Guest Writer: Lauren Fabiszak
It’s an indescribable feeling returning to a place that has so much significance in your life. Since spending the entirety of my junior year of college abroad, Newcastle, England has become that place for me.
During my months there, I became involved with Newcastle University’s television station, NUTV, as producer of some of their entertainment programming. When I showed some of their content videos to Professor Jay, we saw potential for collaboration between the two stations and immediately began the planning process for what would become “4K in the UK” teaching sessions. This was the first of its kind for Loyola University and to GreyComm. We spent the fall semester months in planning for the classes via web conferencing and communications. The arrangements were all set, but it didn’t feel real just yet.
In fact, wasn’t until I was actually sitting in one of the Newcastle classrooms again that my memories came flooding back, and it was surreal to see Jay standing up there and teaching.
Starting the first session felt like everything had come full circle and was the way it was meant to be. Students were introduced the class to Jay’s teaching style, “edutainment”, which is technical training in an entertaining manner that is interactive and is learner centered.
The first half of the day entailed professional approach to video editing with Adobe Premiere. These tips, as Jay mentioned, are intended to take the video editor from a basic level and then move them to a level of intermediate operation and use. I definitely benefitted from the strategies and shortcuts. The second half of the day entailed backpack video production, a process where students were instructed in field production through the use of mobile devices and cameras to gather media content to stories across platforms. The Newcastle students had great things to say about the experience, and this was only day one.
It was great to see many of the same people return for this second day sessions, along with new students that signed up and joined in on the learning. As the hands-on learning progressed, it was reassuring to see the increase in student excitement to learn more and ask questions. We worked more with video editing, this time with Photoshop for broadcast, and more video editing with the focus on high dynamic range, wide color gamut and color grading, just to name a few.
We headed over to Quayside to begin the backpack shooting session on the River Tyne. Jay worked with aerial drone footage and captured timelapse video of the landmarks. Standing at the water’s edge, back in Newcastle again but this time for a completely different experience, one based on extending service to others, was incredibly gratifying. This ended the second day of the training session.
In the blink of an eye, the final day of the 4K in the UK sessions had come. Prior to the class, Jay connected with the group at Angel of the North for some more drone action.
As a way to wrap up, the last session included a “What are those buttons on my camera” portion that featured a live demonstration with Canon and Panasonic digital cameras. They were encouraged to bring their own equipment, which many did and learned through application of what was learned.
This seemed to excite everybody the most, since some the students were not accustomed to having a professor individually work with them on the equipment they will use in the professional world. I thought that spoke volumes to how invaluable these workshops were to students and am thankful of the dedication to bringing these workshops to fruition.
We filmed reviews from many students about what they learned from the sessions in total. My favorite was from a young lady that said “I feel like all that I’ve learned in my course over 3 months, I could have learned with these sessions for one week”.
Being able to connect not only with British students, but with those from all over the world (Spain, India, Belgium, Netherlands, and more) in our mutual passion for and desire to learn more in media production was a truly exclusive and eye-opening experience. I really felt that Professor Jay and GreyComm had made a difference in these students’ career journey, and it was obvious that this was only the beginning of a new venture that will extend to even more international outlets in the future.
It made me realize how much of a blessing GreyComm has been to my time at Loyola, because this kind of teaching is so rare, yet incredibly needed.