Arts & International Affairs: Volume 3, Issue 1, Spring 2018 - Page 38

THE ARTS, PARTICIPATION, AND GLOBAL INTERESTS non, is also apparent in visual documentation: the presence of the device (the camera) will alter the outcome. To mitigate this problem, the filmmaker should try to avoid inhibiting any social interaction. Overview film on the Global Cultural Fellows Programme (password: aia37) For the IICR Global Cultural Fellows programme, I was faced with the challenge of both being invisible and present to thirty-three individuals from around the world. I therefore had to make a number of important choices about how I approached the discussions, group deliberation and individual interviews to gather footage for the documentary. In scenarios such as these, documentary filmmaking necessitates a compromise between obtaining the best output technically and the best output socially. With this project I found being a silent observer particularly challenging, especially in the sub-group deliberations (prior to the group discussions). These conversations were so electric and relatable to my experiences that I found it extremely difficult not to contribute. Coming from a largely non-academic background, I found the discussions were fantastic triggers not just for further thinking, but for further research. With both broad and delicate subjects being discussed, knowing when to put down the camera is almost as important as knowing when to keep rolling. However, with the spontaneity and unpredictable flow of conversation, especially during the group deliberations, recording as much as possible proved to be extremely valuable. The individual interviews were the glue that held this project together. Jumping between a collective discussion and an individual’s personal thoughts is always crucial in constructing a narrative, especially in this kind of scenario. With so many films to be released, it was a case of concentrating throughout the shoot to ensure that each day’s subject was covered correctly, while simultaneously building towards a larger documentary encompassing the entire event. This was incredibly challenging, especially with the short amount of prep time I had for the project. In the end, the shoot itself is just the tip of the iceberg. Reviewing, selecting and assembling a narrative is where the time of production is truly spent. In this scenario, editing a discussion into its most salient points while balancing the overall content and the individual voice has been a complex task. 37