Making movies with Nitin Das

I remember what school was like. It hasn’t been long since I left, but the memories remain fresh. I walked through the gates of Mount Abu Public School, which mind you could have easily been mistaken as a five star hotel. With all the Janmashtami celebrations, there seemed to be an equal amount of excitement amongst visiting teachers. The “Nokia Create to Inspire” School program had found its way to Rohini, ready to teach educators about the wonderful topic of E-waste through creative means using films.

The objective of the workshop was to teach our educators how to initiate fun and exciting conversations on sustainable consumption. It was quite the experience to see teachers turn into students, nice to have the tables turned for once! Independent film director, Nitin Das, prepared a wonderful presentation on how to make and edit movies.

Once seated, the teachers were all asked a question, “Have any of you seen movies?” A question that received quite the chuckle. The answer was a resounding YES. A second question followed, “Have any of you ever made a movie, or a film?” It was here where hands stayed down, as faces were filled with a bit of confusion. One teacher said “Well I know how to make videos but I give them to my students to edit them.”

It seemed like a tough task to introduce the process of film making to the teachers, but Nitin was up to the challenge. Step by step he introduced better ways of taking photographs, the alphabets of filmmaking, and finally editing a movie. Teachers began their conversations, taking photographs of each other, laughing and smiling. The inner child had escaped and had brought about joy.

The main task given to the teachers was to capture, and edit their own movie. Split into groups, each team was given an apple with a simple idea. “In the first frame, show one person with the apple, in the second, show two people with one apple and in the third, so on and so forth. This idea is a good example of how our world’s resources are under pressure. Our populations grow yet there aren’t enough resources to meet demand,” said Nitin.

The teachers got to the task right away capturing sometimes funny, and sometimes melancholy images and pieced them together using a basic video editor. The result, five short films with an apple playing the starring role. Each film displayed the level of creativity of the teachers, for which there was plenty. It was a lesson experienced not learned, as the groups finally realized the true potential of making movies.

When looking back as to how the lesson was conducted, it seemed fresh, new and certainly very exciting. The number of hours that I’d spent school, listening to many lecturers chastising humanity for the way we treat our environment, certainly did very little to excite me and encourage me to make a change. However, who knew that making fun movies and with innovative stories could be so rewarding? I suppose it’s the fact that being involved in the craft can really make a person see the world differently.

(The blog has been written by Mr. Dhruv Vishwanath from Nokia)

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