NFTS Scotland: Scouting for Commercials

Short course


A mixture of theory and practical work, the course will provide participants with the framework on which to base any scouting role within the locations department for film and TV, and with a particular focus on commercials.

By the end of the course, participants will be able to:

  • Understand the basic principles of photography
  • Take photographs of a location
  • Use photo sharing sites such as Dropbox/Smugmug
  • Package and present locations
  • Understand and interpret the brief
  • Use Google Maps and Google Earth as a scouting aid
  • Understand the most common architectural styles and influences of periods of history
  • Building a back catalogue
  • Complete a script breakdown and location breakdown including identifying any potential problems/ needs
  • Research and assess locations

The course is led by Lloret MacKenna Dunn, a freelance Supervising Location Manager, who has worked for over 25 years in Scotland's Film and TV sector on a diverse range of productions including Sky Atlantic’s Patrick Melrose, T2 Trainspotting and World War Z.

On day one of the course you will be set a scouting challenge to go out, find and photograph a scripted location. Day two will be presented alongside David Neilson, Producer and MD of commercials company Filming Scotland who will focus on the unique demands placed on the location scout when working on commercials.  A separate scouting challenge will be set this day and the results reviewed.

The course is ideal for those who already have some scouting experience in film and TV and are looking to understand how to organise and prepare the best scouting with a focus on commercials. The course is also a good introduction for those wanting to get started in location scouting, as the principles you will learn on day one apply to film and TV more generally as well. 

To get the most out of the course, participants should bring their own camera or camera phone and laptop. 

Fees and funding options

Fees for this course are as follows:

This course is available as a two day course, or you may opt to attend one day only. 

Freelance Rate: £300 (Two days)
Corporate Rate: £450 (Two days)

Freelance Rate: £175 (One day)
Corporate Rate: £260 (One day)

Bursaries, supported by the Scottish Government, are also available for those who are eligible.


The NFTS Scotland bursary fund is currently closed for this course and we encourage you to seek alternative avenues of funding to support the cost of this course if required. 

Please read our Alternative Funding Avenues document which points you in the direction of a few other places which may be able to help. Please allow yourself enough time to secure funding when considering your application.

How to apply

Application deadline: Register your interest

This course is not currently open for applications. Please register your interest to be advised of future dates.