SJIWFF: Innovative and Interactive Panel

SJIWFF: Innovative and Interactive Panel

I was fortunate enough to catch yesterday’s Innovative and Interactive panel at the St. John’s International Women’s Film Festival. It was an exciting event, which I expected, and I got a lot out of it.

Newfoundland’s own Julie Lewis was joined by two film and digital media guest artists, Vali Fugulin and Gina Hara (of Geek Girls fame), on a panel moderated by Lisa Vatcher from Celtx, who have recently released their game narrative tool, Gem (full disclosure: I work for Celtx).

Listening to these folks talk about their work was really interesting and enlightening. They’re bringing diverse approaches to the intersection between art, film, games, and game culture, and I expect they’ll be groundbreakers in terms of bringing film and games, in particular, closer together.

One of my goals for Gamedev NL is to tap into our creative communities, and I had a chance to ask about what the panelists have found to work for that. It was fascinating to hear about their experiences, as well as feedback from the audience. I took a bunch of notes, which will feed into our work in the coming year.

Many thanks to all the participants, and a special thanks to Gina, who chatted with me about community building after the panel. I hope some of you will have a chance to learn more from and about these extraordinary women and catch some of the festival – especially their interactive programming – in future!

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College of the North Atlantic visit!

College of the North Atlantic visit!

I had a chance to visit CNA’s Video Game Art and Design facilities on Sept 21st to meet and talk to the 2nd and 3rd year students there. What a great bunch! They’re already in full swing, and I had a chance to see and chat about some of their paper and video game prototypes.

There was a lot to learn for me, which is always nice – Mischief was a special treat for me, as one of the students was using its infinite canvas to do concept art mind maps. I thought that was a brilliant idea, and it’s got obvious perks in terms of being able to draw, show, and collaborate in an easy format.

Another group of students were telling me about their venture with a local media producer. I can’t overstate how impressed I am that these folks are already making things happen for themselves. Game development can be a tough go, but getting started early is the best and easiest curative for the difficulties involved.

I’m looking forward to seeing what these folks turn out in the next while. Definitely worth watch.