The Platypus for 2008

HD Storytelling for Journalists, Photojournalists, Editors and Producers

Here's the revised schedule and locations for 2008:

This has been our biggest year for the Platypus Workshop. We have trained 72 new visual journalists in the language of video. They are already moving into new positions of influence in web video, television and film.

In late October, we start our most ambitious project, our first China workshop at Dalian University.

The Windy City boot camp is the last domestic workshop for 08.

Chicago, Illinois

The 9-day Platypus Boot Camp – October 17 to 26

Chicago, Illinois –October 17 to 26

These workshops are acknowledged as the gold standard of Digital Video training. In nine days, we teach high-definition digital shooting and editing, with an emphasis on storytelling. It is unique in the industry. We have taught over 200 photojournalists since our inception in 1999. Our graduates have gone on to do television documentaries, Web videos, especially for newspapers and even films. One of our graduates was a nominee for an Oscar in 2006.

There are two ways to attend this workshop. As a Shooter you are the storyteller. You get to use a new Canon XHA-1 HD camera, wireless and on-camera mikes from Sennheiser, tripods from Libec and an Apple laptop MacBook Pro with the latest version of Final Cut Pro for editing. You may work alone, or with a Producer (see below), to create the class exercises and a final 8-minute documentary or news story.

Everyone who joins the class will learn about the newest HDV (High Definition Digital Video) camera, field sound recording, cinematic storytelling, the use of lenses, tripods, and Apple's latest Final Cut Pro editing software.

As a Producer (we used to call them participants) you do what the name implies in broadcast. Producers are an integralpart of the process and the course . . . they attend all classes, team up with shooters to "produce" the various segments of the course work. Producers work in collaboration with Shooters as they research stories, make arrangements, conduct the interviews, go out on the field exercises and co-produce the final project . . . as a team. The Producer and the Shooter both come back to the edit bay and cut the projects together, just like in television. This in no way diminishes the role of the Shooter, who is the principal storyteller; the Producer gives the Shooter more time to concentrate on picture, sound and the story elements, resulting in a better learning for everyone and better told stories.

These workshops are taught by Dirck Halstead, PF Bentley and Roger Richards, all award-winning photojournalists. "We know where you come from and what you want to do." We are adding two additional workshops this year, at the request of alumni and the needs of the changing industry.

9-day Platypus Boot Camp – Shooter Tuition: $1,895. Producer: $795

Discounts: NPPA and ASMP members can take 10% off the individual course tuitions, but not off the combined tuition price, nor the Vietnam Advanced Workshop.

To Register for the Chicago Workshop, Contact:

The workshops are sponsored and supplied by: