Pictured are our Digital Storytellers: Isis Asare, Mian Carvin, Margaret Elisabeth, Jacque Larrainzar, Fia Gibbs, Petra Davis, Caleb Hernandez and Jourdan Keith. Photo by Angelica Macklin.
The QTM project chose a digital storytelling workshop for several reasons:
- We wanted to collect the stories of queer people that would add to the historical archive.
- Digital stories are a complete narrative constructed by the subject of the story. We chose this method, as compared to oral histories, so that our subjects would have extensive control over the representation of their story.
- Digital stories are an opportunity to creatively address the lack of material artifacts. Many of our storytellers did not have photos or objects that represented the story they wished to tell. Instead, the digital storytelling model opened creative space to represent their narratives through collage, symbolic images and with voice and music.
- Through collaboration and an intense sequence of two weekends, the digital stories are produced relatively quickly.
- The final product of the digital storytelling workshop is a discrete and portable narrative that can be shared in museums, but also is an accessible historical artifact that can be viewed online and at group screenings.
- The completed digital story could be shared with QTM’s audiences, but would ultimately be owned by the story-teller. This was important in our quest to share authority and ownership of queer histories beyond the temporary partnerships that were formed in support of the Revealing Queer exhibit at MOHAI.
- Working together, rather than in isolation, the workshop model of the digital storytelling process creates opportunities to build community, even temporarily, that may have personal impacts beyond the films themselves.
The workshop was designed and facilitated by Angelica Macklin and Nicole Robert, with the help of Rebecca Sims. The films were created by eight queer storytellers, each with their own unique identities within the framework of queerness.
So, what happened?
We asked the filmmakers to share their reflections on being a participant in this workshop, now that time has passed. We wanted to know what impact the workshop itself had on their lives, as well as the personal impact of the films they produced. Several of them responded. We are excited to share these with you In the following months. Check back soon!