Accelerate Your Career in the Art Department

Learn industry secrets from Chris Lowe (STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI, SKYFALL)


Commercial production designer Sophie Becher (H&M, GUCCI, COCA-COLA)

Becoming a successful production designer or art director is hard. We can make it easier.

Do you worry about where your career will be in five years? Most people do.

Sometimes it feels as though no matter how talented and hard working you are, you can't seem to consistently land jobs on the big films and commercials that you would like. 

Are you making a good impression on set? Is your portfolio strong enough? Maybe you just don't know the right people?  

It seems like you're doing everything right, and yet your career isn't moving as quickly as it should.

Guess what? The people at the top felt the same way at one point. People like The Last Jedi art director Chris Lowe were not born successful. Acclaimed production designer Sophie Becher did not start her career designing films with Jude Law and Simon Pegg.

But they spent years learning the skills of their trade. Skills like how to plan and manage a massive build.  Or how to put together a portfolio that regularly gets them work on big productions. And then there are those skills which many people don't even realise they need, like the politics of managing expectations during a recce.

What if you could avoid years of frustration by learning these skills directly from Chris Lowe and Sophie Becher themselves? What if you could do it on a fun weekend in central London, alongside a small group of other like-minded freelancers?

What if you could walk away from a weekend feeling inspired and confident, with the skills and connections to prepare you for the next phase in your career?

"I'm not going to become wildly successful from one weekend!" you might say.

Well, that's true. You still have to put in the work. But chances are you're already putting in the work. And it's hard.

Now's the time to make it easier.


Introducing a transformative two-day course...

Secrets of Production Design and Art Direction
with Chris Lowe and Sophie Becher

A masterclass from Cinema Jam in partnership with ShortCourses@NFTS - the gold standard in film industry professional development

26th-27th of May 10:00-18:00 in a Central London

BAFTA-winning art director Chris Lowe and acclaimed production designer Sophie Becher share their insider industry knowledge with a maximum of 20 select professionals.

They draw from lessons they've learned over the course of their careers working on major feature films like In Bruges, Skyfall and Star Wars: The Last Jedi as well as on commercials for international brands such as Coca-Cola, Heineken, and Gucci.

Topics will range from the creative, such as use of colour and light, to the more practical, including managing a team, getting hired on your dream job, and budgeting like a pro.

Lowe and Becher will use selections from their respective bodies of work as case studies to explain the creative and practical solutions they have found over the years and then show the participants how to apply these solutions to their own work.

This course will be highly interactive, with lively discussions that will continue into the evening as the tutors join the participants for a drink at the pub at the end of each day.


Case studies from major films and commercials

Personal career advice you can apply immediately 

Evenings spent at the pub with two living legends

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    Who’s it for?  Production designers, art directors and other art department freelancers, as well as for directors, producers, costume designers, and other professionals who want to better understand this essential part of cinematic storytelling
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    Where is it? Cinema Jam HQ, Collective Auction Rooms, 5-7 Buck Street, London NW1 8NJ 
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    How much does it cost? £297 for two full days of instruction. Complimentary lunch and light refreshments provided during the day and drinks down the pub on Saturday evening.

See what previous students of our courses with Chris Lowe and Sophie Becher say:

"On fire with everything - motivating, in​​​​spiring!"

Freia Von Schwichow 

Art Department Assistant

"A lot of super practical advice that you can't get anywhere else. When you're working on set nobody has much time to explain how everything works. You'd either have to work for a long time to learn this stuff, or you can go to the class and get it the easy way."

Sonia Kasparian


"The chance to learn from top professionals was a very inspirational experience"

Paul Savulescu 

Production Designer

Book now to transform your career

Space is limited and tickets will go fast, so don't delay

Find out why we have a 100% Satisfaction Rate*

*100% of the participants surveyed in our past two art department courses say they would recommend the course to a friend or colleague!

Course Outline

Day One – Chris Lowe

  • Part 1
    • Brief History of my career path
    • Attributes learned at University
    • Things they might not teach you…
    • How to Maximise your chances of employment
    • A great portfolio

  • Part 2
    • Starting a Project
    • Reading a Script
    • Breaking down a Script
    • Approaching a Schedule
    • Reading a one line
    • Breaking a script into a Budget Format
    • Doing a construction schedule
    • Guestimating
    • Doing a labour flow
    • Stage Allocations
    • Stage plans and Schematics
    • Construction Drawings
    • What CM’s don’t like to see

  • Part 3
    • Location Builds
    • Pencil Drawings VS 2D or 3D Digital
    • Scouting, Recces and the politics of managing expectations
    • Communication across departments
    • Approaching a shoot and managing it
    • Flexibility and preparation for curve balls
    • Art direction – is it fun and why I do it?
    • CG, Virtual Environments, and the Future
    • Conclusions and Questions

Day Two – Sophie Becher

    • How I became a production designer
    • My route in comparison to others

    • Film
    • TV
    • Commercials
    • Pop Promos
    • Short films

    • My role in the process of making a film
    • Research
    • Script breakdown
    • Brainstorming
    • Building a team and their roles
    • Budget management
    • Realisation of one’s ideas
    • Day-to-day management

    • What my role is in the process of making a TV show and the different types of television work one can get involved in
    • Research
    • Script breakdown
    • Brainstorming
    • Building a team and their roles
    • Budget management .
    • Realisation of one's ideas
    • Day to day managing

    • My role in the process of making a commercial
    • Differences between film and TV
    • Day-to-day management
    • Research
    • Script and treatment appreciation
    • How I tackled various challenges
    • The team and their roles
    • Realisation of one’s ideas

About the Tutors

Chris Lowe

Chris Lowe has had an extensive and diverse career in art direction over the years, working on TV series such as The Vicar of Dibley and All Along the Watchtower, and then moving into films including The Golden Compass, In Bruges, Skyfall and most recently Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Chris has been nominated for several awards, and has won a BAFTA TV award for Best Production Design for his work on the TV movie Longitude, as well as three ADG Excellence in Production Design awards.

Sophie Becher

Acclaimed production designer Sophie Becher got her first significant break working on BBC’s The Borrowers and has since go on to work on a vast array of production design master works, including period epic To Kill a King, the wonderfully stylish Alfie with Jude Law as well as the hit Simon Pegg comedy Run Fatboy Run. Recently Sophie worked on the chilling BBC series And Then There Were None, Mars and is currently working on the upcoming film A Private War. Besides all her numerous film and television credits, Becher is a prolific designer of high-end commercials for major international brands including H&M, Hyundai and Bailey's.

Book now to transform your career

Space is limited and tickets will go fast, so don't delay

"Great course! The knowledge gained was really helpful. Plus a huge part of the value of the weekend is the contacts you make.

Laura Bright 

Art Department Assistant

"Really educated me and helped me meet new people in a professional environment"

Kiira Smith 

Production Designer

Terms & Conditions

  1. By registering it is implied that you accept the terms and conditions applied to the service. It is the responsibility of the user to analyse all the information published here before proceeding with the registration. The organization reserves the right to change the terms and conditions without previous notice. These changes will be published on this official event page and will be considered valid from that moment onwards.
  2. Cinema Jam Ltd. reserves the right to cancel a registration if the participant does not meet any eligibility requirements described above. In these cases a full refund will be issued.
  3. No booking will be considered valid until Cinema Jam Ltd. receives the total value of the registration.
  4. The registrations cannot be re-utilized or returned, unless in case of cancellation of the session, yet if it is possible and reasonable, the name of the registration can be changed for another person to attend the session. Please bear in mind that Cinema Jam Ltd. will not be responsible for travel expenses, or any other additional expense, in case of cancellation. Cinema Jam Ltd. will equally not be responsible for any monetary compensation in case of timetable changes or cancellations. Cinema Jam Ltd. is also not responsible for any compensation or devolution in case of absence of the event by the participant for any major reason (ie: situations outside of the sphere of control of Cinema Jam Ltd., such as war or threat of war; riots; civil unrest; industrial dispute; airport shutdowns; flight cancellations; terrorist activity; natural disaster; nuclear disaster; fire, adverse weather conditions; or similar situations).
  5. There is a chance that the Cinema Jam Ltd. might have to make alterations regarding dates or timetables, either due to changes in the professional schedule of the workshop speakers or due to travel difficulties. These alterations are beyond our control and will not be cause for reimbursement.
  6. There won’t be any devolutions or reimbursements in case of absence by the participant for professional, personal or health reasons.
  7. The registration will be considered invalid in case of illicit resale.
  8. The participants are responsible for checking the veracity of the information during the registration and report any errors or mistakes as soon as possible.
  9. Cinema Jam Ltd. reserves the right to refuse entry and reimbursements in case of abusive behaviour, physical and psychological threats, drunk or disrespectful attitude. The same is applied in case the participant tries to enter the event with any object considered as a weapon or with any illegal substance.
  10. Cinema Jam Ltd. will not be considered responsible for the loss or destruction of private property of the participant, nor will it be responsible for any medical or hospital expenses in case of injury or illness inflicted during the event nor on its installations or in the city that is hosting the event. For this exact reason the organization advises the participants to acquire health and travel insurance against all possible risks.
  1. By purchasing this course you hereby authorise Cinema Jam Ltd (the Producer) to record and edit your name, likeness, image, voice and participation in the performance on film, tape or otherwise. You agree that the Recording may be edited and otherwise altered at the sole discretion of Cinema Jam Ltd and used in the whole or in part for any and all broadcasting, non-broadcasting, audio/visual, and/or exhibition purposes in any manner or media, in perpetuity, throughout the world. Cinema Jam Ltd may use and authorise others to use all or parts of the Recordings. Cinema Jam Ltd, its successors and assigns shall own all right, title and interest, including copyright, in the Recordings, to be used and disposed of without limitation as Cinema Jam Ltd shall in its sole discretion determine.
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Refund Policy

To cancel your place on this course, notice of cancellation must be given by email to info(at)

  • If you cancel at least 28 working days prior to the start of the course you will receive a full refund minus a 10% administration fee
  • If you cancel between 28 and 10 working days prior to the start of the course you will receive a 50% refund
  • If you cancel less than 10 working days before the event you will not be entitled to a refund

No refund will be made for non-attendance on the course.

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