Fear and Loathing In Documentary The Epic Journey Seminar Series Week 8

The story so far..

So the documentary seminar came and went. It was a little bit of a hectic day as I was using the multitrack studio at Building 9 to record some audio for another assignment, and then had to rush to the seminar to post up some new posters I had made over the night. As we all agreed (my opinion at that point had no weight) to wear colourful Hawaiian shirts and not owning one I was lucky to borrow one in time for the show. It somehow turned out to be the darkest shirt that anyone was wearing that day haha.

So my job, was to collaborate with Axel and Nadine to design the poster for the event which I ended up making using paint and ink, the old school style. I thought it was pretty ugly considering I can’t see anything I make to have any value, buuuut the rest thought it was cool so we ran with it.


The night before the event itself we thought maybe we should make some handouts, but considering I had been given handouts at all the previous seminars and never read them, only to find them scrapped and tossed away, I decided to just make large single page bios of the guests and paste it outside the seminar hall for people to read before coming in. I had printed an extra copy of each just in case, and the guests ended up taking them home because they liked it. Which I also thought was really weird.

They’re not really that great.

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Upon arriving at the seminar about 30 minutes before the show was to start, I realised everything and everyone inside was in chaos and disarray and quickly went in to help whoever needed assistance. The problems mostly surrounded the technical stuff as the wired mic’s couldn’t reach the speakers desk, which resulted in the use of wireless mics that we had no control over. So some of them were soft some were loud, but it really didn’t detract from the seminar.

The seminar itself.. well honestly I think it could have been a lot more engaging if the discourse was more about the documentary making process instead of just what getting jobs is like because after seeing all the seminars, some even from the music industry, I realised that all the guests just repeat the same things over and over. Equal parts luck, equal parts hard work, all parts ability to network. If you can’t network you’re dead. Which really always just depresses me and makes me wish I could disappear =-=

second time I get to use this


but yeah if you’re going to get industry professionals to come in, have them talk about their work more than what it takes to get a job, because you could probably just pick that stuff up from motivational posters anyway.

Also I reckon Gabrielle could have been more assertive in stopping the guests from droning on and on, but all in all the event went by fine, there was plenty of food (whoever made those chocolate chip cookies, god bless you they were awesome), we got some audience questions in, the guests were really nice and informative. I’ve not really managed to work on my networking ability, if anything this is probably the second worst I’ve ever been in terms of co-existing with other human beings, the worst probably being last semester – In saying that though I suppose progress is progress and I have spoken out loud to people I otherwise would’ve hid away from just out of sheer terror. Working on the posters was pretty fun even though there was a tiny bit of adjusting required by the Steering Committee’s which reminded me of what it was like to work in an advertising company and why I hate advertising so much, I managed to maintain relative creative control and my preferred design.

What I picked up from this whole adventure is that I would’ve thought to maybe move in the direction of making documentaries,

but as the guests pointed out it’s not really a thing you can just do, and to work towards TV instead, which is really kind of the opposite of what I want to do (also why I felt like asking people who’ve been out of the job market for so long probably wont be too helpful unless they’re the ones with jobs to offer). So now I’m really confused and have no idea what I should look towards doing other than continuing to study and do research on media and its relation to human behaviour and control which is really where my interests lie. Media, PR (a phrase invented by Edward Bernays as a new word for propaganda to move away from its negative connotations), marketing, management, economics, business, politics and advertising are just means to the ends that I’m interested in and I should like to study them all to achieve desirable ends, the only problem is that there are not jobs or courses that exist like that at least in public hahaha. So I don’t know, I don’t see a crossroads in front of me, I see no roads at all, I’m just out in the middle of the sea, floating along and watching the world and trying to understand why I should stay alive.

come at me bru


I think I’ve learnt a lot about myself through these kinds of processes. I have the capacity to create things that hold a lot more value than I believed them to have, as well the ability to engage in serious discussions about difficult topics although this is probably more of a problem socially as these topics have become all I care or talk about and nobody wants to hear that shit all day. I can actually contribute to a group where I might have felt totally inadequate before even in a leading capacity where I ended up spearheading a few groups because nobody else would do it. I’m just a very reluctant leader. Probably too reluctant. But thats probably why I try to always work alone. I just don’t dig power structures.

Women in Media Epic Journey Series and etc.

The women in media seminar was a week ago now. Before the class I had a quick chat with Christina about how I’ve been doing with the course so far and I voiced my concerns with my personal networking report, considering I don’t know anyone I wanna talk to about it. Or more like I’m just too anxious to talk to anyone. She suggested that I look into documentary specifically and I suppose it made sense but it’s not really what I see myself doing, as I pointed out documentary like any other media text is just a means to an end. I would prefer to see myself continuing to learn, but I don’t know who I would go to for that end.

Anyway, knowing Sam was in charge of lighting with his background in film, I knew it’d be good which it was. The light kept the focus on the guests and made it all more intimate, I didn’t eat the food or anything so no comment, and everything else ran really smoothly. Good job guise.

For our own group meeting, the steering committee sent feedback for my poster and made the kinds of requests that immediately reminded me of working in an advertising company, and why I hated it so much. I made the changes that fit the criteria but made no changes to the artwork itself. We also talked about our own seminar and I showed them how winamp visualiser for our backdrop might be fun, but we’d probably have to give an epileptic warning. Also they asked if we could all wear colourful Hawaiian type shirts and I got asked if I wore colour at all 🙁

No.. I don’t.

Variations of black white and grey are what you’ll get from me hahaha. My colour is all inside my brain, it’ll ooze out if you squeeze it hard enough. Also I just found out I missed the Honours info session which is something I really wanted to go and see ._. we always got an email for it in the past. Meh. Hopefully I can still find out what I need to via emails and whatnot. I’m super keen to learn moar.



Preconceived Expect… o patronum


(sometimes I can’t believe how funny I am)

When I joined communications courses I thought it’d help my ability to talk to people.


I just became engrossed in how the world of media can and is used to manipulate people and stupefy them,

which in turn just alienated me even further from human interaction.

In hindsight

“hey guess what, you’re a sheep and you’ll always be someone elses bitch and in debt till the day you die”

isn’t the best way to make friends.

Too bad I guess

fukken sheeple.

And since I’m the only one I talk to



Media 6

Media 6 which turned out to be two completely different subjects is and has been difficult for me in all the ways I figured it would be. It’s all intensely group work oriented which means I absolutely have no other choice but to interact with other human beings and even now I get too anxious to go for classes ugh. We have one class where we have to organise and orchestrate a seminar with real industry professionals and another where we look into media futures and build a text to suit our chosen topic.

So I’ve ended up with the documentary seminar on which I was, along with two others, tasked with designing the poster for the event. The overarching theme for all the seminars was the “Epic Journey”. Our group came up with using Hunter Thompson’s Fear and Loathing theme and just added a Documentary at the end instead of Las Vegas. I thought this was brilliant because it was a story about the journey to find the American dream so yeah it fit the theme pretty damn fine. I also happened to read the book a while back too so I was immediately inspired to make something in the style of Ralph Steadman

and this is the aftermath

Fear and loathing in documentary

For the media futures class I joined the group that wants to cover copyright laws which is something I have had a personal interest in for a while now. Being a media creator I find myself appropriating material through means which are technically illegal so how will it affect the way I respond when my work is used against my will? It’s something I talk about in a previous post more extensively but it’s no where near exhaustive as this is a topic that is still being debated, which is why I was interested in this idea. The only problem is I fear I’ll let my group down because I’m just not very effective at doing heavy research and writing on a high academic standard. They are things I’m still learning how to do, and I know they all have really high standards, so I just hope I can pull a rabbit out of my ass with this one. If I could work on it alone and in my own time they would probably get much better grades.

Also ‘steering committee’ is such a silly name, always makes me think of steer. Maybe they should change it to the overlords, might be more enticing to join as well.


Growing up where I was from, piracy was possibly the only way to get content at all. The media world around me was totally censored or simply banned outright (Daredevil was banned because it had the world devil in it for fucks sake). The only people who sold movies and music that were worth the time and not uncensored were people selling pirated content. When I re-watch a lot of old movies it’s like I’m watching entirely new films – which is great to some degree, it’s a whole new experience! But in all honesty I wouldn’t have known about the world of music, games and movies if it wasn’t for piracy, and now that I can afford them I spend money whenever I see something worth spending on.

I don’t think big companies neglect this truth either, otherwise they’d be working even harder to take down individuals for minor offences in piracy. Besides, the world of copyright is muddy as fuck. If I’m a music producer and my tracks get used in clubs and bars around the world for profit, I should be getting a cut for all of it – as a DJ would I really want to go through the trouble to credit 30 different artists just for a one hour set, which I change every time I perform many times a week? Well in that sense it’s probably the venues responsibility to sign up with a body like APRA and pay their dues there, but I don’t know if most do.

There is no real black and white when it comes to it outside the pirate flag itself.

Calico Jack

Leaving it to the music (or whichever related) industry is akin to letting the mob handle its bidnuz, and they will bully the fuck out of everyone they can to milk every single penny they can.

Saying no to ‘piracy’ is like saying no to drugs. It’s not gonna happen and with good reason. People have been ‘stealing’ and re-appropriating art since forever. It’s a learning process, it’s how we develop more complex ideas and make new things. Most of the media if not all of it that you know and love today is a copy or a ripoff or a remake of something someone else already has already done. Trying to stop that and stamp your name on it is like trying to kill the creative process and say no to any growth unless it has your name on it. If this ran rampant it would inhibit any real progress and just seems totally counter-intuitive and unproductive.

The whole notion of ownership is a human construct anyway, but we want recognition and incentive to continue making works of art. If there’s nothing in it why bother? I think the illusion that to be a successful creator you need to reach triple A status is a big problem with this – that you’ll only ever be considered an artist if you make a lot of money.. the most money. Otherwise your life is a failed endeavor. But art is the creative playground in which all other aspects of our lives are born, it is innovations’ playground. Creativity deserves much more credit on the basis that without it nothing would really exist today and we’d still be living in the jungles smashing shit with our fists. The whole field of design can be argued as a place for futurists to plan out what our life will be like, isn’t that important as fuck?

I find myself in a particularly peculiar position as I myself am a media maker, but I have also pirated many things in my life, and I’m not alone in this as I’m sure a majority of creators around me do so to. It’s not because we want to steal from the people whose work we adore, rather it’s often times down to a few things like being financially incapable or simply not having access to text in a legitimate way. Knowing the way the internet is and how when you put something online, or if it does end up online somehow, it really doesn’t belong to any one person anymore or group anymore, it becomes part of a greater collective – and to be honest I think that is fair and right. The internet has always been the greatest tool of unknown collective collaboration we have ever seen (I mean you collaborate with people you’ll never know, and people you’ll never know will make things out of your work that you’ll never see) and as long as it stays free it will continue to serve people.

The problem is the warped attempt to capitalize on everything possible at every turn. The term pirate for people who ‘steal’ files was supposed to be derogatory, but if anything when a company goes after an individual for downloading some tunes or films they are the ones that come off as evil and it’s probably because of this

which is why nobody really feels like anything is being stolen when they pirate. Big companies still make million of dollars and thrive and continue to do so and when they crack down on poor unsuspecting kids they make themselves out to be even bigger greedier heartless machines.

The line has to be drawn somewhere,

and this is a discussion that needs to find a resolution.

Greed MTG