Thursday, July 2, 2009

Wednesday July 1st

To see the best thing that came out of our class today, you'll only have to scroll down this page and read the latest posts: Michel, Alipio, Alexande, David, Rahone, Rayanne, Valdeilson, Lucas and hopefully soon the rest of the children from the Video Carta group became a part of the Luta Pela Paz blog today. Bem vindo a voces! Estou muito animado sobre este blog, sobretudo saber que todo o vídeo Carta grupo está aqui!

This also made it up for the fact that we didn't get outside to film today. Knowing that this could be a possibility we made both a plan A and a plan B from home. Plan A was to bring the cameras and the kids outside and film while presenting the animals in Maré. Pigs, chickens and dogs just to name a few. But, as mentioned earlier on this blog, it is complicated to film outside the walls of Luta Pela Paz. We therefore always get guidance from Bira, a photographer from Maré, who teaches photography at another organisation in Maré called Observatório de Favelas. Bira is also an important figur in the work at Luta Pela Paz. What ever is worth knowing about situations such as moving around in Maré with a camera, he knows. This Wednesday, after Bira's advice, we ended up with plan B, which was to teach a workshop of creative filming and to introduce the blog to the children. It actually turned out to be a first class experience, since eight new blog posts came out of it.

The fact that the kids only need to take a few looks at the blog before jumping into writing and publishing posts on it, is very characteristic for their relationships to the whole so-called 'Information Age'. At Luta Pela Paz the kids have access to computers with internet connection and they are also being teached a class called 'Informatica', where they spend a great amount of time in front of a computer. And then there are of course the social networks online that some of the children are familiar with, such as Orkut, the Brazilian version of the infamous Facebook community. Not to mention the computer games of course, which almost all of the kids sneak to practice, when ever they get the chance.

After doing the blog workshop and after all having posted on the blog, we turned to our creative workshop. Logistics are always a challenge, and our original plan for the creative filming was that the children should have brought their favorite thing from home and film it in various creative ways. However, this part of the plan was falling through, so we instead asked the children to choose a favorite thing, a person or an activity at Luta Pela Paz. After writing about why they made this choice and what it meant to them, they all did their own invidual filming. Lucas did a really great shot of a boxer's dancing feet in the gym. Michel filmed three different capoeira instruments in the courtyard outside the gym, while he explained the names and the use of them. And Rayanne got some good close-ups of Caro, her favorite educator at Luta Pela Paz.

Further down you can see how the schedule of the day looked like. The plan mentions giving the kids a flip camera, but we never got to do that since we still don't know if there are any flips available for our group. The flip is a very simple little video camera, not bigger than a small digital camera. The idea is to give each of the children a few days with it, so they can film in their homes, where we might not have access with the big and not very incognito video cameras. This will also give the more shy children a chance to play around with a camera on their own.
Hopefully we will be able to let the first of the kids bring the flip home sometime during next week. I am sure something really great will come out of it - since it will bring another dimension, the home environment, into the children's video letter.

And as promised, the schedule:

Wednesday, the 2nd of July
2.00 - 2.15: Ice breaker. MCJoel is doing a freeeeestyle.

2.15 – 2.45: Basic film production:
-B-role (Alejandro). Why is it necessary and what do we use it for. Show examples from the Amazone film. E.g. the girls walking from one hut to another.
- Cover pictures (Nadia). What are they and what do we use them for.

2.45-3.00pm: If we have the flip camera, we should introduce it and the one bringing it home should get a chance to try it.

3.00 – 5.00 pm
Plan A: We can go out an film.
3.00 – 3.15pm: talk about what we are filming today and divide into groups (Chris). 3.15-5.00pm: Shooting outside. It depends on Bira what we can do and if we can split the kids into two groups.
Possible themes:
- Animals
- Where do the kids buy food, toys, clothes etc.

Plan B: We can't get outside to film
3.00 – 5.00: Workshop on creative shots. Joel will do a 15 minutes introduction on how to make creative shots.
After this we will give them ten minutes to write about their favorite thing. Hopefully they have all brought one for class and if not, they should find a thing at LPP.
Key things to write about: Why did they choose this thing and what does it mean to them. It can also be a person or themselves.
After the writing they will go to the gym, film their favorite thing from an angle they choose and talk about it while filming. The shot should be no longer than 30 seconds.
This workshop should be incorporated another day, if we are going for plan A.
4.45 – 5.00: Blog workshop. What is a blog and what can a blog be used for. Show them Luta Pela Paz’s blog and teach them how to post something on it. Fabio – do you want to do this?

Note: at the end of the day we are bringing home both cameras to go through the material so we will have an overview Friday, when the editing starts. One camera goes to Nadia in Ipanema and the other goes to the boys in Botafogo.

Nadia Claudi
The New School University, New York

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