Create & Explore

Our current workshops are happening with students from London, New York, and Taiwan! 

Try one of the film lessons, find a place to shoot or explore, and watch, read, or listen to something. Check back often for updates!


Assignment 1

Create a Digital


The majority of the media environment is fast paced and attention grabbing, it’s part of our consumer driven culture. This assignment is to slow down and see what is right in front of you. Explore your environment with your camera like an artist with a sketchbook. Things that seemed boring become fascinating as you look longer and in more detail. Look for shadows, reflections, emptiness, density, color, and light. Experiment with your camera angles, get close, hold your camera low to the ground or climb up to gaze down, don’t be afraid to move around to get the right angle. Capture around 5 shots that when assembled make about 1 minute in length.

Some camera tips as you begin shooting...

  • If using a phone, shoot horizontally whenever you can
  • Zoom with your body, not with the zoom function on your camera (when possible)
  • Make sure your shots are AT LEAST 5-10 seconds long, if not longer
  • Always keep an eye on where the light is coming from and adapt to it.
  • Experiment!

As a bonus try this method for really slowing down and looking.

  • Find a view that you want to observe quietly,
  • Close your eyes for a minute and focus on your breath.
  • Open your eyes and use your camera to shoot for 30 seconds.

Learn more by watching this Lens on Climate Change video.


Assignment 2

Collaborate with friends by
creating an online image bank.


Gather footage from a group of your friends into a shared online folder. Each of you makes a 1 minute film from the shared footage, or one person volunteers to be the editor of your collaborative film. Watch your movies together!

Tips and Hints: You can use Google Drive if you have access to that.


  1. Get in touch with your fellow filmmakers. 

  2. There are many ways to start collecting footage. It helps if your group agrees on something in common. Feel free to come up with your own connections. 

    Here is one way: Start with a question. For example: What washes up on the shores near you? Where did it come from? How does the water you drink get to your glass? Where does the water you wash in go? Are there any legends about the sea where you live? What calms you down? (you can use footage shot in assignment #1). Tell me about your community? What does water mean in your community? What is outside your window? What would change if there was 50 percent more water? How would it change if there was 50 percent less water?

  3. Each of you responds to the question with footage you shoot and drop it into the shared folder.

  4. Edit! Will your film be poetic or informative?
    How will it flow? Think about it having a beginning, middle and an end. Consider sound and text.

    Tips and Hints: Look at Walter Murch’s 6 Rules. Have fun but break the rules whenever you want!

  5. Watch your films together either online, or set up a screening. 

    Reflect afterwards: What is surprising? How would you do it differently next time? Hatch a new plan!

A great example of an ongoing collaborative film:




Visit a

Take a trip to explore what scientists have discovered about the waters near you.

New York City


Dead Horse Bay
Brooklyn, NY


Manhattan Virtual Tours
New York Times


Gowanus Dredgers
Brooklyn, NY


Valentino Pier
NYC Parks


Marine Park Salt Marsh
Brookyln, NY


Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge
Audubon Society



Thames Festival Trust
Meet The Modern Mudlarkers


Mudlarking on the Thames
London, England


Execution Dock
London, England


The Lost River Fleet
London, England


Fantastical Fleet
Self-Guided Digital Tour


Discover Ship Wrecks and London’s Maritime History


London, England


Houseboats of Regents Canal
London, England



Fishing Harbor


Donggang in


Kinmen County Fisheries
Research Institute


Beishan Broadcast


Watch works by artists engaged with environmental issues.

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