2nd Annual NCL Film Festival Awards

The second annual NCL Film Festival premiered at Committee Room No 9 in the centre of Glasgow last night. Students, family and friends from all our levels of courses gathered in the function suite at the venue to watch a programme of short films, documentaries, show reels and edited highlights from student work over the course of this academic year.

Mr Robert Macrae (NC), Michael Grant (Lecturer) Ronan Smith(NC), Jack Gartley(NC)

After the programme, a selection of awards were given in categories established at last years event, with ten NCL “Oscars” up for grabs. These included awards for best male and female actors, cinematography, sound design, documentary and the best short narrative film. HN students were also competing for the best graded unit submission at both HNC and HND levels.

The best HND student showreel was also awarded and there were some particularly strong submissions from our final year students in this category, which was won by Chloe Cummins for her Cinematography showreel.

For a full run down of the winners in each category click on the photo’s in the gallery below and visit our student film archive at this site where all the winning features will be made available to view over the next few months.

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2ND Annual NCL Film Festival

We are proud to announce that the 2nd Annual New College Lanarkshire Film Festival will take place on Thursday 13th June at 6.30pm in Committee Room No.9 (John Street, Glasgow).

Traditionally the festival has been organised by staff but this year the students took over the running of the festival themselves due to the Film & TV department’s lecturers bowing out due to industrial action. 10 Awards will be handed out across the 3 course groups including Best Director, Best Showreel and Best Graded Unit.

“As a team, we made the decision to give over the running of the festival to the HNDTV students and set them the challenge of securing a venue, organising awards and deciding on a running order for the evening.

The essential skills on show included Communication and Working with others and they were able to demonstrate both maturity and the required organisational skills when dealing with external clients.

They are a highly motivated bunch who will do well going forward into the industry or into Higher Education. Myself and the team would like to take this opportunity to thank all the students for their hard work and dedication to Filming throughout the year.”

– Alan Moffat: Film & TV Lecturer


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20 things you wanted to know about the Union but were afraid to ask…

Cumbernauld EIS members striking on 5th Feb 2019

Recently, a couple of students from HND TV raised a petition in order to gain support for the scrapping of the Parking Fees that have recently been applied in Cumbernauld Town centre. As students, they feel as though they are being unfairly punished for attending college and they are attempting to gather as many signatures from staff, students and businesses alike…we’ll have more on this at a later date…

Within the Film & TV department, we regularly debate with our students the merits of questioning how news is represented through the Media and the one thing we ask our students is not to place all their trust in what they see, hear and read without properly researching and investigating an issue or a piece of news.

As part of the Law and the Communications Industry unit we discussed Media Regulation and the various laws surrounding Media reporting. Last month we covered the BBC News Coverage of strike action taken by EIS members across colleges in Scotland. We discussed how nuanced debate often gets lost in the need to deliver a quick soundbite. The students, largely young and still to properly embark on their journey into the world of work, understood implicitly the need to protect worker’s rights. They also understood the need for solidarity and how important a collective spirit is when it comes to working together effectively.  

We had a discussion on Trade Unionism in Scotland and the history of famous trade union battles including Jimmy Reid‘s Upper Clyde Shipbuilders work-in, the Miners strike and the impact de-industrialisation had on communities such as Ayrshire, Lanarkshire and Fife in the 80’s and the Trade Union Act which means you need a 50% turnout of eligible members to be legally valid. We looked at the editorial decisions during the news coverage of the Battle of Orgreave and we discussed how dangerous the Media can be when it comes to the mis-representation of facts.

Yesterday saw teaching staff across all three campuses embark on a second day of strike action. I had discussed this with students last week and they raised some excellent questions about the validity of the strike action. We were able to agree on the subject of fairness and the idea that public sector cost-of-living wage rises need to be consistent and any offer has to be consolidated. I also reiterated that teaching staff do not like strike action as it invariably impacts on both teaching staff and students. I told them I get very well paid for the job I do in the context of wider society. However, I also pointed out that some Principals in FE were paying themselves more than the First Minister of Scotland. They all laughed at this!!!

Sadly, this is not a joke. We are living in an age where there are some lecturers who are feeding students because they have not eaten. Our core student demographic in Lanarkshire region is largely poor and disenfranchised. They are particularly vulnerable to the vagaries of the modern workplace with zero hour contracts and an erosion of rights which would make a Victorian Mill owner envious.

The perfect storm looms as Brexit approaches and now more than ever, to coin Tony Blair’s famous mantra, we need “Education, Education, Education” to distinguish fact from fiction.   

Alan Moffat
Film & TV Lecturer (and EIS Cumbernauld Branch Convener)​

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HN and NQ students film STV’s “Strictly Kids”

NCL Cumbernauld campus students from the departments of Hair & Make-up and Film & Television recently attended the “Strictly Kids” event at the Doubletree Hilton in Glasgow, in aid of STV’s Children’s appeal.

The hair and make-up students were on hand to help prepare the dancers before the competition began and Film & TV students Chloe & Sammi Cummins and Naailah Aslam took stills and shot footage of the day’s event.

“It was great to see students from all three levels (NQ, HNC & HND Film & Television) come together and work as a team. It was a long day where they were tasked with getting as much coverage as possible in order to produce a “highlights” piece. They were able to use their initiative on the day and the footage we now have will give us lots of options in the edit.  

It was also great to see two ex-students working on the production. Mark McLellen was engineering sound with AV events company VisionHire and Kevin Walls was freelancing as a camera operative for STV.  This demonstrates that sometimes hard work and perseverance does pay off. I asked them both if they missed college. They both said “No” which is a good thing!!!”

Alan Moffat: Film & Television Lecturer

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HNC Students stage event and raise awareness on suicide

HNC Fashion Photographic Make-up students from Cumbernauld campus recently organised an event as part of their employment experience unit. The event was held in conjunction with Chris’s House, a Lanarkshire based charity which is a ‘Centre for Help, Response and Intervention Surrounding Suicide’.

Debbie Tominey, Lisa Johnston and Sarah O’Doherty were interviewed on the day about the purpose and theme of the catwalk.

The overall event was documented by NQ Film & Photography students Paige Graham, Jack Gartley, Kieran White and Robert MacRae.

“The students who helped organised the event did an excellent job on the hair & make-up and it was nice to witness first hand how they all pulled together as part of a team to make it happen. The charity, Chris’s House, do a brilliant job and it is a credit to see our students getting involved in raising awareness around suicide”

-Karen Milligan, CQL Hair & Beauty

“Debbie, Lisa and Sarah were brilliant on camera and were able to give an excellent overview of the day and what it meant to them. Our NQ Students were superb and they stepped into their roles at short notice and were able to come back with a lot of coverage and some great photographs from the day. It’s also great to see students working across Faculties”

– Alan Moffat, Lecturer, Film & TV

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The Big Draw: Art Workshop

HND Art students, Neil Silvester and Ross Arthur recently put together a unique visual arts workshop for members of the public as part of The Big Draw, their event was held at the National Shooting Centre in Slamannan.

They were accompanied by HNC Television students Hannah Love, Donald MacLeod and Michael Donaghey who documented the day.

Big Al’ shows them how it’s done!

“Ross and Neil’s “Painting with Guns” was an interesting take on mark making and the work they produced reminded me of some of the Boyle family work (Sheila is not part of that family, but her work is very good!).

The TV students who turned out to film that day did a great job in filming the event and I enjoyed shooting a shotgun for the first time. I even hit the target…although more a case of beginner’s luck to be honest!”

-Alan Moffat, Film & Television Lecturer

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Sound and Vision Promotional Trailer

Three former NCL HND graduates have created a new promotional video for New College Lanarkshire’s Film/TV and Sound Production departments.

Film and Television alumni Johnny Lynn and Duncan Formosa and Sound Production graduate Kieran Greig were tasked with producing a promotional short to highlight the skillsets and equipment utilised in the areas of Film/TV and Sound production.

The brief included a directive to show both the facilities and equipment available to students at the college’s Cumbernauld campus and to give an insight into the production processes involved in moving image and sound production. The group developed an innovative and simple treatment based around the equipment setup and filming of a live band in the recording facilities at the campus and scheduled a shoot to take place over a couple of days during the Summer recess.

The Glasgow  band “Black Cat Revue” fronted by former HND Film and Television student Garry Thomson lent their services to the project and the three man crew were given access to the department’s facilities and extensive range of Film and Sound Production equipment to capture the many shots and sounds needed to make the feature.

“Everyone across the departments of Film/TV and Sound Production is delighted with the 2018/19 promo’ and it’s particularly satisfying to have been able to commission three graduates from our courses to create and produce this feature for us.

They’ve delivered a very creative and professional promotional feature within budget and on schedule. Who better to advertise our specialisms and courses? “

-Michael Grant, Film & Television Lecturer.

“It has been great to witness the collaboration between former film and sound production students on this project. The creative sound design by Kieran has elevated the quality of the promo to a truly professional level and will stand as a great example for future students of the power of sound for moving images.”

-Andreas Jonsson, Sound Production Lecturer.

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The Sound Of The Underground

HND Film and Television student James Reid and lecturer Alan Moffat recently followed a team of students from the HND Sound Production course down into the Inchindown underground oil tanks in Invergordon, Ross-shire to document a very special ambient recording project.

Tasked with capturing a sound source in an acoustically interesting environment, Erin McHugh, Andrew Napier, Joseph Welsh & Shaun Cassidy set up a surround sound recording environment in one of the chambers at the now disused oil depot.

One of the oil chambers at Inchdown

The chambers hold the record for having the longest reverberation time in a man-made structure and as such, are often sought out by audio enthusiasts hoping to experience this unique characteristic. For their project the group recorded current NQ Creative Industries student Matthew Hardie playing a composition on violin in a space very few have had the privilege to access.

“The filming at Inchindown presented us with some major challenges in relation to the logistics and the technical requirements of filming in the dark. Jim had to work around ISO settings, aperture and depth of field whilst ensuring he did not slip in oil and potentially hurt himself and damage the kit.

To add to this, it was a 7 hour return journey and when he got dropped off at his house just before midnight he remarked that it had been “a long day that went in very quickly”. I told him it would be the first of many!!!”

-Alan Moffat, Film & TV Lecturer

For more information and photo’s from this project please visit the Sound Production department’s blog at this link

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Albert Lucas: Showreel

“The idea for the showreel is to craft a narrative of some sort.. I want to use more than one soundtrack so I can demonstrate editing to different pacing. I plan to introduce the showreel with the titles, showing my name and that it’s an editing and cinematography showreel. Then I plan to move into some footage of Glasgow and show it as a normal showreel. 

I then plan to use a glitch effect to transition into my black and white footage. After transitioning into the black and white footage I will use another glitch effect to go into really cinematic footage showing off the best of the stuff I’ve done. Using creative transitions and showing a wide variety of shots.”

– HND Film & Television Student Albert Lucas

Albert’s showreel demonstrated his skills in both production and post-production processes and matched his strong cinematography to a complex and tightly synced edit.

By using the concept and look of VHS tape he managed to find a narrative idea that tied his sequences together and offered dramatic emphasis to the structure of his reel.  The post-production, animation, colour grading and editing skills he brought to this project are advanced and show great skills not only with the software but how to effectively use these parameters to finesse the moving image.

Albert spent a great deal of time researching audio tracks before beginning his edit of the assembled footage.  We often hear very generic copyright free tracks that students throw into the edit with little thought or grace,  the amount of time Albert spent researching and deliberating over the soundtrack resulted in three strong pieces of music that gave him different rhythms to edit to and greatly elevated his finished reel.

He also submitted a strong portfolio that archives the many features he worked on during his HN course and showcases his design and photography skills in a professional looking site.  Click the screenshot below to visit.

The obvious labour of love that went into his showreel is evident to any viewer and he thought very carefully about the myriad of details that go into a project like this. As a result this submission won “Best Showreel”  at our inaugural Film Festival at the CCA this year and sets a new benchmark for our HND Film and Television students.

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Cameron Shaw: Showreel

Student Cameron Shaw produced this reel for his HND Film and Television graded unit to showcase his camera operation and editing skills. It features live performance, gigs, short films, music videos and other promotional material, including the National Theatre of Scotland’s Shift project and New College Lanarkshire’s graduation ceremony, held in Glasgow’s Royal Concert Hall in November 2017.

After shooting relatively few features during his previous HNC year, Cameron needed to significantly add to his portfolio of films during his HND to be able to produce a varied and interesting showreel.

Over the course of his final year he was involved in many productions, as part of the crew on his classmate’s shoots and undertaking many extra curricular projects, and his camera operation skills were greatly improved as a result.

Cameron is continuing his studies at degree level after the Summer with the University of the West of Scotland.

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