By Any Media Necessary: Mapping Youth and Participatory Politics

MA+P Toolkit: Video

This project was created by MA+P faculty member Gabriel Peters-Lazaro

These projects will challenge you to expand your expressive video making skills through your use of framing and camera movement. You can use any camera that you have available including the video functions on your still camera or your smartphone.

The goal of these projects is to translate experience into visual representation through video. Recording video is a practice of looking, and the practice starts before you ever pick up the camera; start by really connecting to your own senses; to what you see and hear, how light and shadows change with your own movement. And then expand your real sense of time and space into the conceptual space of the camera; try to visualize how the camera will record the scene; how it’s movement will be similar or different from yours; how it’s closeness to the subject will change the field of view; how it will render light and dark. Only after you’ve made a complete mental recording should you pick the camera up. Once you do, you’ll have to reconcile what you imagined with what the camera is capable of. The more practice you have with this, the better you know your tools, the better you’ll be able to pre-visualize, up to the point where the process happens in real time and the camera becomes an extension of your mind and body.

Process Piece 

The goal here is to make a non-destructive art installation from the natural environment and to document the process through video. It could be as simple as assembling an artful pile of pebbles and twigs (and you’re welcome to do exactly that). The goal is to get detailed and visual, to identify even the smallest steps in the process and to find a way to show them visually - NO TALKING. You might have to repeat some of the same steps over and over, recording them in different ways so that you could edit everything together into a seamless whole that makes it seem like you only did it once.
  1. Get detailed
  2. Plan and rehearse
  3. No talking
  4. No more than 3 minutes of footage max
  5. You're not required to edit a final piece, but you are welcome to do so

Story in Space 

Where you are and where you go tells a story. Pay attention to how your visual world changes as you travel from room to room, from inside to outside, from one building to another. How can you capture this experience of movement on video? In a single shot of no more than 90 seconds, create a story of movement with a distinct beginning, middle and end. The story is the place, the story is the movement.
  1. One shot, 90 seconds max
  2. Plan and rehearse
  3. No people on camera
  4. No talking
  5. Beginning, middle, end

Keep track of your footage, retrieve it, upload it to YouTube or Vimeo and then share it!


Video camera basics - emphasizes key concepts in cinematography that apply to any and all video camera projects


Video delivery and distribution - an introduction to what your video IS and what to do with it once it's done


Video editing basics (optional) - though each editing program is different, the underlying concepts are the same in all. iMovie, Windows Movie Maker and YouTube's built in editor are all accessible options. 

This page has paths:

This page references: