Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Women's Machinima - More Than Virtual Vision

Putting the Spotlight on women again! But this is a detour away from my series, although still it relates to women machinimists. Just that I will take some time to acknowledge some very timely women's efforts, pertaining to a couple of big machinima competitions.
Behind every great man, there's a woman - and not any woman. Chantal Harvey, 48 Hour Film Project founder in Second Life, is caught behind the legendary RL film director Peter Greenaway. But in no way is she in anyone's shadow.

Over the last few weeks, some major machinima events have take place in Second Life. I would like to take note of the strong force behind these events by the strong women who contribute to them, and shape these events. At the 48 Hour Film Project/Machinima screening held in UWA/BOSL Amphitheatre in late September, I really got a kick out of the machinima The Titty Tour (by the Jewell Theatre Team), especially the in-your-face title exclaiming "I AM WOMAN - Hear me roar" to those women who totally get it - what it means to step forward and acknowledge that women bring a unique perspective to the screen and life.

My media career was built off the hard work of the women before me, and the women machinimists today are paving a path for a new generation. Don't kid yourself: those budding women machinimists are watching the women producers and the characters they bring to the screen. You don't have to claim you are feminist to understand that there is something extraordinarily brilliant about being female. That perspective needs to come to the screen - strong women who kick machinima ass by being real (real characters, credible, authentic; btw, I love the little girl in the movie Kick Ass. She is real in her own right on the screen.)

Ah, I digress again! I want to say a few words also about the last major media event that was sponsored by the University of Western Australia at the UWA-BOSL Amphitheatre. It was its final in a series of year round competitions: UWA's 3D Art & Design Challenge and MachinimUWA II: Art of the Artists. See my Best of Second Life Magazine blog for more on that.

What I did note from that event was as Taralyn Gravois (above, top), the director of the UWA-BOSL Ampitheatre, steps down from her role this year for machinima events like this, FreeWee Ling and Chantal Harvey step up to the plate: FreeWee as curator and Chantal as manager of the amphitheatre. Where do we know Chantal from, but the powerhouse that brought us MaMachinima the group, the 48 Hour Film Project (Machinima), and MaMachinima International Festival. Of course many other women have contributed to her efforts, as well as others, like Toxic Menges, Phaylen Fairchild, and Pooky Amsterdam. And what about that extraordinarily talented Flimsey Freenote, one of the winners at the 48HFP.

Another rising star, who has paid her dues by working hard on her skills, is Laurina Hawks, one of the top winners of UWA's lastest and final machinima competition (noted above) of this year. First place was tied by both Laurina (No Tomb for the Arts) & Bradley Dorchester (Art of the Artists).

I would also like to shine the spotlight on those men that have helped to make these events possible as well, such as Jayjay Zifanwe (CEO, UWA), Frolic Mills (CEO, BOSL), and LaPiscean Liberty (Aview.TV) - and many others I am leaving out.

It is extremely important to acknowledge the women of machinima, given they will help to define the film and television industries in years to come, let alone the field of machinima. I would like to acknowledge Moo Money for her work on my book project, for she has brought much experience and talent from her days with, Second Life, and beyond.

It is always time to celebrate the advancements of women in machinima. Keeping it short and simple this week. My blog series, Women Machinimists, will be back on track next time.

:) Soni

Machinima: 48 Hour Film Project (September 17-19)
UWA MachinimUWA II: Art of the Artists (October 10)

Bravin, Persia. BOSL Blog, September 26, 2010. (48HFP)
Fitzroy, Sonity. BOLS Blog, October 12, 2010. (UWA Challenge w/links)

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Forthcoming, Machinima: The Art & Practice (working title, McFarland, 2011) by Sonicity Fitzroy and Lowe Runo. The Professional Machinima Artist Guild graciously provides syndication of Sonicity’s blog Magnum: The Machinima Review to Aview.TV/Sonicity/