As a strictly amateur filmmaker, I arrived at Intel’s DIY FX workshop expecting to be overwhelmed by techies, gadgets and jargon that I wouldn’t understand, but after an informal introduction the team had only one thing to ask of me: “are you game?”

These parting words from graphic designer, Dan Price, kicked off three hours of pure hands-on playtime. As the second in Intel’s ‘remastered’ series, the workshop, tucked inside a sparse white studio at the Design Museum, demanded ingenuity. Gone was the reliance on software editing, instead we learnt to use whatever you’d find around the house: mirrors, sweet wrappers, bits of string and even a cordless drill… (tape a camera on the end!) Workshop leaders, Price and Millie Ross, joked, “maybe we should have called it the MacGyver effect.”

…the workshop would eagerly draw out the inner child…

When we got started the atmosphere was electric. Light bulb moments were happening en-masse. But although there were clearly some serious projects going on, rather than being exclusive, the programme was very accessible. The audience were diverse, from filmmakers and advertising researchers to families, which was no wonder; smearing paint over our fingers and playing with toy dinosaurs, we realised that the workshop would eagerly draw out the inner child.

Fellow MouthLondon reviewer Lashana Campbell said: “Intel’s DIY FX showed the average filmmaker or film enthusiast simple tips in constructing homemade film effects without a huge budget. Everyday items were shaped, broken and splashed on all in the hopes of capturing a shot. The workshop directors provided artists of all works with the tools and a little encouragement to use your imagination and produce great results.”

Through its resourcefulness, the series fosters an important message…

Millie and Dan are part of Jotta, a vast community of artists and designers in collaboration with University of Arts London and Central St Martin’s. Together they work with Intel to promote the “intersection of technology with art and design”. Through its resourcefulness, the series fosters an important message: to realise how inventive recycling can be, and how the average waste item can become an artist’s tool.

The crew were always keen to help, encourage, or just to chat (arranging parties; exchanging e-mails). And if there were minor glitches with the technology they used, that they had more a rough than exact plan about the visual components; in the end this complemented well the unassuming, quirky and inspiring spirit of the day.

Don’t miss the next in the series: DIY Type, at the Design Museum on 25 June.

Images courtesy of Jotta



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