Sunday, August 28, 2011

Crowd TV – Making an Online Documentary

I was intrigued when I first heard about the idea of making the world’ first online collaborative documentary.  My curiosity was further aroused when I heard the documentary was about Water Stories and would voice issues of concern to Western Sydney-siders.  Since I work in the field of water in Western Sydney and this was another link into the creative world I went along on a rather wet afternoon to the workshop to learn how I could be part of this process. 

CrowdTV is a social experiment to connect people and through the creation of documentaries they are interested in watching.  It is process that will link communities, help drive positive change in people’s values and attitudes to water and the environment and a rare opportunity for untrained people to be involved in the process of making a doco.   

Australian Documentaries and the Institute for Sustainable Futures, at University of Technology Sydney have come together for the making of Water Stories. The project is funded by the Water in The Landscape Program run by the Western Sydney Regional Organisation of Councils (WSROC).  The website states the film will be submitted to film festivals around the world and that a red carpet event will be held to celebrate this world-first, participatory and professionally produced documentary.

My Idea

After the workshop I decided to submit my idea title, Water & Culture: The Lifeblood of Our Planet.  My idea was to explore the connections of people from diverse cultural backgrounds in Sydney to water.  As I travelled the world I came to realise that water was intrinsically linked to religious practices from baptism ceremonies in the Christian communities, to burial ceremonies in the Hindu culture to Muslims using water to purify themselves before worship. Water also plays a key part in many of the dreamtime stories of Indigenous cultures.  In addition many people have a spiritual connection to water.  I thought a documentary that drew on these connections would be quite interesting.

 And the Winner is…

Imagine my surprise to read the August News Letter from CrowdTV and learn that my idea had been the winning one.  The community will now submit ideas and a movie about water in Western Sydney will soon be in the works..


Australian Documentaries interviewed me about my idea and how it came about.  I can’t wait to see how this process unfolds…stay tuned!

“The world is but a canvas to the imagination.” — Henry David Thoreau

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