I love my job. I just really really love my job. It is maybe weird to make that statement 5 days before leaving it but this weekend it once again became very apparent: this work is amazing as you get to work with top notch people. This weekend also made concrete all those books about collaborative creativity I have read lately: together we make better ideas.
We started StrangerFestival around two years ago on a couple of PowerPoint slides. Along the way came the visuals, the partner organisations, first videos uploaded on the site, first marketing material, more partners, more videos, an international festival and loads more. It is already a great project which has given loads of people their first time on a plane, their first video-making experience and their first international friendship.
This weekend we had a meeting first with our European partners and continued right away with the first meeting of TheStrangers, a group of young video makers acting as our expert group. Both of these meetings made it clear: this project belongs now to more people. It is not just our project. It is a bloody fab feeling when you start hearing more and more people using the word ´we´.
I am happy I get to continue in the project also next year, although in another role. Having these meetings in the beginning of the year would have made sense but then again TheStrangers group was really possible only after the first entries. It is fantastic that we can now learn from 2008 and make things better in 2009.
The people and issues we work with are amazing. Just a testing session on the website generated already a list of small things that would help make joining easier. You get to see some of them in the coming months. We came up with ideas for great workshops, created new categories, wrote down lists of possible jury members, brainstormed on prizes and even made some videos. TheStrangers showed us in the team and to each other already several videos which we had not seen before but which were winning material. It has now been proved that having young video makers owning the project with the team brings in great content. It is therefore clear now that in 2009 StrangerFestival will be even more special, even more fun and even more meaningful. I cannot wait.
Here are some of their findings:
Beautiful childhood memory from Slovakia
Role of video making in one´s life
How making a video important to you always does not need to be about you
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