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Introduce Yourself

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Welcome to The D-Word! Stop in and sign the guest book - let us know a little (or a lot) about yourself.

Please note that this is one of our Public Topics, so best to enter email addresses with (at) to prevent them being harvested. Spam will be deleted.

Doug Block

Nice to see "horror filmmaker" and "eyeballs" in the same sentence, Marth. Welcome to The D-Word and to the world of docs.

Ben Kempas

Worrying to see "Boeing engineering" and "horror filmmaker" in the same sentence... although I guess today is more about Airbus horror...

Anyway, welcome to The D-Word!!!

Khemarak Tor

Hi Everyone!

I've been researching books about Documentary film making and it has led me to this website. I've had a huge interest for this genre for quite awhile but had not ever tapped into it the way I would imagine how an enthusiast would. Thereby, I'm now taking those steps to learning as much as possible. Hopefully, I can pickup significant knowledge, tips, and the sorts from everyone here. Thanks!

Gilly Mathieson

Hi Everyone,

The D-Word has been very insipirational site for me as I prepare to pitch a documentary proposal..

I feel a little bit of a fraud as I am currently not a documentary film-maker but a television journalist. I began working as a journalist in 1994 but became a producer/director and made documentaries for Channel 4. I moved from documentaries back to journalism in 1999 because of job security and an offer of a BBC staff job which was too good to turn down. Ten years on, four children later, I am still reporting at BBC Scotland but have ditched the crew and editor and now work as a video journalist. I report for our flagship current affairs programme, The Politics Show. Over three days I have to find a story and make a five to nine minute film and arrange a discussion to follow. I film with a Z1 and edit on Avid. My stories are all character led and take me across the world. I was one of the first reporters at BBC Scotland to train as a video journalist in 2002 and have loved the transition despite the huge workload.

For me, the last six years have been about honing my film making and story telling skills so that I can go back to making documentaries when the kids are at school and there are fewer demands from me as a parent.

For 8 years I have been dreaming about making a documentary series set in the Canadian Arctic and I am now finally preparing to pitch the idea to BBC Scotland and BBC Four. In 2001, I spent two months living in the Canadian Arctic and made a series of radios features. It was then that I met my key characters and since I have been building up my relationship with them and knowledge of the area and people. I am now planning to go back in May 2010 armed with my camera. Well that's if they buy the idea!

Now that the proposal is almost in place, I need to think about whether I should be trying to get on a BBC course to use a more advanced camera than the Z1. I'm proposing to self shoot as the budget will mostly be eaten up by travel and staff costs, so there is no room to bring an ap/sound person. There's a lot I have to learn and find out many I am so happy to have found the d-word..

If anyone ever needs any Scottish contacts/interviews/footage etc, I'd be more than happy to help out as a favour. Or if you're bringing your film to one of our festivals in Edinburgh get in touch. We're only a few minutes walk from the Filmhouse and if you're stuck for a place to say we may be able to help out.

Doug Block

Thanks for introducing yourself, Gilly, and great to have you among us. Wish you'd posted last year, I was in Edinburgh for a mentorship program with the Scottish Documentary Council (if I remember their name correctly) and I screened 51 Birch Street at the Filmhouse. I've also been working with Edinburgh-based filmmaker Amy Hardie as producer on her upcoming personal doc. Do you know her? It's really extraordinary, just saw the latest cut yesterday and I'm very excited.

Anyway, hopefully we'll meet up next time I'm there. Good luck with your project, in the meantime.

Yocheved Sidof

Im currently directing/ editing my first feature length documentary film. Hit a point where I realize that even though I've spent the past eights years editing promo length films, editing feature length is a whole other animal!! So after about a year and a half shooting, logging, cutting trailers, trying to piece together scenes, I still feel completely unorganized! But the stuff is so compelling and Im confidant we have a great film, the question is how to proceed... Do we write a script? How to we organize tapes? Should we get a mentor? Etc... So I'm here to meet other doc makers and learn a thing or two! Looking forward!

Doug Block

Welcome to The D-Word, Yocheved. You might want to take a look at back posts in the Editing and Post-Production topic (or do a search). We've had a number of discussions about how to go about organizing tons of footage.

I also highly recommend you get in touch with a consultant like Fernanda Rossi, who is NY-based and just led an info-packed, week-long discussion of story structure here, which is now archived.

Gilly Mathieson

In reply to Doug Block's post on Tue 2 Jun 2009 :

Thanks Doug. It would be lovely to meet up when you're next over in Edinburgh. I've not yet met Amy but know her by reputation and the documentary institute she founded a few years ago. I'll look forward to watching her new film when it comes out. The SDI has some fantastic masterclasses many of which are on-line. James Longley was there only last month but unfortunately I couldn't make it as I was filming out of Edinburgh for a few days.