5 Months Program

Semester Cinematography Course

Semester cinematography course is practical, full-time, suitable for beginners and taught on our campus in Prague, the Czech Republic. This study program will teach you the basics of cinematography and includes the shooting of up to 10 short films as well as a high production value film at the end of the course. You will also be required to learn the basic principles of filmmaking to make you understand the entire process from pre-production to post-production, which is crucial for kick starting your career in the film industry. The emphasis on cinematography specialisation is given mostly during practical classes

our value proposition

course highlights

Film Shooting Every Week

During the course, you will practice your shooting skills on up to 10 short films of different styles.

High Production Value Film

You will shoot a high-quality production film on the most popular cinema cameras such as Red Monstro, Alexa Amira or Sony f55.


From all the materials shot you will make an industry-standard showreel and present it to the panel of film professionals in a public cinema.

High production value film

Your main focus during the semester will be to shoot your final film at the end of the course. During the semester you will invest most of the time developing a film, which will have higher production value compared to average school films. Through guidance of your tutors, you will shoot your film with the professional filmmaking equipment at the value of more than 90 000 USD and on the same level as a professional film production. 

what you will study

cinematography module

Below you can see the basic topics which you will complete on the course. You will turn into practice all knowledge acquired in the classroom. During practical exercises, you will equip yourself with key skills needed to shoot your final film and industry-standard showreel. The curriculum of the Semester Cinematography Course is identical to the first semester of the 1 Year Filmmaking Program.

Basic Principles of Camera & Lens

Principles of Camera and Lens Use in Cinematography

Operation of Equipment

Essentials of Safe Setup, Operation and Control of filmmaking equipment.

Roles in Camera Department

Activities and Responsibilities Associated with Different Roles in Camera Department.

Essentials of Working with Directors

Fundamentals of Combining Equipment

Presentation of Dailes/Rushes Demostrating the Use of Different Camera, Lens and Lighting Combinations.

Basics of Operating Lights

Safe Setup, Operation and Control of Lighting Equipment

Master Classes

Learn directly from professionals from the film industry by listening to their personal experiences as filmmakers.

Compositional Theory

Basics of Compositional Theory of Cinematography.

Basic Features of Lighting

Features of Lighting in Cinematography in Creating a Visual language

Consultations with Teachers

You will have consultations with your teachers in order to get best possible guidance for your final film.

Practical Workshop

During the course you will be constantly improving your cinematography skills by shooting up to 20 short films of different styles. You will be also allowed to use the video content for creating your high-quality showreel.

Shooting of High Production Value Film

You will shoot your own high production value final film in which you will go through all the phases of the film production from cinematographer’s point of view as follows:

  • Location Scouting
  • Casting
  • Production Design
  • Cooperation with Director
  • Shootingon the Film Set
  • Editing in Software DaVinci Resolve
  • Color Grading in Software DaVinci Resolve

Basics of Color Grading

Basics of Color Grading in Software DaVinci Resolve



  • Basics of Mise-en-Scene Studies
  • Directing Actors
  • Film Theory
  • Basics of Film History
  • Mood Boards


From Concept to Final Draft


  • Film Crew: Roles and Responsabilities
  • Introduction to the Business of Film
  • Basics of Line Producing
  • Project Planning
  • Pitching
  • Casting
  • Basics of Movie Magic Scheduling Software


  • Usage of Editing Techniques for Different Production Contexts
  • Types of Shots
  • Emotional Curve of the Scene
  • Timing and Pace
  • Editing for Different Genres
  • Editing in Da Vinci Resolve Software
  • Color grading in Da Vinci Resolve Software
  • Postproduction of Sound

program details

What To Bring?

We recommend that all new Prague Film Institute students purchase their own:

  • Portable external drive with minimum storage 2 TB
  • Laptop for self guided learning and post-production practice. Our goal is to teach students how to use their own computer for high quality results. Make sure that you choose a laptop which meets the minimum recommended specification. However, for tasks which requires specialist software tools, you will be also allowed to use Prague Film Institute’s computer equipment. 
ComponentMinimum RequirementRecommended Requirement
CPUIntel COre i7 or AMD Ryzen 7Intel Core i9 or AMD Ryzen 9
RAM16 GB32 GB+
Media StorageSSD or RAIDSSD, Direct Attached RAID or NAD RAID (10 GbE)


  • Budget for your films – our school emphasizes the importance of practical learning by making films. Unlike standard classroom education, the cost of practical filmmaking can vary a lot depending on your script and the vision of the director and cinematographer. For teacher-led workshops the school will cover all or most production costs. However, for shooting of your own films you and your classmates must pay yourselves. As part of our curriculum we will teach you how to be resourceful when it comes to production expenses. Even with clever budgeting, we estimate that you will need approximately 5 – 10 000 CZK per semester for shooting your projects and on top of it a budget for your final films at the end of each semester. The school will provide for you a bundle of filmmaking equipment and a transportation van, but all other production costs will be your responsibility. We encourage you to plan carefully about the budget of your short film. Write or choose a script that matches the funds you have available to produce it.

What is Included

We understand that by choosing to study with us you are making a big financial commitment. We want to make sure you understand exactly what your tuition fee will cover when you decide to become a Prague Film Institute student.

  • Lectures, workshops & master classes
  • Teaching materials
  • Prague Film Institute Certificate 
  • Equipment (see more here)
    • Industry standard cinema cameras & equipment
    • Full editing suite with post-production software
    • Individual licence to Premiere Pro/Da Vinci/AVID Pro Tool
    • School car for student projects
  • Green-screen and cinema room on-site
  • Field trips to industry partners
  • Discounts at our industry partners

Not Included

  • Air fare
  • Visa fee & health insurance
  • Living expenses (housing, food, transportation)
  • Production cost for your films (such as locations, actors, fuel) 

Hovewer Prague is still cheaper than many European cities. The capital offers very safe living environment with high rating in housing and healthcare.

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