A guest blog from Sarah Outen about creative community fundraising, rowing oceans, and the epic challenge of turning adventures into films. Her Kickstarter campaign is to be found here.
There’s a neat little quote on the Kickstarter website about seeing what happens when a community comes together to create. I’m seeing the energy of that collaboration right now as I run a campaign to raise £40K in three weeks, to fund the documentary of my recent expedition. (My stomach still turns as I write those words and you’ve probably noticed how I wrote 40K instead of adding all those noughts.)
During my first big expedition to row solo across the Indian Ocean I didn’t really pay much attention to filming and so the resultant film was comically lacking. (I barely shot any footage of me actually rowing, for example, and I mostly talked about food) That was fine as it was never a major goal for me and I chalked it up to learning. But it did mean that for my London2London: Via the World expedition I was keen to pay more attention. It still wasn’t the primary goal of going – because going was that goal in and of itself – but I did pay more attention to my gear, a loose plan and thinking about the final film itself. I even paid other people to film me at different times and occasionally just gave my camera to whoever I was with, too – for them to film themselves or me or whatever.
It is almost two years since I passed back under Tower Bridge in my kayak, almost five years after I had first paddled beneath it in 2011, as I started my London2London:Via the World expedition. It feels like the right time now to be making the film, now that I am further along with processing and settling than I was when I first got home. It has been an interesting narrative to watch in my head and see how my attitude to, and my sense of it, changes with time and space. Edges have been softened, traumatic stuff has had a chance to calm albeit still invading at times, and I have more headspace available to let feelings and thoughts arise, more energy to consider with.