Filmmaking for Social Engagement: A Two Day Residency with Activist and Filmmaker Adams Wood

Filmmaking for Social Engagement: A Two Day Residency with Activist and Filmmaker Adams Wood

Our next grant-funded student project!

Next week, the KnowledgeLab is sponsoring a two day residency with activist and filmmaker Adams Wood, focused on using film as a means for social engagement.

First, join us on Thursday March 30 at 7pm in Seelye 106 for a screening of On Coal River, a film that takes viewers on a gripping emotional journey into the Coal River Valley of West Virginia — a community surrounded by lush mountains and a looming toxic threat. The film follows a former coal miner and his neighbors in a David-and-Goliath struggle for the future of their valley, their children, and life as they know it. The screening will be followed by a Q & A with the filmmaker.

On Friday March 31, the KnowledgeLab will host two interactive workshops, Hands-On Filmmaking for Social Engagement: Theory and Basic Camera Skills, 10:30a-12p and 4:00-5:30p. These interactive workshops will offer participants basic skills and theory about the many ways video and filmmaking can be used to share knowledge and inspire engagement in a social movement context.

We will discuss different forms and formats including social issue documentary, campaign and call to action videos, as well as emerging media platforms. We will screen and discuss excerpts pulled from Wood’s own work and beyond. In small group work, participants will have the opportunity to create a strategy for a hypothetical engagement goal. We will end the workshop with a brief hands-on camera training, where we will cover filming and interviewing techniques, using participant’s own cell phone cameras. Registration is required for these free workshopsRegister here.

This project is funded through a KnowledgeLab mini-grant to Maria Wood ‘AC. Mini-grants are available to all Smith students, faculty, classes, and student orgs for projects relating to the themes of knowledge creation, knowledge sharing, and the future of libraries and campus learning spaces, including pop-up installations, events, and more. To learn more, visit