Making a documentary

Earlier this year one of my students interviewed an internet performer – a young man who embraced the web as his tool for communication five years ago.He began by making video posts on YouTube. As he developed his ideas and his skills, he made a ten part parody of a soap opera  – he played all four characters, wrote it, shot it and edited it.  Called Oh The Drama – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QBDdzKisCOM – it is witty and illustrates his innate ability to use image making as his creative form.  With no formal training he began to make many videos and vlog posts and used YouTube as a place to express himself and talk to an audience.  At this point he has had 5 million views.  He joined Twitter very soon after it was established and has 10 thousand followers. His name is Patrick, but he posts and performs and is PattyBoy.  After meeting him and seeing my student interview him for her assignment I realised what an incredible person he was and wrote a treatment to apply for funding. The treatment and the ideas has had positive responses – but my first attempt at funding has been declined.  I have received funding before, I have been declined before. After being declined three times in a row over 8 years ago I gave up. Over those 8 years it has become easier to be independent in terms of the means of production.  With Final Cut Pro on my computers and a dslr, access to some other cameras, mics and mixers,  and the use of social media I have begun shooting this film and documenting the process via the web.

I have been trying some approaches that I had only dabbled in before.  The first interview was shot in a studio and with the assistance my colleagues, an interrotron was set up. What is it?   http://errolmorris.com/content/eyecontact/inter527.html  Two cameras each with an autocue. It works by  reflecting my face  in the interviewees camera and the interviewee’s face reflected in mine. This enabled the interviewee – PattyBoy to look down the barrel of the lens. I am hoping this will create an intimacy with the audience and is also and become an approximation of PattyBoy’s use of the internet – he speaks directly to his audience.

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