Since I invented the term Conscious Filmmakeress, I thought it might be helpful to briefly explain in a few points why and how I claim this term for myself and now with pride.
1. CONSCIOUS STEPS
In every part of the production I am trying to put in as much attention and love as possible. This means respect and love for the people I film with. Sending out love and my deepest attention in every step is not hard for me, I am fascinated by the being and work that these women present to the world.
These steps include:
set intentions before every work step
research of topic and protagonists
loving contact with protagonists
travel to filming: as sustainable as possible
on set: spread the love and trust
lighting a candle and smudging before editing, praying
letting the guides connect me to great musicians for the film music
paying/bartering influencers and everybody on the way who helped in any form
It is important for me to add this claimer, a self-declared Manifest, no wait, FEMIFEST, to explain that the films I make come from a place of respect. It is never possible to fulfill everyones' needs and the last I want is for anyone to feel hurt by what I produce. Be assured that I will always try to create very carefully, in my most possible power. The women I interview have their own ideas of the world and just because I offer them a platform doesn't necessarily mean I support each and every word they offer. I trust you to take with you from the interviews what resonates with you.
3. TRUST THE MAGIC
This is one of my favorite aspects. In every moment I trust that what I am doing will happen as it should. Sometimes this also kept me relaxed when the battery of my cameras were empty and I missed scenes. I trusted that I had enough footage or certain scenes were just better kept undocumented. I follow signs, my gut feeling, my magic number 32 as a form of confirmation to be on the right track. I trust that on my research I will find the people who fit and let myself be found. New topics may come like flashes into my days and dreams and I instantly follow them as I know they will be what I have to do. I ask to be an instrument of something that wants to be expressed through me and my camera.
4. SEE THE UNSEEN
I chose documentary film as my genre because my utmost intention is to show real life. And in this specific genre I dedicate myself to topics that don't get too much attention in general broadcasting.
Why: In our time and space, spiritual topics tend to still be perceived with a lot of scepticism. Only what can be measured through science or is of worth for the patriarchal structures. That's why we need more visibility for the topics that matter for us.
Every step on the process is a part of my one-woman-show. I've learned along the way, that my highest good and need is freedom in my working process. This gives me flexibility, independence and an untied spirit. I choose to work independently from production companies so I don't have to bend or reframe stories just to be sure to still be granted funding. I still love collaborating and am always open for projects with other women in the film business but working by myself on my own films seems to be part of my path. Also, to trust in myself.
6. HOLDING SACRED SPACE
An other point why I film on my own is this one: the spaces that women hold at certain gatherings are sacred. I feel deeply honored (and sometimes shy) about being invited to bring my camera to spaces in which women share their deepest wounds and show themselves vulnerable. It's impossible to bring a film crew and sometimes even I feel intrusive with my camera. It's a very delicate topic. Before the filming starts, I will ask again if every woman consents to being on camera. Even if they agreed via my introduction mail, their daily feel could be different. And I will respect this and try to film from angles in which I can exclude them from the footage. And yes, that can mean I will have to sacrifice good pictures sometimes but consent is one of the highest goods when we want to detach from Patriarchy.
7. EMPOWERING WOMEN
Women. I love them and want to be of service for them, for us! Empowering women is indeed the biggest social movement worldwide and so needed. As my form of service on this planet, I would like to focus the attention to those who need to be uplifted. If we raise the feminine, we can inspire women to believe in themselves and go out and take charge in processes (politics etc).
My spiritual believe includes respect for all species of the world. I stand united with all beings of the world and am open to listen to all sides of a story. This means, I see the current discrepancy in the world of feminism, a deep cut in the perspective of who is a woman and how a female being can be defined. It's a painful process that this community needs to go through to see that in the end we are all human beings and just want to be seen. Let us be in support of each others lives, sisters, and not find reasons for division. As a lesbian woman myself who is in a loving partnership with another woman and who has spend a great amount of her life in the LGBTQI+ community, I hope to touch the hearts also of those who feel excluded in "women topics".
9. ETHICAL MARKETING
This was a new term for me and I resonated with it instantly. Marketing is not my favorite topic since I am shy and don't feel comfortable putting myself out there too much. Thus I had certain difficulties to show my work to the world. Marketing needs to be organic and matriarchal. It is a networking process after all and should always feel good on both ends. I believe in fair payment and win win situations.
10. NOT ABOUT PROFIT
This platform is my heart project and I love creating films. I have other jobs that bring the money so I finance the films on my own so far. All the money that comes in from the first movie and donations (thank you ❤️) goes directly to making the new film and covers other production costs. I have to pay travel costs, equipment, fees for the music I use, website hosting, etc. To make profit out of the films is not a goal. However, I am grateful for every film sold because it allows me to continue my work and hopefully, eventually, sustains me.
11. BEWARE OF WORDING
Did you know that a lot of terms in the film world derive from war language? Shooting, shot, headshot (for a catalogue), (meet a) deadline, those are all terms that we wouldn't use in Nonviolent Communication. So I try to distance from these terms.