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This page contains the detailed report written by a recent graduate from a ceramics degree at a British University.

Positive points of NEVAC material:

  • So little material exists about the crafts in the 20th century that NEVAC cannot fail to be useful and worthwhile.
  • Interviews with well known names have been made alongside less well known makers, (such as Sidney Tustin).

Positive comments on the interviewing approach:

  • I liked the fact that the interviewers were knowledgeable and don't feel it necessary for the archive to appeal to the 'man in the street'.

Critical comments on the interviewing approach:

  • I feel it would be best to have a brief introduction to both interviewer and interviewee and how they both know each other, (so the viewer may be aware of any bias).

Criticisms of the content of the video:

  • The quality of some of the recordings was poor, (such as the Roger Michell material).
  • Colour bars appear at the start of some of the recordings: it is not clear if this is an error or intentional.
  • There should be more video of people making as this would make the best use of the visual element of video.
  • Some of the interviews were a little dull as it was just the person talking and nothing else. Perhaps, images or stills could be edited in to add interest.

Prefered layout of the web-based video database:

Possible searches:

  • Factory: (Moorcroft, Spode etc.)
  • Workshop/Pottery: (Martin Bros., Winchcombe etc.)
  • Technique: (throwing, spraying etc.)
  • Country: (for influences, Spain, Greece etc.)
  • People: (Pueblo, Hispano-moresque etc.)
  • Society: (social dimension/influence upon making, i.e. 1950's)
  • Artists: (Picassoettes, Dufy, Cocteau etc.)
  • Movements: (Arts and Crafts, Art Deco, Brit Pop, Marxism etc.)
  • Politics: (political persuasion of the interviewee or a particular object)

When I was watching the Anita Hoy interview the Bullers company was mentioned so at that point it would have been useful to have been able to find out more information about the company.

General points about how the web-based video database may be organised:

  • The web-based database needs to be clear and idiot proof yet attractive enough to encourage use.
  • Information which is misleading or confusing should be avoided. Search facilities, thesaurus etc. should be made obvious.
  • Words used need to be clear and commonsense: don't use technical terms.
  • All video should be accompanied by the basic information, such as: interviewee, interviewer, date, duration, synopsis, format, NEVAC reference number.
  • When searching for a person or clip, a brief synopsis of a couple of lines would be helpful, to know what was contained on a particular video on the screen. If I found a few clips I would like to see, I would find it useful to be able to highlight them all and have them play in an order of my choosing, but also keep a portion of the screen free for options such as pause, rewind etc.

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