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COMMUNITY CONSERVATION FILMS

COMMUNITY CONSERVATION FILMS

INTERPERSONAL DYNAMICS AROUND A LAPTOP.

EXPERIENCE FROM CBCF TRAININGS AND HOW I HAVE HANDLED THEM-By Jackson komen CBCF

Mkuru Arusha training

The Mkuru community environmental center supported by Oikos project and funded by the Italian Government through University of Insurbia hosted CBCF in March 2008. This was the second film training after the training undertaken at Olkirimatian by Mr. Ben Please and hosted by SORALO.

Mkuru training was the first one done in Tanzania whereby, young filmmakers from both countries benefited, they included:
Participants    Country
1. Charles               Munene     Kenya institute of Education
2. Steve                  Mwangi    National museums of Kenya
3. Joshua               Wambua    Nature Kenya
4. Nathan               Pallanyo    Tanzania Natural resource forum
5.  Sophia              Masuka    Wildlife conservation society
6. Jackson              Komen    Lake Bogoria
7. Job                     Machekele     Nature Kenya
8. Lodrick              Mika    Tanzania Natural resource forum
9. Michael             Tiambati    MPIDO Livestock forum
10. Hilda                Aloyce    CBCF Tanzania Program
Trainers    
Ben please    UK
Sarah Mathews    UK
Sandy Watt    UK
They all did good films which both targeted the tourism and community projects. This was also the first time when some of us encountered the filming in the real world. Most of our trainers were also fresh from long time in the filming industry but not training. Therefore the gap existed between the trainees, and trainers in terms of experience.

In Mkuru training, the film trainers would spend most of their time introducing and discussing with trainers, on what community based films meant to the indigenous communities of East Africa, and also to bring more understanding to the trainees on what the project was all about.

The trainee’s later acknowledged that the project was unique as recon by one of the trainee and said.″I remember when I used to show films around Lake Bogoria neighborhood to Schools and local communities; little did I know how to make films! At one time or the other most of my target audience would never understood why I was showing overseas films in the community. Although, the films were of conservation benefit, but at the end of the day, the films had no connection with the native of the land″, says Jackson Komen Education Officer, Lake Bogoria National Reserve.

The other interesting part, was when the trainees who had just completed College were excited about the new editing suite (Final cut pro)
Steve Mwangi said “At the College we were trained on theory most of the time, and when equipment was available, then students were too many to share the equipment i.e. Camera, tripod and not even mentioning the computer with old version of editing soft ware’s “he considers himself lucky to have participated in the training.
Most of the other trainees who had done filming elsewhere, would really share success stories of what they have done in the filming industry. At some point during editing it was hard for them to accept critics from trainers, although when themselves left them to do the films, they would not manage and so the two weeks training was hard and tough.
The trainees later managed to produce rough cuts films, which included:
➢    Oikos Community water projects (A participatory water management among the Arumeru Communities in Arumeru Districts near Arusha National Park.)
➢    The Camel walk (A short ecotourism promo film project undertaken by the local communities ) among others at Oikos community Camp.
Naivasha advance editing 20th July -3rd August 2008
The Naivasha training was a kind of advance training from the others. This training was much tough and had a tight training of trying to make a short 5 minutes of the previous 12 minutes films, and also make the 5 minutes into a one-minute advance promo film with no much changes in the two films.
The trainees included
Participants    Organization
Grace           Mwaura     Kenyatta University
Caroline       Njoki     Kenyatta university
Elsie                kariuki     Born free Foundation
Elijah              Chege     Kenyatta University
Bethlehem     Seyoum     Ethiopia environmental organization
Veronica           Wangui Herman     Kenyatta University
Sammy              Wanjau Njuguna     Lake Naivasha Riparian association
Evelyn                 Evans Izoba                   

    Tanzania Wildlife Research institute
Trainers
1.    Mr. Jackson Komen
2.    Miss Helen Ganichuad
The training went smoothly  and all  trainees enjoyed. However, when it came to making a one-minute film, issues were actually the other way round.
The objective of the training was to encourage students to become creative and advance their editing skills.
One of the worst times that captured our attention is, when some of the students escaped with a permission of going to the washrooms, but they were actually escaping editing classes. However, one of the trainers discovered the trick, and waited for the trainees to leave from the washrooms, then he stood right next to the tents where the trainees used to spend. Every now and then, the trainers had to go to individual tents to persuade them to complete editing process. 
Past training sessions held at Kijabe Farm Naivasha. ©Photo by CBCF.
Eventually they all managed to complete the films then they produced quality films.
One of the trainees said,‘’ although editing is really addictive, am yearning to see the day when I will complete my film, have a rest, achieve what my target audiences would be happy to watch, I will be happy when there will be no more issues of Timelines, Transitions, using pen tool, dropping media files, media management and the rest  ‘’said Elsie Kariuki former film trainee.


Mutomo film training Eastern province Kenya

The training was organized by CBCF and ALIN to train members of their staff to make community livelihood films in the Dry lands /Arid lands of Ukambani.
Nevertheless as we all travelled throughout the dusty storms of kitui, Nzambani, we later arrived at Mutomo Mission Hospital where they hosted us for two weeks.
The introduction to conservation film training went successfully, no sooner than later, the editing scenario was approached and just from a distance, some of the trainers who were assisting trainees, started complaining of a certain team that could never cooperate, nor respect the opinions of the other members. It led to a point when the lead trainer was so much upset and convinced a meeting of all the trainees ‘’we are not here for jokes, we are here to produce films which will later be used at Copenhagen climate change conference. I have learnt that some of you aren’t willing to give any chance to their colleagues’’ said the trainer. ‘’The resources that have been spent to facilitate the training, will never be recovered, if that was the kind of work you’re doing here, We are now located to about 350 Km away from Nairobi and not even mentioning other trainees who have come purposely from Uganda and Tanzania. Then my orders now is for you guys to pack your luggage, the driver will be here in 20 minutes to take you back to your homes or respective organization, full stop! ‘’Said Jackson Komen one of the lead trainers.

One of the training sessions in Mutomo District, Eastern province Kenya
©Photo by CBCF
The trainees later harmonized themselves and one of them who was actually an artist by profession said ‘’what is incredible here is this computer, and soft ware’s including iTunes. I have been concentrating more in knowing the dynamics around this Laptop and not editing. Every time I try something in Macintosh everything looks different, look at the caption and the photos, they just come out so clearly compared to our normal computers’’ said Gedion Koech and he promised to work hard. However, the team managed to work extra hard and produced a good film, Called the voice of a fallen donkey-The effect of climate change in Mutomo district

All the trainees were staff from Arids Lands Information network.


Bogoria training April 2009.
Lake Bogoria National Reserve hosted CBCF at Lake Bogoria conservation education center on April 2009 for two weeks.
The criteria for selecting the film trainees was done as usual through application as per the announcement made by the project training manager.
Those who were chosen to attend the training included;
Participant     Organization
Mr. Nicholas O.Goody Migot     Osienala Project Kenya
Mr. David Odira     Osienala Project Kenya
Mr. Godfrey Wasiwasi     Ministry of education –Tanzania
Mr.Kimani Ndung’u     National Museums of Kenya
Mr.Toroitich Kamuren     Egerton University
Trainers
Jackson Komen
Elsie Kariuki
Mary Mwendwa
Elijah Chege
Mary mwendwa
The above named trainees were a combination of people who had worked in the filming industry especially at the Video production, radio studios and among them were officers who were employed by the Government through special program known as ‘’Mwalimu wa radio’’ a program run by the ministry of Education commonly in East Africa.
The team was also composed of people with different ages, among them was a fellow aged over 50 years, who was a very good Radio presenter but knew little about video production, something he had longed to learn over years.

We started our normal trainings, by doing introduction to conservation filmmaking.
The work was all about teaching the basic computer operations and putting aside editing first.
It all continued until, when we decided to pair students to assist one another in areas where others were not really familiar with.

We left them to plan their films in three sections by noting down the ideas in a paper as follows;
•    Introduction of the film and story line.
•    Main body
•    Conclusion.
Then after three hours we had a team who claimed to have completed everything and ready to do something else.
However when the trainers looked into each project, they realized that some of them had dropped footage into one time line with no editing but with credits at the end.
They were really difficult to convince them or even change their minds.
Then the only way we could show them that they hadn’t achieved their goals yet, was to make them continue but set deadline of showing rough cuts films for critics.

During the rough cut show, they showed something very different from the rest, they quickly admitted and seek advice, eventually they managed to produce a film known as The slow death of Loboi swamp, it is about conservation of highly degraded swamp which is threatened by Encroachment and Soil erosion.

 
April 2009 film training at Lake Bogoria National Reserve Kenya
©Photo by CBCF
The various teams summarized the all scenario of the dynamic around the Laptop differently and because we’ve been using apples Computers for long because of final cut pro program, they described Macintosh computers as follows.
‘’Apple have always been individual in the way they do things .The way their machines operate, they way they look; even their screens are unique. No matter how hard the competitions tries, Apple has remained a formidable force in the creative industries in the world .The reason why Apple continues to be successful is the result of an extremely loyal customer base who refuse to abandoned their platform of choice. People do not remain loyal to Apple out of some kind of blind devotion –they remain loyal because Apples machines and software’s serve them better than their competitors.

People like using Apples Computers.

People love using Apple computers.

When it comes to Final cut pro, the same applies.

In a few short years, Apple have created an editing system which shines bright across the murky waters of the post-production scene.

Final cut pro is reliable and stable, It works very well, and it works with every known format on the planet; video film.

It is the success, it is for clear reasons.

It is easy to use.

It is powerful.

It is affordable

My other friend said to me years ago: ‘you know, I don’t know why Apple computer’s still exist?

They exist because the people want them to exist

That’s it’’.

Some of the Quotes from Epilog; the focal easy guide to Final cut pro 6

Jackson
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