News

Sava Sher: Identity exploration and Film making with Tuning Fork Films

November 1, 2014 • Posted in: News, Uncategorized, Workshops

The Pench Tiger Reserve is home to the famous Royal Bengal Tiger. This large cat has come to receive much attention and conservation efforts focus on the recovery of the numbers of this majestic specie. With the tiger at the fore, changes in the reserve take the form of changing rural landscapes, social fabrics and tourism revolving around the tiger.

Through our identity exploration and film making workshop, we wished to shift focus from the tigers of Pench and see what lies beyond!

Our students, rightly the ‘sava shers’ of Pench, learnt about video shooting, editing, voiceovers and everything that comes with film making. However, this was no ordinary film making workshop; the five days of the workshop entailed digging deeper and exploring the relationship of ‘jungle, mein aur gaav’ and, in the words of Ankit, ‘demystifying the camera’.

Pulkita Parsai taking the students through the identity exploration process.

Pulkita Parsai taking the students through the identity exploration process.

We began with a letter writing activity to help students describe their village and forest to explore their equation with their immediate environment. This is turn was to be our fodder for the film.

Students reading out their letters.

Students reading out their letters.

Next came a lesson on the basics of film making. ‘Focus’ came to be known as ‘screen saaf karna’ and ‘zoom’ became ‘andar aur bahar’. Five days in the E-Base were all about tripods, DSLRs, camera bags, different lenses, filming locations, scripts, voiceovers and more!

Trying their hand at film making in the first session.

Trying their hand at film making in the first session.

Students broke up into groups to go into the villages and buffer zones to capture the best shots to express through a film their relationship with the tiger dominated landscape.

The Wood Spiders were an absolute hit with the students!

The Wood Spiders were an absolute hit with the students!

In the buffers, students for the first time, stopped to observe Giant wood Spiders weaving their webs, and captured it all on camera. The thrill of doing so was uncontainable! The students suddenly looked at everything as a subject of filming. Baronets and common grass butterflies made the majority of the footage in the process. The trees too make up a huge part of the students’ daily lives. Shots of the trees were a must for the film!

Having fun and creating their film in the forest of Pench.

Having fun and creating their film in the forest of Pench.

Capturing the setting sun in Pench.

Capturing the setting sun in Pench.

Another group went into one of the village to speak with the elders about the time when Pench wasn’t a tiger reserve. These interviews proved to be very interesting for the students to know the state of affairs before Pench officially became tiger land.

With one of the Dadajis in the village.

With one of the Dadajis in the village.

The last of the three groups preferred to film village life in Pench. A village abutting a forest has a rhythm and pace of its own and the students were excited to capture it on camera.

Shooting at Lake Kohka.

Shooting at Lake Kohka.

Interviewing villagers for the film.

Interviewing villagers for the film.

On the last day, the groups met again to review each other’s footage and the students were introduced to ‘editing’ and ‘scripting’ on this last day. Going back to our letters written on the first day of the workshop, the students began the process of recording the voiceovers. By the time we completed our scripting, we found ourselves outside a village in complete darkness by our jeep, recording voiceovers!

Working on the script.

Working on the script.

Voiceover recording in the dark!

Voiceover recording in the dark!

After a hectic five days, the students not only defined their relationship with the forest but also found the film makers in themselves. Here is a look at the work of our students: Sava Sher

And, to give you a glimpse of the fun behind the scenes, here are a few more photos of the workshop.

Atop the terrace of one of the houses to get a glimpse of life in the village.

Atop the terrace of one of the houses to get a glimpse of life in the village.

At the end of a day's shoot.

At the end of a day’s shoot.

From the E-Base to the village and back again- the filming schedule sure was hectic!

From the E-Base to the village and back again- the filming schedule sure was hectic!

The joy of looking through a lens.

The joy of looking through a lens.

DSLRs: their new friends!

DSLRs: their new friends!

The End

The End

Stay connected

Sign up for our newsletter

© 2021 Conservation Wildlands Trust | Privacy Policy | Refund Policy