‘Where film, text and sound meet’

Winnipeg Film Group hosts filmpoetry workshop for emerging directors

Montreal-based poet Rachel McCrum is hosting a filmpoetry workshop with the Winnipeg Film Group. (supplied photo)

Film and poetry go hand-in-hand in the upcoming Winnipeg Film Group (WFG) workshop, curated by Irish-born and Montreal-based poet Rachel McCrum.

After receiving recognition as the first BBC Scotland Poet-in-Residence and earning the Robert Louis Stevenson Fellowship, McCrum is ready to share her knowledge once again with students. This time, it’s with Winnipeggers through Zoom. Despite never having visited the city before, she is excited to discover how each participant in the sessions will capture their surroundings through the lens.

“Filmpoetry is the point where film, text and sound meet, so I am looking forward to hopefully (giving) people some tools to capture their environment in a different way,” McCrum says.

She further explained that the threepart workshop series (which will take place on Sept. 18 and 25 and Oct. 2) is geared toward beginners who are learning how to hold a camera and edit footage for the first time.

“This is a short course to show people the context and intricacies to the basics of editing ... By the end of (the course), what I am hoping is that everyone is able to create their own short film and also have a taste of what it is like moving forward,” McCrum says.

Other than preparing for the workshop series, the poet has kept herself busy with the return of performing events in Montreal. She is also focusing on her second book, following her previously published collection entitled The First Blast to Awaken Women Degenerate. Even though McCrum is in the early stages of the writing process, she hinted at the theme for her next project.

“I am working on the concept of shame or shaming, which is a huge topic, and it’s a landscape that is constantly changing,” McCrum says.

According to WFG production co-ordinator Karen Remoto, the organization is thrilled to have McCrum curating the workshop series, especially since the COVID-19 pandemic has expanded the reach for instructors and participants to join. Remoto says these workshops are targeted to different skill sets, and that the camera learning sessions tend to be the most popular.

The filmpoetry workshop is designed to assist emerging filmmakers with techniques to enhance their craft and get the basics down. There are only a few essential tools to keep in mind for the sessions.

“To be able to participate, you just need a laptop and a poem. It is fairly easy, because each session is about one hour each,” Remoto says.

The Filmpoetry with Rachel McCrum workshop series has limited seats left, and passes are between $40 and $80. For more information about joining, email training@winnipegfilmgroup.com.

Published in Volume 76, Number 3 of The Uniter (September 23, 2021)

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