To those of you in the know, you’ll already be clued up as to the rules and regs of writing Haiku. To those who don’t, here’s a quick guide:

“Haiku” is a traditional form of Japanese poetry. Haiku poems consist of 3 lines. The first and last lines of a Haiku have 5 syllables and the middle line has 7 syllables. The lines rarely rhyme.

Here’s a Haiku to help you remember:

I am first with five
Then seven in the middle —
Five again to end.

Because Haikus are such short poems, they are usually written about things that are recognisable to the reader.

To be fair, you probably could have just watched the video, which gives you a good grounding as to what Haiku is, where it came from and what it’s all about.

Working with the Japan Society, we captured a workshop at St Fagans National Museum of History where poet Paul Conneally worked with school children to develop their understanding of the form, as well as get inspired to write their own Haiku. The video explores the idea of the benefits of Haiku poetry to children, inspiring creativity and thinking in ways they may never have done previously—reconnecting with nature and drawing from experience to create art.

From the outset, we wanted to create a video that not only captured the event, but also gives the viewer some education as to the thought process behind Haiku, the rules of the form, and its origins. Being such an interesting method of poetry outside the realms of the classic ABAB stuff you’re often taught in school, it was an interesting challenge for us to combine the educational aspect in with a piece of event coverage.

“With Storm & Shelter’s help, they really brought our film on Japanese haiku poetry life. Friendly, professional and collaborative, it was a real pleasure to work with them. The final edit is a work of art!”

Hannah Eastham
Education & Outreach Officer, The Japan Society

Throughout the day, we conducted interviews with children as they developed their work, hearing about their writing process and the elements of nature that inspired them to write. We also got them to read their work aloud, which we peppered through the edit, supported by motion graphics. This gives the viewer an understanding of not only the feel of the poem, but a visual representation of the form, supporting the educational aspect of the piece.

It was great to capture some real moments of deep thought, inspiration and confidence in the children as the day progressed. Whenever we work with school kids, it’s awesome to see their enthusiasm for creative learning, and by now, we’re a dab hand at capturing this feeling. It’s wicked to see how they can develop in such different ways and how it often brings out sides to them that their teachers would never have expected. The video has been incredibly well-received and since shown at events around the UK.

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