Prospective students must complete all Admissions Requirements as well as the portfolio requirements to be considered for admission.
Because of time constraints in reviewing large quantities of tapes and films from many applicants, we ask you to send only your best work. The suggested total time of the film or tape material (no matter how many pieces) is 10 minutes. Five minutes of quality material is better than 30 minutes of mediocre work. Please note, however, that we prefer to receive complete works rather than excerpts. If you submit a DVD, please make sure it plays properly from a menu. Label everything you submit with your name, the date completed, duration and/or dimensions, and medium. Please do not send the only copy of your creative work. Stretched-canvas, framed or three-dimensional works cannot be accepted; please document them in slides or Macintosh-readable CD or DVD. Be sure to review the additional portfolio guidelines below for the program to which you are applying.
Please include a completed Portfolio Information Form with each mailed portfolio package. Address your portfolio to the Office of Admissions at CalArts using the attached printable Portfolio Mailing Label. Do not send your portfolio directly to the School of Film/Video. Doing so will cause a delay in the review of your work.
Label your video/DVD/film/16mm film with the number of pieces on the disc, the title and running time of each piece, and a word or phrase designating your responsibility in the production of each piece (e.g., camera, writer, etc.). Enclose a separate sheet of paper with the same information as above. List your priority for viewing.
The Portfolio Room is equipped with the following viewing methods: 16mm film, VHS video (NTSC/U.S. and non-U.S. standards), DVD, Blu Ray, and Mini-DV. We discourage CD-ROMs because they often fail to play. If you choose to submit your portfolio as a CD-ROM, it must be formatted to play on a Macintosh system. If you submit a DVD, please send a back-up copy in an alternate format. Please cue tapes. All films should be head out.
The clearest evidence of talent is a film or videotape. You may supplement your films and/or videos with creative work in other fields, particularly visual material such as artwork, photography, drawings and design, especially if you believe it will help the faculty to understand the kind of filmmaker you are. The Program in Film and Video requires Mini-DVs, videotape, DVDs or 16mm film. We discourage CD-Roms because they often fail to play. Technical difficulties will be considered as incomplete presentations. DVDs also fail to play, so please double check your DVDs in a number of different decks. For the review committee, visual work and the required written materials described below have priority in your portfolio. If you choose to submit creative writings such as a short story, a poem, or a script, please limit the length to a maximum of six pages. Please send only one copy of your creative writings in your portfolio. If sending a film or video that was part of a collaborative project, please describe your role in the process or inception.