Formative Blog Post
I went to town researching everything I could about the women who created the Pink Protest and who kicked off the #Girlswanktoo campaign. I discovered that founders have just released the number 1 selling book called ‘Feminists don’t wear pink and other lies.’
So I have began to contact them and so far I had 3 positive responses. 2 from founders and 1 from a illustrator who was involved in the project. These interviews will hopefully be taking place in face to face from the week of 22nd October.
I have also contacted sex-sperts and educators as, I want to look at the health / well being effects of female masturbation. As well as touching on how better education could help break the stigma. So to keep organised of contact emails and response progression, I have created a Excel spreadsheet.
Within the next few weeks until the Formative rough cut is due, I need to work on finding a commissioner. I have researched a more production houses and will contact them within the next week, to hopefully secure a commission. I need to work on finishing my written proposal so, I am able to send this off to commissioners.
I am confident overall as, so far my contributors are confident speakers as, they have been featured in a lot of press coverage. So I am positive that the doc is starting to shape up.
The Pleasure Gap – ‘Documentary’
When researching period poverty as part of my preliminary idea, I came across a community of activist’s called the ‘Pink Protest’. They had ran a campaign earlier this year called #Girlswanktoo. After reading this quote on their website:
“Masturbation, like orgasms, is a gendered issue. When a young man starts to masturbate it is seen as a coming of age moment. Becoming ‘a man’ goes hand in hand with being aroused by images of a sexual nature, and then touching yourself for pleasure. For this reason, the male orgasm is given special, dedicated treatment. For women, masturbation is an uncomfortable, shameful elephant in the room.”
… I knew I had to explore the stigmas surrounding female masurbation. Aswell as exploring how the #Girlswanktoo movement was created and the ways in which we can break this taboo within society.
I thought about approaching a London based audio production company to see if a, Radio 1 style documentary would suit this project. As well as seeing if they would read my pitch for commissioning. Luckily I’ve done some work experience over the summer at Wisebuddah, so sent a email to a documentary producer there.
After my research I began to look for inspiration from sources around me. I used Ideas from work as a starting point, as I knew I would enjoy researching those themes further. I am part of the production team on the ‘Badass Women’s hour XL’ and they speak a lot about all female organisations and movements.
- The Luminary Bakery was a charity set up to help women from disadvantaged backgrounds. The bakery would take on several women and help them gain the skills needed to gain employment. I thought about creating a documentary following one woman’s journey, but i knew that would be feasible in the modules time frame.
I then took inspiration from influencers and accounts I followed on Instagram, to potentially create a peice around the theme of period poverty or body positivity.
- I follow a lot of plus size influencers and thought about ‘Why young curvy women condition themselves to self loathing? And can social media help / hindrance in the journey of finding self love and body positivity?’ But after a initial group chat with my tutor, she questioned how I could achieve this as it was a very visual thing. I loved this idea but, I think it would be better of being commissioned for a visual documentary too.
- I had recently been seeing loads of people talk about the ‘red box project’ on Instagram. Once I researched into It, I realised it was a charity project to try and eliminate period poverty across the UK. I was then inspired to create a long-form audio piece about tampon tax, but I thought that would take a more political route, and that isn’t my style. But I would potentially use the idea of the ‘red box project’ as a back up idea.
Task / Format Research
After reading through the brief, I knew I wanted to focus on a longer and more traditional audio piece, so I decided to go down the Documentary / Features route. I believe I could make a professional sounding audio documentary with the tight time limit of 10- 15 minutes, without the doc feeling boring, dragged out or lifeless. I’m a big fan of audio documentaries / on demand content, so I feel this module will be beneficial to my portfolio work for after I graduate.
I have done some research to see what other audio documentaries are currently available on the market and had a listen to how they are formed within production style. Here are a list of current providers and a few examples of long form audio that I really enjoyed listening too:
- BBC World service / The Documentary ‘The Benefits of Nakedness’
- BBC Radio 4 / The Untold ‘ After the Bridge’
- BBC Radio 1 / Stories ‘The Future of Contraception’
- Podium.me / ‘If Boris was a Youtuber’