Vividcon/Vividcon 2015

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"Fandom isn't about what you make. It's about what you love." ~#VividCon Twitter Post
"Vividcon: All the love, all the time"" ~#VividCon Twitter Post

Overview

Vividcon was held August 7-9, 2015.[1]

Programming: Panels

include a link to the panel schedule

also notes from panels

This was the first year that Vividcon introduced fandom specific panels. Here is one atendees thoughts on the experiment:

"Given the post introducing fandom specific panels I was really expecting a push to include fandoms that wouldn't typically be big fandoms at VVC and to try and get new people to vote. Maybe that happened, but my sense was it didn't. We got four fandoms that are/were popular at VVC and we got panels that drew heavily on vids made by VVC attendees or that are familiar to VVC attendees (if the reaction from the room was any indication when various vids played).

One of the three panels was supposed to be a historical throwback selected by the concom. I'm guessing that was the BtVS panel, simply because — even though MCU is seven years old (if you just count the movies and don't even get into the comics), Doctor Who started in 1963 and was rebooted ten years ago, and due South is from the 90s — there is more happening currently in the other three fandoms. To me though, the effect of these fandoms having been around for a while, was that they didn't feel new or different. I've been watching vids come out of VVC for the past ten years — I have seen all of these fandoms come out of the con many times.

If the goal was to get new people, I am dubious as to the sucess. That doesn't mean that the fandom panels were a bad plan — I think they have the potential to be really interesting — but if the goal was getting more people to hear about VVC and getting more people to be excited about it and attend … I don't know, maybe it did work. But I didn't get that sense. And if it did work, I'm unsure that the panels that existed were the best panels for convincing people to come back.[2]

Programming:Vidshows

Master List[3]

Recurring Shows

Themed Shows
Artificial Life
VJ: tbm
Description: Androids, replicators, clones, and augments: a celebration of a different kind of mind.

Coming Soon to a Screen Near You
VJ: kiki_miserychic
Description: Trailers in vidding can be found in wide variety. Many media mash ups exist that use audio from one source meshed with the video from another source. Many trailer vids swap genres or shift the focus of the original media. Trailer vids can be made to promote other fanworks, generally fanfiction. There are also fan edited trailers for existing media and fan created media can take a different approach or create something new. Patchworks can be created to give the viewer a taste of media that does not yet exist.

Game Plan
VJs: Milly & elipie
Description: Get your head in the game and your adrenaline pumping! From baseball to football, come root root root for the home team and cheer as people put their bodies to the test.

Gray Areas
VJ: Trelkez
Description: The antihero, the enemy-turned-ally, the hero on a downward slide, the villain wracked with guilt, the unrepentant thief: characters struggling toward the light, spiraling into the dark, or embracing a life lived in shades of gray.

Hey Vid, Wanna Get High?
VJ: joyo
Description: Vids as trippy visual spectacles.

I Like This Version Better
VJ: AbsoluteDestiny
Description: A vidshow about canonical and fannish rewrites, including historical revision, weird homages, and AUs.

Lions and Tigers and Vids, Oh My!
VJ: elipie
Description: From tiny crawlers to fuzzy beasts, this vidshow celebrates animals and shows what the world is like from their point of view.

You’re My Best Friend
VJs: Gianduja Kiss
Description: A celebration of BFFs.


Vid Rec Lists

Commentary

Challenge Vid Show

"Then it was time for Challenge. Oh, Challenge. So... last year, Premieres made everyone sob, and then we were all so relieved because it wasn't nearly as bad this year. Well, we found out why. It's because those vids were submitted to Challenge instead. All in all, it was a very strong Challenge show. Anoel absolutely broke the entire room with Afire Love, though, a vid using footage from The Normal Heart(as well as additional footage from what I believe were a few different documentaries about the AIDS crisis)."[12]

In-Depth Vid Review

The two vids chosen for in-depth were Cut Like A Buffalo, a vid about Cookie from Empire, by Kiki_miserychic and Hydrogenuine by Cherry Ice, a Jupiter Ascending vid.

Anoel's Notes on In Depth Vid Review were posted to her LJ.

Panel Notes

History of Escapade: The Digital Transition:

"The first session, History of Escapade: The Digital Transition, made me nostalgic for shows I've barely or never watched. *cough Highlander cough* melina provided fascinating insights into the early styles and philosophies of digital vidding at Escapade. Was introduced to an infamous and still powerful Oz vid, Prison Sex, by Jo."[14]
"...the history vidshow this year was about Escapade, specifically during the late 90s/early 2000s as the switch was slowly starting to be made from analog to digital vidding. It actually surprised me just how many of the vids that I recognized: some from previous VividCons, some from online vid downloads, and some from vid DVDs that I've bought over the years. I guess that it shouldn't surprise me as much as it did. I started getting into vidding in 2001/2002, which was during that period..... ....Of course, it also made me miss some of my older fandoms. Highlander, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Stargate SG-1, Invisible Man... oh, shows. ♥ I totally need to do a rewatch for all of those at some point."[15]

Fandom Specific Panel: BtVS: Nummy Treats:

"I would have liked a broader view of early BtVS vids, but that may have been my own ignorance; I didn't realize Nummy Treats referred to a specific mailing list and group of fans. The panel did introduce me to a landmark Buffy/Faith vid I hadn't been aware of, Superstar by heresluck, as well as a fabulous Spike vid that I have to track down from Slayage 2005 [16]; something about all the pieces fitting together.""[17]
"The Spike vid is Schism by Vyra. It's probably been reposted to YouTube, as well. It blew EVERYBODY's mind. It still blows my mind. Twelve years later, Vrya's work holds up better than just about anybody else's from the Nummy Treat era."
"... the NT list had about 1,000 members in its heyday, with dozens of vids posted to the Buffyverse Music Video Database (which auto-posted announcements to NT) in any given week, so while the list was indeed "a specific group of fans" in that it was for posting, watching, and discussing Buffyverse vids, it was not exactly a *small* group."[18]
[These are abbreviated selections. Read the full set of panel notes at the link below.[19]]: "Critical feedback was a huge part of Nummy Treat, as was suggesting that vids be beta'd. The question of exactly what critical feedback was, though, came up a lot.

Video boot camp on We Band of Buggered! The whole point was to help make us better vidders, honing our craft and thinking about exactly what we were doing.....

There was a lot of fighting about 'ships going on in the Buffyverse fandoms at the time, but the vidding side of fandom was at least fighting about differentthings. The universe as a whole was huge, and there was a lot of different aspects of it to be explored.....

All you had to do was come to Nummy Treat and ask for help, and people would give it to you. It helped so many people become much better vidders in such a short amount of time.....

Nummy Treat and We Band of Buggered were an amazing place to get detailed feedback all of the time."

Fandom Specific Panel: Doctor Who Vidding:

millylicious had some interesting things to say about the challenges of vidding Doctor Who as a character with a lot of faces and as a show with decades of source material of varying quality. We discussed ways to unify the character across faces/actors—single "I" narrator, matching motion, visual parallels, etc.—and the way vidders can choose to depict the Doctor as one person across time or as a character unto himself with each new regeneration; if the latter, each incarnation inspires different music choices, styles, narratives. I liked the sequence during greensilver/trelkez's Take On Me where the Doctor tries on clothes like he's trying on personalities to rediscover who he is after regenerating, and I loved being introduced to Blank Space by purplefringe and such_heights (Doctor/Master).""[20]
"Doctor Who is unique because there are very few shows that have run as long as it, with so many actors playing the same character. There's also a very different quality of the source, thanks to its longetivity." Read the full panel notes here.[21]"
slide for the Survival of the Viddest panel

Survival of the Viddest:

"Things I jotted down during Survival of the Viddest, which was about archiving:
  • Lots of copies keeps stuff safe
  • Nonprofit/academia/museums may be more committed to preservation
  • One option is use your own (or a trusted) server for downloads
  • Put metadata in your video file (LlamaEnc does this); put your name in your video file name
  • It's easy to win a takedown battle if you make a big stink. Although it's easier if you have clout.
  • digitalpreservation.gov/personalarchiving
  • Explore creating a Critical Commons account
  • Don't physically store hard-copy backups in a place you wouldn't be comfortable in yourself""[22]
"Non-digital is easier in some ways: a book is a book. A tape might get degraded, but it's not going to be something else. That said, digital is infinitely replicable with no degradation when it's replicated, so that's a plus!

Digital video, even more so than other digital files have problems. They are harder to store (larger), more complex (more things can go wrong), non-standard/proprietary formats (no right format for preservation, harder to rescue).

Remix video has even more problems than other digital videos. There are copyright issues, hosting challenges, creator anonymity, hostile/hands-tied institutional culture. (For example: if institutions — museums, libraries — can't make material accessible, then they might not take it.)

One way to get vids into institutions is to have a 'canon' of vids, but that's problematic! 'Canonized' vids are often divorced of context and there are problems with making a theoretical framework out of them because it often ignores large sections of vidding, including non-VVC vidding. (This wasn't explicitly mentioned, but my thought: canonizing vids might help those vids -- somewhat debatable --but not necessarily vids which are not part of the canon.)" Read the full set of notes here.[23]

Multi-fandom Vids:

"I was very much looking forward to Nate's Make Mine Multi, and it didn't disappoint. Having made one small (5 sources) and two big (40-80+ sources) multifandom vids, I came to the panel with a mix of things I've learned and things I'd like to learn from others and was keen to talk research, definition of scope, structure, process, philosophy, flow, the advantages and disadvantages of working on a tight deadline, etc. I hope I didn't speak up too much. Said the person who usually sits quietly in the back, ha.

It was a two-hour panel in a well-attended room with lively discussion, very little of which I wrote down. Here's what I did note:

  • How do you connect sources: dance, disorientation, narrative/themes, visual similarity…
  • Argument about 3 sources is more specific to those sources, whereas argument about 100+ sources is more universal
  • When do you tip from "about these sources" to "a pattern"? One answer: ask, Do I need to know canon X to get what you're saying?
  • Even more so than in a single-source vid, you are the voice, you are the one who sees the connections and presents the argument or shapes the narrative
  • Only knowing a source through multifandom vid research can give you a bad association with that source if your vid is about something troubling
  • Multiple characters become one character
  • Song/music structure can define the number of sources you use; one vidder couldn't figure out why 5-source vid wasn't working until she realized the song had 4 parts to it and cut one source out
  • Viewers' brainpower is already going toward making sense of the multi-sourced clips, so there's less left to interpret any divergences from lyrics
  • New-to-me research idea: IMDB keyword search
  • Groupings and metabuilds can help when you don't have a narrative; Nate's Gene Kellyexample: dancing alone, with props, with partners, with world, alone again""[24]

Stop, Collaborate, & Listen:

"jarrow's and in absentia laurashapiro's session Stop, Collaborate, & Listen started with a rundown of the pros and cons of working together on vids and then broke for a mixer exercise in which people with vid ideas talked to people who might be willing to offer help, from full collaboration to beta to concept development to help finding source and song. There were some neat ideas, and several people offered specialty services to the room in general. Also jarrow proved every inch the second-grade teacher he cheerfully announced himself to be. Adorable.""[25]
"The first 15 or so minutes of the panel was Jarrow talking about different ways of collaboration and then asking the audience for the pros and cons of collaboration. What is collaboration? Two or more people working on a vid in concert, either in the same location or two different locations. One person might be the "driver" on a particular computer or system, one person moving the mouse. For the purposes of the section of the panel, we were just considering two+ people making a vid together. Betaing, cheerleading, tech help, song gifting, etc were withheld from this part of the discussion." Read the full notes at the page.[26]

Vidding as Media Literacy (powerpoint presentation here[27]:

"Vidding as Media Literacy featured acafan panelists futuransky, lola and cathexys, each of whom brought along 1-2 vidders whose work they have used in their classrooms: giandujakiss (A Different Kind of Love Song), kiki_miserychic(Flawless) and sisabet/sweetestdrain (On the Prowl), respectively. They brought up a slew of provocative questions about the uses of vids in education and in wider cultural conversations that there just wasn't time to address. It ought to have been a two-hour panel, alas. Here is futuransky's Prezi that she updated during the panel.

All I wrote down was:

  • [Vids can be used when] people teach critical analysis and tools of authorship outside of academia
  • Understanding "On the Prowl" was a capstone of cathexys' uni course; students watched three times over the semester
  • "Flawless" as essay assignment after class discussion
  • Both vids stemmed from conflicting feelings about source/trope; love/shame; criticism andcelebration; the ambivalence is the resolution (and perhaps the reason the vids are so compelling)
  • Issues of losing the framing and context when a vid travels outside its original fandom circles
  • Class talked to vidder: humanized process, they related to her on a creative/creator level
  • "Seeing 'Superstar' changed the way I think and write"
  • "A Different Kind of Love Song" – the fans are normalized
  • Get the students where the love sits, even if they don't know the source(s)
  • "Frat boys wept"
  • Most vids are about the emotional connection to the source, but teaching & advocacy examples tend to be intellectual critiques, respectable""[28]
"The panel was organized by academics, some of whom vid.

Vidding is a place where people teach each other analysis, not just critical analysis of media, but also teach an understanding of cultural knowledge — i.e. access (downloading vs streaming, etc), preservation (a la skygiants's panel!), tech.

What do vids offer culture? When vidding goes from a less well known subculture to broader culture, what is its new role? What is lost when the conversation moves beyond fandom? Are we developing a canon of vids? (A personal canon vs a broader one?) Is this something to avoid? How central is fannish love/response? Does that disappear in other contexts?

Vids are a way of getting people (students) interested w/o 50,000 words. Some vids are more accessible than others.

Context/how we frame the vid is important: the context can be learned, but not always the vidder's intention. The aesthetics might speak to people outside of fandom, but the fannishness might not translate.

It's what you bring to it; a marriage of criticism & love."[29]

Curse You, After Effects!:

"franzeska walked through basic rotoscoping and motion tracking in Curse You, After Effects!, and let me tell you, those 15 minutes showed me how to solve a problem that's caused a 95%-complete SGA vid to sit on my computer for two years. Jazzed to see if I can finish it now.""[30]

Con reports

Other reports

Notable premiering vids

Twitter

  • what did people say on twitter? #Vividcon, #ClubVivid

References

  1. 2015 Wayback copy of the homepage
  2. VVC: Fandom Panels (dS, MCU, BtVS) dated August 25, 2015; WebCite.
  3. Archive link.
  4. WBM link.
  5. WBM link.
  6. archive link.
  7. WBM link.
  8. WBM link.
  9. archive link
  10. archive link.
  11. archive link.
  12. Sunday Post dated August 11, 2015.
  13. archive link
  14. Vividcon Panels Post dated August 11, 2015; ref link.
  15. Friday Vividcon Post dated Aug 8, 2015.
  16. "Slayage 2005"? This fan is referring to Slayage Conference on the Whedonverses, except that there wasn't a con in 2005.
  17. Vividcon Panels Post dated August 11, 2015; ref link.
  18. comment in Vividcon Panels Post dated August 11, 2015; ref link.
  19. Nummy TreatPanel Notes
  20. Vividcon Panels Post dated August 11, 2015; ref link.
  21. here.
  22. Vividcon Panels Post dated August 11, 2015; ref link.
  23. archive link.
  24. Vividcon Panels Post dated August 11, 2015; ref link.
  25. Vividcon Panels Post dated August 11, 2015; ref link.
  26. archive link.
  27. archive link
  28. Vividcon Panels Post dated August 11, 2015; ref link.
  29. VVC Panel Notes dated August 16, 2015; WebCite.
  30. Vividcon Panels Post dated August 11, 2015; ref link.