Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Happy Earth Day 2008!

MEC's green roof among others
Originally uploaded by 416style
Everyone should be doing their part today to lessen the strain on our environment. Here's one trend I hope to see take off in Toronto - Green Roofs. This photo of mine was taken on the green roof of MEC - Mountain Equipment Coop and was used in Bruce Mau's MASSIVE CHANGE exhibit held in Chicago in 2006.

Some of the environmental benefits of green roofs in an urban setting include:
-reducing stormwater runoff that affects water for drinking and swimming, as well as habitat in local rivers and lakes
-reducing energy consumption by as much as 50%
-reducing the urban heat island effect by lowering the City's temperature and therefore a reduction in cooling costs
-beautifies the City
-creates more natural green spaces in urban areas
-provides more habitat area for wildlife including migratory birds

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Hot Docs Heats Up in Toronto

The Hot Docs festival kicked off in Toronto last Thursday with a moving documentary, Air India 182, bringing to life the stories of families touched by the worst act of terror Canadians have ever encountered as a nation.

After this opening weekend the festival buzz is heating up, giving high honours to Football Undercover, a film profiling a Muslim women’s soccer team, as well as Carny, a colourful doc that explores the strong and unusual bonds of one girl on the road.

Cuban Song could be given a miss I’m told. The documentary follows in the tracks of other Cuban docs that show how life and music mesh in Havana, however it lacks the depth and tone set by its cinematic predecessors. Tiger Spirit failed to engage audiences in the story of divided Koreans reuniting for the first time in decades, while Club Native hit home showing the difficult side of life for Mohawk Indians uniting with partners off their reserve. (Thanks for the tips & reviews John, Lana & Diego).

I’ve got my festival pass – 10 films for $90 – but have been caught up preparing for a BBC micro-session on how to approach research for forensics documentaries. I’ll be presenting a Cold Blood case study Wednesday at 2:30PM. Those with an industry pass are welcome to swing by and see what you can learn about the field of archive and visual research from our experienced panel.