Material & experimental cinema

Material & experimental cinema






Material & experimental cinema

- Formation longue durée

Saturday February 3, 2024 - Sunday February 25, 2024
10 am - 4 pm

Main Film
2025 Rue Parthenais #301, Montréal, Quebec, H2K 3T2, Québec

With Philippe Léonard (La Montagne, Elisapie, Thisquietarmy)

Application deadline: January 17th 2024 at 11:59pm

Cost for participants: $450 (all materials included)
Total training time: 48 hours (46h of courses + 2 hours of mentoring)
In person at Main Film’s office

With the financial support of the Quebec government, Main Film, dedicated to independent filmmaking, pursues its mission of supporting emerging filmmakers.


This hands-on professional training focuses on the practice and aesthetics of experimental and analog cinema.

It covers all the stages of analog filmmaking, from the use of the Bolex camera to distribution strategies, hand processing and an introduction to the optical printer.

By the end of this program, you’ll have acquired the skills to present a silent film on 16 mm film.

Philippe Léonard, director and cinematographer, will guide participants in mastering the following key elements:

  • Introduction to experimental cinema, its cinematographic and creative practice.
  • Familiarization with the materiality of film: its physical, chemical and photographic properties.
  • 16 mm silent films (including sound): shooting, hand-developing, direct animation, working with developed film, optical printing and projection.
  • The key elements for broadcasting and projecting your film.

You’ll also receive a personalized two-hour mentoring session.

The course emphasizes practical application to make the concepts presented more concrete and easier to assimilate.


The course is open to 8 people only.
It is addressed to self-employed media arts workers living in Quebec.


Module 1 | Introduction to experimental and analog cinema approaches

  • Saturday, February 3rd from 10am to 4pm (5h) – including 1h break

Module 2 | Introduction to Bolex camera

  • Sunday, February 4th from 10am to 4pm (5h) – including 1h break

Module 3 | Cinematography et shooting

  • Saturday, February 10th from 10am to 5pm (6h) – including 1h break

Module 4 | Hand processing

  • Sunday, February 11th from 10am to 5pm (6h) – including 1h break

Module 5 | Cameraless animation and film editing

  • Saturday, February 17th from 10am to 4pm (5h) – including 1h break

Module 6 | Introduction to the Optical printer

  • Sunday, February 18th from 10am to 5pm (6h) – including 1h break

Module 7 | Distribution strategies

  • Saturday, February 24th from 1pm to 5pm (4h)

Module 8 | Hand processing n°2 & basics of projection

  • Sunday, February 25th from 10am to 4pm (5h) – including 1h break


Your application must be sent via this form before January 17th at 11:59pm:


Philippe Léonard

Director, cinematographer and designer of stage projections (Godspeed You! Black Emperor, Cigarettes After Sex, Elisapie, Thisquietarmy). He shapes his images by combining film, analog video and cutting-edge technologies to create unique visual material. His artistic approach lies at the crossroads of expanded cinema and experimental moving image practices.