I had a ridiculously good time, both staying with svmadelyn and at the con, which despite not being a vidder at all, has never not felt like my con, a fannish home where a year passing between meetings feels like only yesterday and we're all so ridiculously delighted to see each other and talk until we're asleep on our feet and waking up at ridiculous hours to do it all again. It's vids everywhere--not just at the panels and shows but in the consuite and in the rooms and outside on the patio and pretty much anywhere laptop will travel, which is anywhere at all. We pimp the vids from our friends and what we downloaded from youtube and what we saw last week and still remember what sockpuppett taught us about color and what we learned about structure and make everyone, everyone watch the most literal vid ever in Twilight set to Crazy For This Girl.
What I've Learned About Viddom in Fandom
In fandom in general, I'm both producer and consumer of fannish goods, so to speak, so it's rare i have the opportunity to be only audience and to think and act only as audience, which is--different for me. As a writer, I'm always heavily influenced by other writers, by the canon, by feedback, by earlier fandoms, and even when I'm not actively writing, I'm still thinking as a writer. I examine and explain and interact with the medium as a writer. I can't do anything else; that's what I am.
Vid fandom from the first has always been a surreal and fascinating experience for me in that, like anything else, I carry it with me whenever I write, but it lets me also be just audience.
Just an audience in fandom, however, isn't like IRL audience with the assumption of passivity in consumption. For one, I'm not sure vids can be interacted with passively, and in the second, most vidders don't seem to require, expect, or want a passive audience. Most don't seem to be just looking for a reaction, but an interaction with their audience, because we're supposed to not only watch for what it is and what they created, but also what we bring to it and what we take from it. They're checking their language with us, which I'm going to get back to in a second.
When I watch a vid, I'm expected to say "yes, this works" or "no, this doesn't" or "wtf are you high" or "I think I'm having an LSD flashback". Sometimes, someone traps me against a table until I admit yeah, I have no clue what was up with that, because failure is measured in having an audience that doesn't care, not one that does.
So understanding that, my first VVC, I realized that I had to stop acting like I understood everything I saw and then realized, shocked, that they were like, beyond thrilled to tell me exactly what it was I wanted to know, even if I didn't know how to ask.
Vidding is a language that's a visual representation of the one we already speak quite well. When I realized that, I suddenly understood what I was missing all along; in vidding, it's always show and not tell.
Now that said, Vividcon.
Vividcon and Viddom
I'm not a vidder, so it still surprises me how much I love Vividcon, a con for vidders and their work, and how much I get out of it every year I go. I like being an audience and vidders, thank God, will let you trap them in corners to talk about their work, and other people's work, and the theory and structure behind the work and a lot of it is the fact that they take it seriously.
Thing is, I take my hobbies seriously. I take all my fun seriously. If I'm going to spend hours of my free time writing fanfic, then yeah, that's something I take seriously, and I love that vidders do that, too, that they think about it so much and have so much to say about it and get so much out of it and will talk about it and what they were doing. I get vids aren't accessible to everyone--it took me a while to understand the structure of fictional text isn't applicable to the visual medium when condensed to three minutes, and I learned a lot about the ways to get around that.
So my favorite panel was deepad's Choreography of Vidding panel (I think that's what it was called), where she showed several clips of different styles of dance and how the language of choreography compared to the use of specific types of clips that were in themselves a language that fans learn to read. I would have loved that one as a two hour, because the breadth of information couldn't possibly be contained by a single panel, but the moderator did a good job giving an overview of something I think most fans do with TV just generally and vidders simply refine. I'm hoping deepad might do another panel and consider focusing on one aspect of what she had a very good handle on and explore more deeply how vidders use specific gestures in clips to convey an emotion or a state of being or even a particular set of fannish thoughts.
I'm going to try, sometime in the next week when I'm thinking about it, to get a more coherent entry on how vidders use fandom's own shortcuts when watching TV as the method of telling a story, but I need to think about it more before I get there. Until then, anoel has note from all the panels she went to here including that one, which I've been referencing to refresh my memory.
More later. I'm actually supposed to be doing laundry and I was reading fic, then took a break and thought, right, I need to write this before I forget! And now there is the dryer done.
Writing this does ease the slump a little.
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