The “Tips for a Sustainable Planet” video series was created through a partnership between Community TV Network and Shine On, Chicago!
The process for our project went according to plan: youth video makers worked in pre-production, production and post-production teams for each video. The first video is about recycling buildings and materials in Gary, Indiana and features the non-profit, Delta Institute; the second video, “Teens Eating Healthy” focused on how teens can make informed choices on food that is beneficial to them and features the urban farming non-profit, Growing Power, Chicago; the third video, “Too Many Straws”, is about about how one-use plastic products are aversely affecting our environment, and includes participation by The Shedd Aquarium.
The project has been well-received, and Shine On Chicago is currently working with local Chicago TV stations to air these short video segments. During the production process, we learned the following: there are many eco-friendly, environmentally sustainable stories to be told, and teens talking to teens is much more effective that adults talking to teens about this important subject. The format that we developed can be used as a template for future segments, and we think give broadcasters a good understanding of the series, its positive message and broadcasting quality.
At one point, and as a way to keep the scientific information fun and informative, we considered using white board animation. However, after several animation tests, it was decided to scrap the technique for our first segments, and instead focused on finding strong, royalty-free images to help us reinforce our environmental message. As a side note, we hope to use some form of animation in future segments. We believe that now that a “Tips Template” has been created, we can get these short videos aired on local broadcasting stations, and attract corporate sponsors to participate.
Through our RFP Round 2 grant, we successfully created 3 short videos that focused on environmentally significant stories; and we are continuing to offer these sustainability messages to various platforms and audiences. In fact, just as we were completing our 2nd video in the series, “Teens Eating Healthy”, we found out that the OneEarth FilmFest was looking for short video content. We were able finish our piece in time to be entered into the Teen Film Festival. And while our segment did not win, the piece was shown in the festival and viewed by both teen and adult audiences.