#MakeSomething

This is what I tell my kids. Usually after I’ve turned off the wi-fi or taken away the TV or Xbox…

“Dad, what can I do?”
“Make something!”

For seven years now I’ve actively been finding ways to get people creative with the technology that would have had me giddy with excitement when I was 12/13 years old. Specifically the little mobile devices in our pockets that pass for phones (or tablets)…

There’s no question that the internet is a huuuuuge distraction and so it’s really important to make an more of a huuuuuuuge effort to block it out and get creative!

With a few clicks you have apps to capture and edit films, including special effects. You could also paint and draw, make music… maybe even get started on writing that novel… or, here’s a thing… be ironically creative (creatively ironic?) and make a game to zombify someone else!

Animation is a great one. The ‘magic’ of having an intimate object come to life is still an enormous fascination for people – a Frankenstein complex maybe?

Next month I’ll helping visitors, young and less-young, at Dundee’s Verdant Works to bring Lego to life! Bring your own device (be sure and download iMotion (Apple) or Lapse IT (Android)) or use one of ours. There’s even a dedicated child free session in the afternoon for you Lord Business* disciples.

This’ll be a fun and active learning experience that you can take away and recreate at home.

So make a date to make something with Playful Communications and Verdant Works:

Kids and Families: 10:30 – 1pm
https://www.verdantworks.com/event/saturday-studio-animate/

18+: 2 – 4:30pm
https://www.verdantworks.com/event/intro-stop-frame-animation/

*The character who glued his models together in the Lego Movie

#MadeOnAMobile in Newcastle

Following a series of extremely well received workshops across Scotland I’m heading south to Newcastle with my mobile digital film making workshop… in November 2018.

And I can’t wait. I was there earlier in the year to help out on another workshop and fell in love with the place. It’s so photogenic and full of bridges… which is a win/win for a bridge geek like myself.

You’ll learn the basics of preparing your film, getting the most out of your mobile device and a number of techniques such as time-lapse, stop-frame animation, adding titles and music and sharing on social networks or through your website/YouTube.

So, stay posted or get in touch if you’d like notified of dates and booking information:

#MadeOnAMobile in Dumfries (Scottish Borders)

#MadeOnAMobile Dumfries

Thanks to Lindsey Mason Ross who invited me down to Dumfries in July to deliver a #MadeOnAMobile film making session to local businesses at Dumfries & Galloway Business Gateway.

#MadeOnAMobile winners Dumfries

Everyone had a great time and left inspired with a variety of ideas for promoting their businesses using video.

I’m now booking for Winter 2018 so listen to what these folks had to say about the session and have a think about if it’s for you, your team or organisation..?

Here’s what they said… 

 

 

#MadeOnAMobile – what’s it all about?

Featured

2018 has been a whirlwind of increased demand for workshops precisely at a time when I decided to demonstrate the power of mobile film making with an hour long documentary – captured, edited and shared from a single iPad.

So I took a few hours recently to put a short film together to encapsulate what I’m up to, explain what #MadeOnAMobile is all about and demonstrate what it can do…

So if you can give me (literally) two minutes, I’ll bring you up to date…

Open Close Movie with @Documentally Live in Newcastle

I’ve been following Documentally (aka Christian Payne) ever since a mobile network provider gave him the challenge of hitching from Lands End to John O’Groats with nothing but a handful of prepaid sim cards.

This would have been 2009-ish and the very early days of social media. However, using Twitter and whatever other social platforms were emerging at the time Christian negotiated the country, taking lifts and accepting offers of couches to sleep on and completed his task.

So, eight or nine years later he very kindly invites me to join him on a digital storytelling workshop to talk about my film, Open Close Movie, made entirely on an iPad.

We did some various bit and bobs but the video below is the live broadcast we did on Periscope.

It was a great afternoon and I met some great people who were attending the Thinking Digital conference at the Sage in Gateshead – I couldn’t stay because I was running a workshop in Glasgow.

So I hope to be back in Newcastle in November with #MadeOnAMobile – it was my first time in Newcastle and I loved it – particularly being a fan of bridges, the place is chock full of them!

Anyway, hope you enjoy the interview…

#MadeOnAMobile @ Stirling University

I always want my workshops to be fun. I want people to learn and enjoy themselves doing it. The group from Stirling Uni were going to enjoy themselves anyway…

It was business as usual, making movies on mobile devices but this group took it to another level. It was such a fun day with some really creative films… one of which you’ll see below.

First off, this is my view of the day with quotes taken from (unsolicited) feedback taken from Twitter – yep, they’re all out in the public domain for all to see.

So here’s one of the clips from early on in the day – I wish I had a copy of the full length version they made in the afternoon – hilarious… here you go:

I really hope to go back to Stirling Uni soon – they had such a great approach to learning and I would have stayed all evening – great fun!

MadeOnAMobile at Stirling Uni 2

Open Close Movie is #MadeOnAMobile

Mobile film making is fine for making social media shorts – but what about a full length feature? Sean Baker, Michel Gondry, Steven Soderbergh – all of them Hollywood directors who have made films using an iPhone camera for a cinematic release. None of them, however, edited their films using the same device.

“The enemy of art is the absence of limitations.” – Orson Welles

The schools, museums, public sector organisations I work with don’t always have lots of kit, if any kit at all. Tablets in particular are easier to come by and most have film editing apps. So, the limitation I gave myself was inspired by the people I’ve been training and working with. Capture and edit on a mobile device.

And if it’s okay to edit a minute or two of video on a mobile device then why not 10 minutes, 25 minutes, 45 minutes?

By most standards (British Film Institute, the Academy Awards) is “feature” length and so that was the target.

The subject of the film, Open/Close, is:

“BRINGING STREET ART TO DUNDEE, OPEN/CLOSE IS INJECTING LIFE TO THE ALLEYWAYS AND FORGOTTEN CORNERS OF THE CITY CENTRE. WORKING WITH LOCAL ARTISTS.”

Learn more about the project on the website

Open Close Movie was projected at the Dundee Contemporary Arts Centre cinema on 19 May 2018. 130 people turned out and generously signed my lobby poster with lots of nice comments.

The plan now is to release the film online later in the year with additional footage of a spin-off Open/Close project (in partnership with Dundee City Council) called Waste of Space; where industrial waste bins are being painted up by local artists.

So watch this space – Open Close Movie is coming to this screen soon!