, 16 tweets, 5 min read Read on Twitter
A recent discussion with @bizaaron & today with a girlfriend who is an amateur film maker got me thinking about value of Instagram. I want to get rid of it as I see no value to it. I use it as a dummy account for my avatar Shazza Breaknews Foreign Correspondent bit still...yawn.
I can’t place my finger on why I dislike this platform so much. Maybe it’s because it seems so contrived. Everything is filtered, too perfect. It just doesn’t seem real. It also encourages people to just scroll through rather than engage?
Well anyway, I tried to think of ways on how to make it useful for me so I decided to change it from my actual name and use it as a test bed to formulate & create the back story of my character’s news reports every week.
I also use them as a way to experiment with different internet “fun” tools that are out there that allow you to create things like fake tweets....
The posts add a bit more creativity to process where I’m not experimenting as “Helen Blunden” but instead creating context by way of a storyline and char development. It also adds fun bc I’m thinking “how can this be part of my news report?” I create assets like this.
The posts are deliberately B&W bc I like how they go against Instagram’s “prettiness”. However there’s something about B&W images I find evocative of journalists of past which I try to emulate. Maybe a connection to journalism pre-political correctness & fake news.
I deliberately chose to be a character who’s female (obviously), gone thru the system, experienced, close to 50, angry bc she doesn’t understand the new world, she’s unrecognised, unrewarded and passed over by the young ones. She’s still in the field & doesn’t have a Walkley.
Much of my inspiration I got from watching journalists work with each other & their cameramen (mainly men) when I was in Public Affairs role in defence years ago. They go into some tough environments to report the news & it’s only in recent times that I see their true value.
So I created another character who we never see. Mike the cameraman. In Shazza’s eyes, he’s incompetent and the bane of her existence. Of course, Mike is the real hero here (although he’s always off camera of course)...
For all these characters & their development, I used the templates that the corporates use for profiling their customers “persona profiles”. Not only could they be used for target market demographics but i used them for developing characters 🤣
So using Instagram as a character development and story telling platform of a made-up character (fake) for a news channel @CNTnewschannel (fake) & in B&W (fake) was like “taking the piss out of everything” that is fake about the stuff we see online nowadays.
Yesterday @helenmpal interviewed me on her podcast for @BeSelfunLimited & she asked me to share the benefits of doing a sideline project that does not bring immediate tangible benefits such as new work, career, money etc.
Thing is, our sideline projects need not always have some direct gain such as money or a new career. It need not be “work related”. This has broken me out of my comfort zone, learned new video skills, I feel far more creative & hence take risks & frankly, I laugh a lot.
The whole process has also taught me a lot about creativity in teams; story telling; video creation; team conflict; organisational skills. Also it’s tested me in other ways about my “identity & reputation” online. How do I want to be seen online?
Will I continue? As long as I’m having fun, I’ll do it. There’s a place for comedy in our lives - we need a laugh. We have these tools at our fingertips that we can use to spread laughter so why not?
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