After advanced level studies in Photography and Sociology, I completed a three-year BA (Honours) Degree in Film and Photographic Arts at the Polytechnic of Central London; I graduated in 1985. This historic Polytechnic—which in 1896 hosted the first exhibition of Lumière Brothers' films and in the 1960s initiated the first British degree course in Photography—later became the University of Westminster. The influential film course was moved out of central London to Harrow. In my day, however, we had a five-storey building at the top of Lower Regent Street, in the West End of London.
Immediately after graduating, I edited several experimental shorts, and in 1986 I cut a making-of documentary for Alex Cox's punk feature Sid and Nancy.
Watch my showreel
See my main credits on IMDb.com
In the 1980s and 1990s, I worked as a freelance film editor in London, principally on Channel Four productions and at BBC Elstree Studios with the legendary film producer Paul Watson. At this time, nearly all my work was done on 16mm film. A decade later, I cut for television again, in Mexico City, for Canal Once.
Watch my showreel
See my main credits on IMDb.com
I am the producer, photographer, editor and sound designer of the documentary The Colour of Olives (Carolina Rivas, Mexico-Palestine, 2006, 97 min.); the producer, co-director (with Carolina Rivas), photographer, composer, editor and sound designer of the documentary Lessons for Zafirah (Mexico, 2011, 75 min.); and the producer, co-director (with Carolina Rivas), co-writer (with Carolina Rivas), photographer, art director, colourist, editor and sound designer of the fiction feature1 for 1 (Mexico-Spain, 2013, 97 min.) Between them, these films have won 15 prizes in the USA, Russia, Cuba, Mexico, Belgium and France.
I am the producer (with Carolina Rivas) and supervising editor of Videovalores—an innovative cinematographic project that changes our perception of cinema, opening access to the creation of short films to anyone who wishes to participate.
Videovalores has been supported in Spain by 'la Caixa' Obra Social, Filmoteca of Catalunya, Filmoteca of Spain, and CCCB among many other partners. In Berlin, it was supported by Migration Hub Network and Cervantes Institute Berlin, and in Amsterdam by European Cultural Foundation.
This dynamic film creation workshop aims to stimulate the production of short films that explore possible scenarios of a better world, through the knowledge and practice of universal values: values such as tolerance, respect and freedom. In the manner of a film 'postcard', a Videovalores film transmits a universal value accompanied by a final phrase, in the form of a 'P.S.', which synthesises poetically the message the director wishes to transmit.
Videovalores workshops have produced 50 films in Spain and Germany. We are currently planning new editions in other countries. In 2019, Crevices, by Syrian filmmaker and Berlin resident Dyaa Naim, won a Plural+ Youth Video Festival award in New York. In 2020, Sasha Benarie's Intimacy of Social Distancing won the Best "2020 Vision" award at Screen Culture Film Festival, London.
Films I have produced and edited have won the following prizes:
My credits: Producer, Editor/Supervising editor, Sound Designer
Crevices (Dyaa Naim, 2018)
2019. Plural+ Danube MEC Award, PLURAL+ Youth Video Festival, US
PLURAL+ is a joint initiative of the United Nations Alliance of Civilisations and the International Organisation for Migration
Intimacy of Social Distancing: A Trilogy (Sasha Benarie, 2020)
2020. Best "2020 Vision", Screen Culture Film Festival, London
2020. Best Lockdown Film, Screen Culture Film Festival, London
Lessons for Zafirah
My credits: Producer, Co-director, Photographer, Composer, Editor, Sound Designer
2013. Best Documentary, Latin American Film Festival van Vlaanderen, Belgium
2013. Human Rights Prize, Latin American Film Festival van Vlaanderen, Belgium
2011. Best Film, Mexico Today, FICUNAM, Mexico
2012. Best International Documentary (3rd prize), Cine Pobre Festival, Cuba
2012. Best Film, Young Jury Award, Anûû-rû âboro, New Caledonia
2011. Honorary Mention, Best Mexican Documentary, DocsDF, Mexico
2011. Honorary Mention, Best Mexican Documentary, Puebla Film Festival, Mexico
2011. Honorary Mention, Best Mexican Documentary, José Rovirosa Prize, Mexico
The Colour of Olives
My credits: Producer, Photographer, Editor, Sound Designer
2008. Special Mention, Cine Pobre Festival, Cuba
2008. Honorary Mention, Todas las Voces Contra el Silencio, Mexico
2007. Special Mention, Cancún Riviera Maya Film Festival, Mexico
2007. Best Direction Documentary, Golden Minbar, Russia
2007. Artistic Vision, Big Sky Documentary Festival, USA
2006. Courage in Filmmaking, Women Film Critics Circle Awards, US
2006. Special Mention Sound, Docúpolis, Spain
Watch my showreel
See my main credits on IMDb.com
I am currently working on the concept for a book about Ukrainian street art.
Bosnian War Posters was published in June 2022 by Interlink Publishing. It is distributed by Simon & Schuster.
I am the author of the forthcoming publication, ABC of Film & Video Editing.
I am the editor, designer (and publisher of the first edition) of Film Step by Step: Methodology of Self-knowledge (Creadores Contemporáneos, 2010, and Editorial Autografía, 2020), by Carolina Rivas—for which I also wrote the foreword.
I have written extensively for various print and on-line publications, most notably about Mexico—where I lived between 2002-11—for Eye Magazine, London.
In Mexico City, I wrote a series of texts about Palestine for Proceso. Other miscellaneous articles have been published in various newspapers, and journals and magazines.
I have taught film editing since 2006. At first in Mexico, and now in Spain. I am currently the head of editing at La Casa del Cine, Barcelona, where I have given classes since 2012. I also teach privately to individuals and small groups.
My methodology is to teach the software through practical necessity. After a short discussion of the key creative, and even philosophical, issues connected with film editing—plus an introduction to the non-linear editing (NLE) software—I present my students with a series of real film projects that cover all the main genres: fiction, documentary, experimental, music, trailer, multi-camera. These projects increase in difficulty, the more extended the course runs. The emphasis is on being a capable and intelligent film editor, and the software is learnt as a tool to enable that. Learning to be a film editor is not just learning software; it is learning to see, think, feel, structure and write in images and sound.
I usually teach in Adobe Premiere Pro, and on longer courses also teach Adobe Audition for more professional sound production—although, on all courses, long or short, equal time is dedicated to image and audio editing.
My students have said:
I highly recommend this course. I had no former experience (and am not tech-savvy), but Daoud is not only an acclaimed filmmaker but a good teacher. The course is very well-structured and clearly presented—and I surprised myself at what I produced. It has been a perfect initial introduction on both a technical and a human level. An excellent inter-relation between software and the spirit of editing. Congratulations!
I can say that I am very satisfied with the course. I loved the emphasis on narrative strategies and design of experiences as more important than the technical elements of the software - which were also more than adequate and were introduced effectively and accurately.
The course definitely exceeded my expectations. The teacher's ideas make you love your work and appreciate the value of editing.
El curso es muy completo y práctico. El profesor es, no sólo un excelente editor, sino también un gran maestro, y muy accesible. El curso me preparó muy bien. Digamos que estoy lista para editar.
Estoy muy contenta con el taller. Lo que más me gustó fue el aprender la forma de trabajar correctamente, no ir a ciegas e ir tocando los botones.
Un curso muy bueno porque no sólo parte de enseña a usar un programa de edición que es la herramienta, sino el trabajo que se hace como editor basado en los principios de montaje todo esto por medio de prácticas que te dan noción del trabajo. Además de las prácticas Daoud va enseñándote las técnicas que él usa a la hora de editar.
While I don't claim to be a 'professional' graphic designer and rarely seek paid work in that capacity, I enjoy designing books, posters, presentations—mostly for my own needs, unless someone explicitly asks me to design something for them. I generally work in Adobe InDesign, Illustrator and Photoshop.
My most notable design projects to date are posters for my films, Carolina Rivas' book, Film Step by Step, and my current book, ABC of Film Editing, which is a work in progress.
- In 2019 I created two installations for an art exhibition in Barcelona that featured pieces made from recycled material. These pieces—Homage to Hong Kong and The Golden Age of Cycling—were accompanied by photos and texts.
- In 2018 I sound-designed a 90-minute theatre play called Ridiculous Man, based on Fyodor Dostoyevsky's short story, The Dream of a Ridiculous Man. I designed sections of the sound in Adobe Premiere Pro—as if it were a movie—but it was live-mixed during performances in QLab from atmospheres, effects, original music, and narrator voice stems, some of which were premixed and some clean.
- In 2010 Carolina Rivas and I produced a DVD of nine original short films. It was titled Life Ends Abruptly, and other Short Films, and contained shorts by predominantly first-time directors. The DVD sold out in Mexico.
For nearly five years, between the summer of 1995 and the end of 1999, I dedicated myself to the cataclysmic events taking place in the former Yugoslavia. The violent breakup of Yugoslavia started many years before, but it wasn't until the massacre in Srebrenica, Bosnia, that I got involved. I drove aid to Tuzla from Britain in October 1995 with a convoy called Worker's Aid; made another humanitarian trip between December 1995-January '96, when I also visited Sarajevo before the end of the siege; and returned for a third time to Tuzla with Worker's Aid in the summer of 1996.
In mid-1997 I went to live in Tuzla, where among other things I started making the only complete collection of Bosnia's war-time graphic art, intending to publish a book of locally created images about the war. That book, Evil Doesn't Live Here: Posters from the Bosnian War, was finally published in New York and London at the end of 2001. It was a tremendous international success.
I lived in Bosnia until the end of 1998, but returned to the region in the spring of 1999, to Skopje, North Macedonia, where I worked for International Medical Corps (IMC) during the neighbouring Kosovo War. I left Skopje in December 1999.
In 2012, while living in Madrid, Carolina Rivas and I were commissioned to write, plan, direct, shoot and edit 30 stop-frame Spanish cooking videos. They were all cut to music, with no dialogue, and only the chef's hands were visible. They were a lot of fun to make and greatly admired. The films were produced for the giant US publishing group, Meredith Corp.—the owners of Allrecipes.com.
Gallery (selected projects)
Evil Doesn't Live Here: Posters from the Bosnian War, USA and UK, 2001
Published in New York (Princeton Architectural Press) and London (Laurence King Publishing).
The Colour of Olives, Mexico-Palestine, 2006
Carolina Rivas and I shot this feature documentary in Palestine in November-December 2004. It premiered in Sarajevo in 2006. It won seven prizes around the world and has been shown in 100-plus festivals in more than 40 countries.
The Colour of Olives was shot in Masha in the West Bank of Palestine.
All eight members of the Amer family were featured in the film.
The Amer family's house was entirely enclosed by the so-called Israeli 'security wall'.
Shaddad Amer waiting for a fence to open so that he can get home from school.
Lessons for Zafirah, Mexico, 2011
This feature documentary was shot in Mexico between 2009-10. It premiered in Mexico in 2011 and won eight prizes around the world.
Lessons for Zafirah features central American migrants as they struggle though Mexico to reach the USA.
We filmed much of the film in a rescue mission in Oaxaca, run by Padre Solalinde.
Other key events were filmed in the states of Veracruz and Chiapas.
Zafirah, director Carolina Rivas' daughter, is the young protagonist of the film. In the course of the film she learns certain ethical 'lessons' from her mother.
1 for 1, Mexico, 2013
This feature film was shot in Mexico City in 2011 and edited in Spain. It premiered in London in 2013. Later, it ran for three months at the Cineteca Nacional in Mexico City.
1 for 1 was made with nearly 50 actors who helped develop the script over several years of workshops and rehearsals.
The film tells the story of a pregnant homeless migrant who needs to find a room in which to give birth.
The migrant faces widespread social apathy and exploitation. The only person who cares about her fate is a young girl who tries, and fails, to help her.
1 for 1 was filmed in an entirely black studio space using long static compositions. The only montage is between scenes.
Eye Magazine, London, 2002-2005
I wrote many articles for Eye Magazine between 2002 -12.
In Any Colour So Long As It's White, Eye Magazine, London, 2002
This was my first in-depth illustrated text for Eye.
One spread from In Any Colour So Long As It's White: Why does Mexican advertising look nothing like the Mexicans?
This is Mexico ... This is 1968, Eye Magazine, London 2005
Carolina Rivas and I investigated and wrote this in-depth illustrated text.
One spread from This is 1968 ... This is Mexico.
Proceso, Mexico, 2004
Proceso commissioned and published three texts about my experiences in the West Bank of Palestine during the second Intifada.
Film Step by Step: Methodology of Self-knowledge, Mexico, 2010
Carolina Rivas' book featuring two of her short films was commissioned by the Arts Council of Mexico (Conaculta).
Life Ends Abruptly, and Other Short Films, Mexico, 2010
This DVD of short films by new directors was produced by Creadores Contemporáneos. It sold out in Mexico.
ABC of Film & Video Editing, Barcelona, 2022
Coming soon... See the publications page on this site for more details.
Videovalores, Barcelona, 2015
Videovalores in Barcelona was made possible through the generous support of these organisations, but principally through a grant provided by Obra Social "la Caixa".
The premiere for Videovalores at the Filmoteca of Catalonia, Barcelona, 2015.
Videovalores, Berlin, 2017
This edition of the project was made possible through the generous support of these organisations.
Students and tutors outside the Cervantes Institute in Berlin, where Videovalores classes were held in 2017.
Film Step by Step: Methodology of Self-knowledge, Spain, 2020
Carolina Rivas' book has been rewritten, redesigned and republished in Spain by Editorial Autografía. I completed this work (as editor and designer) with the author between May and October.
Bosnian War Posters
Published by Interlink Books in the summer of 2022. I made this unique collection in the late 1990s, and wrote and designed this book. It is now available worldwide.