Students focus on range of issues
Urban art, swimming lessons for babies, “hipsters” and sibling dynamics are under the spotlight in documentaries made by students in a high school short film competition.
The documentaries will be shown alongside drama films in the Briefs Student Film Festival at the Suter Theatre over two nights in September.
The festival, which is in its 10th year, started with a group of Nelson College for Girls and Nelson College media studies students who were keen to have a public screening of their films.
Any student who has produced a short film this year can enter them in one of three categories: trailer films up to three minutes, drama films up to seven minutes and documentary films up to 10 minutes.
Awards will be presented after the students' films are seen at the Suter Theatre and judged by industry professionals.
Nelson College for Girls media studies teacher Anna Hickman said many of the drama and documentary films in this year's festival would have been produced as part of student course work.
“The important aspect of it is that students see their work on the big screen in front of a real audience - a proud but also humbling experience, especially for first time film-makers," she said.
Nelson College for Girls year 13 student Orla McKennon said she was focusing on urban art in her documentary as it was a topical issue in Nelson and nationwide. Her documentary asks: What is urban art and what is graffiti or vandalism?
Miss McKennon interviewed Nelson urban art promoter and collector George Shaw, Nelson Deputy Mayor Ali Boswijk and members of the public for their views.
"A lot of people had not even noticed it around. I was quite surprised," she said.
Miss McKennon said examples of urban art in Nelson included an artwork at the footbridge over the Maitai River near the Riverside Pool by Melbourne-based artist Urban Cake Lady and the Jedi wheat-pasting on the back of Rebel Sport on Rutherford St.
She had footage of work by reformed Nelson tagger Geof Lusins' woollen geometric installations or “yarn bombing” efforts around town.
Miss McKennon said challenges in putting her documentary together included finding street artists to interview, as a lot remained anonymous. It was also hard to get good shots of urban artworks, because they were often in awkward positions.
Miss McKennon said other media studies students at her school were making documentaries on a range of topics, including one asking, “What is a hipster?”
Briefs Student Film Festival, Suter Theatre, 7pm September 25 and 26.
- © Fairfax NZ News