Participatory Productions: Community Building Through Storytelling

Join this workshop to explore how we can tell our collective stories where the subjects of the story are the ones shaping it.

When telling a collective story – a story of a community – are you concerned with ideas of agency, representation, meaningful participation, and informed consent? 

Traditional storytelling methods, such as writing up case studies, commissioning a video production, or brainstorming a campaign messaging can feel constraining, arbitrary, and disingenuous. In this session, we will draw inspiration from emerging practices, such as Socially Engaged Practice in art and more notably in photography, and Marshall Ganz’s Public Narrative structure, which can support us reframe how and who tells stories.

This workshop is an opportunity to share our experiences with you and, more importantly, an introduction to how you might use this method in your own work. This method can be applied to the creation of many different mediums like a film, a podcast, a photography exhibition, a campaign, a stakeholder consultation, or a research exercise.

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  • Examples of participatory storytelling 
  • Breakdown of a participatory production process  
  • Exploring applications and benefits of this approach in your work 
  • Considerations and limits of this approach
  • Ideas for participatory projects 
  • Understanding of a process of a participatory production
  • A creative tool to build consensus in your community/membership
  • Understanding of a participatory approach to communicating organisational/campaign vision or purpose
  • Communicators
  • Community Organisers
  • Campaigners
  • Workers concerned with membership recruitment & engagement

Ieva Padagaite is a director at Blake House Cooperative making films with progressive organisations and exploring ways to use creative mediums to connect self to the collective. She’s been developing participatory film production practice as her key interest and worked on some major campaign films in the UK and internationally. You can find examples here:

You can read a little write up by one of the participants in such a production about their experience.

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