Aboriginal stories told through film

FILM: The three day workshop will focus on script and concept development, before subsequent visits over the next three months where shooting will begin.
FILM: The three day workshop will focus on script and concept development, before subsequent visits over the next three months where shooting will begin.

Budding film makers have been given an opportunity to tell their stories and gain valuable hands-on experience at a workshop in Port Augusta.

Over the course of four months Aboriginal participants will script, shoot and produce two short documentaries with the help of professional filmmakers from the South Australian Film Corporation (SAFC).

SAFC Associate executive Nara Wilson said the program is about creating opportunities for Aboriginal people.

"It's a big focus at the South Australian Film Corporation for Aboriginal people to be telling their own stories and that's what we are doing," she said.

"We are creating new skills here in the Aboriginal community of Port Augusta and hopefully one day we will stop doing these workshops because they'll be running them themselves.

"It's really important to get their stories out there as well, especially for the elders who might not be with us for too long."

The documentaries will be featured during Country Arts SA Black Screen 2020, which is screened regionally throughout South Australia.

They also have the potential to be picked up by National Indigenous Television (NITV).

Program participant Marika Davies pitched one of the successful ideas.

"It is an extraordinary opportunity to be apart of this. Who would've ever dreamed of having a workshop like this in Port Augusta?," Marika said.

"My story was about Malka Carving and its centred around Uncle Roy himself.

"He is a brilliant master in wood carving and he's the last wood carver we've got here in the region. So we're trying to pass what he knows through the documentary."

Storytelling is a big part of Aboriginal culture and communities are embracing media as a way to convey their experience to younger generations and a wider Australia audience.

With no experience in film making, Marika is working from the ground up.

"(It's) very empowering, because we are able to tell our stories, our way which is very important because our story hadn't been told by us before and it was misleading ... where now it is coming from our own personal journeys, so it is more empowering and healing for us," she said.

"It's very exciting for me and the other participants as well."