creative responses

How can you watch my documentary?

When I visited Bradford Industrial Museum I noticed that their shop had a DVD section for mainly locally produced films, eg A History of Saltaire. It made me think further about the distribution of my documentary and what to do with it after it was finished.

I always presumed I’d put it online and point contributors towards it for their own website and social media streams. I also approached contributors to the film with a services barter where they would give me access for my documentary and I in turn would use the footage in both a longer film about letterpress and a shorter one just about them. From this I had thought a natural word of mouth would generate interest in the final work.

Since then, and realising that it will be a much longer documentary that I first thought, I’ve decided to think beyond that a little and try to be more pro active with its distribution to better reflect the work that I believe will be put into over the next 12 weeks.

The following is an ambitious list of possible places to distribute the film. It is a brain dump of ideas and does not take into account my yet untested filmmaking skills and the potential that the film may simply not be good enough or of interest to these places – these are things I will not know until I have more footage and start to edit the documentary.

  • put the full thing online
  • do a student/staff/public screening at college
  • make a screening part of Leeds Print Festival
  • see if any little venues would like to show it, eg Seven Arts in Chapel Allerton
  • create a tour of print houses like Hotbed Press, WYPW and The Arthouse – make it part of their exhibition schedule
  • sell it at Bradford Industrial Museum (profits could be donated to their Print Gallery)
  • sell it on the Etsy shops of the artists/printers involved
  • give a copy to the college library and the local history library’s in Leeds and Bradford
  • submit it to film festivals and competitions (don’t know much about this but just had a quick look and there is Sheffield Doc/Fest and submission is affordable, deadline is Midnight GMT February 2nd 2015 for the festival in June, and they have a student category)
  • give DVD copies to those involved
  • have a little premiere and invite everyone involved and their friends and family

Making a list like this has given lots of food for thought and is more realistic to the purpose of a documentary than to have an end goal of submitting it solely for tutors to mark.

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