Introduction: Methodology

The video clips you have just seen are the result of an audiovisual pedagogy workshop based on reflections about youth empowerment. For three months, Damaris, Jaume, Daniela, Sebas, Cristina, and Mohamed participated together in different sessions in order to give visual form to their experiences. Would you like to know the steps they took to create their clips? Go ahead and make the HEBE webdoc your own: participate and share your own empowerment experiences.

Step 1: The rules of the game

We put images and words to the concept of empowerment through three short clips (at three minutes maximum):

  1. A self-portrait through the lens of empowerment.
  2. A portrait of someone who has been essential to the empowerment process.
  3. Spaces that have played an important part in the empowerment process.

The HEBE webdoc’s three perspectives of empowerment are a result of the approach suggested by the HEBE research project, which is based on an analysis of spaces, moments, and processes of empowerment.

Step 2: How have you been empowered?

In a group, reflect on and discuss what your process has been, in order to raise awareness. Identify those people, spaces, and moments in your life which made you feel most able to make decisions about your future. Share your individual experience with the rest of the group and listen to others, stimulating a dialogue. As you watch and listen to each other, you create your first collective ideas.

Step 3: The emotion in images

Creating images is easy; the hard part is learning which emotions make them unique. Put together a selection of several varied film clips that could guide the participants through this first step on their path. What they observe in these clips and the group debate about them allows the participants to link their experiences of empowerment with the possibilities for expression in these videos.

Step 4: Observing others

Photography is an extremely useful art for beginning to observe others. Asking yourself what different photographs are trying to show us is a form of observational learning. When the workshop’s participants describe each other, it helps put into practice this observation of others; getting to know them through the lens of a camera.

Step 5: Listening to the world

Sound is an essential vehicle for emotional expression. Soundscapes make up part of our day-to-day. Listening to them is another way of observing reality from a distance. One of these countless sounds is the word. Your word, your expression of “me”, is another form of expression and reflection.

Step 6: Sharing the first images and sounds of empowerment

Viewing images and hearing sounds are two of the first methods for approaching individual empowerment experiences. You must give images and a voice to any element that you identify as a significant factor in your decision making process. Watching the other participants’ images creates links between everyone and becomes a way to reflect on your own experience, when you contrast it with theirs. Group discussion allows you to create an idea of what your clips might look like.

Step 7: Capturing the images and sounds of empowerment

In a group or working together, the process of recording images and sounds should translate into the approaches arising from group debates. Creative freedom is maintained throughout the filming of these clips. The way of capturing these images defines the very personality of the workshop participant. Reflect on empowerment and find a creative process of empowerment in the act of framing and listening to reality.

Step 8: Reflecting on and debating the images and sounds of empowerment

View the first edits of these clips as the focus of group reflection. What do these images tell us about processes of individual and collective empowerment? What do you learn from observing the empowerment processes of others? How can you turn the emotions evoked into individual and collective actions toward empowerment?

Step 9: Sharing experiences of empowerment

Show the stories of empowerment to society. Share empowerment with others as a form of collective learning.