The Indie Filmmakers Lab takes filmmakers from raw idea to finished film in two weeks.


Our participants are emerging filmmakers and young artists in their own right.  We support our filmmakers to find, develop, and express their artistic voices. We provide a fertile, creative space, world-class facilities, professional equipment, and an opportunity to connect with artists and ideas to translate their vision into a reality on film. 


DAYS 1 + 2

Starting with hands-on video-making exercises and artist-run sessions, including a 16mm film camera workshop, filmmakers will be introduced to big ideas and big possibilities for filmmaking at The Indie Lab. Groups will start to brainstorm and develop their own project concepts, exploring how to transform abstract ideas into finished work.

DAYS 3 + 4

After being inspired by great art at the Vancouver Art Gallery, finalized teams of filmmakers will brainstorm, workshop, and pitch ideas, and start script and concept development. Filmmakers are free to make any type of moving image video project they choose, from a stand-alone short film to a video installation with performance. 

Each group is supported by a dedicated Lab Instructor, who will act as a guide throughout the creative process by leading workshops designed to take their team’s idea to the next level, and giving technical workshops on high-end cameras, sound, and editing equipment. 

DAYS 5 - 7

After developing the technical filmmaking skills required to create their project, groups will start filming and sound recording.  Each team’s path will be a bit different. One group interested in fast-paced movement in cinematography and editing might observe a dance workshop and have a hands-on lesson in filming dancers and rapid movement that launches them into shooting their own project. A group focused on sound in documentary filmmaking might connect with a musician to discover how to communicate their vision with a composer, recording sound and then finding abstract, symbolic images to juxtapose with their mix. Another group might focus intensely on the beats within their script, honing the character arcs in their fiction film and learning great tips for rehearsing and improvising on-set. Wherever the inspiration came from, whatever the idea, our goal is to support filmmaking teams in a fertile, creative space, where participants can connect with artists and ideas to translate their vision into a reality on film. 

DAYS 8 - 10 

During the last few days filmmakers learn editing, sound design and graphics, and transform rough shots into finished works. During this phase teams will 'divide and conquer', each person crafting elements that contribute to the final vision. By the end of the final day, groups will be amazed at what they've accomplished; they will have a finished film they can look forward to presenting on the big screen to a full house at their own premiere screening, red carpet and all!



Filmmakers, their friends and family, and supporters from The Indie Filmmakers Lab community will be invited to The Cinematheque to celebrate each team's success with a screening of the summer’s finished films.  That initial moment of inspiration will suddenly meet the moment you watch your film on the big screen with an audience for the first time: excited, and proud.