Ray Tallan, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland

Royal Conservatoire of Scotland Lecturer Ray Tallan

Ray Tallan, head of Film at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland visited NCL’s Cumbernauld campus last week to deliver a presentation to our current cohort of Film/TV students, highlighting the BA Filmmaking course at the Royal Conservatoire.

Two former NCL film students, Duncan Formosa and Colleen Bell have been lucky enough to go on and study at the Conservatoire,  which runs one of the most competitive and acclaimed film courses in the UK.

Ray’s presentation included information on course content, delivery and structure and a chance to see a variety of  features from the graduate’s final year submissions and Ray was kind enough to field a good number of questions from our students at the close of the presentation.

“The prestigious reputation that precedes the conservatoire could be seen as potential barrier for the demographic of student that attends NCL, however as a team we feel it’s important to instil the ambition, aspiration and autonomy necessary to view themselves as contenders for this course and institution. “

Alan Moffat: Film & TV Lecturer

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Meet our new Audio/ Video Technicians: Matthew Hardie & Peter Findlay

Fork Handles…Peter Findlay and Matthew Hardie

The Film & Television department are pleased to welcome Matthew Hardie and Peter Findlay to the team as our new Audio/Video Technicians.

Matthew is an alumni of NCL who began his academic journey in 2015, studying Sound Production and then Film & Photography.  In addition to his academic skills he is also a keen musician and multi-instrumentalist. 

Peter studied HND sound production at NCL and then progressed onto our BA Sound Production course at Cumbernauld campus. In his spare time Peter DJ’s and has a particular interest in electronic music production and remixing.

Their personal experiences here as former students means they already have a clear picture of how both the Sound and Film department’s work, but more importantly, some very specific plans about how the technical side of these courses can be improved going forward.

“It’s great to see two former student of ours in the department’s tech base and these posts are a great opportunity for Matthew and Peter to continue to develop and expand on the skill-sets they acquired through their courses.

They’re both conscientious and approachable and will be an invaluable link between lecturing staff and our student cohorts.”

Michael Grant:  Film & Television Lecturer.

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Maja Engnell: Showreel

“The music for my showreel is written and provided by my friend Saga Wahlström. The music is inspired by Woodkid’s “Run boy Run”. It is quite an up-tempo song with a sort of thrilling feel to it. In the middle of it, there is a slower, calmer part which helps building up to the last part of the song that is the climax.

I’ve built my showreel around the music and have chosen to mix the order of the clips. At first, I had planned to maybe include the clips in a specific film order, but I chose to mix it all together, and make them connect via the dialogue. I am a director and in order to showcase this, I am going to showcase my storytelling abilities with dialogue I’ve written via creative shots.”

-Maja Engnell. HND Film & Television.

Maja chose to highlight the vocational role of a director for her HND reel, showcasing sequences from six features that she directed during her HN course.  During the development of this reel she moved from grouping  sequences specifically from each feature to mixing up the footage, creating a meta narrative that explores the idea of visual storytelling.

She made some very sound creative and editorial choices throughout this process and we  were particularly impressed with the narrative and emotional thread Maja managed to weave into the reel by pulling together dialogue from her selection of films, making the reel work as a standalone feature.

Her choice of shots were dramatic and also aesthetically strong, and her edit had a good pace and dynamic structure which followed the rise and fall of the soundtrack she commissioned especially for this reel.

She also submitted a particularly strong planning and development stage for her Graded Unit Showreel/Portfolio project, which ultimately won her the award for Best HND graded unit at our 2019 Film Festival.


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Meet the new boss!

Film & Television Lecturer Kim Beveridge

The Film and Television department recently welcomed a new member of staff who will be teaching across all levels of our courses in the coming academic year.

Digital artist, film maker and video designer Kim Beveridge originally worked with the Film & Television department in 2018 on the “Shift” project, a large scale multi-media theatrical event, where she liased between the National Theatre of Scotland and NCL film  students to produce a series of  weekly magazine style videos.

Seth Hardwick, Emma Schad and Kim Beveridge brief HN Film & TV Students on the Shift project

“Kim has a wealth of experience in different sectors of the creative industries that she can share with our students and also brings a much needed female perspective to the department that reflects the fairly even gender split that we have seen in our cohorts of students over the last five years.”

-Michael Grant, Film & Television Lecturer

“Kim’s art school background is a perfect fit for our department given everyone within Film & TV is either a Glasgow School of Art or Duncan of Jordanstone Arts graduate.

The  industry experience she has accumulated over the last 15 years will be hugely beneficial to both staff and students within the department and her creative and innovative approach to learning will slot right into how we conduct teaching and assessment.”  

-Alan Moffat, Film & Television Lecturer

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Chloe Cummins: Showreel

“The reel will be a progression of my experience through college – all the projects, events and time I have spent towards working on my portfolio – so for me it will be especially nostalgic. I want to be able to have the viewer feel the same.”

– Chloe Cummins, HND Film & TV Student

Chloe’s work always demonstrated an advanced and highly tuned aesthetic sensibility, which greatly suits the vocation of a camera operator, and in her HND year she considerably upped her technical and practical skills to match this aesthetic.

Through a variety of projects, undertaken in her final year, she produced not only high quality footage, but much more valuably, invested that footage with the poetic and lyrical qualities that are the measure of someone with their own artistic vision. A considerable amount of time was also spent researching music to accompany her reel and in the end she settled for an understated and rather ambient track, which although fairly unusual within this format fitted her aesthetic perfectly. 

Her finished reel displayed a high level of practical skills in both production and post-production processes and strong creative decision-making during its development and as such won the award for best showreel and cinematography at this years NCL film festival.



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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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