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Media Education

Our workshops and classes are FREE to everyone in our service area!

Available by appointment any day (or evening) of the week by calling (802) 651-9692!

Workshops (NOTE: Orientation is prerequisite to all our workshops.)

Basic Camera

Never used a camcorder (that wasn't also your phone) before? We designed this workshop for you! Learn the essentials, from setting exposure to setting audio levels for external microphones, from the different types of external microphones to the functions and use of a tripod, to the best way to set focus, learn about recording formats, shot composition, and the color of sunlight, in this 60–90 minute workshop with either our HD Panasonic AC90 or Canon XA10 camcorder!

Reference guides (by Production Technician Jim Kelty) available here:
Guide to the Panasonic AC90
Guide to the Canon XA10


Editing Essentials with Premiere
Prerequisite: Edit Suite Certification

What are the most essential tools you'll want to be ready with when you begin editing? Not just for first-time editors, this class is about getting you the heck away from the razor blade tool.

Subjects include:

  • Fundamental keyboard shortcuts for Adobe Premiere Pro;
  • Navigating the interface;
  • Subclips, markers, in and out points, bins—putting metadata and organization to use;
  • When and how to use multiple layers;
  • Making titles and using graphics;
  • Basics of audio editing;
  • Ripple and roll, slip and slide, J cuts and L cuts—fine-tuning your edits;
  • Synchronizing multiple cameras and audio sources, and multiclip editing.

—Not thorough enough for you? Make an appointment to use our subscription for video tutorials on all that Premiere is capable of.

Too thorough for you? Make a one-on-one appointment with a staffer to discuss your project and we'll teach you just the tools you need!


Studio Production

If you're planning to (or are curious to) make a show using the VCAM studio, this workshop will teach you and/or your technical director (i.e. a friend you bring to run the booth while you perform for the camera) what our studio and control room are capable of and how to use them.

Learn how to:

  • Set up and switch shots;
  • Create and manipulate graphics;
  • Key-in backgrounds;
  • Roll-in videos, images, and music from the Internet or other external sources;
  • Operate the studio cameras, tripods/dollies, and microphones;
  • Use the intercom system to talk to your camera operators;
  • Control the studio lighting;
  • Mic talent and operate the audio mixer.



What's the difference between a shotgun microphone and an omni-directional mic? When is a shotgun on a boom your best option for recording clean audio and when is a lapel mic more effective? Where should you place a lapel mic for clearest results? How should you hold a boom pole? Why would you record separate audio and how do you use an audio recorder?

If you'd taken this workshop, you'd know. :)



This workshop covers three-point lighting; setup and operation of VCAM's light kit, Rifa lights, and LED Litepanels; and safety information so you don't burn yourself or, like, blow anything up. This class will certify you to borrow lights from VCAM!


Fundamentals of Digital Cinematography

A semester of Cinematography 101 condensed into four hours! Some videography experience before taking this class is important, you don't need to be a seasoned pro, but maybe take a Basic Camera workshop and check out an AC90 once or twice.

Topics include:

  • F-stops, ISO, and exposure;
  • White balance / color temperature;
  • Focal lengths, lenses, and image sensors;
  • Depth of field;
  • Digital media workflows (SD, CF, P2, codecs, wrappers, pixel aspects, etc.).

This class is weird! This is one class you can't set up with just any staff member! If interested in Fundamentals of Digital Cinematography, please email Bill at bill[at]


Motion Graphics
Prerequisite: Edit Suite Certification

This workshop addresses the basic concepts of designing motion graphics for video! Learn to create elements in Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator and import them into After Effects, then bring your graphics to life by implementing the fundamentals of keyframing. Taught by Executive Director Seth Mobley; to schedule, email him at seth[at]


Shooting the Documentary Interview
$25 suggested donation for this particular workshop

Documentary interviews require a special style of interviewing—you need to get at the heart of a story while making the subject visually engaging. Making your subjects comfortable—especially when there are microphones, cameras, and even lights pointed at them—is difficult under even the best circumstances.

This workshop will teach you:

  • Interview methods specifically for documentary projects;
  • Best practices for interviewers;
  • Technical aspects, such as recording equipment, audio levels, and mic placement;
  • How to "listen like an editor".

Certifications (NOTE: Orientation is prerequisite to other certifications.)


This is step one! This free class will certify you to borrow most VCAM gear, use the studio, start a show, and to take all our other workshops! (And to be clear, all our workshops are free; all our everything we do (gear rentals, events, training, time slots on the channel) are free.)

Orientation takes about half an hour to an hour, we'll tell you about our policies and some of the things you can do at VCAM, we'll take a tour of the Media Factory, and fill out some paperwork. —That's it! Then you're certified!

Please bring a photo ID and make sure you live or work in our service area.

Read our Policies and Procedures here. If you're interested. It's not required. (Don't expect the most captivating read.)


Edit Suite Certification

Certification to use VCAM edit suites, with Premiere, After Effects, Final Cut, color critical monitors, and more.

Once certified, if you want to learn to edit you have four options (i.e. here's some next steps after you've taken this certification class):

  • Make a one-on-one appointment with a staffer to discuss your project and we'll teach you to all the tools you need;
  • Take our Editing Essentials class;
  • Make an appointment to use our subscription and watch a thorough video tutorial series on all that Premiere is capable of;
  • Open Premiere (or Final Cut; if you're into that) and start pressing buttons; not necessarily recommended.


DSLR Certification

This is the only certification that includes a test! There are two steps to getting certified to use our DSLR cameras and lenses: step one, pass the Fundamentals of Digital Cinematography test, which you must email Bill (bill[at] to set up. (Not up to speed on your cinematography fundamentals? Take our Fundamentals of Digital Cinematography workshop!) Step two, an appointment with Bill (still bill[at] to go over safe use of interchangeable lenses.


Lighting Certification

Take our Lighting workshop and, like, don't break anything. You'll be certified to use VCAM lights.

If you've taken our Orientation, you can reserve time on a VCAM computer to use our subscription to for video tutorials on creative software and media making.

Consultations, Questions, Additional Workshops

If at any point in the video production process you are confused, or if there's anything you'd like to learn about that's not listed here, talk to us! (That's what we're here for. :) ) The majority of our workshops are one-on-one appointments made by calling (802) 651-9692.

Check out all Upcoming Workshops @ The Media Factory at