March 2, 2006

WORKSHOPS: OneMinutesJr workshop in Latvia - "Baltic portraits"

baltic portraits

the first workshop of 2006 was organised february 21-25 in liepaja, on the
coast of latvia. the twenty participants came from estonia, latvia and
lithuania. the theme of the workshop was (self-)portrait, the new category
in the annual theoneminutesjr competition.

the workshop was hosted by the culture and information centre k@2
( in the district of karosta which used to be a soviet naval
base. the sea, the orthodox church, hyperrealistic portraits of locals on
the walls and beautiful winter days created a perfect setting for the

the first day of the workshop ended with a round of personal discussions
where the youngsters went through their ideas with the video artists david
djindjikachvili and kristina kersa. some of the participants like latvian
martins rudzitis could not wait that long. before eight in the evening of
the first day he had already filmed material for three videos.

the junior of the workshop, 9-year-old andrejs sidlaruks, also had clear
plans from the first minute. "i want to go up to people in the city with my
camera and ask them to quit smoking." andrejs was ready to take risks and
even argue fiercely with the people he would encounter. "smoking is really
bad for you and i think everyone should stop."

many of the youngsters decided to make a self-portrait. rather than showing
herself lithuanian lina luzyte, 20, built a scene where people share
impressions of her. with her video she wished to show how the perceptions of
others never give a full picture of who you are. she was one of the first
ones to complete her film. "they say that directors should be satisfied if
they reach 70 % of their goals. my idea has changed so many times that i
cannot really say if i reached it. david (one of the facilitators) calls me
a perfectionist", the first year directing student laughed.

18-year-old art student nerijus rimkus decided to go for someone else. he
wanted to show chairs in the snow. even a request for further elaboration
could not shed more light. "it´s about, well, chairs." estonian rainer
peanurk, 19, wanted to propagate for the nature and therefore got up before
others on friday morning to film the weekly visit or the garbage truck. he
said he did not want to make his video too serious. ". my video is a bit
silly really", he says about don't be rubbish.

the district of karosta inspired darius pralgauskas, 19, among others to use
his sixty seconds for showing how he sees things. "the candles in the
karosta church made me immediately think about my old relatives", the
lithuanian informology student explains. 19-year-old igne alebaite, who
studies anthropology and history of culture at vilnius university, was as
well inspired by the neighbourhood. her documentary-like video glances into
the lives of the couple who have photographed people of liepaja for
decades. "i am so happy with my videos. i really love them."

after five days of working the participants gathered with a great number of
locals to the hall of the cultural centre to watch the 23 videos from a big
screen. coverage in regional newspapers and state television ltv supported
by word of mouth attracted many to join the screening and some people were
even forced to stand due to lack of space.

many of the participants promised to keep on making videos. some were too
inspired by the week even to the extent that they could not consider
partying on the last evening. lithuanian jonas lozuraitis, who had already
produced two videos for the competition, walked up to the facilitators as
others gathered for a karaoke session. "could i borrow a laptop? can i keep
on editing my videos? i really really want to finish more. please."

the videos of the karosta workshop will be online soon.

tommi laitio
media programme officer
european cultural foundation


Chris Schuepp
Young People's Media Network - Coordinator

Youth Media Consulting GbR
c/o ECMC (European Centre for Media Competence)
Bergstr. 8 / 11th floor
D-45770 Marl - Germany

Tel./Fax: +49 2365 502480
Mobile: +49 176 23107083
Mailing list:

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