Editing for Film and Video Art

This workshop examines how filmmakers and video artists can use editing to create and clarify meaning. After watching and discussing clips from a wide range of films, the participants receive assignments which will put these ideas to immediate use.

We will also consider basic continuity editing concepts and have time to address the participants’ particular interests. As these editing concepts are relevant for both narrative and experimental films, we will watch examples from a range of films to explore some of the many options filmmakers have at their disposal. 

At the beginning of each day we will watch clips that illustrate various editing concepts. After the introductory discussion, the workshop participants will receive an assignment which puts these ideas to immediate use. Depending on the assignment, the participants will work alone or in small groups to conceive, shoot and edit their own videos. As these ideas and techniques are relevant to all types of film, each assignment will be open enough so that the participants can complete them according to their artistic interests - whether as short narratives, abstract experiments or something in between. At the end of each session, we will reconvene to watch and talk about the new videos.

This workshop is suitable for video artists, experimental filmmakers or anyone interested in working with moving images. The focus of this workshop is on the conceptual basis of editing. There will be no instruction on editing programs, but extensive editing experience is not necessary. Basic familiarity with a simple smart phone app is all that is required.

Participants can use any sort of video camera (smart phone, DSLR camera, etc.) and any sort of editing software (smart phone app or laptop with an editing program) they feel comfortable with.



  • Participant introductions
  • General discussion of editing: What can editing do?
  • Rhythm in editing: watch examples and discuss
  • Participants complete, show and discuss their first assignment focussed on rhythmic relations
  • Introduce and discuss ways to conceptualise and prepare for a video shoot: script, shot list, storyboards, etc.


  • Graphic relationships in editing: watch clips and discuss relevant concepts. For example: graphic relations between shots, graphic matches, graphic contrasts, etc.
  • Participants complete, show and discuss second assignment emphasising graphic relations
  • If time, start with discussion of spatial relations


  • Start/Continue discussion of spatial relations, especially investigating how continuity editing seeks to construct a clear understanding of space.
  • Discuss shot / reverse shot sequences and the importance and meaning of the reaction shot.
  • Participants receive the third assignment - “Three possible responses.” They create a detailed shooting plan, including storyboards, which they present to the group before shooting.
  • Then participants complete, show and discuss finished videos

Thursday and Friday

  • Continue the discussion of continuity editing and investigate temporal editing relations.
  • The exact topics and projects will be tailored to the needs and wishes of the participants.
  • Prior application requirements (f. e. assignments to complete)


Basic familiarity with a smart phone video editing app or a laptop editing program.


Participants can use any sort of video camera (smart phone, DSLR camera, etc.) and any sort of editing software (smart phone app or laptop with an editing program) they feel comfortable with.

Michelle Alperin, born in Los Angeles, California, got her BA in Fine Art from the University of California in 1994 and her MFA in Fine Art from Art Center College of Design in 2001. After several artist’s residencies in Berlin, Michelle settled there at the end of 2004. She is currently working with video installation, experimental and narrative film and video, as well as still photography. Since 2017, Michelle has been teaching video art to the first-year fine art students at the Berlin University of the Arts where she also teaches weekly video art courses, participates in group critiques, and gives workshops on various topics, including editing.


Run period:
22.08.2022 – 26.08.2022
Course time:
10.00 am – 5.00 pm
Application Deadline:

Course fee:
EUR 450

Min. number of participants:
Max. number of participants:

Registration deadline has passed. Limited places still available.