Anastasia Fedoseeva studies film production in Norway, but she originally is from Arkhangelsk, Russia. Now she is already working on a diploma project that is a documentary on environmental issues.
She told me about her choice of the project, about the shooting process, as well as about the Icelandic witches, hard expeditions and the first eco-house in Arkhangelsk.
Author: Are you somehow connected with journalism?
Anastasia: Yes, I studied at the School of Journalism “Steps”, was the editor-in-chief of the school newspaper in my native sixth school. I was also at the department of TV journalism at the Northern Theater Variety and Circus school, where all teachers were from Pomorie, local TV-studio. We went with them to the reports, then I interviewed for the first time in my life.
Author: Do you have a love for video from those times?
Anastasia: I think so. In general, I always rushed about for a long time, whom should I become? Everything was interesting, I wanted to try everything at once. Once my teacher, Svetlana Sinitsyna, said: “A journalist is a key to all the other professions. You can become anyone for a day. ” I immediately fell for creating videos.
Author: And how did you get into the ecology?
Anastasia: It was two years ago. In social networks, we have a chat with the Volunteers of the World Cup in water sports in Kazan. My friends wrote that an interpreter is needed for Norwegians to attend an ecological school. I was selected. It was very scary for me – probably everyone should try it.
But the most dramatic event was the expedition to the Republic of Komi in September 2016. It was very tough: the baggage was lost, there were many fights, the person hanged himself … This was a Russian-Norwegian project. There we studied the configuration of the forest. The Republic of Komi is very similar in terms of climatic conditions to the Arkhangelsk region. If one tree grows in the Republic of Komi, then it may grow in Arkhangelsk. There were situations where you do not know what to do. For example, my Norwegian had lost all the luggage, we had a train in 4 hours, and he had no socks, no panties, no sleeping bag. Russian people found everything for him in a village.
Author: Probably, life in Norway also somehow influenced you?
Anastasia: Yes. Norway has learned to combine comfort and harmony with nature.
Author: So, you choose the topic of the diploma by yourself?
Anastasia: We have a very practical education: we constantly write projects. Accordingly, a diploma is a project. We were given complete freedom: you want to shoot a short film or you want to work only with sound or color – do what is interesting for you. It is not necessary to shoot a proper film.
The draft title of my diploma in Russian translation sounds like: “How to make environmental problems more accessible for understanding through documentary films.” I see the urgent need for activists and organizations in video content, so I decided to combine what I love and what is good for the world. In fact, I was scared to start this project: I had a choice between this project and another for America that is easier. So to speak. it was necessary to choose between the heart and the brain. I chose my heart. laughs
By the way, I did not even know before this filming that there are so many eco-organizations in Russia. For example, do you know that an eco-house is being built in Arkhangelsk?
Author: No! Where is it?
Anastasia: Constructional company “Aquilon” builds it at the intersection of Vyucheysky propspect and Northern Dvina Embankment with a view of the cathedral. All construction materials are environmentally friendly and are made in Russia. The only non-ecological material is double-glazed windows. There will be green territory and separate garbage collection organized. Plus this house will be 50% more energy efficient than all the houses in Arkhangelsk.
Author: They are building it with some sense, right?
Anastasia: For competitiveness. In Arkhangelsk, you need to build something more to surprise people. Ordinary house is not enough.
Author: Is it another shopping center?
Anastasia: Almost. It will be a residential building, but the first two floors will be provided for business needs.
Author: Does not it bother you that there are already too many documentaries devoted to ecology?
Anastasia: I wanted to focus on the positive, that is, what people are already doing, and not talking about problems themselves. I think that this approach will attract more people and will be more interesting. In Russia, you must be really engaged in ecology. I want to show the strength of people that they not only change themselves, but they change everything around themselves.
Author: Your diploma project is being filmed in Norway, Russia and Iceland. The choice of the first two countries is obvious, but why Iceland? Why not Sweden or Finland, for example?
Anastasia: I had half the classmates from there – it was easier to organize. The university covers expenses for the road, plus the country itself is very ecological and enters the Arctic region, like Norway and Russia. There I was a month or so: there was a lot of work. We worked with the minister of the environmental issues, witches, shamans, eco-activists, ordinary residents, chairmen of various organizations.
Author: Sorry, you said witches?
Anastasia: Iceland is a fabulous country. laughs My classmate received an offer to film the coven for witches and they needed a DJ. Always say yes! There we met Linda. She told us: “I was given the name Linda at birth, now I wear the name Lindwolf.” Like, the wolf is its totemic animal.
Author: How are witches associated with ecology?
Anastasia: That’s very interesting! She told us about different dimensions; said that Mother Earth can live without us, but we without it – no way. She also said that she is a production designer, organizes festivals, teaches in the film academy. In general, Linda is a part-time witch. laughs