What is Storylab?
With reference to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals 4, 8 and 10, independent and citizen filmmakers in Malaysia, Ghana, Colombia, California and Greece have been enabled and empowered through the innovative StoryLab skills training research initiative to develop their own creative voices in pursuit of meaningful cultural contributions and employment opportunities within growing democratised cultural and professional moving image sectors. This unique lateral transnational collaboration across 5 continents, involving University partners inMalaysia (Universiti Putra Malaysia), Australia (Griffith University), Ghana (National Film and Television Institute) and Colombia (University of Ibagué), headed by Professor Erik Knudsen at the University of Central Lancashire, has led to profound transformations in ideation practices, enabling new co-development and production partnerships, enhanced visual storytelling skills, better engagement with local cultural preservation and deeper awareness of the opportunities of narrative filmmaking, thereby enhancing the voices of independent and marginalised communities.
StoryLab philosophically and creatively examines ways in which independent filmmakers may explore, through practice, the discovery and development of a personal voice in the making of their films – particularly in examining the early ideation stages of cinematic expression – and ultimately seeks to understand the practical ways in which ideas are shaped into stories and narratives. Utilising interdisciplinary approaches inspired from music and enthropology, StoryLab has developed an immersive research methodology entitled Ethnomediaology, which involves the active and personally immersive participation of researchers in the research culture and process of knowledge generation, data gathering and evaluation, as well as impact delivery.