Do you have old legacy format video tapes such as DigiBeta, BetaSP, HDcam, DVcam, MiniDV, Umatic Lo Band, U-matic Hi Band, VHS, SVHS, VHSc? We can digitise all these formats to full HD Apple ProRes files at very affordable prices.
We also offer a supported self-service option at our south London studio.
Please contact email@example.com for a quote at our introductory rate.
We are delighted to announce the launch of the Barnfield Video Archive Project. In a series of participant-led workshops we will be viewing and editing archive videos filmed on the estate and the local area 2008-2010 for the Well London programme.
The workshops are both online and in-person at the HUB Herbert Pl, London SE18 3BD.
Our aim is to explore these archives and for participants to film new videos to show the changes of places and people over time. The workshops will include training in how to get good results filming with your phone. In the summer we will publicly screen the results of the project at the HUB . Date to be announced.
All are welcome! Residents past and present, young and old, people with an interest in or a connection to the area, people with an interest in local history or community development. Please share this with your friends, family and colleagues.
Workshop dates are as follows:
Tuesday 23 May 2023 – 6:30pm-8pm
Tuesday 6 Jun 2023 – 6:30pm-8pm
Tuesday 20 Jun 2023 – 6:30pm-8pm
Tuesday 27 Jun 2023 – 6:30pm-8pm
If you are interested to join us please sign up using this link. Alternatively, if you would prefer us to contact you via phone, feel free to include your contact details, and Mark will be in touch.
It has been great spending the last 2 intense years developing remote online workshops, training courses and Participatory Video projects, sharing our expertise in video making and collaborative work with dozens of passionate anthropologists, researchers, journalists, academics and aspiring filmmakers from all over the world.
We learned a lot and developed a very effective online training programme including 7 courses, all structured in a sequence of modular live 3-hour zoom sessions scheduled to work across a variety of time zones (15:00-18:30 London time, including breaks). Our online programme will continue, allowing people living on most of the planet to attend our courses. We are also excited to meet in person with our trainees, as we have been used to do for over 10 years, offering again the option to share video tools in a practical face-to-face learning experience.
The new 2-Day Video Production Workshop
The in-person 2-Day Video Production Workshop is an intensive course covering in two days all the content of the first 4 sessions of our online courses. Participants will learn how to use various types of cameras and professional sound equipment, how to film high quality video interviews and collect engaging visual stories and impactful video documentation.
The workshop will run at our London Studio in Battersea (SW11), giving participants the opportunity to learn using a range of professional and semi-professional film equipment – DSLRs, camcorders, grip equipment, professional sound recorders and microphones – during the practical shooting exercises. The In-person Video Production Workshop is also a perfect opportunity for those who attended our online programmes to refresh their skills in a fun, practical and intensive 2-day stand alone course.
Integrated with our online Video Training programme
The in-person workshops integrate flawlessly with all the online courses we already have. All our courses will be scheduled so that participants can choose their favourite mode of attendance: entirely online or a mix of in-person and online. Participants can learn the camera techniques face-to-face in our 2-day Video Production workshop (replacing the first 4 online sessions at no cost) and then attend all the specialist webinars and the video editing part (online sessions 5-8) remotely. If travelling to our studio is not practical, you can still attend the whole course entirely online.
In order to give every participant a real hands-on experience and plenty of time for shooting exercises, our in-person 2-Day Video Production workshops will have a limited number of attendees.
In June, Spectacle began an online participatory video workshop series for a group of residents and community leaders in Greenwich.
This programme of 8 half day workshops was designed to build the skills and capacity of the diverse Greenwich communities to co-produce media. Through this training in smartphone video making, these individuals aim to produce content for and about their community of interest.
Over eight half day sessions this course is equipping the participants with core video production and editing skills. They are learning about cameras, framing, talking head interviews, filming locations, shooting action sequences, shooting to edit and editing.
Through practical exercises participants develop their technical skills and visual storytelling between sessions. The freedom of these exercises encourages participants to begin filming places and people for their projects. Topics of interest range from fashion to noise pollution to exercise and wellbeing. Some in the group are entrepreneurs running their own start ups and are excited to create content to showcase their enterprises.
Spectacle’s skill development workshops give participants a foundation in the skills required to produce engaging, good-quality video content. After only four sessions, feedback has been tremendously positive. One participant called the sessions, “eye opening.” Another spoke of how the practical exercises gave her the push and confidence to overcome her nervousness about filming.
Though the participants live locally within the same area, many do not know each other. These online sessions are also designed to encourage community cohesion and cooperation between diverse groups. Spectacle encourages resource sharing especially of equipment and skills and opens up opportunities to brainstorm about collaborations and future projects.
Spectacle’s participatory workshops are delivered live and are fully responsive to participants’ needs. These workshops assume no prior video knowledge and can be adapted to the available equipment of any group.
Participatory Workshops at Spectacle
Spectacle specialises in facilitating Participatory Video (PV) workshops aiming to give participants the tools to speak for and among themselves through video. You can read about our method here.
We approach filmmaking collaboratively and use workshops to share skills, responsibility, and authorship. Spectacle’s PV process is based on workshops in which group members build technical competence, gain confidence in their creative inputs, control the editorial process, and share ownership of the final film.
For over 40 years we have collaborated on participatory video projects with community groups, educational institutions including schools and universities, academics, researchers, NGOs, local councils, cultural institutions, and museums.
Our participatory video workshops can adapt to the nature and duration of any project. From research to outreach, from documenting to pure filmmaking strategy, working with existing groups or creating new ones, we can lead, facilitate, or just assist with your project.
If you are interested in learning more about Participatory Video consider our two week intensive course covering all aspects of our method and advice for planning your own workshops.
The project’s events, which were held online due to the pandemic, included a public premier of a new fully German version of ‘The Truth Lies in Rostock’. The screening was followed by a Q&A with director Mark Saunders, which focused on the participatory production process through which the film was created. For more about the process or the archive footage, see the bottom of this post.
This screening also launched a unique workshop designed to connect Rostock’s past, present, and future.
The Truth Lies in Rostock
This 1993 film depicts the events which occurred in August 1992, at the Lichtenhagen estate in Rostock, in the former East Germany. Over the course of three nights, a fascist crowd assembled. The police withdrew as the mob petrol bombed a refugee centre and the home of Vietnamese guest workers while 3000 spectators stood by and clapped.
The film uses material filmed from inside the attacked houses and interviews with anti-fascists, the Vietnamese guest workers, police, bureaucrats, neo-nazis and residents. Through these perspectives, a story of political collusion and fear unfolds.
Thirty years later the question has become, how can the memory of the ‘Lichtenhagen Pogrom’ help fight new waves of fascism in Germany?
Participatory Video Workshop
This two-day participatory video workshop offered the chance for young adults from Rostock to dig into the film’s questions about the nature of fascism, racism, and the roles and responsibilities of the city, state, and federal governments.
By working with archive footage and filming a live commemorative demonstration, the workshop was designed to bridge the past and present issues of racism and anti-racism in Rostock. The workshop’s second aim was to offer new skills in media and filmmaking to these young adults.
The workshop launched the weekend of August 20th. A group of young Rostockers were split in two groups, one working with archive footage, and one filming the live demonstration.
Before the workshop began, Spectacle digitized a portion of our extensive archive footage from 1992. The material selected was of the anti-nazi demonstration that followed the pogrom. This group worked with Spectacle to edit a new short film from the material.
Meanwhile, the rest of the participants went as a small group to film an event which echoed the archive material – the Lichtenhagen Commemorative Bicycle Demonstration. This group of participants learned about filming techniques and edited footage from the demonstration into a short film which focused on the landmarks which have been built to commemorate the events thirty years before.
Read more about the project from the German perspective.
The Aims of the Project
Provide a safe space for reflection about the events in Lichtenhagen, specifically for different groupings that were involved in the events at the time. This includes, but is not limited to the Vietnamese community in Rostock, some of whom had to fear for their lives and lost their homes in the events, and Rostock residents, some of whom were appalled at the unfolding events and other who were cheering at, or maybe even participating in the attacks.
Provide skills training in workshops, teaching participants how to use video cameras, record sound, and conduct interviews.
Potentially encouraging dialogue between diverse groups and contributing to a more sustainable community through a process of reconciliation.
Preserving the oral history of the 1992 events by creating Zeitzeugen (witness/bystander) documentation for future generations, through the production of a series of films including original as well as new footage. These footage shot in these workshops will be made available online as well as on DVD and can be used to educate younger generations.
Spectacle has an extensive archive of footage from Rostock between 1991-93. The archive grew out of a programme of participatory video workshops run by Spectacle. After the unification of Germany, all the East German media outlets were taken over or replaced with Western media. Spectacle’s series of open workshops were designed to establish an independent, community-based media group in Rostock and to document the effects of unification on the city.
All participants in the workshops were beginners, with little experience in photography or filmmaking. The practical exercises concentrated on how the unification was changing the physical urban landscape. At the close of the first sessions, each participant was interviewed about their experiences as well as their hopes and fears of “Die Wende” the unification of Germany.
One of the objectives of the workshops was to establish a community media group to that end we formed the Jako Media Co-op. Just six months later Jako E.V. and Spectacle would rejoin to make ‘The Truth Lies in Rostock’.
The production process created over 200 hours of footage that did not appear in the final edit of the film. These scenes of daily life in 1991-1993 have become an historic archive of the city at that volatile time. The aim of the 2020 project was to re-work and revisit this archive together with a new generation of Rostockers who were not even born at the time of the pogrom.
Spectacle is currently a partner in a research project developing a groundbreaking remote PV method. The research project Reinventada is funded by the London School of Economics (LSE) Knowledge Exchange and Impact Fund (KEI). It investigates the condition of displaced and migrant women, especially mothers and heads of household, living in disadvantaged neighbourhoods of Medellin (Colombia).
The research was initially planned to produce a participatory documentary on women’s ‘right to the city’ in Medellin. However, as soon as the pandemic crisis exploded, being well aware that women are amongst the most affected groups of people during emergencies and disasters, we were able to create a remote participatory project that investigates the impact of COVID-19 on participants’ everyday lives in poorer areas of the city.
Started in May 2020, the project was originally planned to be conducted face-to-face, but was forced online due to the pandemic. It is led by dr. Sonja Marzi, the Principal Investigator from the Department of Methodology at LSE, as well as supported on the ground by two Colombian partners: Maria Fernanda Carrillo, a sociologist and filmmaker, and Lina Maria Zuluaga, anthropologist.
The aim of this research project is to create a documentary filmed and edited by the women themselves to depict their daily lives during the pandemic.
Online Participatory Video
We began initially by training the participants on how to best use web platforms and available technology. We set up weekly ‘Zoom’ meetings that served as an online space for workshops on filming techniques and how to use their smartphones to capture high quality video. Zoom meetings became the workshop space where all production and editorial decisions were discussed and made in consensus. The production meetings are chaired by participants on a rotating basis. We discussed film content, planned shoots, reviewed and critiqued the footage together, and collaborated on editing the final documentary.
The groundbreaking project has successfully adapted Spectacle’s Participatory Video methods and techniques to an online environment. The short documentary Reinventadas was released at the end of 2020 and premiered in film festivals in 2021.
Are you an academic researcher, PhD student, PostDoc fellow seeking to boost the impact of your research? Do you wish to improve the originality of your research proposals in humanities, science, arts, social sciences? Why not include a video outcome in your funding application?
Video workshop at Sheffield University
Other academics are already using media production to enhance the impact of their research in many ways. Video can be used either to monitor the research process and report research results, or it can be integrated in the research methods as a strategy to collect original data that can be easily analysed and disseminated. Spectacle has long experience in training academic staff in how to achieve quality video outcomes for their investigations.
We have already organised bespoke courses for anthropologists and social researchers of Edinburgh University, Cambridge University, Open University, Social Research Association, Amsterdam University, academic staff at Birkbeck, Comms departments at Oxford University, Cambridge University Press, King’s College as well as the Macular Society. All gave us excellent feedback.
Together with practical skills and confidence, they went away inspired and excited by the potential of incorporating video in their academic work in order to improve the impact of their scientific communications.
We are pleased to announce that after a few months of filming and collecting stories from Battersea residents, we are ready to screen our project to the public!
Memories of Battersea is a video oral history project run by Spectacle and part funded by the Wandsworth Grant Fund. The project gave young adults from Battersea the opportunity to be trained in film-making while producing short films about their neighbourhood, collecting memories from elder Battersea residents, bridging intergenerational gaps and engaging with the history of their borough.
The screening will take place on Monday, 15th October at Senior Citizen Club 234 Carey Gardens London SW8 4HW.
4.30pm – 5.30pm – walking tour of the Carey Gardens Estate with Mark Saunders – filmmaker, Brian Barnes – mural artist and Nick Wood – architect
5.30pm – 7.30pm – screening and discussion with contributors and filmmakers
Are you a small, socially engaged organisation? Do you want to promote the great work you do using video? You have no money to commission a promotional video nor enough confidence or equipment to produce in-house engaging video content? Do you have your promotional video idea in mind and need help to make it real?
Spectacle wants to support you by skilling you up while helping you produce your amazing first promotional video!
We are a small, socially-minded company whose profits go back in to funding our community based work. We therefore want to support other organisations with a bespoke programme that will help you produce your first video while being trained in video making. We have applied a generous discount to our standard prices in order to help you reach your aims and to contribute to your success.
Spectacle is an award winning independent television production company specialising in documentary, community-led, investigative journalism and participatory media. Spectacle’s documentary work has been broadcast and exhibited internationally. We have produced work on commission for clients including Amnesty International, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, the Howard League for Penal Reform, Council of Europe, Groundwork, the London Health Commission, the NHS, Big Local and the Wellcome Trust.
As well as undertaking productions, Spectacle runs short, sharp, affordable training courses and community based media workshops. We are based in London but can travel within Europe to deliver bespoke group sessions. We believe our courses are the best around, largely based on the exceptional feedback we have received from the hundreds of people we have trained over the years.
What will you get?
You will have your first video professionally produced by an award winning production company. You will also learn how to make your second video, building up confidence and practical knowledge that will scale up your outreach and marketing strategies.
What services are provided?
We are offering a bundle of services that will guide your staff (up to 8 people) through a specifically designed programme of training and production based on your video project.
You will attend practical workshops on video making and you will be assisted in your real shoot by our director. You will have complementary equipment (second camera, audio recording, lights) and extra crew if needed. Then we will train you on how to effectively use video editing software, sitting togetherin front of your project to get the editing process started. Our professional editors will finalise your video and guide you through uploading and promoting it on you social networks and media platforms.
Discount applies to voluntary sector only and is not applicable after 31/05/2018
We are offering two options, depending on how confident you are already in video making and on the nature of your projects.
Option1 (groups up to 8)
2 Day Bespoke Training in Videography
1 Day Shooting (assisted with extra equipment and crew if necessary)
1 Day Editing Workshop (Introduction to Software and workflow.Preparation of Edit)
4 Days Professional Editing.
TOTAL normal price 4000
TOTAL for voluntary sector 2000
Option2 (groups up to 8)
1 day Bespoke Training in Videography
1 Day Shooting (assisted with extra equipment and crew if necessary)
1 Day Editing Workshop (Introduction to Software and workflow. Preparation of Edit)
2 Days Professional Editing.
TOTAL normal price 2800
TOTAL for voluntary sector 1600
Contact us for more info at firstname.lastname@example.org
Memories of Battersea is a video oral history project run by Spectacle Productions and funded by the Wandsworth Grant Fund. The project gives young adults from Battersea the opportunity to be trained in film-making while producing short films about their neighbourhood, collecting memories from elder Battersea residents, bridging intergenerational gaps and engaging with the history of their borough.
In this episode we met theatre director Christine Eccles in the Battersea Art Centre. Christine tells her story about Mayday Theatre, a politically engaged theatre company based in Battersea during the seventies and early eighties.
Christine moved to Battersea from Liverpool in the early seventies and, inspired by radical theatre and the political atmosphere at the time, started her own socialist community theatre group. Working with the local residents and the Labour council they put on shows around South London that were based on local issues and stories such as the lives of factory workers, the gentrification of Battersea and the growth of the National Front in the area.
In this short film she recounts stories from some of their most memorable performances, shares her photos from the time, describes her experiences of working with the local community, and explains why her work was an important political force in the history of Battersea. She describes the neighbourhood’s radical history, what it was like when she moved there, and the changes that have taken place since then, including the sudden switch from a Labour to a Conservative council and the rapid change in housing landscape.