Why visual journalists need to get their act together (fast)
I’ve been putting a lot of thought into finding new ways to do historical documentary storytelling over the past two years.
As those who’ve spoken to me about it in the past will know, I think what we’re offered on television and radio is formulaic, sometimes crude, and almost always boring. The internet offers a fantastic platform to try new ways of doing things.
So here is a rare and refreshing example of a wonderful, short, historical documentary. But here’s the shock: it’s been made by Honda.
Yes, it seems even car companies are having a go at being film makers – and succeeding.
It’s part of a new campaign called Live Every Litre, and aims to make a documentary about the amazing journeys people take, or want to take, in their lives.
The wonderful treatment of this story (showing a veteran taking his granddaughter to see Normandy – why has the BBC never done that?!) and it’s subtle execution aside, this little film could be evidence of two things for visual journalists:
- that teaming up with companies wanting to use the power of storytelling to market their products could actually be an effective way of producing great video journalism (this series has Claudio Von Planta at the helm)
- that if we don’t pick up the baton soon, it’ll be Honda winning BAFTAs and Emmys in 5 years – while video journalists are busy working in their showrooms.