Course Descriptions

The classes listed below are not necessarily offered every term. For current class schedules, or to register, select Register Now .

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  • ACN-254

    Art of Movie Trailer

    This class will explore the art and evolution of the movie trailer as well as examine the processes, strategies and techniques used to create the trailers that generate interest in a motion picture, build excitement and drive box office. Trailers are often the art of condensing, distilling, packaging, and positioning an existing - or soon-to-be-existing - film into a short, provocative format. Sometimes it involves creating new materials from outside the movie to enhance the story and experience. But it's always about deciding which story to tell and telling it in an exciting way. Course will also examine how these approaches apply to films beyond Hollywood blockbusters, including independent features, student films, shorts and documentaries. An ideal course for writers, copywriters, editors, filmmakers, advertising professionals and anyone who wants an inside perspective on how this increasingly vital commercial art form is created. Based on your individual goals, you will research, conceive and develop trailer concepts in the class through a proof-of-concept pitch - either verbal, script, PowerPoint, or rough edit. Prerequisites: access to a computer with a word processor and/or basic editing software (editing not required.)

    2 units

    Class regularly offered in Fall and Spring

  • ACN-401W

    Color in Photography

    Delve into a world of color! Through readings, critiques, lectures and assignments, we will explore color theories, how color is created, color as a cultural tool and the history of color photography. We will also examine technical and practical issues such as color balance, additive and subtractive systems, proper color correction, color management and lighting. Classroom discussions will cover a diverse group of artists, including Alfred Stieglitz, William Eggleston, James Welling, James Turrell, Lita Albuquerque, Anish Kapoor, Mark Rothko and Yves Klein.

    Prerequisite: Basics of Digital Photography or by permission of an ArtCenter advisor. Required: access to a camera with manual controls for exposure and color balance; digital camera is preferred although a film camera with manual controls can be us.

    1.5 units

    Class regularly offered in Fall, Spring and Summer

  • ACN-152

    Intro to Filmmaking

    Learn the fundamental concepts and practices involved in filmmaking. In this course, directing and cinematography are closely linked and students explore methods that make a film play. Emphasis is on effective communication, storytelling and creative editing techniques for story enhancement. Students will make three short films. Required: access to a digital video camera and editing system (Art Center's cameras and computer lab facilities are not available for student use.

    2 units

    Class regularly offered in Fall, Spring and Summer

  • ACN-589W

    Powerful Presentations

    How to tell it so you can sell it. Whether you are a creative or business professional, you must learn to connect effectively with your audience and communicate your ideas in a compelling way. This inspirational workshop will help you hone one of the most critical and often overlooked skills that everyone must possess: the professional presentation. Learn how to take your presentation skills to the next level using words, voice, body language and visuals. Mastering these skills is vital to your professional success whether you are a designer, artist, entrepreneur or business leader.


    Class regularly offered in Fall, Spring and Summer

  • ACN-421W

    Screenwriting 101

    Too many screenwriters forget how liberating a blank page can be. It's actually the best time to experiment and develop your writerly instincts. This is an introductory course into the world of screenwriting for film and television from the perspective of a working screenwriter. We'll begin by unpacking the principals of scene construction and what's on the page, such as dialogue, tone, and character motivation. We will also explore what's not on the page, such as concept, genre, theme, and writing habits. Ultimately, this course will equip you with the resources you will need to move past your fears and begin your first screenplay.

    No prerequisite. Basic knowledge of filmmaking for movies and TV is beneficial but not required.

    2 units

    Class regularly offered in Fall and Summer

  • ACN-165


    This course provides an introduction to the versatile field of storyboarding.Class discussions and demonstrations will cover different styles and techniques of sequential art used in live action, animation and commercial applications. Through a combination of in-class and homework assignments, this course will teach you the necessary mechanics of visual storytelling and help you develop an individual and industry-typical style. Special guest speakers will round out the classroom experience. Students may draw by hand or work in digital formats using Wacom boards and laptops. Note: access to Art Center's computer facilities is not included. Please provide your own equipment and software if you wish to work digitally. This course is designed for students and professionals who wish to expand their skills or seek to develop their portfolios for entry into Art Center's full-time degree programs.

    2 units

    Class regularly offered in Fall and Spring