Sunday, October 21, 2007

Pointy prizes aplenty

Roar Film sent me over to Melbourne on Friday for the ATOM Awards for Australian multimedia. We won four awards from a possible four, so a very heartwarming result for us. Last year we went over in force (about eleven of us), in expectation of picking up a number of awards, as we had seven nominations. We only collected one, and later turned into a surly drunken rabble roaming the streets.

This year only three of us went; Amanda the production manager, Will the creative director, and myself. We had five nominations across four categories, and Will also had been nominated for a student piece he did before he joined us.

Three of our nominations were for Australia and the Vietnam War, a CD-ROM we made for the Department of Veterans' Affairs. This was my baby to some extent - we produced it at a time when our then creative director was overseas and we had no production manager, so I handled a lot of aspects that would normally not be my job. We worked in a fairly clunky collaboration with **** Media of Melbourne, who did not follow our directions as closely or graciously as I would have liked. We were nominated jointly, so I was expecting to run into them on the night.

Although public speaking gives me the hab-dabs, I could see that it was a waste of time having me over there if I wasn't prepared to accept an award and say a few words. We'd only just arrived (late) when I suddenly found myself walking up in the spotlight to accept an award for Vietnam. I was expecting to share the stage and extend some hearty backslaps to the **** guys but they hadn't turned up. I thanked all the right people, apparently didn't come across as nervous as I felt, and got out of there in about 30 seconds. I think I said of **** Media that the project "would not be what it is without their input" which may have been my subconscious protecting me from an telling an outright lie.

I was nearly back to my seat when I recognised Peter Tapp from ATOM (Australian Teachers of Media) who I assumed had jumped up to congratulate me. He looked surprised when I held out my hand and pumped his up and down - he was actually intercepting me to send me over to the other side of the theatre, where the fellow who presented the award to me was waiting forlornly to have his photo taken with me.

While I was being photographed from numerous angles I heard that we had won the very next category as well. By the time I was sitting down we had won another! Then we won the next!! The compere, Alan Brough, commented, "Roar Film are obviously the Titanic of this year's ATOM Awards." Vietnam won Best Secondary Education Resource, and Best Multimodal Production (the CD was packaged with a book and DVD). Celebrating Us won Best Primary Education Resource and Best Multimedia Learning Reference.

The awards were sponsored by Crumpler bags, and all winners were given one (worth about $50- $200) They have a fantastic website by the way. I scored one of these:

The final excitement of the night was when I won us a box of software we thought was worth about $4000. I have just checked it out and it's more like $500, but still a handy bonus. There were ten numbered stickers under random seats - I found number 4 under the vacant seat to my left. Nºs 2 and 3 didn't show up, so I got second pick of the table of goodies.

At the end of the night, Amanda, Will, Will's girlfriend Sarah and I mooched about looking for cake and coffee for a while lugging our armfuls of Crumpler bags, and our pointy trophies. We all had seperate plans for the next day, so it wasn't a particularly late night, but it was very enjoyable to have started the night with such a bang and spent all the rest of it with a lovely glow of victory.

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