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Using interviews and free stock footage for documentaries

Films about sustainability may often be in the format of a documentary, but how can we effectively use stock footage?

Young people today react to the growing climate crisis in a way that no one could have predicted. The 20th of September 2019 marked the largest climate strike on record.

Sustainability through film

Youth Climate Strikes is a youth-made documentary covering the opinions of the young protesters as well as the science behind climate change. The filmmaker chose to use copyright-free interviews with researchers and specialists, as well as stock footage from around the world, to give weight to what we can do to change the trajectory of this growing issue.

Speaking with other young people who have been tasked with using stock footage in films they make in class, one student said: “It was different to any other film we’ve made because it was something I’ve never done before. Using images and archive footage made us think differently about the topic and the creative project.”

It’s always best to create your own photos and videos to illustrate a point if you can. However, if you or your learners would like to use stock footage in your films, sites like Pexels, Videvo, Pixabay and Mixkit all have large video collections that you can use for free. Just be sure to credit the source of the footage either on screen or at the end of your film, as per the website’s licensing terms.

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Sustainability Through Film

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FutureLearn - Learning For Life

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