Independent Filmmakers Co-operative of Ottawa


IFCO was created in the summer of 1991. It began as a result of the vision of a small, enthusiastic group of up-and-coming filmmakers. This vision was to create an organization which provided filmmakers in the Ottawa area with the facilities, training and funds required to make independent Super 8mm, 16mm and/or 35mm films. IFCO remains, to this day, the only organization which provides this service in Ottawa.

IFCO initially consisted of five founding members (Monica Szentesky, Scott Galley, Wayne Meade, David Chow and Glen Cross) and several volunteers who helped initiate and develop the programs and services that IFCO offered to the region. IFCO was incorporated as a non-profit co-operative corporation in January 1992, and in June 1992 received office space in the Arts Court Building, located in the heart of downtown Ottawa. In June 2009 IFCO became a registered charity.

25 years later, IFCO has supported the creation, by its members, of over nearly 400 independent film productions, by providing access to training programs, equipment rentals, on-site facilities, production grants and more. We now have a solid membership base, and continue to occupy a prominent position within the Eastern Ontario arts community.

IFCO now has two full-time staff members: the Executive Director, and the Technical Coordinator. The staff can be reached via the Contact page.

IFCO receives funding from the City of Ottawa, the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council; earned revenues through workshop fees, equipment rentals, and annual membership dues; plus in-kind and/or financial support from foundations, private funders and corporate sponsors.


The Independent Filmmakers Co-operative of Ottawa Inc. (IFCO) is committed to supporting Super 8mm/16mm/35mm original filmmaking production, training, exhibition, presentation and critical discourse.


The Independent Filmmakers Co-operative of Ottawa Inc. (IFCO) is a centre for artists who express their ideas, values and experiences using the medium of film. IFCO provides, on a co-operative basis, training, facilities, equipment, funding, information resources and means to exhibit work. IFCO aims to encourage a critical discourse in and an historical appreciation of film as and artform, and to develop, support and sustain an innovative and diverse Ottawa-based community of artists.


• Promoting the use and appreciation of motion picture film as an artistic medium;
• Promoting and fostering cultural diversity in filmmaking;
• Providing artists’ access to traditional filmmaking tools and training at affordable rates;
• Preserving and maintaining traditional filmmaking processes and equipment so present and future generations of artists have access to all
• Providing artists with access to services and resources which both support, and protect the integrity of traditional filmmaking;
• Having a voice/presence in the community that is respected and welcomed;
• Creating partnerships with other communities, organizations and initiatives;
• Providing a community for like-minded people to engage and participate in the true spirit of independent filmmaking; and
• Empowerment of artists.

IFCO offers two kinds of workshops: the comprehensive Hands-on-Film Workshop Series and our focussed workshops. These workshops train future filmmakers on the technical core aspects of filmmaking, and are also an effective way for aspiring independent filmmakers to meet others who are active in the local filmmaking community. Many workshop participants go on to help one another with their films.

CELEBRATE 25 YEARS ON THE SILVER SCREEN - HELP IFCO MAKE A DIFFERENCE BY MAKING A DONATION. READ KARSTEN'S STORY: "I began my experience in filmmaking as many others did; through trial and error with a family digital camera. This is a great way to start and provides a solid foundation of curiosity and wonder, but it has its limitations. Through my school program, I was afforded the opportunity to partner with IFCO."

FILMMAKER EH! is IFCO’s exciting mobile application for indie filmmakers, with a comprehensive directory listing of filmmaking resources. This mobile application is especially tailored for aspiring CANUCK filmmakers on the GO! Available for iPhone, Android, and BlackBerry platforms, the mobile application provides continuously updated information about a variety of independent emulsion filmmaking resources.

IFCO Newsletter