Ella Pultinas and Megan Luke
From its beginning, we wanted it to be about Evergreen as an institution where supposedly we as students and faculty aim to, put simply, embody the “Five Foci” in our attempt to learn in ways that allow us to self-determine apart from the social structures and institutions that arrange our behavior into complicity. We also wanted it to be specifically about exercising our freedom to educate ourselves collaboratively. We were asking ourselves a lot of questions. Realizing that the idea of accountability itself can be taken in a lots of ways – the most common seeming to be about spending money ethically or voting – and that the issue of how to work towards ‘social change’ is complex and confusing, we wanted to reflect the need to really think about it both in our writing and our adaptation.
Footage for the video was largely taken while we were actually hanging out and walking, talking about these issues, which was nice because we wanted our video to reflect the practice of discussing, the general plurality of perspectives, and our time spent at both Evergreen and the places where we continue our learning experiences everyday. Spontaneity kind of took precedence over scripting. Only half of what we wrote ended up in our piece, unfortunately, and we also had to omit recordings of conversations and footage from an interview we had last week with activist/writer Kenyon Farrow due to the 7 minute limit.
Korbin Bennett-Gold and David Erde
October 24th, 2012
Korbin and I are both very dedicated filmmakers, because of this our topic focused on the responsibilities and ethics of filmmaking. We feel this applies to both topics since the representation of humans on screen is an issue of justice and the hegemonic implications derivative media has on society chiefly is a dilemma of how to sustain growth of cultural identity. The two of us spent a large amount of time simply discussing these issues to find a level of understanding between us, and afterward used key terms and emotions we wanted to express in this piece as a guide for our brainstorming.
Our adaptation is heavily radical – we essentially threw the paper out the window and started fresh with all the research and personal insight gained in the backs of our minds.
The piece aimed for poetic, reflexive, performative, and expository modes.
Since we made a film about filmmaking, we wanted to experiment and expand the uses of the medium as much as possible for the sake of the messages we were getting across.
Getting on the same level, and learning to disagree and respect the other’s views of the end product were the biggest challenges.
A film by Joel Nelson and Sean Neagle
Watch a Donkey Fight an Elephant Artist’s Statement
For our film, Watch a Donkey Fight an Elephant, we focused on the two party system and how it has lead to an un-democratic system of government, which in turn, has lead to greater voter apathy. Our video focuses more on the justice aspect of the program, particularly the idea of just government. Our essay changed a lot based on feedback from our PODS, who helped us clarify our ideas, and address the issues of culpability and what we can do to help. We used our AV script more as a general outline when shooting, leaving plenty of room for improvisation. We were fortunate in that Green Party candidate Jill Stein was speaking on campus while we were shooting, lending more voice to our ideas. Our essay was literal, but we took a more performative route with the video itself. The video also contains some elements of advocacy as well. In general, we tried to make an informative, performative, black comedy with our video. The most challenging aspect for us was writing our AV script. We worked long and hard on it to make our ideas clear, and come up with interesting visuals to go with our text.
The message we were trying to communicate is how only through understanding the repercussions of our actions can we facilitate change, for we cannot care for anything of which we do not know. The process of creating this piece was a little unorthodox because we disregarded the visuals while writing the script, and disregarded the written script while creating the visuals. The method of adjusting the collaborative essay into a script followed in suit, drastically different, the video hosts a radical adaptation. Despite a somewhat haphazard conception, in the end, things melded together cohesively. The piece predominantly uses the reflexive and poetic modes of representation, with a small element of performative mode. The video is comprised of many shots regarding the environment, and human interaction within it. There are also supplemental moments of abstract representation. The most challenging thing about this project was creating a pre production plan, and following through with it. Additionally, we ran into many technological issues when transferring media, from one workstation, to the next. Ultimately, the project was a success.
John Heinekey and Jeb Stuart
October 23rd, 2012
Our film, “Looks Good Enough to Eat”, is about the impact of food waste and food production on the human race’s efforts to be sustainable. In developing this film Jeb and I borrowed ideas from one another’s independent works to create a truly collaborative project. Because of the similarity between our two works this was a very natural effort. Our intention was to shed light on the ways our food production and consumption harms the environment. While it borrows aspects of absurdism our film is a fairly traditional and literal visual representation of the essay we wrote. Our mode of representation was highly expository but our deliberate appearances on screen were participatory. Stylistically, the film was dry and straightforward, although imaginative in parts of our participatory aspects. The biggest issue for us in production was getting all of the footage we wanted. There were certain shots from our AV script that we simply weren’t able to get because of their impracticality. We wanted to get footage of a large scale industrial farm but our inability to get to one made that impossible. If such footage had been available it may have competed with, and outshined, our participatory role in the film. Regardless, for the resources at our disposal we made the best possible film we could and had a great time doing so.
Beau Cardall and Alex Olson-Bick
S&J Collaborative Artists’ Statement
For our S&J Collaborations Project, we chose to focus on building/strengthening ourselves and our community through public media. Instead of being silent while governments and corporations create our reality through mass advertising and media manipulation, we aim to change social norms towards more sustainable thinking and disintegrate fearful ideologies, thus creating a new , community reality.
The two of us shared an interest in media manipulation and how we fall victims to their advertising. The most challenging aspect of this production has been learning how to mix abstractions with narrative. One way we’ve achieved this is by overcoming fears of filming the public by being comfortable with our artistic endeavors.
Our mode of filming is highly inspired by an observational mode mixed with reflexive moments. It was difficult to be completely cinema verite, but we got around this. Instead of using actors and scripts, we included our own participation and exploration of poetic expression.
Our collaborative project focuses on the struggles of working within a tight food budget while being acutely aware of the negative effects of genetically modified organisms and other unhealthy ingredients that are so common in inexpensive food. Our voiceover is completely faithful to our collaborative essay, which gives us both a unique voice in the personal effects the food industry has on us, and a combined telling of the history of this mess of a food industry. This faithful voiceover is paired with a visually radical adaptation that uses abstract imagery that doesn’t cause a fight for the viewers’ attention. The juxtaposition between the poetically abstract visuals and our argumentative, expository voiceover mirrors both the physical and psychological effects of the problems within our food industry.
Taylor Good, Lisa Hurwitz, & Rhys Stevenson
Our piece sets out to examine the collective anxieties of our group members on the issue of homelessness and the discomfort it evokes in each of us, respectively. What is our relationship to the problem? What unique feelings could a meditation unearth? Rhys explores his visceral reaction when walking past a homeless person, Lisa makes connections between experiences with her first girlfriend and the impact they had on her views regarding homelessness specifically in LGBT populations, and Taylor examines her guilt over the pure fear of seeing a homeless person. Rhys concluded that he doesn’t know enough about a person to judge so he should just help, Lisa concluded that she should strive to look at homeless populations more equally, and Taylor settled upon getting over her fear of seeing someone homeless.
Primarily poetic, our piece plays with 3 timelines and both their similarities and dissimilarities. We attempt to recreate the mundane everyday experiences where our paths cross with homelessness. Symbolically, the subsequent result is that our paths as individual group members cross as well. Though written separately we quickly realize commonalities in our different experiences and portrayals of them.
Our adaptation, a literal one, explores a mode mostly untouched by group members in the first video project. Additionally the group will push itself to explore weaknesses from the first assignment. Lisa is exploring the long take, Taylor the short take, and Rhys on more fluid narrative. By playing with these techniques we hope to wield tension, hold viewer interest, and remain true to the stories we convey as filmmakers.
Mariah Gerth and Emma Loftis
The purpose of this project was to explore the misrepresentation of the LGBTQ community in mass media, and the religious influence surrounding the debate for LGBTQ rights. Our adaptation was traditional, surprisingly so, considering how candid our audio and visuals were.
We used google image search to display how the simplest method of getting information only adds fuel to the fire of the LGBTQ community’s misrepresentation. We juxtaposed these fast paced images with distanced lockdown shots of real people who all identify with a different sexuality sitting down and having fun as equals.
Our process was very organic and casual to prevent any stilted or heavy-handed expression of the issues at hand. We simply sat down and recorded ourselves having a conversation about this subject. Then we set up a camera while making dinner to capture the truest reality of us interacting as equals.
The editing process was nerve racking at first, but our dedication combined with our great chemistry as collaborators made for a good work environment and ultimately, a good video.