Welcome! This is an excerpt of alesson taught by professional film producer George Escobar here at Iguana Art Academy. We offer courses in various art genres, including drawing, film, painting, with more courses coming. This lesson is Lesson 8 from our Introduction to Film course. All courses at Iguana Art Academy follow the lesson format that you see below.

Every Iguana Art Academy lesson consists of a presentation (video or slide) and an assignment. Within each presentation students will enjoy five aspects in each lesson:

  1. Welcome: an introduction to the session
  2. The Art Life: a visit to the teacher’s studio for a glimpse into the life of a professional artist
  3. Lesson:  consists of:
    • instruction on the lesson’s topic
    • explanation of the assignment for that lesson
    • a demonstration of the assignment
  4. Art History: most lessons include a visit to the Iguana Museum of Fine Art (IMOFA), which houses an amazing collection of fine art sure to inspire any artist as they see beautiful examples of what they’re learning in class.
  5. Assignment: each lesson has an assignment that enables you to put into practice what you’ve learned. Assignments are geared to be done in a reasonably short time (though you can devote as much time as you’d like) and are challenging (consistent with course level).

Enjoy lessons at your own pace. Our goal is your understanding of principles taught and enjoying new skills; we want you to get the most out of your courses. You can move through the slides by clicking on the arrows (backward / forward). As with all lessons, you’ll find assignment details below. If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.


Welcome to Lesson 08.  I hope you enjoyed last week’s discussion on cameras and feel more comfortable with choosing one when the time to film is at hand.

In this lesson, we are going to discuss the composition of scenes to be filmed.   There are a number of composition principles to consider when planning or filming scenes.  The most important one is the “Rule of Thirds.”  You may be familiar with this principle as it is used in a variety of artistic media (e.g., photography, painting).  In addition to the Rule of Thirds, we will be discussing the following principles of composition:

  • Headroom and lookspace
  • Angle on angle
  • Simplifying
  • Lines and shapes
  • Framing
  • Contrast

Each of these principles of composition takes time to master.  However, mastering these principles allows you, as a film-maker, to convey powerful messages.  During the lesson, I provide some do’s and don’ts associated with each principle as well as guidance for using the principle to convey a specific message.

I can’t stress enough that composition allows specific messages to be conveyed.  The message you want to convey does not usually happen by accident but through careful planning and creation.  This lesson will provide you with the information you need to begin composing your own scenes.

Let’s get started.  Click on the video below to begin learning about the principles of composition.  Once you have watched the video, please complete the assignment listed below.  Enjoy!

*Every lesson includes an assignment to help you own the principles taught. You’ll see the assignment goals, materials, and guidelines.