Sunday, June 28, 2009

Beirut, I should try harder - A Videojournalist's tale

Viewmag’s David at one of Beirut’s thriving Art Bazaars, which comes
alive at night.
TRY HARDER - is the title of a short film

A personal poem

Returning from Beirut, I'm reminded why I wanted to tell factual stories.

But I should try harder.

I recall in 92 how driven by idealism I made my way to South Africa, looking for the next generation.

And knew then I should try harder.

There as with Beirut, a state was shaking of the yoke of its perceived image, pleading for the documentarists:

to try harder.

To see past the news, the simplified mimetic discourse which feeds a cycle of recycled news.

That's why we should try harder.

For invariably, in all communities, states, our minds ferment more complex thoughts which require the light of day.

To show just how hard we are trying.

And in many cases it's been driven by the young, the successor generation,

who are trying really hard.

Their endeavors often go unnoticed, their voice drowned by three letter acronyms of news internationalists.

Are THEY really trying hard?

It is not the job of news, the argument goes, to tell anything other than that of news value.

But try this hard description for size then.

What is news?

Videographers, artists, bloggers, photojos, journalists, designers have within their reach the potential to show how THEIR view can turn yours on its axis.

Hard. Try. Try. Hard. Though I might add not through propaganda.

What is art is a perennial question ?

That which challenges us unlike no other to perceive beyond our station, to reprocess ingrained thoughts.

And that's why it matters.

Returning from Beirut I've rekindled the flame of why story telling keeps me awake.

Because the more we try, the easier it gets.

And the more easier it gets, the more we should most definitely try harder.

I sat down and brain dumped the above this morning, digitising footage for which I plan to make a short film from Beirut. Sadly, I hadn't planned any story or interviews, so really haven't done myself justice ( I was here for other, specific, reasons looking at the work of other VJS)
But in any case, I figure I'd like to go back soon and in this case I should try harder.