Transforming Storytelling

Claire Evans
Ele Jansen
What is transmedia and how is it transforming storytelling? We asked two of the Doc Lab 2012 international mentors, Claire Evans (Australia) and Ele Jansen (Germany).


What is transmedia and how is it transforming storytelling? We asked two of the international mentors at the recent Doc Lab 2012, Claire Evans (Australia) and Ele Jansen (Germany).

What is transmedia and how is it transforming storytelling? We asked two of the international mentors at the recent Doc Lab 2012, Claire Evans (Australia) and Ele Jansen (Germany).

Claire works across different genres and platforms including television, film, commercials, games, web, specialized time in post-production and computer generated imagery. Ele is a creative producer, focusing on participatory storytelling and experiential learning.

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  • What is transmedia? How is it transforming storytelling?

Claire Evans: Quite simply, transmedia is telling a story across multiple platforms. Whether it's film, television, online, games or live performances and experiences, transmedia in non-exclusive in its use of mediums. A transmedia story should be told through two or more platforms.

For Dog Money World, transmedia allows us to better connect with a fractured audience and tell our story in a rich, fulfilling way. It takes advantage of the emerging media portals, tools and platforms available, as well as more traditional media forms, and innovates new ways of storytelling.

Ele Jansen: An adjective. A type of approach in media production to create non-linear narratives by making use of various channels and locations to engage lean-back and lean-forward audiences. It transforms storytelling by scattering a storyline, opening grand narratives and some say it brings people together to tell stories.

  • What are your top tips for building an effective transmedia campaign?

Claire Evans: We believe the media and technology adopted in transmedia should be led by the demands of the story in order to achieve genuine connection, not by what channels are at your disposal. In other words, don't just use technology for technologies sake.  Think about your audience and design the experience with them in mind.

Ele Jansen: Be personal, engage a small group to co-create, make them your ambassadors to spread your shared assets.

  • What are your top tips to enable and build communities?

Claire Evans: When it comes to building and enabling communities, above all it's about respect.

  • Tell us about your recent and upcoming projects

Claire Evans: My company, Dog Money World, is currently building a mobile-locative game called Crime Plays. It's like the Amazing Race meets Grand Theft Auto. Users play on their mobile phone and become the main character in a rich storyworld. They complete missions, take out other players and compete to become top-dog in a virtual, criminal underworld.

I'm also working with Producer Kristina Ceyton and Writer/Director Jennifer Kent on their feature film The Babadook, a psychological horror about a single mother (Essie Davis) who becomes possessed by a monster that wills her to kill her 6-year-old son. I'm working with the filmmakers to devise and execute the transmedia strategy. We're currently looking to create an interactive storybook, a exploratory game and some viral videos.

Ele Jansen: learndoshare is a burgeoning global community, a social innovation lab and repository for toolkits that help stepping into the world of collaboration, design science and storytelling. Check out our first book.

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About Claire and Ele

Claire (@claireyevans) has been involved in media for almost 10 years, beginning her career in production on traditional live-action film sets as well as spending concentrated time as a post-production and CGI producer at one of Australia’s leading production companies, Rotor Studios.

For the past few years Claire’s focus has been completely cross-platform, looking at the relationship of convergence media on storytelling and entertainment. In capacities as a both creative director and a consulting producer, Claire has been involved in the output of a number of mobile apps, websites, films, TVCs and transmedia productions.

Ele (@elejansen) combines her PhD in Media Anthropology with her work as a creative producer at Reboot Stories, focusing on participatory storytelling and experiential learning. She’s the driving force behind LEARN DO SHARE, harnessing pitfalls and successes of collaborative social innovation. The native German is funded by the Australian government and publishes for Germany’s most renowned interactive media department at the Filmakademie Baden-Wurttemberg. She advises FMX, Europe’s largest gaming-media conference.

Throughout her Master’s in Communications Management, she published on Cross-Sector Entrepreneurial Collaboration in East Germany and Corporate Social Responsibility. Ele developed original solutions for innovation incubators, creative industries and big brands since 2001. Hearing being her favorite sense, piano tunes, drum kits and surf recordings are suitable currencies to bribe the passionate dancer.

  • DOC Lab 2012, held on July 13-15, was a three-day incubator to educate, inspire and develop filmmakers with a shared goal of developing and prototyping multi-platform documentary projects.

Related blog: 'What the # is transmedia'

Written by

The Big Idea Editor

26 Jul 2012

Interests Cathy Aronson – The Big Idea Editor Cathy is a journalist, photo journalist and online editor.