I started going to this conference two years ago upon acceptance into the New Waves Program. At the time I was coming down with a terrible flu-like cold and was down for the count for over a week. Midway through recovery a call came in saying that I was accepted and was receiving free admission to the conference that weekend. I was encouraged to go, so go I went with my herbal tea & big doe eyes wondering what was in store for me there.
This year was no different. I looked around the room and saw many faces I didn’t know or am slowly learning to know & yet also, more faces I now know.
As a writer in the industry, it’s easy to be in your own little world and not notice what is going on around you. This event allows me to meet the people on the other end of emails , phone interviews & conversations being had.
Screening: Mouthpeice with Q/A with Director / writer Patricia Rozema
This film was beautiful. Lyrical in movement, raw in presence, provoking in layers and utterly captivating. Be it that I am still a fresh new mama heart with an almost four year old (it still feels new on so many respects), that the relationship depicted between mother & daughter felt so uniquely similar to my own with my mother, or that the main characters age is 30 (which I will soon be), it felt so accurate, so real, and so beautifully captured. I would rewatch this again and again.
Workshop: Observationsal Documentary: Pay Attention. Be Astonished. Tell About it. with Robin McKenna
This workshop was invulable. As Claire and I are working on this doc concept & learning how to interview our subjects to gain that authentic capture, hearing from a professional in the field about different ways to be ‘aware and mindful’ has given us a lot of food for thought on how we approach our projects.
Out of the Box Networking Lunch
This year they gave you two cards (randomized) as you walked in for lunch, each with a colour and a number which told you which table you would sit at for the first half of lunch, and which for the second. This idea was INGENIOUS! It acted as a professional speed dating opportunity in which you got to not only say who you are and what you do, but were able to hear the same things from the faces around your table. I had one of two very deep and inspiring conversations from my time at the conference at one of those tables and I am so glad I was there to have them.
I often feel like an unconventional duck at film and television events, as my way into the industry has been unique and ‘untraditional’, but despite my own ‘imposter complex’, these events continue to be where I find the deepest women, the best professional development opportunities and a community that seeks to create improvements in the world they live in by the stories they tell.