Spoon Fed No.3
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How to Survive the Future :: Naomi Smyth

'How to Survive the Future' is an interactive GPS- mapped journey that will build online in real time through a series of blogs and short documentaries.

This year my husband Sam and I will sail from Bristol to Greece on the seas and inland waterways of Europe in our £500 Ebay boat, gathering tales of the economic crash and other crisis points. We’ll meet people preparing for a spectrum of possible catastrophes; peak oil, climate change, volcanoes and even the 2012 apocalypse. We’ll learn survival skills from them and question their worldviews in a series of documentaries and ‘how to’ guides.

On the way we’ll learn the skills we’d need to survive and start a family in a collapsed economy, without the stability and benevolence of a democratic state.

Just in case!
The films and writing will be embedded in a GPS map with our planned and past route. People will be able to meet us by the water for discussions, parties and screenings. We’ll invite our online audience to contribute video diaries, ‘how to’ guides and their thoughts on survival and fear of the future.

At the end of our journey we’ll create a feature documentary with our journey as the central thread. We’re novices at most of the skills we’ll be learning and we’ll struggle to adapt to life on the boat. There will be beauty, absurdity and plenty of comedy. Like most things, the end of the world has its funny side. We’ll let the audience decide how seriously to take the apocalyptic view, but never take ourselves too seriously. Trailer: www.howtosurvivethefuture.org

I’m Naomi Smyth, a Bristol artist working in performance and documentary. In 2011 I released my first feature doc ‘Invisible Circus: No Dress Rehearsal’ with media co-op Future Artists (www.invisiblecircusfilm.com). Sam Rossiter is a web designer and administrator, and was the main crew member on my first feature. It won the Dynamo Doc Award 2012, and had sold-out screenings across the country. It was selected to screen at the Watershed’s 30th birthday celebrations among a selection of the best films and TV to come out of Bristol. Channel 4 recently chose it to screen in the Diversity strand at the Cultural Olympiad 2012.

We developed this project over three years, most recently on a course run by Sheffield DocFest and Crossover Labs. This ended in five hours of meetings with people in the documentary and cross media worlds at the DocFest last week. We had great support and feedback but there isn’t much funding available and the first chunk can be the hardest to get. We have shot some material but we need more to attract funders.

If we could waterproof our camera and sound kit and get another waterproof hard drive, we would be a step closer to being ready to move onto the boat, set off on our journey and start telling you stories.