In March, I participated in a project workshop to “evaluate, develop and define the core idea of the project” with Hayo Schumerus, who’s a professor at the ifs for Documentary, Director and Director of photography, and mentored the workshop group I was in.
During this workshop we discussed who would be interviewed. It still wasn’t clear what was the content really about. And what were my criteria for interviewing people.
But mostly, I answered the “why” question. Why am I doing this project? Why is it important to me?
Because gender-based violence affects me, as a woman, and I’d like to contribute to a positive change with this project.
On the 4th day, we had to do a presentation in front of the class, a few teachers and our mentors. Here is the feedback I received:
- What kind of host do I want to be?
- What tone?
- WHAT IS MY ANGLE?
After discussing that last point, I came up to the conclusion that this podcast will be about my journey, wondering about gender, meeting “ordinary people with extraordinary stories”, activists, interviewing experts and making portraits.
This angle is coherent because it allows me to document my personal concerns about gender and to follow the research process, starting from rape culture, then feminism, masculinism, and gender studies.
I still need to find out what kind of host I want to be, as I’ve never written journalistic content from a personal point of view. But for that purpose, I’m planning on analyzing podcasts’ hosts and their style. How do they position themselves in the podcast? Are they more like a guide? How personal do they get and why?
Here are my next steps for April and May:
- Podcast analysis
- Write one or two fictional prototypes
- Find someone to act for the prototypes
Postcast, potscast, podcast!
I’ve been wondering about the project’s form since I started in September.
At first, I thought I wanted to experiment with web-documentaries.
But to be honest, I haven’t watched a good web-documentary in a long time. (The last one I loved was StainsBeauPays
about teenagers talking about the Parisian suburb where they live.)
And I see a lot of flaws in the concept itself (too time consuming, reaching small audience and short life span).
But if not a web-documentary, then what should it be?
I’ve been listening to a lot of podcast for the last 4 years. Mostly when biking or on a plane, but also instead of watching series while eating for example.
I love podcasts. And my favorite ones are the one who tell extraordinary stories from ordinary people. I love them because they’re personal yet I find them really informative on a humanistic level.
AMRS, ARMS, ASMR!
Another thing I’ve been interested in lately is ASMR. This acronym stands for Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response.
It’s a physical reaction that can be compared with a tingling sensation in the back of the neck and a feeling of relaxation.
It can be triggered by binaural audio stimuli like someone whispering, or some gentle touch sounds or close personal attention situations.
But some people are more sensitive to visual triggers like watching someone doing a repetitive task like folding towels, or mixing paint like this artist does.
I think I discovered it via a French vlogger Solange te parle in a video where she whispers and lists her 10 favorite feelings.
And then I also read this informative comic about ASMR.
What I like about it is the positive outcome. People do feel better after watching or listening to ASMR.
So I thought, how about, I make my own podcast and experiment with ASMR to discuss people’s relationship with their own gender.
Here’s a first draft of the core idea of the project:
“In GENDER*, an immersive podcast series using ASMR and role play**, you meet people questioning gender and redefining it, while confronting yourself with your own definition of gender, to see what could possibly make this world a more tolerant place.
* Temporary name
** Need testing to know how ASMR and role play can work with non-fiction”
It will probably change in the next months but this is where I’m at. And here are the open questions I still have:
- Who is my target audience and how do I reach them?
- Is the use of ASMR triggers serving the content?
I think that to answers these questions, it is time to stop conceptualizing and start prototyping. So this is what I’m going to do for the next months.