who work in the creative and cultural sectors who are at all levels. We also welcome freelancers who provide management and administrative support within the creative and cultural industries. To register interest send us a note

Connect with us online
Twitter @CPDbusinessclub
Instagram @creative_network_southwestuk

The business forums are facilitated by founder of Creative Network, Abbi Kirby (MBA), who is a creative industry management specialist. She provides background business development for the arts, working with charities, organisations, micro-businesses, freelancers, and job seekers. Her areas of expertise are in helping individuals and groups in understanding and managing their artistic vision to help define confident goals, develop robust business strategies, pinning down management processes and nurturing creative development. See more at:

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