The Open Door Project

/The Open Door Project
The Open Door Project2018-08-09T10:07:10+00:00
Loading...
Loading...
Loading...

Where it begins

Read on...

The Open Door Project – or ‘Sound Mind’, as it originally was titled – began as an idea to give a voice to young people in Birkenhead who might be struggling with their mental health. Funded by the Big Lottery Fund, Periscope set out to find a group of individuals who had started a journey to recovery, and might act as a guiding force to anyone suffering alone, not yet accessing support or speaking out. We were happily at the mercy of outside ideas when it came to the shape that the film project might take – we just needed the minds to make those ideas.  Serendipity showed itself as an open door on Seaview Road in Wallesey. It was in fact The Open Door Centre where the beginnings of the project would start to sprout.
The Open Door Centre is an incredibly unique mental health charity which compliments therapies and peer support with the arts, encouraging creativity as a companion to understanding, combating, and sharing difficult experiences. It was the perfect place to collaborate the idea of ‘Sound Mind’.

Ideas are like Open Doors

Step through...

The curious and the willing met with us one winter’s evening to find out what Sound Mind might be, and what they might be to it. 14 attendees of The Open Door Centre squished themselves with us 3 at Periscope to sound it out. We gave them the pitch; that we wanted to know their opinion on the new prominence of mental health in the media, and the world at large. How they felt it represented their experiences, how they felt it spoke to people who might be scared to join this new arena of saying ‘I’m struggling’, and how they would take the reins. How would they like to share their own experience of the journey through mental health? There were ideas of letters un-opended as a metaphor for ignoring the sirens in your head that say you’re not coping. There was also talks of trying to follow maps. The feeling that was founded at the centre of all this abstraction though was the abstraction – that the journey is not always tangible or recognisable but in fact abstract. It was a feeling of thinking you’re lost right up to the moment when you realised you were never lost – you were doing the best you could do simply by putting one foot in front of the other. It’s only when you look back that you see how important every single step is. And then someone showed us this video…

Loading...
Loading...
Loading...

When we began walking

Follow our footsteps...

And thus ‘The Open Door Project’ was born. The Radiohead video described exactly the feelings we’d been sharing and trying to conceptualise all evening. We decided the mix up the idea with our own message – that no-one is alone on this journey. Five members of the team volunteered as actors. With a mix of characters searching in our video, we could create a collective experience through individual spotlights. We decided the actors would start of in different locations, seemingly trekking different paths on different journeys, but eventually the characters would end up on all of the same paths, melding into each other, experiencing the same highs and lows. We also decided we would have spoken word in our film. The great thing about The Open Door Centre is that it attracts people of the creative persuasion, so writer John volunteered to come up with the words, when the time was right. We wanted locations to be really prominent, so a few in the group volunteered to be part of the ‘Research and Development’ team, scouting appropriate filming locations. The rest divided themselves into music scouters, sound engineers, camera people, storyboard creators and directors. We had a film in the making. 6 weeks later and we had some footage in the can, which took us everywhere from Crosby Beach, to a 200 year old library, to the top of Mau Famau, to the streets of Birkenhead and all of the spaces in between. See below for a behind the scenes scoop…

Loading...
Loading...
Loading...

The importance of getting seen

See for yourself...

Now that most of the filming was done it was time to dust it – editing began. Everyone had an input of what footage should stay and what should be left on the cutting room floor, with those with a flourish for Final Cut contributing some digital elbow grease crafting the final film. But while the rest of us waited, we discussed how to start making waves for what we were putting together. We’d always aimed to put together a film premiere to showcase the final product, so plans started to find their place – where would we show it? Who would be invited? Could we collaborate with any other pioneers of social change out there? Within the group we had a link to a 19 year old entrepreneur who was starting a street food CIC for residents of low-income families, who was launching his business in the summer, so decided to share a local celebration with him in Bootle. So that was sorted. But with a while to wait, how could we spark curiosity and comment in between. Well, the same way any film does. With a great trailer. We didn’t want to give too much away, as our concept was already very minimalist, we wanted it to be intriguing and stimulating, but with an echo of seriousness of subject. And with a message of a movement. We worked with a quote we all loved – ‘Not all who wander are lost’. And this is what followed…

test estt ets tstest estt ets tstest estt ets tstest estt ets ts

I was a bit nervous but excited to join the project as mental health is an extremely important issue, especially in relation to young people today. The filming was very enjoyable – apart from the rain and the wind – Jonathan and Vic were great at explaining filming techniques, and their passion was infectious. After we completed the filming in various locations around Liverpool, I felt inspired to write a poem – something I hadn’t done for a few years – which eventually became ‘You Are Not Lost’. After a few rewrites, and a collaboration and explanation of editing techniques, I got the chance to record my piece – the first time I have done so – which was a great opportunity. I felt like the experience was great – I learned some new skills, had an opportunity to share some writing and most importantly, I got to play a small part in highlighting a very important issue. 10/10 would work with Periscope CIC again.

John McCallum Cherry, Project Writer & Actor

test estt ets tstest estt ets tstest estt ets tstest estt ets ts

One door closes...

We’re so incredible proud of this 4 minute representation of months of hard graft, hard moments, rain and cold, chasing after light down Bootle Canal and being chased down beaches by our drone. It’s one thing to create a project of this ambition. It’s another thing to recreate your most significant and frightening personal experiences and share them to the world in the collaborative hope that it may inspire others to share theirs. We believe the piece speaks for itself, so… take a look.

test estt ets tstest estt ets tstest estt ets tstest estt ets ts

test estt ets tstest estt ets tstest estt ets tstest estt ets ts

Loading...
Loading...
Loading...