This year we are re-imagining Mentors into a monthly seminar series called “Cinematic Conversations.” “Conversations” will include trending topics, technique topics, and topics to provide you with the foundation to make better films. Taught by film professionals and peers, these interactive sessions are designed to build upon one another, developing the skills needed to better compete in the crowded field of filmmakers. Check back in early April for a full line up of seminars, instructor information, and ticketing!

Cinematic Conversation: How to Film a Protest
June 8th / 6:00-10:00 PM / Impact Hub: 419 7th Street, NW / Tix: $20
Metro: Red Line (Judiciary Square)


Have you ever been involved in a protest? Have you ever wanted to document it? DC Shorts presents their first seminar in their Cinematic Conversations series: How to Film a Protest. This seminar teaches filmmakers the art of filming a protest; topics include the best equipment for the field, finding subjects to interview, and onsite filming techniques. This seminar is a must for any filmmaker interested in capturing movements as they happen.

Cinematic Conversation: How to Market Your Film
July 22nd / 12:00-4:00 PM
Location: The DC Center @ Reeves Center / 2000 14th Street, NW / Suite 105 / Tix: $20
Metro: Green/Yellow Line (U Street)


You’ve made your film. You’ve spent countless hours perfecting it, and now it’s ready to be seen. What now? How do you find your audience? DC Shorts’ second Cinematic Conversations seminar – Film Marketing – teaches filmmakers the skills to attract their film’s audience, including how to make a trailer, how to make a movie poster, and how to use social media to bolster your film’s presence.

Cinematic Conversation: Film Writing: Writing for Animation, etc.
August 12th / 12:00-4:00 PM / The Potter’s House: 1658 Columbia Rd NW /  Tix: $20
Metro: Green/Yellow Line (Columbia Heights)


Every film requires a blueprint, or a script, to organize and guide the story. Scriptwriting is a skill necessary for any filmmaker looking to write their own films. DC Shorts’ third installment in their Cinematic Conversations series, Film Writing, gives insight into the different kinds of film writing and how to master each one. Topics include writing from book to movie, writing for television, and writing for animation versus live action.

Cinematic Conversation: Filming: How to Film (In Spanish)
October 14th / 12:00-4:00 PM / The Potter’s House: 1658 Columbia Rd NW / Tix: $20
Metro: Green Line/Yellow (Columbia Heights)


Film is universal, and DC Shorts strives to support all areas of DC’s community through our education programs. Our fourth Cinematic Conversations seminar – How to Film – teaches filmmaking basics for Spanish speakers. Topics include the basics of film technique, basic film equipment, and on set: cast and crew members.

Cinematic Conversation: Photography + Film: Similiarities & Differences
November 9th / 7:00-9:00 PM
Location: The DC Center @ The Reeves Center / 2000 14th St, NW / Suite 105 / Tix: $10
Metro: Green/Yellow Line (U Street)


Photography and film share many differences, but are still close enough that one could easily swing between both mediums. DC Shorts’ Photography and Film seminar focuses on the difference and similarities between film and photography to teach the techniques and skills necessary to be active in both. Topics include photography basics for filmmakers, film basics for photographers, and story development from photography to film. This seminar kicks off with a competition to create a film from a photo.

Cinematic Conversation: Film Fundraising and Finance
December 9th / 10:00-4:00 PM
Location:The DC Center @ The Reeves Center / 2000 14th St, NW / Suite 105 / Tix: $40
Metro: Green/Yellow Line (U Street)


It’s no secret that making a film is hard work. Of the challenges that plague filmmakers in making the journey from idea to film, one is almost always standing in the way of every filmmaker’s goal: money, or lack thereof. DC Shorts’ sixth Cinematic Conversations seminar, Film Fundraising and Finance, gives insight into the ways in which filmmakers can find money for their films, and how to use that money efficiently once they have it. Topics include government funding, foundation funding, and corporate support.

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