Digital Story Telling

Every community has a memory of itself. Neither an archive nor an authoritative record ...but a living history, an awareness of a collective identity woven of a thousand stories’    The Story Centre

Throughout history, story has been used to teach, to entertain, to express, to advocate, and to organize.  It is through the sharing of stories that communities build their identities, pass on traditions, and construct meaning. Community building efforts use story to remember the past, to understand the present, and to imagine the future.

Digital storytelling is also an excellent vehicle for fostering intergenerational interaction between youth and elders.  We work in a cross mentoring process  with young people and adults in communities and through digital media and technology, foster participation and dialogue across generations and the community to  share, record, and value stories from their lives, in ways that promote artistic expression, health, well being, and justice.

While the term "digital storytelling" has been used to describe various forms of media practices, we emphasise the first-person narrative, meaningful workshop processes, and participatory production methods

Slippry Sirkus offers mentoring & training to emerging artists, community workers, service providers & youth services providing opportunities to work at a grass root level alongside Slippry Sirkus artists in a skill exchange that provides practical ‘hands on’ experience in digital story telling.

What is a digital story?

Digital stories are brief first person videos created by combining age-old storytelling narrative practice with modern-day technology and digital media. The digital storytelling process was developed in the 1990s at the Center for Digital Storytelling in Berkeley, California, and has grown through the combined influences of popular education, third world cinema, and the community documentary movement.

Digital storytelling is different from the art of making short films in several key ways.

First, digital stories are typically produced in small, intensive workshops, where trained facilitators put much emphasis on story development and sharing. Storytellers are encouraged to put their stories ahead of the technology, and a primary aim of the process is to show people the transformative effects of giving voice to their own challenges, triumphs, opinions, and struggles.

Second, digital storytelling puts the tools of production directly into the hands of the storyteller, who is trained to use free or inexpensive digital editing tools to craft a video from her/his own materials, including the recorded narrative and important personal photographs.

Finally, digital storytellers are encouraged to use their stories, both to start conversations with friends, co workers and family, and in more formal efforts at community building, education, program documentation, and advocacy.

How is digital storytelling used in community projects?

For community digital storytelling facilitators, these stories are useful both as a process and a product. As a process, creating a digital story can build skills in reflection and critical thinking, oral, written, and visual storytelling, and multimedia production. As a product, you can use a digital story to build skills, create social inclusion and effect social change.

Why is digital storytelling effective as a tool?

Throughout history, story has been used to teach, to entertain, to express, to advocate, and to organize.  It is through the sharing of stories that communities build their identities, pass on traditions, and construct meaning. Community building efforts use story to remember the past, to understand the present, and to imagine the future.

Stories can surface knowledge and leadership :

In the context of low-income communities and communities stories are often the primary resource that individuals bring to their work. Community workers may not have financial or technical resources, but they do have a wealth of experiences, wisdom, and beliefs. Through telling our stories we learn their value.  Through telling our stories we learn to see ourselves with a role to play in our communities.

Stories build community :

Both internally and externally, stories can connect individuals to others who share their experiences and generate the ability of individuals and organizations to act. One goal of community building is to become part of someone else’s story, to have their story become part of you. It is through the act of telling that we realize that our stories are interconnected with others.

Stories can create the conditions for change :

When we build relationships through storytelling, the process often encourages individuals to think differently about themselves and about their capacity to act both individually and collectively

From Spreading the Stories, created by Creative Narrations for MassIMPACT

'Handle With Care' Project

‘The Journey' shares insights from the young people from the sixteen communities who participated in this two year project.

 

Galleries

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Have a look at the images that capture some of  the many project highlights

Click to view Images

Media Comment

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There has been very positive responses to our projects across a broad sector of the community

View samples here

Making Music

Listen to the songs created by the young people about the lives, their families and their communities.

Bourke Girls Track