My video class is one of my best classes. I get to see my students grow and stretch themselves creatively. Everyone has to start somewhere and some first come into the class with no experience at telling a story visually. However after making four projects throughout the the semester, usually I can see improvements in everyone’s work.
I have been blessed with students who really love making short films. Their passion for creating digital stories help ignite the others in the room. They also provide technical expertise when others get stuck. I don’t usually get questions directed at me. They usually problem-solve among themselves. I enjoy listening to their interactions as they work through the issues that can arise.
Recently one of my students, Connor, attempted his first clay animation story. I thought he did a really good job with it. I asked him the significance of when the character steps into the mud because it seem poignant to me. He replied, “What did you think it meant?” After I told him, he said that he really didn’t mean for it to be that poignant or a turning point of the film, but if I interpreted that way, then he was pleased. He then went on to explain that he wants people to come up with their own interpretations. He said that often in his films there is no right or wrong answer–only opinions.
Here is his clay animation, called Soiled. He took almost 1000 photos to make this film. It is all digital photography and not video. It was fun watching him make this. This is what Connor said about his film.
What makes a film good isn’t always the acting, the story, the cinematography. I believe its the emotion that breaks through in it whether through music or the character development. I try to capture this in my films.
I also really liked a movie that he did with his little sister who acted in it. Here it is. Also if you want to see his other films, here is his YouTube Channel.
Digital storytelling is fun!