Looking back at the various documentaries we have studied over the past 7 weeks I am trying to think seriously about some viable options for my own project. The sites we have analysed show just how malleable the online medium is – if you have an idea, no matter how wacky or far-fetched, the web and the many platforms it supports can take you there. One concept can be approached from infinite directions, whether by flash, an interactive magazine or even the structure of a simple blog.
Being relatively inexperienced in this field of web developing, I am slightly frightened of exploring these complex platforms. In my previous post I implied that I would use my journalism skills in this task – albeit in my head envisaging a social, location-based project incorporating interviews and profiles. However, I have since had a change of heard/mind and am thinking to pursue something more along the lines of Re-enchantment. Not so much in terms of its fictionality, but in relation to its interactive nature. It is a flash-based project and, as much as it would be a challenge, I think would enjoy learning how to use it. It truly seems like a flexible and creative medium to play with, as well as being a great way to create something entertaining, engaging and perhaps even educational.
The idea of Re-enchantment, with its incorporation of fairytales, has also got me thinking more broadly about the subject matter of my potential documentary. Previously, I have shared on this blog my love of history. I think something history-based would work well with a Re-enchantment style project. Over the past week I have been thinking about some of my favourite historical figures, conflicts and periods as possible avenues.
- Al Capone – his life, times and crimes
- Henry VII- his reign, role in the Reformation, his wives, his egotistical character
- Murder of Rasputin – myths surrounding his life, involvement in the Romanovs and control of the Russian empire and his mysterious death/murder
- Internment of Japanese-Americans during WWII – could incorporate photo journals, profiles of interns
Considering the list above, I think my project will be different to Re-enchantment in that it will not have the same fictional basis and perhaps be more of an educational concept. That said, I wonder who I will aim this project at? It could be an interesting challenge if I were to select primary-aged students as my target audience. Appropriating the issues and forming them into a flash platform that engages and stimulates 8-12 year olds would certainly be a difficult task. Then again, is it a smart idea to restrict my audience to such a degree? Would a high-school student be attracted to a site like this? A university student? An adult with any remote interest in history? It is clear that target audience will play a prominent role in how the site is designed and what interactions it will use to entice the user and enhance the user experience. So many things to think about!