Wairarapa's film-makers of the future are receiving a helping hand to perfect their creative talents outside the classroom thanks to the innovation and dedication of Toi Wairarapa.
Students yesterday began a music video project under the tutorage of experienced cinematographer Ed Davis, who has shot music videos for bands such as The Black Seeds and Jordan Luck.
Toi Wairarapa co-ordinator Mena Antonio said the film programme was about making students with a genuine interest in film more confident and proficient in all aspects of film-making.
"The kids will be involved in the film-making process," she said. "It's about getting the students behind the camera as well as in front of the camera."
Henry Sinclair, 17, a Makoura College student, said he was delighted to be involved in the project during Youth Week. His schoolmate, Tom Feringa, is also taking part.
Henry said film-making wasn't an area covered in school, so he relished the chance to improve his skills.
"I think film-making should be offered in schools but, as it isn't, Toi Wairarapa fills one of those gaps for us."
Henry said he was inspired to take a big interest in film after watching Sir Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings movies. He is a Jackson fan.
The enthusiastic young man also visited Weta in Wellington in recent months and met Lord of the Rings producer Jamie Selkirk. He said he enjoyed the whole process of film-making and the experience of creating a music video.
"I'm hoping to get more knowledge and experience of the film industry."
Sarah Philip, 15, and Becky Adamson, 16, from Kuranui College, are also taking part.
They entered a short eight-minute film into a competition recently and said the project had whetted their appetite for the film industry.
Becky said they got friends to take part and they enjoyed the challenge of putting it together: "Three weeks ago, I won a trip to film school and that really made want to get involved."
Sarah said she hoped to improve her knowledge and skills.
Filming was an area she looked forward to working on.
"I think it's more filming for me and [concentrating on] what's in the frame."
The music video the students are creating is likely to be showcased at a Wairarapa event in coming months.
Mr Davis said the music video would feature eight sound bites from a variety of students on their favourite places in Wairarapa.
It would be edited in a "vocoder" style, which meant music would be added at a later stage to bring the interviewees into rhythm with the accompanying beat.