A Shetland filmmaker is to follow in the footsteps of a fellow documentary creator by travelling to an Inuit hamlet in a remote Arctic community to recapture her vision 40 years on.
Shona Main will venture to Grise Fiord next month to begin her six month trip to reconnect with individuals who previously spoke to Jenny Gilbertson during the production of her 1978 programme Jenny’s Arctic Diary.
She said: “To me, this trip and my research is about learning from Jenny Gilbertson. She was remarkable: a woman filmmaker in her seventies operating outside the industry, with limited kit and limited resources (it was her Zetland County Council pension that she lived on), yet she made this extraordinary body of work and in such a different way.
“I have always had dreams about the Arctic – or tried to have dreams, you know when you lie in bed imagining yourself to be somewhere else. I’ve always looked North.”
Throughout the documentary, she aims to capture the changes the community has faced over the last four decades by endorsing some tricks of the trade from her fellow island creator.
After spending five months in Grise Fiord, Ms Main will travel to Coral Harbour 1,800 miles away and hopes to raise £10,000 through crowd funding, with £2000 having already been raised.
She added: “To honour Jenny, I have to honour those she worked with and the way she did it. These funds will allow me to broaden my research.
“In the Shetland archive there’s a letter that Jenny wrote to her daughters in July 22, 1970, when she was in Coral Harbour. It says ‘People drop in here quite a lot. Especially my camera boy who has a weakness for pie.’ Visiting/being visited; feeding folk; training up youngsters and paying them, these was Gilbertson’s way of working and the approach I will follow.”