May 2010 - Digital Media Manager at global tolerance
I took on a new role with an innovative social enterprise and communications agency called global tolerance leading their Digital Media Department. Simon Cohen, founder and general manager of general manager, is a spicy 30 year old with an awesome vision for communications ethics that fully resonates with the history of my work trying to build truth, integrity and human meaning in the communiations field. Their motto is 'communications with concience' which held strong echos to the motto of MasterWorks Productions, my blog relative strangers and all my creative output, 'your life is your message'.
We're working on some awesome projects with some amazing organizations, including UNESCO,DotSpots,The British Council,The Charter for Compassion, and TED to name a few highlights. I just finished a research paper for UNESCO on "Youth, Peace and ICTs" exploring the innovative solutions that young people are developing engaging new and old ICTs in new and wonderful ways for the cause of peace and mutual understanding in the world.I was introduced to global tolerance through Ellie Stoneley, their amazing board member who at the time, told me all about Tole-rants: 60 Seconds of Hope, global tolerance's inspiring video competition that engages everyday people to film a 'constructive rant' about a social issue that they're passionate about - but flipping the rant from a negative spin by requiring 'tole-ranters' to offer a positive solution to the problem they are addressing. The competition is still open but those wishing to pariticipate need to move on it fast as we're picking finalists in October based on a public voting system. The winner will be chosen on November 16, 2010 - the UN International Day of Tolerance - at an amazing gala happening in association with the RSA in London, UK. The list of judges is awesome too - it includes: Rajmohan Gandhi - Grandson of the great Mahatma Gandhi, a journalist, professor and political peace activist; Mirjam Schoning - Head and Senior Director of the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship; and Abdul Waheed Khan - recent Assistant Director-General for Communication and Information, UNESCO.
April 2010 - Relative Strangers Official Blog Launch
This marks the official launch of my new blog "Relative Strangers". The Blogs tagline runs as this:
Identity: Personal, Communal, Social, Brand.YOU, ME, US, WE. What makes us who we are? The roots are milliennia deep and the shift is constant. In the throws of a major paradigm shift let's explore the fun we're having as we trip through the light fantastic in the age of digital.
From my perspective we appear to truly be in the crux of the media shift as promised by the advent of electricity. Social Media, the Web 2.0 reality of our time, and the incredible 'wired, interconnectivity' of our planet is a personification of the tribalism that Marshall McLuhan predicted. It is a time of great questions, great opportunity, and incredible creative potential. This blog will explore and engage with flavour and story the ways we are retaining and enhancing our humaness in this new world.
MARCH 2010 - CrossOver Labs , Convetry, UK
Invited to attend 3 day intensive workshop exploring convergent media with another eclectic group of minds at CrossOver Labs. Led by Frank Boyd we hung out in a 12th century monestary, with the oddest and tackiest interior design possible. Huddled, conspired and pitched ideas like "4am Project", a quirky project brought by Karen Strunks with great elegant potential. Had an awesome Mentor - Andre Ktori, Director of FutureMusic Lab at the Univeristy of Wales , and a completely wacky and brilliant man. The man who inspired the 4am Dance Craze that's sweeping the nation, and captured us deep in thought.
FEBRUARY 2010 - Future of Digital Content Workshop, Cambridge, UK
Invited to attend the "Beacons For Innovation", Creative Industries workshop in Cambridge, banging heads together with a very interesting cross section of execs, from the Mobile Director of CNN, the COO of PSONAR an interesting music share/sell software, to the Director of Screen East and other interesting minds (I'm tag rather than name dropping); examining digital innovations and rapid prototyping concepts for ways forward, cresting like free wheelin' surfers on the digital tsunami - well that's how I feel anyway.
Connect with me at the "Beacons for Innovation"
FEBRUARY 2010 - Saskatchewan's Ministry of Education Licences "Where's Your Home?"
The Ministry of Education for Saskatchewan has acquired an Interactive Education Licence from MasterWorks to provide classroom streaming, DVD copies and the "Where's Your Home" Teacher's Guide to grades 8 to 12 across the province. Saskatchewan's Ministry of Education is an exciting and forward thinking body, and though they work with more limited resources than some of the wealthier Canadian provinces, they are working with people and companies like mine, to break new ground engaging students where their multi-platform eyeballs are. I look forward to working with them on future dynamic educational projects.
DECEMBER 2009 - Merry Christmas from MasterWorks
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from Gus and I, for a happy, prosperous and fruitful year. Shine a light into the year ahead and remember, even dreary eyes can smell out a good bone.
OCTOBER 2009 - Skype Helps Save My Wedding Day
My wedding day (to my lovely Italian wife) was planned for June 20 of this year, in an incredible ancient church that dates back to 400 A.D. and is set in the gorgeous but reclusive olive tree covered hills of Lazio, Italy. This landmark day, in this beautiful setting, carried one big possible heartbreak however. My elderly parents, both in their mid 80s and living with Parkensons disease and a heart condition, were unable to make the flight. Being the baby of the family (the last of 8 children!) I couldn't imagine this day without them there. With our church being in the middle of nowhere, with not even a telephone line connecting it, I had one distant hope - I purchased a wireless pen drive in the hopes that I might get a signal strong enough to broadcast the wedding via a webcam. Attempts to make a connection the night before the wedding and the morning of were turning futile. The connection was either nonexistent or not strong enough. And then by a little miracle, with a half hour to go, the signal clicked and up popped a SKYPE call from my Dad, sitting at his computer 4,000 miles away in Scarborough, Ontario. Through the gift of this wonderful, mind-boggling free to use technology, my wife and I were married in a 1600 year old church, with my parents JOINING us, dressed in their pijamas at 4 o'clock in their morning, watching us from their computer. In a very real sense, we were all together. You can watch my YouTube video SKYPE Saves My Wedding Day. I sent many a personal thanks to God for this one!
AUGUST 2009 - The "R" Word
A new documentary produced and funded by OMNI TVs "Independent Production Fund" which tells the story of people with intellectual disabilities and their families in Canada, incorporates significant portions of my film "Revel in the Light", a film I produced on the inspiring story of Rebecca Beayni, an incredible young woman born with severe cerebral palsy, who has become an important national and international advocate for the rights of the disabled and an accomplished artist.
Helen Henderson, columnist with the Toronto Star, penned a wonderful article on it entitled: "The R word: Still toxic even if you don't say it out loud"
JULY 2009 - How To Be Indie
A new online casual game created by Heroic Interactive was launched this month, created in association with YTV - the online experience aimed at children, ages 8 to 12 years which converges with the How To Be Indie TV property produced by the Heroic Film Company which launches on YTV in the fall of 2009. I carried the dual role of User Experience Manager and Assistant Project Manager, coming in after the basis of the game was created and working to tune the interactive experience for the intended users.
JUNE 2009 - Unsung HeroesWins at the Signis Belarus Film Festival. Honey Moon in Minsk! Married one week earlier in the hillsides surrounding Rome, my wife and I took the offer to attend the festival and were feted in grand style by our warm and gracious Belarussian hosts. What an amazing experience. I'll post pictures soon on my blog.
JUNE 2009 - Revel in the LightScreens at the Emotions Film Festival held in Athens, Greece.
MAY 2009 - Prophets of PeaceMasterworks Production's successful DVD series and teacher's guide that deals with the advocacy and dignity of individuals born with developmental disabilities, sells into the Ontario School board system.
SEPTEMBER 2008 - "GAKU"Graduate Prototype from post-graduate The Telus Interactive Art & Entertainment Program at The Candian Film Centre.
Check out the NEW MEDIA section for detials.
In February 2008 I took a scholarhsip to attend the "New Media Lab" at the Candian Film Centre - an intensive five month post graduate course covering the field of interactive art & entertainment. The appeal of the course was a mixture of postivies, not the least of which was that it was practically focused - the first three months we were submerged in the theory and practice of the broad scope of interactive media - the last two months were spent in the hands of development of a prototype, with which we were given carte blanche artistic freedom and a miniscule budget of $800. The prototype I came out with in a team of four blew past these limitations, acheiving huge standards in its artistic, user interface, market, practical and functional merits.
Other highlights of the course included:
- The chance to explore this massive and constantly evolving field of digital art and communications with a faculty experts successfully practicing in their respective fields.
- Theoretical and hands on explorations of interactive fields ranging from Human Computer Interaction (HCI), Interactive Narrative construction, Convergent Media, Webcasting/UGC/ Interactive Television, User Interface Design and User Testing, Gaming and the Gaming Industry, Rapid Prototype Development, Group & Team Dynamics, The Art of the Pitch, Business and Marketing in the Digital Sphere and slew of industry guest speakers as well as the chance to attend industry events such as ICE 2008, and enter the roster of CFC alumnae working in the fields.
OCTOBER 2007- When In RomeThe pilot episode for an original and innovative new webcasting program produced by Masterworks Productions is completed. Watch the online clip and read the program synopsis here:
When In Rome - 30 second Opening Clip
JULY 2007 - McLuhan Way wins at SIGNIS BELARUS International Film Festival.Award details
JUNE 2007 - Revel in the Lightto screen at the Abilities Arts Festival in Toronto, as part of the series called "Beyond Disability: Young Artists at Work". November 4, 2007 .
JUNE 2007 - Toronto Social Justice Award for Young Adults for Rebecca BeayniRebecca Beayni was recognized with the 2007 Toronto Social Justice Award for Young Adults for "her life example and persistent efforts advocating for social change for the undervalued and marginalized." Amazing work Rebecca!
City of Toronto Official Citation - page 8.
Watch the 30 sec. Revel in the Light clip, and connect with Rebecca's new website inspiring discussion around the concepts of Citizenship, Peacemaking, Community Building and Inclusion. www.rebeccabeayni.com
APRIL 2007 - SPOON MANMy latest documentary work-in-progress. A feature documentary. John Smeltzer, 57 years old, born with Downs Syndrome; the worlds greatest spoon playing-performer! John reached his first dream when he shared the stage with Natalie MacMaster and Leahy.
SHARE the 5 min. YOU TUBE clip! With every new viewer John gets that much closer to his next dream concert, and we to the finished feature documentary. Remember the immortal quote from Field of Dreams: "If you build it they will come."
MARCH 2007 - Excellent review of McLuhan WayFr. Thomas Dowd is Associate Director for the Office of Pastoral Personnel in the Archdiocese of Montreal and teaches theology at Concordia University and the Grand Seminary of Montreal. McLuhan Way Review
MARCH 2007 -THE BIOGRAPHY CHANNEL aquires McLuhan WayThe Biography channel has acquired a broadcast licence for McLuhan Way! Airings will begin in September 2007. Stay posted for further details. Marshall McLuhan - Any Famous Last Words?
MARCH 2007 - THE VATICAN LIBRARY lists McLuhan Way: In Search of Truth in its historical library.
MARCH 2007- Nadia Delicata, Doctoral candidate in Theology at Regis CollegeNadia who is also a McLuhan Fellow at the McLuhan Program in Culture and Technology, and completing her doctoral thesis on faith, media and technology pens a wonderful article on McLuhan Way - We Need to Retrieve the Truth
FEBRUARY 2007 -A short cut of Deiren's latest documentary SPOON MAN enters Steven Spielberg's "On the Lot" filmmaker competition.Watch the clip, and give us your support!
This is a work in progress toward a feature documentary, as John continues to dream of hitting the stage with Neil Young, Willie Nelson, The Chieftains, Ashley MacIsaac, Great Big Sea, The Irish Rovers and many more country and celtic stars!
FEBRUARY 2007 - Masterworks releases new DVD, Prophets of PeaceA compilation DVD containing the two award winning biographical documentaries, Where's Your Home?, and, In God's Hands. Now on sale at L'Arche Daybreak Publications, and on Masterworks Productions website. MEDIA KITS
JANUARY 2007 - January 20, 2007 Toronto Star articleWonderful article about Rebecca Beayni, our film "Revel in the Light", and her hopeful witness to a world continuously struggling with the value, purpose and place for people with disabilities. Keep it up Rebecca, you are a light and people are listening!
DECEMBER 2006 - Prophets of Peace curriculum at St. Francis Xavier UniversityProphets of Peace has been added to the curriculum at St. FXU in Antigonish, Halifax. Diploma in Assisted Living: Human Care & Community
DECEMBER 2006 - Masterworks Productions releases new McLuhan Way DVDMasterworks Productions has just released a new DVD of its award winning film McLuhan Way with improved chapters and special features menu. An accompanying teacher/student study guide are being developed in discussions with various eduction sectors. MEDIA KITS
JULY 2006 - Masterworks receives development funding from The Manning Centre for Building DemocracyMasterworks receives financial support for it's new political documentary Hidden Steeples© Masterworks Productions 2006.
JULY 2006 - KTRC/ Braambos (Belgium) acquires broadcast licence for McLuhan WayKRTC has begun broadcast of McLuhan Way and created a Flemmish dub of the film. KRTC Broadcasting
JUNE 2006 - McLuhan Way wins the John Culkin Award in Media EcologyMcLuhan Way has just been awarded the John Culkin Awardfor Outstanding Praxis in the Field of Media Ecology from Fordham University in the United States. Media Ecology Association
Deiren Masterson attends the awards ceremony and Media Ecology seminars held in Boston.
JANUARY 2006 -"Love is a Choice" Top 10 Best Seller with Ignatius Press.
NOVEMBER 2005 - "McLuhan Way" nominated for The John Culkin Awardfor Outstanding Praxis in the Field of Media Ecology at Fordham University, New York.
Celebrating works of art, media production, and professional activities that relate to media ecology (studying media and culture as an environment).
OCOTBER 2005 -Love is a Choice at 8th Religion Today Film Festival in Trento, Italy.
"Love is a Choice: The Life of St. Gianna Beretta Molla" written, directed, produced, shot and edited by Deiren Masterson one of 21 international documentaries screening in competition at the international/ interfaith festival held amongst the beautiful mountain side of northern Italy.
SEPTEMBER 2005 - McLuhan Way: In Search of Truth at McLuhan Interantional Festival for the Future
"McLuhan Way: In Search of Truth"screens at cutting edge new media/culture/ and technology festival founded by Bill Marshall, co-founder of Toronto International Film Festival
AUGUST 2005 - In God's Hands screens to 5,000 at World Youth Day 2005, Cologne, Germany
"In God's Hands" had special screenings, including a massive open air screening of a 35 millimetre print of the film to over 5,000 young people from around the world at the Inigo Award Film Festival in World Youth Day 2005, Cologne, Germany
AUGUST 2005 - Revel in the Light has special screening at the United Nations in New York
"Revel in the Light: The Life of Rebecca Beayni" screened in a presentation by the group Inclusion International and the subject of the film, Rebecca Beayni in promotion of the rights and dignity of people with disabilities.
MAY 2005 - Love is a Choice at 20th SIGNIS Poland International Film Festival 2005.
"Love is a Choice" screened in international competition.