I am a Writer and Director whose work focusses on themes of cultural identity. The exploration of my own cultural identity journey, as a half Moroccan and British woman, has been the driving force behind my projects of short filmed interviews and my Graduate Fashion Film, ‘Treasure’ (Coming soon) looking at themes of homogeny, grief, sisterhood and otherness.
My work aims to elevate voices and tell stories of personal experiences of cultural identity. ‘Treasure’ seeks to feel relatable to those who have gone through their own journey and to inspire others who, like me, feel afraid to begin this journey due to their own traumas and fears. Also, to shed light on the topic to people who perhaps don’t see their culture as something to be considered, for example those who come from majority ethnic groups and to help young people realise the difficulties that arise from confusion, shame and other emotions regarding issues surrounding cultural identity.
Whilst considering exploring my own cultural identity and finding the courage to do so, I reached out to young people around me to film and interview, asking them to share their personal experiences of their own cultural identities. Conducting these interviews inspired me to create a film that I felt would tell their stories along with mine. I found comfort in finding a commonality between us all, despite coming from different cultural backgrounds and each with our own very different experiences.
Exploring different mediums of storytelling was a major part of my research process, with the discovery that poetry and painting felt like therapeutic ways of telling these stories in a way that may feel relatable to those who could understand my film from their own personal level, as well as helping to shed light on the subject to those who could not. Using film, poetry, painting, production design, styling and editing helped me to tell this story of embracing cultural identity and fighting otherness.
This personal storytelling of cultural identity is told by me as the Writer and Director of my Fashion Film ‘Treasure’. I also produced of the film shoot, was the Production Designer, Stylist and DIT technician. Once filming was complete, I edited the film myself. Carrying out all these roles myself meant that the work was deeply personal, with each aspect of the film being thoroughly considered. Having absolute control over all these features meant that I was able to ensure coherency with each element of the film-making, reflecting and expanding on exceptionally personal concepts. During the film shoot I worked at a high production level with a professional crew which included a Director of Photography, First and Second Assistant Director, Steadicam Operator, Focus Puller, Production Runners as well as casting hired models. I also commissioned a Musician/Sound Designer who composed the unique score. Once editing was complete, I worked very closely with a Colourist.