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Jun 24, 2018 at 2:00 pm

Documentary Fundamentals: Post-Production (Graphics/Music/Archive)

With Lana Wilson, Penny Lane, Katya Mihailova and Seth Ricart

This session of DOCUMENTARY FUNDAMENTALS is about finishing your next documentary. How can title design and graphics be effectively utilized in documentary? What about my approach to music or working with a composer? What do I need to know about using archive materials? This session will dig in to graphics, music and archival issues that come together during post production.


Penny Lane is a Sundance award-winning filmmaker who was admitted to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in 2017. Lane has been making innovative nonfiction films for over a decade, including three feature-length documentaries: OUR NIXON (2013) premiered at Rotterdam, went on to SXSW, won the Ken Burns Award for “Best of the Festival” at Ann Arbor, and was Closing Night Film at New Directors/New Films; NUTS! (2016) premiered at Sundance where it won a Special Jury Award for Editing; and THE PAIN OF OTHERS (2018) which recently premiered at Rotterdam. Lane has been awarded grants from many organizations, including Creative Capital, Cinereach, Chicken & Egg, Sundance Institute, TFI Documentary Fund and Catapult Film Fund. She was named “Most Badass!” at the Iowa City Documentary Film Festival in 2009 and one of Filmmaker Magazine‘s “25 New Faces of Independent Film” in 2012. Lane has a regular column called “Notes on Real Life” for Filmmaker Magazine and is Associate Professor of Video Art at Colgate University.

Katya Mihailova is a composer for film and media based in New York City. She is a British Academy Television Craft Awards (BAFTA) 2018 Original Score Nominee and a Film Composer Fellow at the Sundance Institute. Coming from a background of classical piano and chamber music, Katya’s compositions ranges from solo piano to experimental electronic, from orchestral to folk, intuitively interacting with the visual  element, and at times, contributing a necessary ingredient to storytelling.

Katya is originally from Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. In 2017, her musical score to “Song for the Nomad” directed and filmed by Ben Sturgulewski in Kyrgyzstan for DPS Cinematic won BEST SOUND at Kendal Mountain Film Festival.

Katya composed original scores and contributed her works to a number of documentaries, features and shorts. Notably: “Born Free”, a British-Russian documentary produced by twice-Oscar-nominated producer, Mike Lerner, for Channel 4 in Britain; “Russian Woodpecker”, a documentary by Chad Gracia that earned the Grand Jury prize at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival; “Living Legend”, a film by Alonso Llosa that premiered at the Hampton’s Film Festival in 2015 and has since been acquired by the HBO, “The Rain Collector” by Bella Wing-Davey that premiered at the London Short Film Festival in January 2016 — and many others.

She holds Masters Degree from the Manhattan School of Music in piano performance. After taking a course in Music Technology at the Juilliard, Katya was chosen to become a composer fellow at the Sundance Music and Sound Design Lab 2016 at Skywalker Ranch under top industry composers Oswaldo Golijov and George S. Clinton.

Katya’s in-production projects include, “Sex in Soviet Union” a documentary-hybrid film by Chad Gracia, a National Geographic documentary about Jyrgalan by Noam Argov and Alex Pritz and a British documentary about Libyan all-female soccer team “Freedom Fields”.

Seth Ricart is the founder and supervising colorist at RCO, a boutique color, and finishing facility. He has completed color and conform for films that have premiered at Sundance, Toronto, Tribeca, and more.

Recent projects have included 2016 Academy Award Nominee Cartel Land, 2018 Academy Shortlisted City of Ghosts, When Lambs Become Lions (Tribeca 2018, Editing Prize), and We The Animals (Sundance 2018, NEXT Prize). Commercially he has worked with Nike, Pepsi, Honda, Bose, Verizon, and the UN.

Lana Wilson is an Emmy Award-winning and two-time Spirit Award-nominated director, writer, and producer based in New York. Her most recent film, The Departure, premiered at the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival to critical acclaim and went on to be nominated for an Independent Spirit Award for Best Documentary. The Departure was called “A work of art” by the San Francisco Chronicle, “Moving…like a haiku” by The New York Times, and “A genuinely spiritual experience” by The Washington PostThe Departure was theatrically released in 30 US cities last fall, starting with a held-over run at New York’s Metrograph, and nationally broadcast on PBS this year. Wilson’s first film, After Tiller (co-directed by Martha Shane)premiered at Sundance in 2013 and went on to win an Emmy Award for Best Documentary. It was also nominated for an Independent Spirit Award, four Cinema Eye Honors, and the Ridenhour Prize. After Tiller was theatrically released in 50 US cities by Oscilloscope and nationally broadcast on POV. Wilson has also worked as a writer and producer for television. She is a 2018 Women at Sundance Fellow, has been a Visiting Assistant Professor at Pratt Institute, and holds a B.A. from Wesleyan University.

Buy A Series Pass

DOCUMENTARY FUNDAMENTALS! A nuts-and-bolts professional development series designed for the emerging or intermediate documentary filmmaker, Documentary Fundamentals at UnionDocs is six-part program taking place over the course of one weekend. Buy a SERIES PASS ($125) or choose to attend individual sessions ($25/each). This program has been an ongoing series at UnionDocs for many years. It developed from our experience with documentarians who needed a better foundation across the board to navigate production and distribution as an independent filmmaker in today’s landscape.

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Jun 24, 2018
2:00 pm – 4:00 pm


352 Onderdonk Avenue
Ridgewood, NY 11385 United States
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