What do art and music have to do with life stories and dating? 2019

A 12-week filmmaking workshop led by Jemma Cullen for and with the GOLD group at East Kent Mencap as well as users of the Margate Adult Education Centre. The workshop took participants through the entire process of making a film. The project culminated with a film screening and awards ceremony at Dreamland, hosted by TV presenter Ayo Akinwolere.

The project took place every Wednesday, 10am–1pm, from 26 June to 11 September 2019 at Open School East, Adult Education Centre, Hawley Square, Margate CT9 1PF and you can view the film below.

This short course was conceived with members of East Kent Mencap’s GOLD (Getting on with Learning Difficulties) group, following a discussion on how Open School East and East Kent Mencap could best collaborate. GOLD members talked about their desire to develop filmmaking skills and to give visibility to their stories and talents. This discussion led to the development of a 12-week workshop under the direction of artist and OSE 2019 Associate Jemma Cullen. The various sessions invited different specialists in the fields of film-directing, editing, prop-making, scriptwriting and storyboarding, all of whom were also OSE 2019 Associates. These were: Rosie Carr, Elouise Farley, Rhona Foster and Holly Hunter.

East Kent Mencap kindly put together a behind the scenes video and Jemma Cullen created a ‘making of’ film, both of which can be viewed below.


Wednesday 26 June 2019
Introductory session and mapping out the project.

Wednesday 3 July 2019
Glossary of production words.
Introduction to camera skills and to camera shots.

Learning camera shots at AEC

Learning camera shots at AEC

Wednesday 10 July 2019
Introduction to roles within film crew.
Storyboarding session.

Pulling the story together

Wednesday 17 July 2019
Self-allocation of roles and creation of subgroups.
Scriptwriting session.

Lil’ Bex’s rap lyrics

Wednesday 24 July 2019
Resume work on storyboard and script.
Directing and production design sessions in subgroups.

Character improv session at AEC

Wednesday 31 July 2019
Making session 1 – set, costumes, props.

Prop making at AEC

Wednesday 7 August 2019
Making session 2 – set, costumes, props.

Rosie in costume as ‘WPC Lee’

Vanessa in costume as ‘The Duchess’ on set at Olby’s Soul Cafe

Mandy in costume as ‘Security Guard’ at Olby’s Soul Cafe

Wednesday 14 August 2019
Film shoot 1 – indoors.

Shooting ‘Grandmas’ scenes on set at wilderness hill

Shooting ‘Grandmas’ scenes on set at wilderness hill

Shooting ‘Grandmas’ green screen scenes on set at wilderness hill

Wednesday 21 August 2019
Film shoot 2 – outdoors.

Lil’ Bex filming on set at Garden Gate

Wednesday 28 August 2019
Watch first cut together, give notes to editors.

Wednesday 4 September 2019
Screening of the premiere at Dreamland.

Rosie on the red carpet at Dreamland

The Ballroom at Dreamland

Wednesday 11 September 2019
Feedback and evaluation.
‘Oscars’ ceremony.

Group photo with Ayo Akinwolere after the awards ceremony

Michael, Holly, Jemma, Lil’ Bex, Ayaan & Jamie celebrate after the screening at Dreamland

Vanessa & Barry proudly show off their certificates after the screening

OSE wishes to thank Sue and Suz at East Kent Mencap, and Kent County Council and the Big Lottery, for supporting the project.