Frequently Asked Questions
This page should help with most questions, but if you still have questions, please call 0117 930 0141 and we will be happy to help.
What happens during the week? – The programme is different every day. We start with a full day of trying out new techniques. Everyone gets to try out seven techniques, including pixilation, lip syncing, working with a wire frame armature and sand animation. Over the next five days you will work in a team of five to devise a story and write the script, make all your models and sets and shoot and animate a short film. We will also lay on a variety of talks with practicing professionals who will give you an understanding of their careers and how they started out in the industry. We spend one evening discussing progression routes – helping you to think about your own next steps to join the animation industry. At the end of the week we go to the Cube Cinema in Bristol to watch our finished films and we round the week off with visits to UWE School of Animation and an Aardman Studio tour.
What have past students got out of the scheme?
All past students become part of the BFI’s alumni scheme and get some fantastic help and exclusive opportunities for getting started in the UK film industry. Many of our course participants go on to study animation at university or take up apprenticeships in the industry.
What are the rooms like?
We have sole use of the Barton Camp site during our course. There is a large common room/dining hall, three classrooms and a sports hall on site. All the accommodation is in a modern building with small shared dormitories (with six sharing a room). There are also two smaller rooms which can be requested. All rooms will be single sex. People with particular needs will be given priority for the small rooms.
What is the food like?
We employ our own chefs, Clare and Sarah. They have lots of experience cooking for young people and have developed a menu that we think you will enjoy. They provide breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and a delicious dinner. We have plenty of breaks for tea, coffee and juice. We always provide a vegetarian option and can easily cater for halal, gluten free, lactose free or vegan diets. We send out a diet form before the camp starts so you can tell us about your needs.
How does the Bursary work?
Once you have been allocated a place you can apply for a bursary to cover your fee, your travel expenses, child care or any part of these. There are two bursary schemes with different ways of calculating if you are eligible. It is important that no student, wherever they live, should feel excluded because they can’t afford the costs.
Bursary for fees (links)
Bursary for travel or childcare (links)
How competitive is it to get in?
We always receive more applications than the 25 places we have. We want to work with people who have made some definite steps towards a career in this industry. This means experimenting on their own, taking relevant courses, researching, work experience and practicing their skills. You will need to show this on your application form.
Long term support?
We will keep in touch for at least 6 months and provide you with a range of opportunities. This will include festival dates, training schemes, bursaries, competitions, networking events etc. This will be done through FaceBook and email.
What happens in the evenings?
After dinner we have a programme of film screenings, career talks and on some evenings you may be working on your project. There is also time for socialising. On the last evening we all go into Bristol to the Cube Cinema to view our finished films. Due to the nature of the project you will need to remain on site.
What rules will there be?
As a significant proportion of students will be under 18, we have a strict no-alcohol rule during the camp. Students of the opposite sex will not be allowed in each others rooms after a certain time in the evening. Needless to say we have a zero tolerance to bullying, anti-social behaviour, sexism, racism or drugs.
What time do people go to sleep and wake up?
As you will be sharing a room, there will need to be an agreed time to have the lights out. Usually this is around 10.30 to be in your own rooms and then 11.30 for the lights to be out and no more noise.
There is a morning meeting at 8.50 and we start work at 9.00. Breakfast opens at 8.00 so again we will need an agreed time for you to be awake. Usually this is about 7.30.
Space and time for prayer?
We make space and time for anyone who would like to pray.
We encourage applications from people who have a variety of needs and have catered in the past for people in wheelchairs, hearing impaired, autism and a range of other common issues. Please get in touch to discuss any special needs you may have. Call the office on 0117 930 0141 and ask for Steve.
Smokers and vaping is not permitted in any of the residential buildings or in the classrooms, however there is a designated space outside the accommodation block.
All staff have been trained in child protection and hold a current DBS (A check that they have not had a serious criminal conviction). There will always be eight members of staff (men and women) on site providing care and security. We work in small teams with one member of staff attached to each production team. Our lead tutors, Steve and Kari, are responsible for overall wellbeing of everyone on site.