All Of The Content That Is Used For The Documentary Photo Film

I have found it quite hard to put the right images with the right  part of the stories and also to cut the images down for the photo film, maybe this is because the story contains its own visuals at time. However, I believe I have done my best in the way of matching the images to the stories.

For the introduction of the photo film I have created an animated title, England to Jamaica. From doing research on animated text in Final Cut Pro I was able to create my own for the introduction. I also edited a part of Dennis Brown’s song, Love has found its way. The edited song plays in time with the animated title and at the end of the title. The music fades by getting quieter when the talking begins. I felt using the music gives it more of a Jamaican ambience, the spirit feel of the story which gives off the right vibe before the stories come. As well, Dennis Brown is one of the stars that is mentioned in the story that helped Jean when she was in Jamaica, his photograph is also added in the photo film so I felt it would be nice to have his music as part of the introduction.

The music used for the introduction:

I have shown all of the scanned photographs in a previous post and they are shown in the exact order of how they will be placed on the time line for the documentary photo film.

The images have worked as a timeline to show each story she tells about her journey. The photographs match the narrative of the audio where Jean tells her story. With the good range of images that I had I was able to create a vibrant documentary photo film. The images are very old meaning that some are better quality than others, but I like how each image is different because it shows how each one is individually special, having its own existence and purpose. I feel the story in the audio works really well because the images and the audio are in balance giving a unified feeling. This is why I think it makes it easier to draw in the viewers attention because it is understandable, and lets the viewer travel with it in its flow. I have let some people listen and watch the photo films and they have enjoyed them. To break up the second story of Ethiopia I used another title which is just called Ethiopia.  For this clip I have not used any music. I have used animated text, similar to the beginning of the introduction. I did not use the Ethiopian music by Neway Debee which I was planning on using, as I have discussed in previous posts because I wanted that little bit of silence right in the middle before all the talking starts again. I was liking the flow of the talking and did not want music to break the flow up because there was not a need or place to add music. Adding music here would only break up the flow of the piece.

After the stories have been told of Jean’ journey of both Jamaica and Africa, I then end with asking Jean a question. I asked Jean “What was it like coming back to England after being away for so long?” Jean answers the question to end the photo film and explains exactly how she felt. Jean fully expresses her feelings and how hard it was coming back after being away for a long amount of time.


Below is the image that I used for the beginning of this question. I am glad I had chosen this photograph as it captures Jean in her home environment and it shows what she sees everyday when she wakes up. Jean views everything that is around her as she sits back and watches the world that is now in front of her own eyes. In a way, her posture shows signs of being relaxed yet not comfortable. I believe this is due to her still re-adapting to the way she now has to live. She may be still getting used to the envionment she is in as she has only been back in England for two years. I also contemplate whether she shows signs of being uncomfortable because she knows how her life now is easy compared to those who may be suffering in different worlds, which she knows is happening because she has experienced examples of these.

When Jean says about the “push button society” on England I feel this image below works really well. She does something that she enjoys but the photograph goes with one of the subjects she is talking about. It has become a part of her, it was surrounding her when she lived in Jamaica and it is something that she is quite open about.

She explains how she enjoys running the tap, as when she was not in England she had to bathe in a river and that also included washing clothing. I used a photograph that I had took of Jean when I followed her around for the day, this shows a daily task of making tea. I think this image also connects with the enjoyment that she is talking about as the main water source is in the kitchen of her home and it is where she spends most of her time as she also cooks a lot. It shows the luxuries she now has around her in her home which we may take for granted.

In this photograph Jean looks happy as she holds her apple as she stands in a busy market. She says how it is a joy to go and buy food without having to grow it yourself or have to advertise it. I feel this photograph shows the freedom she now has. She stands out, holding an apple which is seen to be a religios symbol. It is like she holds the story, of which is the many stories she tells. The image is taken of her as she stands in the  Bull Ring Market.

Not having to get food with a held hand machete gun and being able to go to a shop and buy food. I have used another photograph that I had taken when in Birmingham Bull Ring Market. This is a photograph that I had captured as she buys the item from the stall. I feel it shows how easy it now is for her to get hold of the food she wants with out having to work for it, just like the water for the cup of tea.

Jean expresses how she feels about when she is in the city centre and people stare, due to her dreadlocks being down to the floor. People say that Birmingham is a place of culture, but whether they accept it is another thing. I have used the image because I like how she stands strong in the city centre of Birmingham. She is herself, and is part of the city she talks about. The image shows her dreadlocks and their full length. Even though the way she stands is a strong pose, I like how she still does not look fully comfortable.  I feel this is due to her still re-adapting to the English lifestyle she now lives.

I have used photographs that I have taken in her home and I really cherish them to be interesting representations of the subject. They show a double meaning, how she is happy but may not be too comfortable because of her still re-adapting. Her character is very positive, and she is very aware of the world. The portraits show her happy self, her true characater. Such a genuine character, where below, she sits  in her living room. Her confidence really shines in these images as she is in the environment of her home. I feel as though my photographs are natural and portray the true character of the subject. Jean opens up to me, and I feel I have made her feel confortable with me photographing her.

Until she gets itchy feet where she explains to go back to Africa. I feel the character of her home, the way in which she has decorated it brings her back to Africa. The image below identifies how painting takes up a lot of her time. These painting are part of her, she goes back to the journey she once made, they are all African and also Jamaican inspired. For each painting she paints she says how she can just sense  these places, her imagination of where she misses. I think that she as a person cannot go back but painting takes her back to Africa and Jamaica, in her inner ability to connect and communicate the presence. Therefore, Jean says, until she gets itchy feet, the paintings shows how much she misses these countries that are so far away, which is why I believe these images fit well.


At the end, Jean says she wants to go back one more time before she closes her eyes. For this last part of the story the image below was the best one to use for how she felt and what she was discussing. I beleive her eyes tell it all, of how she sits, looks down and closes the eyes just hoping to go back. This was a photograph that I had taken when following her for the day. The end part of the story finishes off the photo film beautifully.


Sound used

These are the edited sound clips of the audio that are used for the photo film




To sum up

This is every single item that was used for the documentary photo film, I have shown the order of how everything flows.

These three images I was not originally going to use but after listening to the documentary stories I feel these photographs fit the most and I began to like them even more as soon as they made their way into the documentary photo film. I think this is due to me noticing the potential of them more and how well they fit with Jean’s thoughts and feelings. The photographs definitely portray the feelings that my subject is expressing. The secong image blelow interests me because even though we cannot see her face we can see her head is tilted. This shows her feeling of interest and involvement in the atmosphere.


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