wildlife filmmaking

Justine Evans on nature’s power to nurture

A woman films rhinos at sunset

Wildlife film-maker Justine Evans recently had a friend visit her home near the Forest of Dean. As night fell, Evans took them mountain biking through the forest trails, which she regularly does with her wolfdog for no other reason than “it’s quite fun doing it in the dark”.

While they were out night riding, Evans recalls her friend turning to her and saying, “Oh, it’s not all that spooky, is it?”

Greening wildlife TV

The irony of natural history enjoying a TV golden age while the wildlife it features enters a dark age was not lost on the panel at an RTS event on sustainable film-­making in early December.

Natural history is “making huge amounts of money while its subject matter goes extinct” was the succinct summary of Tom Mustill, a producer/director and owner of Gripping Films, which makes campaigning, low-­carbon films about the environment.

NFTS partners with RSPB for Natural History & Science MA

The partnership will include an RSPB scholarship, which will support a student through their two year MA, starting in the School’s new academic year in January 2018.

The two-year MA course will equip students with the skills required to direct science, natural history and wildlife productions and the knowledge to produce entire shows. 

The RSPB will work closely with tutors and students to inspire a new generation of filmmakers to create engaging content that elevates the charity's conservation cause, reaching new audiences through innovative student filmmaking. 

Life in the Air

Series producer, James Brickell, and episode producers Giles Badger and Simon Bell took us through the ‘mechanics’ of the series, which explained the mechanics of how cats leap three metres from a standing start to catch their prey, snakes fly and ‘shy and nervous' sparrow hawks fly low to the ground at incredible speeds to snatch the birds from the feeders in our gardens.

“We wanted to deconstruct the science behind the fundamentals of how animals and birds launch themselves into the air, though extraordinary physiology", explained Series producer, James Brickell. 

University announces funding for aspiring wildlife filmmakers

Working in partnership with the Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust, the university is offering one student a full fee bursary on a one year course in Wildlife Filmmaking. 

The course includes masterclasses and personal mentoring from experts in the field, and practical experience from staff at the BBC's Natural History Unit and Bristol-based company Plimsoll Productions.