When I overheard Matt Fallon (Edge programmer extraordinaire) discussing the My Happiness Film Project (Ideas Festival), I was intrigued. The concept of happiness and what that means to different people has always interested me but the idea of making a film to portray that seemed like a bit of a challenge. Then Matt suggested I talk to my 87 yr old Papa about what makes him happy. When I broached this topic with my column-writing-script-editing-film-producing mother her first response was “But Katie! How can you interview Papa about happiness?! He’s a grumpy old man!” This is far from the truth – although he would love to make you believe that it was in fact he who stole Christmas with his disarming charm and wit.
So I dove into the challenge. I decided to broaden the spectrum a little and open it up to my family – not just Papa. I think the trickiest part of it all was making sure my mini doco didn’t turn into one of those frightfully boring home videos that your mother shows at your 21st birthday or other significant occasions. (The time that Aunt Gertrude spilt pepper sauce on her best floral dress isn’t half as hilarious to the rest of the world as it is to Aunt Gertrude. )
And the quest began to find out what makes my family happy. I took a bit of a haphazard approach – my family all sitting on their respective couches or floors and candidly telling me what makes them smile from ear to ear. Thankfully I have two very sweet and highly intelligent cousins who, when the camera started rolling, collapsed into fits of giggles which was the perfect beginning to what turned out to be quite an insight into my family.
I always knew our family laughed a lot and were predominantly happy people but somehow seeing it on YouTube made it that more tangible – happiness runs in my family. I hope that my little attempt at this great competition run by the Ideas Festival (www.ideasfestival.com.au/) brings a little bit of that happiness to anyone who watches it – happiness never decreases by being shared. Now I don’t know if I quite managed to avoid the ‘home-video’ status but I do believe that Aunt Gertrude (bless her heart) would be proud.
Check out my entry here…. Happiness Runs in My Family – My Happiness Film Project
And enter the festival or see the entries here…. http://ideasfestival.com.au/my-happiness-entries/