This policy is based on published information on equipment access found in the online Graduate Student Handbook, plus additional equipment and guidelines more recently added. The purpose of the policy is to provide clarity for students, staff, faculty and management.
While we want our graduate students to have as much access as possible to our equipment, the requests must be in synch with the limits and capabilities of our Studio Staff, who typically handle upwards of 600 equipment bookings a year, each requiring preparation, check out, check in and maintenance, as well as ensuring fairness and equity to other students.
Equipment for Course Assignments and Thesis Workshopping
Typically, an MFA production course (like Documentary, Short Narratives, Process or Hybrid Fiction) requires that graduate students produce one final assignment, to be made outside of classroom hours, usually, a short (5-7 min) final project, using minimal equipment. In addition, some classes have additional assignments (very minimal in scale) that require equipment and/or studios. Bookings per assignment can be for up to 3 days, plus 1-day pick-up and 1-day return, pending availability.
The following is a list of cameras and camera packages available to graduate students to sign out for course assignments in the Fall/Winter terms and for work-shopping scenes/techniques for thesis films:
- 5 Panasonic AF100 Digital Cameras
- 1 Panasonic HPX 250 Digital Camera
- 5 Canon 7D Digital Camera
- 2 GoPro Hero4 Black Cameras
- 7 Bolex Film Cameras – 16 mm & Super 16mm
- 6 Super 8 Film Cameras
- Standard lenses
- 3 Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Cameras
- 2 Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera packages which include follow-focus, matte box, NPF batteries, large capacity SD card, 9” HD Panasonic monitor, Opticon prime lenses (16mm, 25mm, etc.) and adapter for SRII prime lenses
Example of an acceptable equipment request for a course assignment or thesis workshop shoot:
- 1 camera (from above list) + standard lenses or camera package
- 1 tripod
- 1 light kit (up to 3 lights)
- 1 set sound (mic, lavalier kit, recorder)
More elaborate items such as a 17” Panasonic field monitor, doorway dollies, C-stands, large lighting and grip requests, walkie-talkies, etc. are reserved for thesis work and will not be available for assignments/workshopping.
Please note that all equipment is subject to availability and that requests for equipment for class assignments outside of the term associated with the course will not be granted.
Equipment for Thesis Film Shoots
The following larger, higher-end camera packages are available to graduate students for their thesis films (fiction, doc, alt) during the April 1st to August 31st window of graduate student priority, ideally for a single block of up to 6 days (plus 1-day pickup and 1-day return), and in special cases, for a maximum of 2 blocks of up to 6 days each (plus 1-day pickup and 1-day return):
- 2 SRII Super 16 Film Cameras with lenses
- 2 Red One MX Cameras with lenses (now becoming outdated but available if desired)
- 2 Canon C-300 Mark II Camera with lenses
- 2 Sony FS-7 cameras
- 17” Panasonic field monitor, doorway dollies, C-stands, large lighting and grip requests, walkie-talkies, etc.
If students request equipment for extended periods they may have access to the Blackmagic packages cited above:
- 2 Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera packages which include follow-focus, matte box, NPF batteries, large capacity SD card, 9” HD Panasonic monitor, Opticon Super 16 prime lenses (16mm, 25mm, etc.) and adapter for SRII prime lenses
Please note that you must submit the DOP’s CV and short statement of their training/ experience to the Studio Manager and the Equipment Room Allocation Co-ordinator, copied to your Supervisor and the Graduate Programme Director, for approval. In addition, you must obtain email approval of the shoot from your Supervisor and provide a production plan that indicates you have adequate crew, vehicles, production insurance and a well-planned shooting schedule to support these packages.