Class-Specific Information

Failure to adhere to these guidelines will result in loss of equipment privileges and potential disciplinary action, including failure in the associated course or on the comprehensives project.

Overview: The aim of production courses in the Media Arts and Culture Department at Occidental is to combine media history, theory, and practice with perspectives on visual culture afforded by our location within an Art History and Visual Arts department. We keep our equipment, facilities, and courses current with trends in the field, but we are not a trade school, nor are we seeking to blankly emulate mainstream models of production. Occidental offers the chance to pursue Media Arts and Culture in a liberal arts environment. Approaching theory and practice simultaneously in one of the major metropolitan centers of the world, informed by study abroad opportunities and interdisciplinary learning, is a rare and unique opportunity. Your production work must therefore be characterized by resourceful and creative use of the materials at hand, rather than falling prey to the myth that producing groundbreaking media requires access to more money or more specialized equipment.

Form and Content: The MAC department trains students in digital video workflows. Use of the department's cameras, equipment, and software platforms designated for your course context is required unless otherwise cleared by the faculty member.

Student Filming Policies: Familiarize yourself with the rules and regulations listed in the Student Production Handbook (SPH). Ignorance is not a defense. Your course professor, Diana Keeler (Manager of Digital Production; dkeeler@oxy.edu), and the Student Production Coordinator all have office hours to clarify any questions or concerns you have.

Hazardous or Restricted Shooting Conditions: It is strongly advised to avoid writing projects that involve weapons, stunts, minors, special effects, moving vehicles, multiple locations, large numbers of extras, or excessive costuming and production design. The aforementioned come with safety, logistical, and monetary restrictions outside the means and time constraints of Occidental projects and have historically distracted students from the core explorations of innovative form, content, and exhibition, with poor result. Refer to the Making Sure Your Project is Safe section of the SPH and ask your faculty member if ever in doubt about an activity or approach.

Budget Caps: You are requred to adhere to any budget caps set by the department or your faculty member on student project expenses to ensure equity. Be smart! Think within the means and materials you have at your disposal from the very start in crafting and realizing your concept. Don’t write an impractical project and then purport to be the victim of your own writing or lack of forethought. Ingenuity and creative use of resources will be evaluated as a part of project grading. For Advanced-level productions ASP grants (up to $300) are available each semester through the College's Undergraduate Research Center. Seniors are also eligible to crowdfund for Senior Comprehensives projects. All granting processes require advanced planning and consultation with your faculty member and cannot be left until the last minute. Refer to the Budgeting section of the Student Production Handbook.