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35

www.lycoming.edu

T H E CO L L E G E

ycoming film and video students will put their creations

on the line against the work of other Pennsylvania

students in Lycoming’s eighth annual Film and Video

Festival, which will be held on April 7 from 7:00-9:00 p.m.

The juried competition has four categories-narrative,

documentary, animation and experimental-and is open to

college film and video students, who are invited to submit

their pieces from across the state. Prizes are awarded in each

category, and the best film by a Lycoming student will receive

the Tom Woodruff Jr. Grand Jury Prize, a cash prize that comes

with a striking sculpture of a film reel created by Academy

Award-winner Tom Woodruff, Jr. ’80. Woodruff, a special

effects artist and actor, worked on “Terminator,” “Aliens”

and other well-known films. He and his wife Tami ’81, both

Lycoming College graduates, are also sponsors of the event. The

evening’s festivities will be held at the historic Williamsport

Community Arts Center, and is free and open to the public.

Lycoming’s Department of Communication’s Digital

Media Program (DCOM), produces the festival each spring

to showcase student work and share it with the community.

“We get a lot of people from the greater Williamsport area who

come out to see the films and support the students,” said Leah

Bedrosian Peterson, associate professor of digital media and

DCOM director. “The fact that we have an Academy-Award

winning artist from Williamsport involved is also a big deal.”

Bedrosian Peterson, whose own artwork focuses on historical

and contemporary identity, is a master of several media, as

comfortable with a pencil creating stunningly photorealist

drawings as she is behind a viewfinder. She and her colleagues

have crafted a curriculum and approach that provides practical

experience while nurturing students’ artistic and conceptual

development. “One of the great things about the program here

is that it isn’t specialized on a singular focus of becoming a

director or editor. The students can make all different kinds of

work and learn all elements of the filmmaking process. They

are encouraged to develop their own voice, and we foster that.”

A recent alumna, Christina Moliterno ’14, just had her senior

project, an animated film called ‘The Island Dwellers,’ admitted

to the 2015 Aesthetica Short Film Festival in England.

On the pragmatic side, students begin shooting footage

almost immediately. “From the time they are freshman until

they are seniors, they are involved in the entire process. They

don’t have to wait until their last semester to make a 15-minute

film,” said Bedrosian Peterson. The DCOM stockroom and

lab are stocked with up-to-date equipment and software that

students need to create professional-quality productions. “We

just got a 4k Blackmagic cinema camera,” the next generation

in high definition, “and the students here are working with

the digital equipment that is identical to what they will use

professionally, so they are already on top of it. We have students

graduate and apply for jobs in New York and other major cities.

The companies call and say they can’t believe how much our

students stand out, even compared to students from Columbia,

Yale or NYU. Our graduates are beating them out because they

know how to do everything and they are really motivated.”

With a video camera on every smartphone, and every

aspect of human experience-from the tawdry to the tragic-

now being recorded, manipulated and shared, being film-

and video-literate is a must for those who aspire to being

comprehensive communicators. “Every year we get a good

number students from other disciplines, particularly business

majors, coming in to take DCOM classes,” said Bedrosian

Peterson. “Many of them anticipate that at some point they

will need to put together a short video work, either for a

commercial or to promote their enterprise in some way. The

moving image is now ubiquitous.”

BY CHRIS QUIRK

L