Hi again, it’s been a while. Currently we’re still in a pandemic, and what better thing to do then make a video about it. This project was called Witness to History, and it was all about a teens perspective during a major pandemic. Our driving question was “How can we as storytellers tell the stories of our community during this period of physical distancing?” For this project we were tasked to make a video about how our community had changed or responded to COVID-19. It was supposed to be from our perspective and was going to be specific to us in our community. However you were allowed to choose any type of community, not just the one you lived in. That meant I had the option to choose the climbing community, and I did. The video that I made to answer the driving question was a about the climbing community, but more specifically the Hive (the gym that I climb at). And now that you’ve got an, admittedly basic understanding of this project, let’s jump right in!

There were 2 milestones that helped me come to my final video, but the first one was milestone 2. Milestone 2 was research, but the part of milestone 2 that i found most useful was the interview. Interviewing my father and Alex was super crucial to my video. I have course had ideas for the video before interviewing them, but hearing their opinions on the climbing community changed my ideas for the video completely. I initially had a much different structure for my ideas and I was going to focus in more on the climbing businesses, but after talking to them I decided it was much more important to focus in on the people in the community, because they’re much more important to it. They also gave me several more interesting topic points, such as talking about how climbers in the outside world have been divided, A more in-depth opinions about the pre-COVID-19 climbing world. Overall this milestone was one of the most helpful in the entire project, and completely shifted the direction of my video for the better.

The other milestone that really helped me with my video was milestone four. In milestone four we made a storyboard for our video. This story board was the plan for how to construct our video. This is where I took all the jumbled thoughts from my head and put them onto the paper. The reason I found this mile stone so helpful is because it’s almost an organizational tool. I’m usually not a very organized person, and thoughts tend to get a little lost in my head, but when I have a storyboard it’s really easy to plan and much easier to make in the long run. For my storyboard I drew 12 separate scenes/plot points for my video. I started with the introduction of climbing and how the climbing community was doing so far, and finished with the future of climbing with different points and interview clips in between. Although this mile stone might not have been the most thought-provoking mile stone, or the mile stone where I learned the most, it really set me up for the video and solidified my plans. It brought all my ideas together and eliminated the bad ones, trimmed down the good ones, and gave me the resources to create my final product!

My final product ended up being (in my opinion) quite good! In the end my video was about the effects of COVID-19 on the climbing community and greatly resembled my storyboard minus a few scenes. It was a bit of a monster to edit and I had more than 30 minutes of footage at the start. I struggled a lot with lining up speech in the interview clips, and there still might be some small delays here and there. In addition a lot of the images I used were the Hive’s, and I really just wanted to thank them for letting me use their images! I think in the end I actually ended up answering the driving question quite well (just as a refresher the driving question was “How can we as storytellers tell the stories of our community during this period of physical distancing?”) Because myself as a storyteller told the story of how the climbing community has been affected. And the climbing community has lost a lot of new climbers, businesses, and has created a completely new divide in the climbing community. But I have until the happier side of the story, we’re new climbing businesses are being started, people are learning to climb at home, and how the future of climbing is going to be much more accessible and have online resources. So I do genuinely think as a storyteller I was able to tell the story the climbing community, cohesively well, and I’m excited to share my video

In conclusion this project is actually one of my favourites we’ve ever done. It featuring one of my favourite hobbies, it was really interesting to make. It was one of the projects that required a lot of thought and was really self driven. I tend to prefer projects where the final product is made by just me as it allows me a little bit more creative freedom, and generally just let me be the boss. I also learned a lot from this project. I learned a lot more about the climbing community and how it works. The people I talked to in the interviews had very different opinions on certain things but surprisingly almost the exact same opinions on others. And that shows me just how diverse the climbing community can be. It doesn’t matter if you’ve been climbing for 35 years or nine months your opinions are just as valid and diverse. This video also taught me a lot more about the use of images and videos. Normally you just think of a video I was being made up of videos, but there’s so much potential for other ways to make videos. Getting to create a photo essay open my mind to a lot more potential methods in creating video, and it also showed me that a photo can be just as powerful in conveying a message as a video can. In the end I’m very happy that we got to do this project, and I’m proud of my final product. I got to talk about something I love, experience a new type video making, and share my opinions in a different way then usual. I hope our world will be able to recover from this dark time (the climbing community included), but I’m glad I got to speak my small part and maybe even share a little knowledge. Stay safe everyone! And see you on the unquarantined side.