Category: creative activism


A few weeks ago, I came up with an idea about three ordinary students who have to go through a day with one of the sights missing. The idea being that they would see peoples aliments in a different light and no longer take for granted the simple things in life.

During this Documentary I also learned a lot. I learnt that no matter what, communication is key. Also, if there is a will, then there is a way. Meaning, if you have a boulder in your way, then you put find an alternate route. That sounds simple, and I guess it is, but putting it into practice and actually moving round that boulder is how you learn. That is what this documentary was all about.

For this task I operated the camera and narrated the scenes for the audience.

You will notice that there are some ‘comedic’ elements in the documentary too. I felt that this was necessary to add in because, no matter what affliction, you should always see the bright side. I always say that a day without laughter and humor, is always a day lost.

Above is a link to the documentary.

Doing this documentary has given me an idea to do a longer one called ‘Senseless’ which is where I will gather a group of five students/workers etc and get them to take away one of their senses. They will do tasks as a team too and try and go round the metaphorical boulder.

My research for this documentary was to look at Helen Keller. I was moved by how she managed to go through life with all of her disabilities. Watching a documentary about her, made me want to make a documentary that show people who take their life for granted and take away a sense, just for a day and see how they cope.

This was the documentary that I watched:


(This is NOT my documentary, I added it for research purposes only)

I can honestly say that I have learnt a lot from making this documentary. The main one being, you can never take anything for granted. No matter how small it is.

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Flash mob #CreativeAct

A little while ago, I was part of a team that successfully managed to fool real members of the public. The ‘deceit’ was centered on two people who are in a ‘band’. the ‘ploy’ was to ‘spontaneously’ see the band ‘Audio Cheque’ coming out of a store in the center of Coventry. We then did an ‘interview’ with them too. My role was with a group of two other people; paparazzi. We would get the camera in their face and take photo after photo.

We manged to fool a fair amount of people into thinking that this bad was real. In order to enrich the lie, we made flyers, a FB page and a ‘song’.  To spice things up we even said that they was going to perform their latest single on to of the Ellen Terry building later that night… a la The Beatles.

unbelievably, we managed to fool a lot of people. People were asking questions, seeing what was going on and to top it off… getting autographs and photos! It amazes me sometimes how naive the British public really is. As soon s there is a new celebrity in town, we go week at the knees and have yearning to find out all about them.

The whole process from idea to taking out on the street took a little over two hours. Which, is great I feel. It just goes to show that you can create two fake people and generate buzz for them in no time at all, if the audience are willing enough.

At first I was skeptical about the idea, because I genuinely thought the public would be smarter. I was almost convinced that they would see through our lie, almost instantly. Incredibly, hardly anyone did. Those that did though, just walked off…

The thing that I learnt most about this flash mob, is that, if you sell something in the right way, anyone will buy it. No matter how ridiculous it sounds. I don’t know whether to be happy that I was part of a team that fooled the public into thinking two students from Coventry university were semi famous indi artists, or sad, because, in this day and age, if you are a celebrity… or even say you are, people will instantly flock to you and want photos and autographs….

Here is the video:   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=izOrw44VFpk&feature=youtu.be

The following teaser trailer is part of a viral marketing campaign for my up-coming feature film, based on a story by Stephen King; The Boogeyman.
It was filmed on location in Warwick, using one of the actors from the film.

The intention of this video is to generate enough buzz about the film, so people will go and reasearch it, and eventually watch the film when it is released online later this year.

http://vimeo.com/38696831
The film is slated for a 2012 (Autumn) Release

I know, I know, It’s been a long time coming. I wanted to make sure it had the right ‘feel’ to it. Whilst shooting the teaser, I kept thinking to myself, I can’t wait to make this film. it has been a long time in the making, but I don’t want to rush into it, or make it ‘feel’ rushed.

It is almost time to roll the cameras now though, and I couldn’t be more excited!

I will leave you now, with the teaser trailer, I hope you enjoy.

So, Yesterday we sat down and watched a documentary. Food Inc. It was a documentary about where and how the food in America is made.
It really made you think about it. There were parts of the documentary where I just had too look away. The way they treated the animals, before slaughtering them was shocking. Some might say, who cares how they are treated, they will be dead soon enough anyway. I disagree, They should still have a good quality of life before they end upon the meat counter in our supermarkets.

I’m pretty sure I won’t be eating at McDonald’s any time soon either. For numerous reasons. Now I’m aware that in the UK we have different standards, but it is still off putting.

A friend of mine (from the USA), posted this the other day. I thought that it was relevant to this post. Enjoy…… McDonald’s USA

The word ‘Hate’ get’s thrown around far too much these day I feel. It’s a word reserved for some of the worst things on the planet. It’s a powerful and emotional word too.

There are a lot of things people hate in this world.

People who know me, know that I’m a very tolerant person, some even say too tolerant at times. But some times I come across somethings that really annoy me, dare I say I come across things I just plainly put, Hate. It’s rare that that happens. But it DOES happen.

Here is the latest one.

Book burning.

As a reader and a lover of all things educational (I heard that sigh at the back there 😉 ) It really annoys me that some people will go to such lengths to make sure a book is not read. I know they get burnt for MANY reasons, but I don’t want to go into too much detail.

I want to talk about one in particular.

When J.K. Rowling gave us her story, Harry Potter. It did not sit well with a certain group of people. You could even say that they just plain hated it. So what did they do… Well, They gathered up as many as they could and burnt them, outside of a church no-less.

I did not take this photo, but I just wanted to share it.

That is what I hate…

So, this blog is all about a film I watched in a lecture at University earlier this week. It was a cynical look at the media industry and how it gets people addicted to the industry, and in some cases gets people to pin their hopes on becoming a celebrity…. and nothing else.
This was a film about the media industry. It gave us lessons to follow:

Lesson 1: Start the Young. By this they mean plonk the kids in front of the TV from an early age and get them addicted to the industry.
Key skills: Motivation/brain washing

Lesson 2: Keep them hooked. Make sure you don’t loose your audience.
Key Skills: Addiction

Lesson 3: Hard wired urges. As they have started them young, their urges to keep watching are hard wired.
Key Skills: One way friendships

Lesson 4: Gossip. News travels fast, good and bad
Key Skills: Gathering information

Lesson 5: Creating News
Key Skills: No need to check the source. Any news is ‘newsworthy’

So, that was the key points and break down from the documentary on the industry. I should point out that the documentary was very tongue-in-cheek. It was an inside look at how the industry gets people to keep watching Television. The tricks include:

Celebrity endourced products to keep you hooked on the things you love, and to give you an emotional attachment to the product.

Advertisements with celebrities with a high ‘star persona’

24 hour news. 7 days a week.

Celebrites ———-> Entourage ———-> Fans

It’s all about supply and demand. They supply it, we demand it. “Only give you what you want” – is the medias response.

The newspapers are ‘self regulated’ by the Press Complaints Commission. which means they regulate themselves. Many have questioned whether they actually do this. I just wonder, with the stuff they DO print, that is a bit too in your face, what have they regulated that is worse than that?….

A good analogy for the media industry is the following: The media is like Gippetto (from Pinocchio) They pull the strings and we, like sheep follow the crowd.

No Offence, but…..

So, our new University project was launched yesterday. It’s all about offense. This is an interesting one for me, as everyone who knows me will know, I am not offended by 98% of things in this world. I am also not someone who dishes out offense. There has been a lot of talk about offense in the past few weeks. ‘Big’ name ‘celebrities’ have been misbehaving. The tall bumbling auto car enthusiast Jeremy Clarkson caused offense when he jokingly said live on ‘The One Show’ that all the people who went on strike should be shot. Now, anybody who knows Clarkson, will know that that was a joke. And what did the big wigs at the BBC expect when they asked him to come on the show? that he was just going to sit there and be quiet? They say you should know your audience, well you should know your guests too! Take a look for yourself: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jVbZz5WW0CA

Now, I don’t quite understand this outrage towards him, because Stand up comics like Jimmy Carr have been getting away with being offensive for a very long time. We accept this because it is in a different environment, but it is still offensive. Here is Jimmy Carr making offensive jokes: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SagayzX2T7Y    Now, to most people THOSE jokes are more offensive than Jeremy Clarkson’s remarks.

 

Moving onto Rick Gervais now, He has caused a storm with his new show ‘Life’s Too Short’ which is a documentary following a dwarf. People have been outraged by this because they feel he is making fun of the disability. I have not yet seen this show, so I will reserve judgment until viewing, but here is a trailer for the show: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2yCx3etQdl0  Ricky claims that this is a serious documentary about  very day challenges of being a dwarf, but clearly this is a comedy too, He is not poking fun at dwarfs, but having a laugh with his friend Warwick Davis. Anybody who knows Ricky, will know that this is his type of humor, what has outraged people the most though is that it is on the BBC and the licenecepayer is footing the bill.

 

I will be watching the entire series and will comment on the episodes. then I will form my own opinion.