Need a free filmmaking resource? March round up

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Welcome to March! Let’s dive right into this month’s free online filmmaking resource round up!

American Film Institute Basic Toolkit & Resource Guide for young filmmakers

The AFI has a 35 page document that covers a lot of the basics of filmmaking, and it’s free to download! This free filmmaking resource is appropriate for people who are very new to their filmmaking journey. If that doesn’t describe you, it may be appropriate for interns who want to work on your sets, or it could be a good read for friends and family members who are interested in helping you out but don’t know the basics of the independent filmmaking world. This guide covers things from basic film terminology to production call sheets to storyboarding basics. This is a great free online resource for filmmakers who are just getting started!

BBC Sound Library

Did you know that the BBC has a sound library that’s free to use for non-commercial use? Their catalog is built off of all the nature recordings they’ve done throughout the decades, and if you’re not making money off of it, it’s free to use. Now, this is a free resource guide, but the good news is that if you are using these sound effects in a commercial project, you can pay to download them for just a few dollars, which is probably less than it would cost you to record your own sounds. If you plan to use them for free, make sure you’ve done your research and are 100% sure your project is not commercial.

37 free fire, explosion, and spark effects

I linked this particular set because it’s what I was most excited by, but the truth is, you should probably explore this whole website and see all the amazing and free online filmmaking resources they have to offer! When we made our debut horror short, Biters & Bleeders, we found that VFX were one of the costliest parts of our movie. Fire in particular is really, really hard to get right, and in filmmaking, time is money. Save yourself the stress and browse through these realistic looking effects to see if any of them will work for your project. I think you’ll find just the one!

The Slanted Lens

If you’ve read our blog before, you already know I’m a huge proponent of using Youtube to learn new filmmaking techniques. The Slanted Lens is a great resource for all things filmmaking and photography. This prolific Youtube channel is a great free filmmaking resource, because it has everything you need to know, ranging from stop motion animation to the laws of light to setting up a basic portrait to camera reviews. This Youtube channel is a treasure trove of filmmaking info, all for the low low cost of $0!

This round-up of color grading Youtube channels

Another day, another Youtube channel. Like I already mentioned, Youtube is a great place to learn new techniques, and color grading is a particularly finicky, difficult to pin down skill, simply because it’s so subjective. Most of us who are working with a microbudget can’t hire someone to do our color for us, so we either buy a LUT pack or learning to color grade ourselves. Sometimes you just can’t find the right LUT to suit your vision, so you have to learn to DIY it. That’s where this resource round-up comes in. Once you watch these videos and peruse these channels, you’ll be well on your way to tackling your own color grade!

Filmsourcing.com

Filmsourcing.com is an amazing resource for filmmakers. They have free assets, downloadable templates and production documents, and filmmaking video tutorials. So many good things in one place! Do you need a crew contact list? Talent release? Tips for producers? Lessons in storyboarding? It’s all here. They have free resources as well as a paid plan. The good news about the paid plan is that you can pay to have just 15 days of access to download anything and everything you want, which is WAY more affordable than a monthly subscription. Give their free stuff a peek!

CineD

This one is for all the gearheads out there. CineD is a great resource for learning more about all things camera gear. They have reviews, articles about upcoming releases, how-to guides for specific skills, camera lab tests, and more. Like so many of these resources, there are paid elements–for example, they have online courses, and you can either pay a fee to download or get a monthly subscription–but the free elements are truly remarkable if you love cameras as much as we do.

Lessons from the Screenplay Youtube channel

If you’re a screenwriter or aspiring screenwriter, chances are you’re always looking for ways to level up your craft. Enter Lessons from the Screenplay. This Youtube channel takes popular movies and video games and breaks down the lessons we can learn from them. What makes Gone Girl work? How does American Beauty tackle character arcs? What can Get Out teach us about the horror genre? Learn all this and more, and get ready to see your screenwriting ability skyrocket.

Molly Stein-Seroussi

Molly Stein-Seroussi

Author

Molly is an author, screenwriter, blogger, and brand manager for New 32 Productions. They are passionate about sharing content that helps filmmakers live a more productive, informed, and well-balanced life. They live in North Carolina with their spouse and way too many dogs.

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