Wednesday, August 29, 2012

New Wave VIDEOJOURNALISM. What we really know

Ken Richter's 16mm camera
The past has no relevance unless it instructs our future. The problem is much of our past is unsighted and deemed to many to be of no consequence. 

Ken Richter's 16mm camera which predates Electronic News Gathering asks the question, What's the fuss all about?

And we thought tiny cameras of the present, the iPhone heralded new thinking!

What is unavoidable is that the DNA of the past is responsible for everything surrounding you and me.

Were it not for Turin and the telegraph, there would be no Twitter. How we know film and exult new findings, can only be new if we understand the past. Yet this comparison seems so abstract, and weighs down the soul. Where do you start?

If yesterday isn't part of our memories and experiences it has no consequence; beyond that is the pursuit of creating artificial experiences involving learning from books, the Net, and films.

But the greatest repository of great, as well as inconsequential knowledge is YOU. But how many of use have told our stories. And how do you find great stories. If anything the great storytellers were artisans, curious souls who walked to discover their craft.

Reporting as a videojournalist in 199

Having been a videojournalist for twenty years and a journalist starting with the BBC in 1987, I commenced a PhD some years ago blithely assured my experience was the surfboard I needed. Yes I'd been writing about News, Current Affairs ever since, as some of these articles below show.

The Value of VJS - article for The Producers, 2001

And yet I was rudely awakened on my odyssey. Knowing something is admirable, but how do you know that?  This is an acute challenge for today's student awash with information on the net, and the pros looking to build new edifices on the existing foundations of knowledge.

For me the knowledge journey has taken me into the vaults of ITN's film library, the British Library, and extraordinary meetings with some of the stalwarts of film making e.g. Albert Maysles.

Reporting in 1994
I now acknowledge the narrative I look to share yields new findings, and yes, given the volume of this area: news and documentary, I so love, there will be gaps.

I wish I could document more of my findings working in Egypt over a four year period, or be more expressive about the places I have worked and sought knowledge e.g China, South Africa etc.

The new video on Viewmagazine.tv is my latest documentation as a videojournalist from one of the most important contemporary seats of politics and humanity, Tunisia.