Bad Planning, but Still Progress – Thu December 11, 2014

When I look back at what I said, last week, that I’d do this week, it seems to me I should actually pay at least a little bit of attention to my original plans.  I said I’d work on the Treatment and look for a map.  And I actually DID make progress on the Treatment, but I never looked for a map.

Instead I did a bunch of other things.  I had a conversation with one of the archivists from Ontario Archives, and she told me that the archivists don’t have subject-matter portfolios but rather – I think – technical specialties.  Anyway, she asked me to send her some questions that I would like to ask in an on-camera interview, and I did that.  In fact, I sent her quite a few, with various options so that hopefully she can find an archivist (or two) who can do an interview with me.

I also bought my 1960s home video clips of a house being demolished by a bulldozer.  There are three clips and they ended up costing $157.  I had thought they’d be $135 but that price turned out to be in USD, and with our current Canadian Peso, the price goes up.

I also had some delays with the downloading of the clips.  After making the purchase online, I was offered the option to have my downloads in one of three formats: ProRes, H264, and PhotoJPEG.  This meaning nothing to me, I turned to our oh-so knowledgeable Media Production Centre, and Hasi Eldib was able to point me in the right direction.  So I now have 3 massive Prores film clips of a house being knocked down.

I am also quite keen to add a distinctive and poignant quotation to this film, and have been looking at some work by Black authors, but haven’t settled on anything yet.

On a more reflective note, I’ve been looking at  Shelley Ruth Butler’s book Contested Representations: Revisiting Into the Heart of Africa, and am reminded of the perils and potential pitfalls of being a white person putting Black history into the public domain.  One of the reasons that this ROM exhibit drew such criticism is that the curator, Jeanne Cannizzo, didn’t involve the Black community in the creation of the exhibit.  For my film I already have input from, and three on-camera interviews with four members of the Black community.  And I still hope to have an interview with one of Mary Ann Shadd’s great- great- nieces, Adrienne Shadd.  The quotation I plan to include will also, I hope, be by a Black writer.  As well, I have a couple of leads on people who might be my narrator and both are members of the Black community.  But I wonder if this is enough.  I wonder if I should ask, perhaps Dr. Diptee to have a look at my Concept Proposal, or maybe someone from African Studies.

Now that I have all this material on my hard drive, I am thinking that a good task for this coming week will be to make a backup.  Imagine if I lost all this?  And I’ve stuck a sticky-note reminder on my laptop to do this, since checking my blog to see what I’d planned to do, doesn’t seem to be working well.  That said, I will (try to remember to) this week continue my work on the Treatment.  And, hey, maybe I’ll even go find a map.

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