A Place Just On The Map
On a wild lonely shore on the far north of Scotland stands ‘Dounreay’. Operating since the 1950′s as a nuclear research experiment, the plant is now defunct and in the process of being decommissioned. Disposing of nuclear waste located in underground vaults has created anxiety for Dounreay’s neighbours, a traditional Scottish crofting family. A Place Just On The Map focuses on Deirdre, the mother of the family, who has worked on the croft for all her life and gives an insight into how the expansion of the site has put stress on herself and her family.
The screenshot above was taken from an interview I shot during the last night of staying with the family. Its of myself untangling headphone wires in their croft at Caithness. I lived with the family for five days, working on the croft and filming for three of them. I wanted to create a intimate relationship with the family so that my film would carry a sincerity within Deirdre’s voice, she felt her voice was ignored therefore i felt it was my duty to create a platform for her to express herself. Since the film has been completed BBC scotland has reported on the vaults. I thought the segment gave Deirdre a small amount of time to put across her views on the development and how it has affected the near by community, but at least it made us aware of her side of the story. Hopefully my film communicates the story in a playful manner when compared to the news report. It observes the life of the crofters as the vaults presence is slowly revealed through archive footage.
A Place Just On The Map has been screened at Two Short Nights film Festival and also broadcasted on television via Holland Doc 24. The film was selected by Breaking Ground who i am very grateful for selecting my film and helping it get broadcasted. The film was paired with Les Enfants De La Mer directed by Annabel Verbeke, documenting a boarding school for boys with behavioral problems. Possibly the link between my film and hers is the thread of isolation?
As the film was broadcasted in Holland a subtitled version had to be created which can be viewed below.
The film was my first proper go at documentary film making as a part of my course at Edinburgh College Of Art, where i threw my self in the deep end and went to the top of the highlands with no idea what i was getting myself in for. Looking back I miss my time with the Buldoo community, chatting over a white pudding supper became my reward for working the croft during the lambing season. Hopefully I will go back soon and catch up with Deirdre and her family.