Documenting the Collaboration Project and Process

“History shows that what has not been recorded has difficulty claiming a space in our collectives psyches.”

– From the Community Arts Workbook, Ontario Arts Council

Documentation can take many and varied forms, among them:

  • Photographs
  • Audio and video taping
  • Letters and journals
  • Collages
  • Theatre or performance-based pieces

Documenting should be thought of at the project planning stage.

You will likely need to itemize your documentation costs in the projected budget and make sure you have the resources to document it the way you feel it needs to be. You may also want to secure the expertise to undertake some of the methods that you may not have within the project management team and partner organizations.

Sometimes an idea or opportunity for documenting emerges spontaneously. Once the moment has passed it is a lost record that could have been valuable in many ways. Try to respond and take advantage of spontaneous or unexpected opportunities.

Even documenting the project design and management process, those sometimes long or tedious meetings with so many details, could be a great layer of the project to document. What may not seem that interesting or “spectacular” at the time can be very interesting and educational to record.

Documentation can be fun and creative utilizing the visual and audio and media arts.

It can greatly enhance a final report, evaluation, or final presentation of the project. The documentation record also serves as a legacy and helps the projects continue to be shared in the future.

If you are planning on taking photographs of people you will need to have them sign a waiver or permission form, so that you ensure you are able to use it for the purposes planned.

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