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.

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.

Animal Farm!

So with Art of Persuasions documentary, Dom and myself basically split the work to a video each. We had to make one clip purely out of found footage and one out of stuff we filmed ourselves but with no interviews in either as a cool limitation to work with. I decided to make the found footage one cuz I dunno how to work a camera fo shit. But like I mentioned in my previous post we had the problem of trying to tackle a very large issue in a small frame of time (3minutes) which resulted in the overall idea changing two more times from the initial one.

My first attempt was simply too factual and wordy, which is precisely what I was trying to ebb away from, as I may or may not have mentioned in the past; explaining things to people isn’t how to convince them of anything. You need to somehow reach their inner feelings and desires.  With this initial idea we wanted to put propaganda in a place where it [although sinister] served a higher and greater purpose to maintain a stable society – as the alternative was complete and utter chaos. I acquired a vast cornucopia of knowledgeable clips and snippets to demonstrate the actuality that humanity was incapable of itself and required the leash, however the deeper I dug the more I found this to be the case only because humanity has been under the leash for so long in the first place. This research helped solidify some of my own world views which was great, but like any good apocalypse – in the original Greek sense of the word – brought more questions than before. If anything, my objective was now further from sight.

Knowing I had a long way to go, I made a contingency video which heavily featured themes from The Matrix, particularly the scene where Morpheus offers Neo the red and blue pill as an analogy to choosing between accepting the propaganda and to believe the lie or to realize that you’re just a cog in a system who has no say whatsoever in the direction of your life. But it was just too much of the Matrix in the end and I hated it for being so gross and cheap.

In the end I decided to make something I thought about when I was younger – a documentary, where the narrator talks about human beings the same way he would talk about animals in wildlife.

“This is a wild human mother in her natural habitat” – and you just stalk mothers in malls or wherever it is mothers spend their time. (pardon my ignorance, I thought Dubai was in India, I’m not perfect)

Gahah it’d be brilliant.

Recently I even saw something extremely close to it. An Aussie show called Bogan Hunters, where the hosts are blatantly capitalising on getting people to self proclaim their Boganism with or without them realising they’ve basically turned into circus animals for the entertainment of people higher social class. Heck the Bogans probably even watch it themselves believing they’ve attained a greater place in life by acting a fool on TV. Sigh.


I didn’t really explain why I thought this was appropriate to the theme of propaganda. You see in my research I’ve found that people are so well under control that we’re basically being shuffled around and made to do things to the same extent that livestock are, all without realising whats going on. It’s the greatest damned illusion ever blanketed over humanity, and if it’s not, it’s definitely up there. You know how you hear about those farms where nobody really gives a shit about the animals and treats them like they weren’t living beings (I don’t wanna post vids but you can find em if you look really fast)? Yeah thats what the people in control of your lives are probably like <<assumption>but a pretty strong one>. You’re just the oil for the cog in their machine of money.

You’re born and raised through a factory process, where you’re sorted by age, and shuffled down two potential paths of life |ARTS| and |SCIENCES| or Sir Ken Robinson puts it –

Since the arts don’t generally produce much wealth you’re immediately considered second rate, but regardless of which line of work you end up in, it’ll always be for someone elses benefit. You’ll be squeezed for every last bit of potential you have like chicks in a macerator. I say ‘you’re’ because if anybody reading this is most likely not in that wondrous “1%”. This affects and has to do with basically everybody. We’re so content with this complacency which might be fine if the situation merited it, but as a species that has such an immense capacity to learn, we seem to be going more and more backwards with each day that passes. I mean.. seriously.. Bogan Hunters.. how is that a thing.. religious beheadings and killing of civilians.. how is that still a thing? Civil war and discontent.. how is any of this still a fucking thing?
It just doesn’t make sense, I don’t think it’s possible for people to be this horrible if there wasn’t something or some force that desired or even required this kind of pain and unrest. It’s almost like the only reason people are horrible to each other, is so that they remember to cherish the times and appreciate when they are good to each other.  Like some kinda dualic Yin and Yang system we truly can’t seem to step out of. Does that mean we’re condemned to repeat mistakes? What’s the point of learning anything if you don’t adapt from the mistakes?

ANYWAY, I feel like I get so lost in these rants the point I try to make loses itself. THE POINT here is that I wanted to make a clip that would make people think for a moment that they are a part of a farm, not as farmer, but as farmed. What resulted, or rather was intended, is a clip, almost like an infomercial for the 1% to look into the lives of the 99% of their livestock. Three minutes, still isn’t enough, and I might like to expand further on this in bigger projects for greater reach, but I hope that at least I got some people in my own class to think about this. Even if only one person. Because the truth is, this is something nobody will want to accept or face. It’s like taking off the blindfold to see a meat cleaver, and I don’t have the solution, but I think it’s worth thinking and talking about, because “nothing strengthens authority so much as silence” – DaVinci.


EDIT: Here is the final vid I made. Hope you enjoy.