A Vignetthnography of artists (in the wild)

I finally had the time to edit another “Vignetthnography“. This one was shot at the Burbage Valley in the Peak District and was part of the Inhabiting the Hack project funded by the CCN+ and organised by Helen Thornham and Alex McLean.

While I was editing the video I was thinking that, hopefully in the near future we could  develop an academic culture that allows us to produce more visual content as research outputs (it is quite a lot of work but also a good counterbalance to writing articles).

Vignetthnographies. A DIY visual technique for fast ethnographies

<intro> With Helen Thornham we have been thinking and experimenting with concepts, methodologies and techniques (what we like to call methodological prototypes). One of our projects, in the last couple of years, comprised a series of “fast ethnographies” in hackathons, hacklabs and apps-development companies. We have addressed the concepts of fast innovation and creative thinking in the staging of these events, trying to think about them in terms of disruptions. The second stage of this project consisted in funding, through the Communities and Cultures Network +, a series of events to intervene critically in the configuration of these events (by not setting a goal for example or prioritizing collaboration rather than competition). I did participant observation in one of these events in Sheffield, a Wreckshop organized by Alex McLean from the University of Leeds and Jake Harries in the interesting space he leads: Access Space. Besides my notes and audio interviews. I did a 10 minutes video interview with Paul Granjon on the concept of Wreckshop and then edited a 5 minutes video with some images from the event (see below)…. Continue reading “Vignetthnographies. A DIY visual technique for fast ethnographies”

On ethnographies, documentaries and collaboration


The three films produced by Studio 12 and Left Eye Blind are online at the BBC Three Fresh Website:

Writing Britain: Mandlenkosi Maposa
“Live how you sleep. Live how you dream.” Ma reflects on the power of dreams in this uplifting
Writing Britain: Saph Holden
Addressed to Mr Cameron and Michael Gove the film is an agonizing tale of her teenage self and how she coped with the death of her sister at this time.
Writing Britain: Hassan Abdullahi
This film provides a poetical perspective on growing up in Leeds.

I strongly recommend that you watch them. As part of my ethnographic work with Studio 12, we did a supporting documentary for the films (below). There are multiple and interesting ways to explore collaboration between academia, third sector organizations, government and, upon all: people. Engaging in media production is one of them. As Sarah Pink states in her text: “Applied, activist and public uses of (audio)visual anthropology allow, in a very direct way, the experiences of those who are normally invisible to be seen and their voices and feelings to be heard”

  Continue reading “On ethnographies, documentaries and collaboration”