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Community Media Cohort Training

As part of Work Package 4: Media Transition, a Community Media Cohort was established, with members from all areas along the Iveragh Peninsula. Designed to target people who are involved in community-based projects and events locally, members have been trained in production and post-production methodologies, which they are applying to assist in the development of a digital piece on the Edible Medicinal Trail around Caherciveen. The skills they have learnt during the training can be applied to promoting their own work in the area and developing a team approach to arts-based projects, promoting the targets of SDG11; Sustainable Cities and Communities. Our WP4 Leads; Rebecca and James designed the programme, with James delivering the workshops and tutorial sessions. His experience running his own production company, Bold Puppy, was an authentic and invaluable asset to the few weeks.

The first workshop focused on familiarising participants with the audio-visual equipment they would be working with. Going over the basics of setting up the frame and shot, prepared everyone for going off-site and filming and sites along the Rover Fertha; which linked to the objectives of the Edible Medicinal Trail. Before filming began, Dr. Anita McKeown ran through the observation methodology she developed as part of the CoDesRes project. This assisted the participants in narrowing their focus in what they were looking at and were hoping to capture on film. A great exercise in really looking at your surroundings! Participants got some great footage around The Old Barracks, Marina and Quay Street.

A fortnight later, we were back together again; reviewing basic setup and moving into an intro to post-production. Participants on the media cohort programme have access to editing machines and software, a great addition to the community space.

The first tutorial was held later in the week, and gave participants the opportunity to drop into the office and spend more time working on the computers to put what they had learnt into practice. James was available in a tutorial capacity which meant that live troubleshooting and further review could develop.

The final workshop delved deeper into post-production and audio recording. Filming a recorded interview was discussed and practiced and the importance of good, clear audio was realised!

The programme concluded with one final tutorial, whereby students were able to work in their original teams from Workshop 1, cutting down footage and adding audio/voiceovers.

We spoke to Sean Sugrue, a participant on the training, who let us know his thoughts on the sessions.

Why did you decide to take part in the Community Media Cohort?

Before you came what did you think it would be?

At the end - was it what you thought / imagined it would be?

When initially hearing about the media cohort group, I was a little unsure as to what exactly would be involved. My interest in graphic design & minor flirtations with ‘home movie’ making was what sparked my interest to go to the first meeting. Seeing that Bold Puppy were involved in running the course, and being aware of the professional production value of their work, fueled my interest in wanting to attend the first meeting and wanting to attend all sessions thereafter. I didn’t really have an idea, or expectation, as to what would exactly be involved however, after the first meeting, which was more like a brainstorming session of ideas from all in attendance, I knew that the rough outline as to the direction the course would take was one I wanted to be involved in. At the end of the course I was delighted to have gained a comprehensive introduction to video-making hardware & software.

Describe your experience of the training sessions

I really enjoyed the experience overall. The sessions were information and delivered in a professional, yet easy-going manner. Questions were always welcomed at any time and so there was an easy, free-flowing interaction between ‘teacher’ & ‘students’. The beauty of the group was the other varied artistic fields that members of the group were working in. Musicians, photographers, storytellers etc meant a creative flow of ideas within the group everyone adding input from their own particular area of discipline.

Do you feel the Community Media Cohort is an important addition to the Iveragh Peninsula?

Yes I feel this group is an important addition to the area. It is essential that we equip ourselves with the knowledge, and equipment, to be able to document local events, record people & places of interest and create media output for clubs, business or individuals in our area. Having an online presence is vital these days in terms of promoting our area and local businesses within. As a small community we need to be able to highlight our community, and area, as well as other towns and cities can do on a national & international scale.

How are you planning on using the skills you developed in the training sessions to further your work/community initiatives?

On a personal level, I would like to develop these skills to work on possible future poetry videos I may produce. Having worked with a local production company to produce two previous videos, I would hope to be able to shoot and edit future videos myself. On a community level, I have plans to shoot a video involving members of the local community, various local locations & a famous local poem, but I really need to fine tune my recently learnt skills before this idea/goal can be achieved.

Also on a community level, I would be willing to share my new skills and knowledge with anyone who may want to learn about video production in the future

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