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Learn How to Become a Cinematographer at NYFA

In NYFA’s Master’s of Fine Arts (MFA) Degree in Cinematography program, students develop a range of skills that can help them to pursue creative goals in cinematography. This accelerated graduate program immerses students in a unique, collaborative environment that emphasizes practical, hands-on instruction in cinematography and the related aspects of filmmaking. Through intensive workshop courses, individual projects, and rigorous critiques, students learn the fundamentals of visual storytelling and cinematographic technique.

Students develop their proficiency with different state-of-the-art camera systems, both film and digital, and learn to supervise the creation of sophisticated lighting schemes. As they shoot a series of challenging projects, culminating in a final Thesis Film, students create material for a compelling cinematography reel that showcases their skill and versatility as a cinematographer. Most importantly, the student cinematographers will be able to effectively harness the visual tools of cinema to tell meaningful stories.

MFA Cinematography students may participate in a series of advanced workshop courses, including Master’s Lighting, Advanced Grip Workshop, Underwater Cinematography, and Advanced Camera Movement, where students have the opportunity to work with a large, telescoping crane. With an intense schedule and challenging curriculum, this program is designed for students focused on ambitious goals in cinematography.


  • Advanced courses and practical workshops that teach essential film and digital cinema cameras, lighting, camera movement, and storytelling techniques
  • Production time to develop technical expertise in lighting, grip work, camera operating, camera assisting, and other key areas of film production
  • Personal instruction and ongoing critique from award-winning faculty, with many that belong to prestigious cinematic societies all over the world
  • The opportunity to shoot a range of projects on the latest film and digital cameras, providing material to build each student’s cinematography reel
  • Access to industry-standard equipment such as cameras, dollies, lighting and grip, as well as production workshops with advanced equipment, such as a crane
  • The ability to attend exclusive guest speaker events with industry experts such as cinematographers, directors, producers, and more
Degree Deatils

The MFA degree in Cinematography is an accelerated graduate program that takes place over two years and five full-time semesters. The accelerated two-year schedule is possible through an extended academic schedule, which allows students to complete three full-length semesters in the first year.

During their studies, MFA students complete compelling projects such as classic Mise-En- Scène, Documentary, and Continuity projects, as well as their MFA Thesis film. In the spirit of fostering collaboration, there may be screenings hosted to showcase the cinematographers’ work to NYFA Filmmaking students. Students will also work as crew on colleagues’ films in positions including gaffer, key grip, camera assistant, and camera operator. At the conclusion of their program, MFA students will have a showcase of work for their professional reel. To learn more about the projects included in the MFA program, visit the Cinematography projects page.

NYFA’s Cinematography MFA program is conducted at our NYFA Los Angeles campus. At NYFA Los Angeles, students will be working in the heart of the entertainment industry, with convenient access to world class equipment, facilities, and crew.

NYFA Los Angeles
3300 W Riverside Drive
Burbank, CA 91505

Acting Film Alumini

Bob Nguyen

Bob Nguyen


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Faculty Highlights

Anthony Richmond

Anthony Richmond