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The art of story telling

This is a post from the weareoca.com archive. Information contained within it may now be out of date.

Once upon a time, 20 photography students, two tutors and two mysterious strangers met in the north of the country…. These films show Peter Rudge from Duckrabbit discussing the art of storytelling at the OCA student residential event in Leeds last year.
Duckrabbit make documentary photo films and radio productions for broadcast, NGO and commercial clients and also offer training courses in film production. Their work is socially engaged and they are often charged with drawing attention to NGO work in challenging environments – see Zawadi’s story, about a young woman whose first pregnancy developed life-threatening complications. Zawadi’s life and that of her child were saved by Medecins Sans Frontieres. The film skilfully combines Zawadi’s voice, still pictures and movie footage, all carefully chosen to tell a compelling story (could anything give a better sense of the terrible roads and nauseating journey than that film sequence?).

Zawadi’s story is as old as the human race, and Peter reminds us that the core techniques employed to attract and keep attention in the 21st century would be familiar to Shakespeare. Peter was an engaging communicator who inspired many of us who were there to want to make photo films of our own. Tim Dunk, a first-year photography student, attended a course run by Duckrabbit in connection with Format 2013. The film made by Tim and others as part of the course is now on show at Format.
The weekend in Leeds was organised by photography students as a way to meet up with fellow students and tutors and fill some of the gaps distance learning can leave. Penny Watson writes about the experience of organising the event here. Organising the event had its challenges but was not that difficult. I found it very rewarding, both in terms of building links with other students and OCA staff, and giving inspiration and allowing space to discuss our work, and I would urge other students to think of doing similar. It doesn’t have to be a whole weekend – you could have an afternoon with a local speaker and a discussion or portfolio review. OCASA may be able to offer some financial support. Go for it!”

Posted by author: Eileen
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2 thoughts on “The art of story telling

  • Re. the video: Interesting and helpful tips – wish I’d heard it all.
    PLEASE could the next one be in the South?

  • It certainly seems long ago and far away; so it’s good to be reminded again of Peter’s talk which was very inspiring. I can certainly support Eileen’s encouragement towards groups of students getting together and organising something for themselves, plus the possibility of OCASA funding support (links already given above by Eileen).

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