Building Blocks of a Short Documentary

In this three-day workshop, PBS American Experience producer/editor and former FRONTLINE editor Eric Gulliver presented methods for constructing a story in short documentary film. From scene development to post-production workflow, Eric guided students through best practices for story editing.

The first day of this workshop focused on developing a theoretical understanding of editing for short film. On day two, participants built a toolkit of advanced storytelling and editing techniques. Day three focused on improving technical skills in Adobe Premiere Pro through hands-on training. Students left this workshop with a framework for post-production that takes into account the changing nature of deliverables across media platforms.

Interested in workshops like this? Check out our upcoming workshops.

Mobile and Social Media Engagement

Smartphones have made creating content for the web easy. But knowing the best apps to use for quality content creation, or the best social media platforms to grow your audience— that’s trickier.

Multimedia journalist Val Hoeppner guided participants through the ins and outs of various apps and social media platforms and recommended best practices for audience engagement and growth.

Apps covered: Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Canva, Enlight Videoleap Video Editor, VideoShop, Chart Maker Pro and Filmr.

If this workshop interests you, please check out our upcoming workshops.

Telling Family Stories in Multimedia

We all want to know more about who we are and where we came from (why else would DNA kits like 23andMe and sites like be so popular?). But how do we tell compelling digital stories about our families through archival video, photos and audio?

In this workshop, multimedia journalist and Montana Media Lab director Anne Bailey taught students how to record audio interviews with loved ones, digitize archival family photos and footage, and edit short, documentary-style videos in Adobe Premiere Pro.

Interested in workshops like this? Check out our upcoming workshops.

Short and Smart: Mobile Video

Learning to shoot high quality video on your smartphone is a game changer in the world of mobile storytelling.

Multimedia producer Val Hoeppner taught participants how to tell compelling video stories in 60-90 seconds for social media. Through hands-on exercises, students learned techniques for interviewing, capturing b-roll, sequencing and editing for impact.

If this workshop interests you, be sure to check out our upcoming workshops.

Telling Visual Stories with Data

Compelling, code-based data visualizations like those in The New York Times and FiveThirtyEight turn complex data into digestible information for the public.

In January 2020, Montana Free Press data reporter Eric Dietrich hosted a two-day workshop at the Montana Media Lab to guide participants through his workflow for creating data visualizations. Participants learned to clean, visualize and annotate data to produce graphics using Google Sheets, the code-based visualization tool Vega and Adobe Illustrator.

Eric also introduced the Jupyter Lab environment for working with data using open source Python tools, and discussed how to combine data visualizations with narrative reporting and storytelling. The workshop culminated with attendees producing their own data visualization using a data set of their choice.

Want to see what’s coming up next at the Lab? Check out our upcoming workshops.

Learning data visualization techniques at the Montana Media Lab helped me add another tool to my storytelling toolbox. As a recent college graduate, I felt like I was learning skills that will help give depth to my work and stand out above the crowd.

Matt Neuman
Higher Education Reporter | The Missoulian