Supporting Whyalla filmmakers

FILMED: SDSW Committee member Lorcan Hopper takes documentary footage on his own device.

FILMED: SDSW Committee member Lorcan Hopper takes documentary footage on his own device.

Filmmakers with a learning disability in Whyalla and surrounding areas are being invited to "Dream It, Screen It" by regional South Australian new media and film organisation Sit Down Shutup and Watch (SDSW).

"Dream it, Screen it" is one of 13 new projects across regional South Australia to receive $159,280 from the federal government's Regional Arts Fund via Country Arts SA.

The week-long workshop run by SDSW will focus on digital storytelling skills and will be produced in collaboration with the YMCA's Leap Takers program and Whyalla City Council in September.

SDSW Chair Lee Witczak said the company were 'incredibly excited' to receive the funding to continue nurturing filmmakers in the Whyalla region.

"Sit Down Shutup and Watch has visited Whyalla twice in the past few years to deliver programs and we've been blown away by the enthusiasm of the local community," he said.

Sit Down Shutup and Watch was part of Whyalla City Council's celebrations for International Day of People with Disability in December 2018 and toured its Best of Fest films to Whyalla in 2017.

Committee member Lorcan Hopper said: "It'll be really good to go back to Whyalla and help people make films that they can enter into film festivals all around the world."

The workshop will enable participants to increase their skills in filmmaking using their own devices and will culminate in a first showing of work that will be of a standard suitable for submission to national and international film festivals.

Whyalla City Council Arts and Cultural Facilitator Deb Hughes said she was looking forward to the outcomes from the workshop.

"New media is an amazingly important way of communication these days, it's really important to be able to tell these kinds of stories," she said.

"It's a really accessible medium...these days we all have a device in our pocket. When we get an idea we can go out and film it, so hopefully there will be some great content produced."

Sit Down Shutup and Watch is led by a Steering Committee of six people who identify as having a learning disability and are passionate about film.

The Committee works with a Coordinator and disability arts organisation Tutti Arts, which has been integral to creating and sustaining Sit Down Shutup and Watch over the past seven years.

Tutti Arts CEO and Artistic Director Pat Rix said: "Tutti is extremely proud that the SDSW Committee has delivered three fabulous film festivals and dozens of workshops across regional South Australia.

"It's particularly great to be deepening our relationship with film-makers in Whyalla through this grant."