FTM Launches New Camera Lab for Underrepresented Film Workers in Manitoba

Manitoba’s workforce development and training organization Film Training Manitoba (FTM) has created a new in-depth two-day film camera course targeted for women-identifying, trans, and non-binary participants.

To register for this course please go to: https://www.filmtraining.mb.ca/ftms-swift-presents-camera-lab-bridging-the-gap-between-dslrs-to-cinematic-systems/

FTM’s SWIFT Camera Lab: Bridging Between the Gap DSLRs to Cinematic Systems is scheduled for February 25 & 26, 2023 and will be instructed by Laina BrownEden Carter, and Tamara Roshka.

This course will feature a wide collection of camera systems and is targeted for sixteen participants. The sessions will be held at UNIT204 Production Services‘ studio.

“FTM is a member of the Province of Manitoba’s Sector Council Program, which promotes innovation within workplaces. FTM developed this new cinematography training with three experienced women film professionals to build our industry’s workforce while supporting the goal of achieving gender equity,” said Carrie Wilkins, Member of FTM’s Board of Directors and Chair of FTM’s Summit for Women in Film Trades Conference.

In 2022, FTM created Canada’s Summit for Women in Film Trades (SWIFT) conference to support more woman-identified workers entering the film industry.

FTM gathered labour market information in 2021 and noted less than 30 percent of Manitobans working in trades positions in the film industry are women-identifying individuals. In an effort to increase the numbers, FTM’s SWIFT was created and was the first major conference held at Red River College Polytech’s new Manitou a bi Bii daziigae building.

“As a long-serving member of Manitoba’s film community, I highly commend FTM’s SWIFT initiatives which are delivering on their promise of new training for women. I believe my team at Eagle Vision will benefit directly from this important recruitment and training. I’m looking forward to participating at FTM’s SWIFT Camera Lab myself,” said Rebecca Gibson, film industry veteran and Partner of Eagle Vision.

This course will train individuals with a general understanding of videography and/or photography to gain confidence and an understanding of cinema camera systems and the possibility of furthering their careers in the industry.

Day one will be an overview of different camera systems and how to build them. Participants will get hands-on experience with different cinema cameras. This day will be a combination of lectures and practical hands-on learning.

On day two, the participants and instructors will touch on stabilization, camera movement, and process. This day will include how to prepare for a shoot, tech surveys and location scouts, decisions around shot and approach, and a breakdown of camera departments on set.

“As a Manitoba-based director, I believe FTM’s SWIFT programming is a major advancement for our film industry. With 50% of our untapped potential workforce gaining experience behind the camera, I’m excited to work in production with the participants of FTM’s SWIFT Camera Lab in the future,” said Danielle Sturk, member of the DGC-MDC and FTM’s SWIFT Committee.

Topics of this course will include:

  • Building a cinema camera and accessories
  • Camera movement options
  • Set Culture

About FTM instructors:

Laina Brown is an Associate Member of the Canadian Society of Cinematography and is the Director of Photography and Co-Owner of Folks Films. She specializes in music videos, comedic and dramatic short-films, corporate events, and unscripted TV. Laina is proficient in Blackmagic URSA and Sony Mirrorless Cameras systems.

Laina has worked with Canadian artists including The Fretless, Noah Derksen, the Manitoba Opera, Begonia, comedian Spencer Adamus and many more. Some of her recent projects include the “Maybe Next Year” music video for Noah Derksen, Golden Sheaf Award Winning and 48 Film Fest Winner “Model Citizens”, a comedy short that premiered on CBC’s Short Film Face Off – ending up in the final top 3 across Canada, and Bell Fibe TV unscripted comedy series “Ghost Kitchens” created and produced by Folks Films.

As a partner in Folks Films, Laina has years of experience in a multitude of roles in film projects, including Director, Editor, Creative Director, Camera Operator, Project Manager, Business Owner and more.

Laina studied Fine Arts at the University of Manitoba including drawing, painting, photography, and printmaking. Photography work put her through school, but for her, cinematography was the ultimate creative visual medium. Cinematography is collaborative, evocative, with a rich history and ever-changing landscape with enormous creative potential. She is a self-taught filmmaker: peers, YouTube, books, workshops, trial and error and hands on experience make up her education in cameras.

You can check out her work at www.laina.ca or www.folksfilms.com

Eden Carter is the Cinematographer and Senior Producer Think Shift Inc. In this role, she works as the lead camera operator and DP for live action projects across Canada and the U.S. and plays a large role in the development and oversight of all visual expression. Her commercial videos range from lean docu-style pieces to large-scale commercial productions.

With over ten years of camera experience, she brings a dedication to compelling visuals and a commitment to quality storytelling for all of her clients. Light, lenses and motion are where she finds real joy, and if she gets to wear a wild-looking camera rig, even better.

Outside of commercial work, she serves on the Digital Film and Media Production Program Advisory Committee, enjoys collaborating with peers on their passion projects and loves finding new ways to connect with women in her industry. If you have a camera, she’d love you to tell her about it.

Eden graduated with a double major in Film Studies and International Development Studies at the University of Winnipeg, and from the Creative Communications program with a major in Media Production at Red River College.

Tamara Roshka is a second-generation Indo Canadian multi-disciplined artist and cinematographer based in Winnipeg, Canada. She studied Fine Arts at the University of Manitoba and graduated in 2010. Over the years she has worked alongside her father, Ernie Nathaniel who is a director and editor. Brought up in the TV/Film industry since a young age, she has developed her skills as a camera operator and cinematographer over the years. Tamara uses her Fine Arts background in everything she does – taking great care in composition and artistic expression in her cinematography. Being mentored over the years by cinematographers such as Charles Konowal, CSC and the late Barry Lank, CSC she has had opportunities to expand her expertise. 

With a passion for documentary filmmaking, Tamara has worked on numerous Manitoba productions. She is partnering with other women in film on developing strategies to help young women and marginalized individuals who are interested in film, bringing awareness to the challenges women face, and advocating for gender equality and diversity hiring in the industry.

For more information about FTM’s SWIFT Camera Lab, please contact: Sheen Chan at sheen@filmtraining.mb.ca


FTM is a non-for-profit charity and member of the Province of Manitoba’s sector council program (through the Department of Economic Development and Jobs). FTM conducts workforce development and training to build a highly skilled and adaptable film industry to support the activities of Manitoba production companies. FTM collaborates with members of the film and television industry to identify the training needs within the community.