Documentary video is a specialist field focusing on planning, executing and polishing audio-visual narratives with a factual character. Planning – or preproduction, does not only entail writing stories, but also production research, how to compile a proposal, set a budget, and apply ethical and legal aspects in different kinds of productions. Because we work with video and not film, intensive attention is given to aspects such as video technology and systems. Execution (production) is the manufacturing of a production. Shooting stories require operational skills such as camera and sound work, but also creative input such as directing and presenting. When a production is polished during postproduction, the raw material is edited, voice recordings are made and sound mixed. Many former students in documentary are working in the film and video industry, some with their own production houses. Students annually complete an internship at such organisations. Our students generally work as production planners, editors and directors. Some have made their mark as cinematographers. Documentary video students often participate in national and international film festivals, and several productions have won coveted awards.
A documentary film by Liesl-Dana van Schalkwyk, screened at many international film festivals, as part of her master's degree in documentary video under the supervision of Prof Attie Gerber. This documentary tells the story of how ordinary people in arid areas cope with conservation and desertification.
A documentary by Mené Meyer under the supervision of Prof Attie Gerber for the BA Hons degree in documentary video, North-West University.
The video honours documentary by Danie van der Westhuizen about possible solutions for the rhino poaching problem in South Africa. Supervisor: Prof Attie Gerber.
Examples of student's work
Video by 2016 honours students.