Selfless Self-Portrait Project
The challenge of the Selfless Self-Portrait Project is to describe the subject without utilizing figurative elements, without showing one's face. There's a common party game that asks the participants to describe themselves without using their name, occupation, or looks. The most successful of these video projects answer that question with abstract imagery, visual-associative references, meaningful pacing, and self-reflexive strategies, like the use of 'interlocutor' characters. One of the main goals of this assignment is to showcase the benefits of 'showing' versus 'telling' in creating a profile/characterization.
After the assignments are completed, turned-in, and critiqued by the class, I often present the students with an option to turn-in another version of their project, utilizing the same footage or materials, but to alternate affect - a 'remix'. A second try brings the benefit of past experience, and familiarity with the subject and materials - in this case, the same raw video footage.