School of Visual Arts, New York, NY     

In 2005, I designed and began teaching a documentary film workshop, Creating a Documentary Film, which encompasses all aspects of the craft from proposals and budgets to production, editing and distribution.  The workshop stresses storytelling, utilizing both innovative exercises and screenings of a wide variety of documentary films. It has been highly popular since its inception. Recently I expanded to an additional course, The Documentary Workshop, which allows students to bring in long-term projects for support and feedback and q&a's with guest lecturers. 

 

Testimonials... 

"Fred's documentary class is a creative think tank. The easy rapport with his students combined with his knowledgeable approach to documentaries makes it an extraordinary learning experience. Every time I visit his class as a guest to share cinematography secrets, I'm impressed by his talents and his students. Two thumbs up!" 

Claudia Raschke, Director of Photography, “Mad Hot Ballroom” and Oscar-nominated “God is the Bigger Elvis” 

 

“I just wanted to e-mail you and thank you for giving me the guts to make my first documentary film. As the course finished and I moved back to Denmark, I immediately started pitching an idea for a personal documentary film that I got during your course.  In 2014 it premiered at CPH:DOX with sold out screenings and afterwards 9 screenings on TV (DR2)! Last year the film won a Robert (the Danish Oscar) and other prizes. It recently aired in Norway and Sweden. Amazing right!? You did really play an important role. One of the things I really liked was that you taught us to ‘just do it’. That’s very different to Danish mentality and I really needed that push. But also the way you taught us to portray environments/characters on documentary film was very inspiring to me. I can’t thank you enough for helping me fulfill my documentary dreams.”

Kathrine Ravn Kruse, filmmaker “Me and Dad” (Mig Og Min Far)

We learned so much so fast—first-time knowledge that we had to apply. I recommend taking a class with Fred. He is a great teacher, he has unlimited experience in this area, he will encourage you to hone your skills, and you just may walk away with your best work. He made me a filmmaker; I found my voice.
— A.B. SVA student Fall 2012 & Spring 2013
Fred’s classes really improved my filmmaking skills and motivated me to keep working—with tips on how to lead an interview, how to build a story, and filming full coverage of a scene. Feedback on proposals and budgets were invaluable.
— C.H., SVA student, Spring 2011 & Spring 2013
Dear Fred:
I want to thank you for the past 10 weeks. It was a wonderful experience. You have been a very inspiring teacher with a vast knowledge of the subject. In the last year and a half I have taken a few doc classes at NYU and NYFA, but I have to tell you that your class was the one that turned my interest around about documentary: Now I really want to make them. I especially enjoyed your film analyses segments. You obviously have a true strength in dramaturgy, but what made your class really enjoyable was your technique of questioning. Your direct, sometimes intimidating questions led us to find the solution ourselves, which I believe is one of the secrets of successful education.
— email from A.H., SVA student, Spring 2012

Media Center of Dakar, Senegal

I originally got the teaching bug in Dakar Senegal, where  I had the opportunity to create and teach an intensive Documentary Filmmaking Lab in which graduate-level students produced three half-hour social-issue documentaries for broadcast on Radio Television Senegal (RTS) and for distribution internationally.

Consulting

From time to time I have been hired to consult on a project in the capacity of supervising editor or producer. Sometimes outside eyes can be helpful, and I enjoy working with other filmmakers.