Sometimes when you make a film it is because you need to get it out of your head. It has to be written down and it has to be made. It feels almost as like if you don’t make it you’ll go crazy and as a result the process of making a film can be a lot like therapy. You end up revealing parts of yourself that you’ve kept hidden, the parts of you that are screaming to get out. It is like you can’t sleep until you can let go of what inside you. Filmmaking is a very expensive form of therapy but it’s all I know. I’ve felt this way about Measuring Tape Girl and about all my other films.
For about a year now Measuring Tape Girl has been used by Deneen Ollis, a Child and Youth Mental Health Clinician for MCFD in Penticton, B.C. Deneen works with young people ages 5 to 19. Measuring Tape Girl has been used with a girl’s group called ACE (Adolescents coping with Emotions). Deneen has use the film to start discussions with the girl’s group and in one-on-one sessions in her office. “For the most part the girls and one young man who viewed it nodded in agreement with what was said and understood the darker humour as well,” Deneen said, “It was helpful as many of us tend to be the same as Measuring Tape Girl and when we compare ourselves to others find ourselves lacking. It was great to talk to the young people about not judging ourselves so harshly, and how we can be our own worst enemies, thinking things about ourselves we would never even say to someone we did not like.”
I’m looking into other ways to get Measuring Tape Girl in front of the audiences that need to see it the most. As an experiment I’m going to put up Measuring Tape Girl on YouTube for awhile so that it can be seen by anyone who might be interested. The process of writing and making Measuring Tape Girl taught me that ‘I was allowed to be happy’. Hopefully the idea that we control our own happiness can find it’s way to others who might need to hear it.