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Julie Crinière
Rudy Hypolite
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who we are

Julie Crinière
jcriniere@mac.com

julie with yo-tv crewI am both a documentary filmmaker and an educator. I think these two roles enrich each other. I love being part of the Blinktank collaborative, where people of very diverse backgrounds meet to exchange ideas, support each other and collaborate on socially oriented media projects.

I currently live and work in New York City, where I direct the Youth Organizer's TV (YO-TV) program for the Educational Video Center (EVC). YO-TV selects young people who wish to continue making documentaries after they have graduated from EVC's high school documentary program and pays them a stipend. (For more information, see www.evc.org.) Currently, my students and I are working on a documentary follow-up study of youth in the foster care system, who were the subject of an EVC video eight years ago. Last year YO-TV produced a video on teen indebtedness, which took a critical look at the credit card industry and the consequences of embracing the "buy now pay later" philosophy. I'm continuing to work on this subject by becoming a co-producer - with Tim Wright and Jasmin Sung of the independent documentary Plastic: Credit Cards and the Culture of Debt, currently in progress.

> Recent News!

I just came back from teaching at the Sitka Fine Arts Camp from June 12 to June 28. This camp was selected as one of the top 10 camps in the country by the NEA. Sitka is considered Alaska's most beautiful seaside town and I left the stench and heat of NYC with no second thoughts. I taught one documentary class and two basic video classes to eager students from 12 to 17 year old. There are 200 students in the whole camp and they can choose from a wide array of art disciplines. It was a very intense program, teaching every day for 10 days, from 8 am to 4 pm. This was followed by student and artist performances in the evening. Some students would come to my class after a salsa class and tell me how shooting video was just like salsa dancing where "you move your legs and your hips but you keep your torso straight". It was a great synaesthetic experience for all of us. Despite the numerous crashes of the PCs we used for editing and countless other technical difficulties that kept popping up every step of the way, we had a successful screening of students' work at the end. Also the documentary we made about the camp will be used as an evaluation tool for the NEA to help secure more funding for next year. I can’t wait to go back. Next year I want the documentary class to explore Sitka's rich past which is a unique blend of Tlingit culture and Russian history.

For more information about the camp please visit:

http://www.fineartscamp.org/index.html

http://www.fineartscamp.org/sfac_faculty.html

[LEFT] View from the campus.

You can see the cruise ship in the background. Cruise ships were a daily sight, appearing early in the morning and disappearing by the end of the day after everybody on the cruise had raided the few fur stores in town.
 

> Previous Experience

julie holding cameraI first got involved with filmmaking four years ago when I interned at Documentary Educational Resources (DER), a house in Boston, which produces and distributes ethnographic films. Because I am bi-cultural and tri-lingual, DER sent me to the Mostra documentary film festival in Brazil to meet international filmmakers and acquire films for American distribution.

Subsequently, in collaboration with Lu Chih-Lan, a Taiwanese grassroots activist, I started making documentaries about immigrant teenagers in American Public Schools. This experience made me want to give cameras to the teenagers so they could tell their own stories. So Lu and I created a "Media As a Second Language" program, which we implemented in several Boston public schools. We also collaborated with a Harvard Education School study on immigration to create a "Call for Art: Collaboration for Action, Representation and Transformation." In it, we worked with immigrant children to combine poetry, theater and video. We also designed a media literacy project for the YWCA's Youth Voice Collaborative.

Concurrently, I was getting a Master's degree at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, after which I took a job at Children's Hospital in the VIA program teaching chronically ill teens to document their daily lives on video. I subsequently edited the footage and created an interactive CD-ROM to help medical staff better understand the day to day struggles of their patients.


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