December 10, 2022

Interactive documentaries

The subject of the research is the creative methods of using multimedia means

screen expressiveness by documentary filmmakers in interactive documentaries of a wide thematic focus, which have a hypertext model of interactivity.

The purpose of the work is to comprehend the expressive potential of the multimedia content of interactive documentaries, as well as to identify the specifics of the creative use of multimedia means of screen expression when creating interactive documentaries by the director.

Research objectives are determined by the goal and formulated as follows.

1. Consider Russian and foreign theories and conceptual approaches aimed at identifying the specifics of an interactive documentary; clarify its conceptual apparatus.

2. Explore the interactive documentary as a multimedia medium, consider the features of the modern audience of interactive documentaries.

3. Explore the visual and sound means of expressiveness of documentary multimedia content, determine their specifics.

4. To analyze the methods of using various multimedia means of screen expressiveness in web projects of various thematic orientations.

5. To identify current trends in the use of new technologies and innovative solutions in interactive documentaries to expand multimedia means of screen expressiveness.

6. Develop a documentary web project that could serve as a tutorial demonstrating a variety of approaches to using multimedia screen expression tools.

7. Describe the aesthetic and technological specifics of the artistic creativity of the director of an interactive documentary. Determine the features of the director’s activity in creating multimedia content on a specific example of a web documentary project. To identify the requirements for a documentary filmmaker in a new kind of artistic creativity.

Research boundaries and terms.

The topic of the dissertation includes the little-known concept of “interactive documentary” (from English interactive documentary), used by foreign theorists and practitioners of the digital media landscape to refer to any documentary project, “which begins with the intention to document” reality “and which uses digital interactive technologies to implementation of these intentions. However, we took as a basis the one proposed by the Russian researcher

N.I. Dvorko clarifies this concept, which takes into account both the ambiguity of the translation of the English word documentary, and the prematureness for Russian theory and practice of a broad approach in defining a new genre. In considering interactive documentaries, N. I. Dvorko suggests limiting himself to “documenting reality” audiovisual works, the creators of which, focusing on meaningful user experience, seek to use the unique properties of interactive digital media to translate documentary content into an artistic form4. As for the concept of “web documentary”, we agree with the definition of D. Aston and S. Gaudenza: “Web documentaries are interactive documentaries that use the Web (Eng. World Wide Web) as a distribution and production platform ta”5. In the dissertation research, we limit ourselves to web documentaries based on the hypertext model of interaction (according to the classification of S. Gaudenza6). They make up a significant body of interactive documentary work today and leave the author with significant control over the narrative. The dissertation research practically does not consider web projects based on an interaction model that uses user participation in the creation of media content.

Unlike interactive documentary projects based on virtual reality systems or locative media, which blur the concept of a screen, in web documentaries the space of reality representation

Various aspects of the perception of multimedia, the specifics of the modern audience, the mechanisms of perception of audiovisual works, as well as the problems of the mutual influence of screen creativity and the technologies that support it, are studied by theorists of mass communication, culturologists, and art historians. For this study, the works of Western theorists had theoretical value.

Methodological basis of the study

The validity of the dissertation’s theoretical conclusions, recommendations for the formation of documentary multimedia content, as well as proposals for improving the professional training of interactive documentary film directors is achieved through the integrated use of both general scientific and particular scientific methods of scientific knowledge: dialectical, formalological, art criticism. The study is complex in nature, defined by interdisciplinary specifics. Multimedia means of screen expressiveness of an interactive documentary are considered in the unity of three problems: artistic and aesthetic, methodological and technological.