The Figure 8

// March 3rd, 2010 // Giant Stories Tiny Screens

korsakow For my midterm in Giant Stories / Tiny Screens I’m going to be putting together a project using the Korsakow software.  The content is going to be very general in using the structure of database film to it’s strength.  The database of clips will be short (1-3 minute videos) of people telling stories to the camera.  The constraints of which will purposely not be much more than that.  I don’t want to influence the telling of their story or their choosing of which one to tell.  In doing so I am drawing upon a few thoughts.  First, I figure that everyone has at least one interesting story.  As well, I feel that most people enjoy telling stories.  On the other side of things, I find that people are often just as interested in the person telling a story as they are in the story itself.  This is why I don’t want to interview people and simply just ask people to tell me a story.  Leaving all of the decisions to them, I feel lets the story come from a more sincere place.

The next thought that all of this led me to was how I can connect all of these stories in a meaningful way.  This brought me back to an idea I had heard before.  Various people have written how they believe there are only a few amount of stories in the world and all other stories are just derivatives of these.  This concept is something I’m still doing more research into, but I’ve already found one of these references that works really well with what I would like to do.  Nancy Kress wrote an article on how she believes there are only 8 stories.  She listed them as follows:

  • Sacrifice
  • Rise and fall
  • Transformation
  • Revenge
  • Chase
  • Quest
  • Romance
  • Competition

The other thing that I really like about this list is that it falls into 8.  I like how the figure 8 encompasses all of the basic plots, yet as you turn the figure on it’s side, it represents the infinite possibilities of all the stories these 8 basic plots can be turned into.

Taking these 8 plots, I plan on tagging all of the stories I enter into the database and using them to draw the connections between all of the clips.  Ideally, the more stories I can enter into the database the better.  Once I have good amount of videos to start with, I also plan on opening the site to encourage others to submit stories they’ve filmed themselves (whether it’s of themselves or of others).  In this sense I like that the piece becomes stronger as the database grows.

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