Uralla Story Sound Walk

As part of the Co-Creative Communities forum last November, we also ran a project development lab. One of the highlights of the day was Uralla Story Sound Walk, a hybrid media project bringing together folk from oral history initiative The Story Project, and Uralla Arts, the local arts collective.

The Sound Walk represents the next stage of The Uralla Story Project, bringing the audio pieces already recorded out into the community in the form of a creative audio-tour you can access on your smart phone. It will let locals and visitors discover more about the tiny New South Wales town, its history and its community.

This is how the team describe the project:

Imagine you are walking around the centre of town with your mobile, and suddenly you hear music, then a voice starts telling you stories from the past. This idea is to bring Uralla stories alive in the street by creating a sound walk that you can listen to on your smart phone. The stories are told by Uralla locals, woven in with music, myths, poetry and sounds from local artists and writers. It’s a first in regional Australia.

The team behind Uralla Story Sound Walk have had a very busy time since we last saw them in November.

After wrangling additional Council and community support, and securing most of the funding, the last stage of the project looks ready for lift off.

If you like the, erm, sound of Uralla Story Sound Walk, then make sure you vote for their project at: http://www.heartofourcommunity.com.au

Andrew Parker from Uralla Arts says “Each vote gets us a $ amount and gets us closer to the project happening. I met yesterday with a regional tourism rep who is now interested in looking at a regional application of this project after Uralla gets up. This would really put the arts and artists in this region on the map. So it is all very exciting.”

Co-Creative Communities Forum Twitter Update!

It was a busy couple of months heading towards the Co-Creative Communities Forum in Melbourne last month. The forum was held at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI) on the 8-9th November.

Co-Creative Communities was a successful forum with a wonderful and diverse group of Community Arts, Media and Community Cultural Development organisations taking part from all over Australia. It also produced a very busy forum Twitter feed from attendees and participants, full of commentary, insights, links and discussion as the panels presented various projects, ideas and initiatives. This ignited great discussion; both at the forum and online in other parts of the country.

Here is a link to some of that discussion that has been archived on Storify. It provides a brief overview of the narrative of the day. Plenty of discussions happened offline as well, and it was a very exciting and enriching forum.

Ben Eltham’s article about the Co-Creative Communities event was posted online, and provided a great summary of first day.

But please check out the Storify link for the extended Twitter story!


Interview with Sam Gregory from WITNESS

Sam Gregory, the Program Director from leading human rights agency WITNESS will be talking on Melbourne’s RRR next week.

Sam is one of our guests at next week’s CoCreative Communities forum, and he’ll be speaking to Jacinta Parsons on RRR’s Detour program at 10.15 am (day light saving time), Wednesday 7 November.

You can tune in through their website:http://www.rrr.org.au/programs/streaming/

Find out what WITNESS have been up to lately, including their ambitious partnership with YouTube on the Human Rights Channel that launched mid 2012.


Christina Spurgeon talks Co-Creative Communities

In advance of our Co-Creative Communities Forum which is coming up at ACMI in Melbourne on 8 November, Christina Spurgeon (who is the lead investigator on our research project) was interviewed by the QUT Creative Industries Faculty for a short promo video, which is embedded below.

By the way, if you’d like to join us in Melbourne for the Forum, get in quick as tickets are going fast!

Project development workshop – call for co-creative projects

For those of you interested in the sound of our ‘Co-Creative Media Exchange’, here’s a little bit more information about what we’ve got planned, and how to get involved.

And don’t forget to check out the rest of the Co-Creative Communities program. Tix available now.

Co-Creative Media Exchange: A Call for Project Submissions
Submissions close 11 October 2012

Do you work in community media or community arts and have a great idea for a project?

We want to hear from artists, filmmakers, broadcasters, media producers, cultural workers and organisations who want to develop an interesting co-creative community media project. It can be a brand new project or a new angle on an existing one. What matters most is that you’re exploring how to help communities make and distribute their own media and stories.

What’s happening:
The Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI) and the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) are hosting a professional and project development opportunity for community arts and media makers as part of a large multi-year research project into community uses of co-creative media.

Taking place on 9 November 2012 at ACMI, Melbourne, this half-day ‘media exchange’ will give selected participants the opportunity to workshop their projects; receive feedback, advice and support from national and international guests; participate in peer-to-peer mentoring and make new connections across community arts and media.

Limited travel assistance is available for interstate and regional participants who need to travel to Melbourne for the ‘media exchange’. Financial assistance from QUT may also be available to projects that are suitable for further research and interested in being involved in the research project in 2013.

Projects might explore:
– New approaches to working with communities to co-create content
– New models of making community tv and radio production more accessible and participatory
– Collaborations between traditional broadcasters and community arts and media makers
– Experiments with using digital media to tell community stories
– Experiments with using social media platforms to creatively collaborate with audiences
– Scroll down for more information about what to include in your submission

How the day will work:
– Successful participants will get 5-10 minutes each to pitch their project idea to the room
– Participants will then get 3 hours to workshop their project in detail with some of the most interesting thinkers, makers and innovators working in community arts and media.

Who will be there:
Participants will get to workshop their ideas with community arts and media figures including:
– Sam Gregory, Program Director of the leading human rights agency WITNESS;
– Sue Schardt, Executive Director of the innovative US-based public media organisation the Association of Independents in Radio;
– Scott Rankin, writer/director and Creative Director of award-winning arts and social change organisation Big hART;
– Mimi Pickering, award-winning documentary filmmaker and community media Director at the celebrated Appalshop in Kentucky, USA;
– Colin Griffith, online media expert and Director of the Australian Centre for Broadband Innovation;
– and many others.

Participation in the ‘media exchange’ is free, but places are strictly limited. For your project to be considered, please respond to the submission questions below.

Send all submissions to digitalstorytelling@acmi.net.au by 11 October 2012

What to include in your project submission for the Co-Creative Media Exchange

Please respond with 1-3 sentences for each question. Feel free to include links or a CV but please don’t submit audio/visual material.

1. What is your project?
2. Who is it for and why?
3. How is the project participatory, collaborative, or co-creative?
4. What do you hope to achieve with the project?
5. What resources do you need to make the project a success?
6. What connections do you have, or do you hope to make, with other communities, organisations, networks,
etc, on this project?
7. Do you need travel assistance to come to the ‘media exchange’? If so, how much and for what?

Additional Details
– Names of people who would attend the ‘media exchange’:
– Organisation (if applicable):
– Contact Email and Phone:
– Estimated Project Cost:
– Estimated Project Timeframe:

Submissions or queries to digitalstorytelling@acmi.net.au
Closing date: 5pm Thursday 11 October 2012

An introduction…

“Human beings have always told their histories and truths through parable and fable. We are inveterate storytellers.” Beeban Kidron

This recent quote has really resonated with me.

My name is Elizabeth Heck, and as a PhD student attached to the ARC/Linkage Project Community Uses of Co-creative Media, I thought I should introduce myself.

Before embarking on research in this area, I was involved in short film making, after gaining my BA (Hons) in Film and Television Production here at QUT. My Honours project was a solo documentary project on Community Television, and my interest in community media goes back a long way.

Thinking back, one of my favourite media projects was as a line producer on a program called Spark TV, where I was one of a passionate team who curated short films from student and emerging filmmakers for community broadcast and screenings. We linked these short films together via animations and other creative means from local animators. We were always excited by the talent that was out in the community, and it was wonderful to be part of project that gave those short films and stories a platform to be shared and enjoyed by others.

A passion for emerging and student film & media making also led me into the field of Media Education, and after I gained my Bachelor of Education, I taught secondary Film, Television and Media Studies. It was very rewarding to see an enthusiasm for media amongst my students. One of my favourite parts of lessons was sharing wonderful discussions with my senior students about the media.

After a short time off to have my two children, I returned to QUT to further my qualifications and undertake a research orientated degree of a Master of Education. This was particularly rewarding, and further ignited my passion for media research, community media making and learning. At that time, I became the Administration Officer for the Australian Teachers of Media, Queensland branch; the professional development organisation for Queensland media educators. As part of this, I manage the ATOM Qld Twitter feed. It is a very valuable learning and professional development tool, and I have really enjoyed curating the content of that feed, for both teacher resources and learning purposes, and relevant promotion for the organisation. I do have a thing for Twitter I must admit! My last M. Ed paper was on the value of using social media, such as Twitter and Facebook, for media teacher professional development. Personally, I have learnt a lot through social media platforms such as Twitter. The sharing of knowledge and information on this platform has been incredibly valuable in enhancing my own learning experiences.

My PhD research is delving into how learning occurs through community uses of co-creative media practices, such as digital storytelling, from the workshop process to broadcast and distribution platforms at the intersection of community media and arts organisations. Digital storytelling as a means of creative expression in social learning. I look forward to researching, sharing and learning further with this project and I am very excited to be involved in this research area.

In addition to my research studies, I do very much have an interest in photography. From my DSLR to iPhoneography and Instagramming. I can’t resist taking a photo! It’s become a daily habit.

On the importance of storytelling, I thought I might pop in the fantastic talk from Beeban Kidron, film maker and a founder of Film Club, a UK organisation established to bring the joy of the cinema and storytelling to kids outside of school time. Her focus here is on film storytelling, but the overall message is universal, as to the transformative power of story and how it can ignite passion and enthusiasm with young people, in this instance, to fire great discussion, shared experience and also informal learning. This talk resonates with me, as someone who has taught film and media to young people and to see the passion  that such storytelling viewing and creating generates.

What is exciting now, is the opportunity for people in the community to make and share their own stories with co-creative media practices. To produce their own narrative and identity, impart new ideas, share, listen and learn from each other. It is an exciting era for personal and community based storytelling.

I am now part of the team tweeting for the @ozccmorg Twitter feed and will be posting regular round ups in future blog posts about what’s going on out in the Twitterverse in Digital Storytelling, other co-creative media practices and related areas of interest.