Workshops with Northern Film & Media

Teaching filmmakers about digital media

In 2014 and 2016, David Varela and I delivered three-day workshops for Northern Film and Media as part of their CreateInnovate programme.

We were introducing groups of filmmakers on their funding programme to ways of building digital companions to their films. The workshops explored the digital landscape, looking at ways you could promote and build on your film using the internet, as well as covering some of the pitfalls involved in doing so. A set of exercises built over the three days to get the participants to develop their own ideas around their films.

We meant ‘digital companion’ broadly. Whilst some were interested in interactive experiences around their worlds, for most, savvier use of technology for the most straightforward of promotion would make the biggest difference. Often, just considering how they’d get a better web presence was a large enough topic to consider - and would have the most impact for them. But there were always surprises, and each year it was great to see participants become more confident in their abilities - often discovering that the great material or collaborators they already to work with was right under their noses.

It was great working with David - whilst we both have experience of the games and interactive landscape, his expertise is rooted in writing and content development, whilst mine is in the technology. Between us, we covered a wide range of topics the participants were interested in - and would always make sure we had time to research any specific requests they had.

I also delivered a workshop in 2017 for Northern Media around using digital media to promote and develop film, as well as the use of technology as an art material. This single-afternoon workshop condensed some of the key ideas of the CreateInnovate courses into it - along with a short treatise on making art with technology.