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The Do-it-All Director's Introduction to Set Design

Created by Holly Beardsley

Holly Beardsley is a do-it-all director. She started directing middle and high school students in her early college years and since then has written over ten shows and directed twice as many.

Do-it-all directors are responsible for everything it seems – the direction, the costuming, the choreography and of course, the set too. And though directors are ready to direct, to costume and even dance, there is something intimidating about designing and building a set.

The Do-it-All Director’s Introduction to Set Design will give you the director, who must do-it-all, the confidence and skills to not only direct but build your own set as well - no matter your experience or budget. This course will teach you set design basics, construction tips, budget tricks, and how to tackle your precious performance space armed with a hammer, and most importantly, without fear.

10 Modules
1 hours, 40 minutes
3 Credit Hours

Course Outline

Lesson 0: Introduction 3:08 FREE PREVIEW
Lesson 1: Vision & Ambiance 14:39 FREE PREVIEW
In this lesson you’ll focus on vision and ambiance: How to find your vision through characterization and how to translate it into your set design. You’ll also explore what you can do with light and sound to help create the ambiance.
Lesson 2: Flats, Platforms, & Wagons 14:53
You’ll dive right in and learn about the three basic components of set design, how to read a script to determine your scenic needs and ways to share your ideas with others.
Lesson 3: In and Out of the Black Box 10:22
Your performance space has a huge effect on your production. In Lesson 3, you’ll learn the pros and cons of each type of performance space and how to make the most of the space you have or don’t have.
Lesson 4: The Most Common Mistakes of Rookie Set Design 8:01
Sometimes it’s good to learn through “non-examples.” Holly shares the most common “Set Wrecks” that can happen and gives you tips and tricks for avoiding these mistakes.
Lesson 5: Introduction to Construction 13:50
In this introduction to construction, you’ll learn about tools and safety and how to construct the three most basic components of set design. You’ll also be introduced to easy materials for simple and safe sets.
Lesson 6: Paint: The Key to a Colorful Set 16:14
There are few things that have as much impact on your scenic design than paint. In this lesson you’ll learn how to make the right color choices for your set. You’ll be introduced to various tools, materials and painting techniques as well as learn tips and tricks for a big impact.
Lesson 7: Dressing the Set 7:16
Don’t let your set go naked! In lesson 7, you’ll see how props can be used to complete the look of your design by “dressing the set.”
Lesson 8: Scene Changes 5:34
Scene changes are an important element of your scenic design. In this lesson you’ll learn how to fit more than one scene into a set and how to address your scene changes earlier so that they become an integral part of your design.
Lesson 9: Something from Nothing 6:43
Sometimes it all comes down to money. Or does it? In this lesson, you’ll learn how to become a “set design scavenger” and how to deal with your current budget and raise money for your next set.

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