Mark Beehre - Creating Our Stories

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[00:00:00] This podcast is brought to you by pride in And funded through a generous grant from the Legacy Fund of the second Asia Pacific out games. [00:00:10] My name is Mark theory. I'm by training a photographer, I did my undergraduate degree at Elan in Auckland. And in the final year of my BFA, which was in 2003, I set out on a project that became middle line mean together. [00:00:30] Initially, it was, in fact, two projects, middle line, which was to be about me living by themselves and not necessarily queer me, and mean together, which was to be about gaming into the relationships. [00:00:45] And [00:00:47] I've been looking at the work of a number of photographers, particularly New Zealand based ones, [00:00:55] including Queen Bush's one who was quite an influence at that time book working men which came out in the 1980s. And featured wonderful black and white portraits [00:01:08] of [00:01:11] working class me and just prior to the [00:01:14] just prior to the reforms of Roger nomics. [00:01:18] And included with that oral histories. And that was one of the influences at the time that I started this project. And I looked at other other work as well. And there's quite a tradition of photographers accompanying the published work with text taken from recorded interviews with the subjects that they photograph. [00:01:42] There was a an American book. [00:01:47] I think it was called me together, but I can't remember now. Rather photojournalistic looking at gaming in the relationships. And it was another one that I adopted at the time, but this quarter, [00:02:01] quite a tradition of doing that. So I decided to use [00:02:08] live recorded interviews as a compliment to my photographs, although the standard is primarily a photographic project. [00:02:14] So when you started out doing photography, were you also recording audio interviews at the same time? Was it the [00:02:22] years when I started the middle and me together, I photograph the people and then I go back on a subsequent occasion, actually, I do the interview first. Generally, I do and record the interview first, and then go back on a subsequent occasion and photograph them. [00:02:36] Why would you record interviews, [00:02:40] both sessions would, would take some time or the interview takes an hour, two and a half months, two hours. And a photoshoot, the way I work will also take an hour or two hours. I particularly don't like to be rushed with the photoshoot. And for most people that work space are divided. Welcome to Two Sessions. [00:03:02] People [00:03:04] especially when you're photographing, you don't want someone to be fatigued or bored with the process. [00:03:12] So it seemed to work well to do them on two separate occasions. [00:03:17] And also [00:03:20] having the chance to spend some time in the environment where I was going to be photographing was actually useful in terms of consciously or subconsciously working out how I was going to approach the, the space, and the people and the lighting, and all those sorts of aspects of photography. [00:03:41] So having some familiarity with this was the place and having time to mull over that before I went back and took the photographs was actually quite an important thing. Had you [00:03:51] done all his reasonable? No, that was the first time I've done [00:03:55] oral history at all. I [00:04:00] read [00:04:02] a couple of books on oral history. [00:04:06] Apart from they had in his specific training, it is a see this was really done in the context of context of a [00:04:14] photographic project. So initially, the the interviews almost seemed to be ancillary. [00:04:22] But as it worked out, and especially as the book came together, [00:04:28] they turned out to be quite central to the project. [00:04:33] I should say that, I started by saying that men alone men together began as two separate projects. And as it went on, it became quite clear that it really was about gaming, the relationships and [00:04:49] the differences between men living with a partner or another or in relationship and living on their own. So I became [00:05:00] the two projects merged into one. And [00:05:04] no became what you see today, the middle and me together. [00:05:09] So what kind of things did you read when you're researching about how to do oral histories? What were the things that you looked at? What were the resources you went to? [00:05:16] I [00:05:18] went to the library and I looked up oral history. And as I said, I found a couple of rather slim books on, on how to conduct oral history. [00:05:29] And so I read those I wasn't aware of internet resources at that stage, that possibly would have been something [00:05:37] I wasn't aware of them. My art history, what was so useful about oral histories. [00:05:44] From my point of view, the thing that oral history gives you in particular is an insight into people's subjective experience. [00:05:54] And that's the difference between oral history and [00:06:01] other forms of more analytic, historical writing. And if we can make an example here, I think that's the difference between what I've done in middle and me together and what Chris Brickell did in Maxim lovers, where he was taking overview, looking at [00:06:21] patterns in society, looking at historical trends, looking at [00:06:26] the big picture, as it were, but I think with oral history, what you do is you look at individuals subjective experience, and that can form a part of [00:06:37] give you a feel for a broader picture of what's happening in society. But it really does focus on the individuals and give voice to the individuals. And that was another part of what I was [00:06:52] concerned to do was to give voice to a group of people [00:06:59] whose voices have been often not be heard in our society, especially the older gain or older women who lived. [00:07:07] Some of them for decades, very closeted lives. And also some of the men who are not what you might [00:07:18] see as the [00:07:21] the cover boys of the gay press, [00:07:25] the people who live quiet suburban lives that we don't often see publicized as, as the icons of the gay world, and to give voice to people whose voices would not otherwise have been heard, was also a very important part of what I was doing. [00:07:44] So perhaps we can go through the process of actually how you went about this project. And I'm just wondering, to begin with how you, for instance, find people in the community that maybe aren't out there. How do you go about what catching people? [00:08:02] Again, I started off, [00:08:06] they're not [00:08:09] working, I suppose. [00:08:13] Without much in the way of [00:08:17] know how, and [00:08:21] working things out as I went along, I started with my own circle of friends and acquaintances and [00:08:29] spoke to a large number of people that I already knew. [00:08:33] And asked if they would be interested in being part of it. And then, from the people I met, I asked if they knew of anyone who would be interested or interesting or likely to be want to be part of it. So it was a snowballing sort of approach. [00:08:54] And then, [00:08:57] when I met my partner, Ross in 2005, [00:09:06] I've done about half of the [00:09:09] half of the [00:09:12] book. And he introduced me to another right, and a range of people from his circle of friends and acquaintances as well, which gave me quite a different sort of set of people to talk to. [00:09:28] I think if I were approaching this, now, I would have a lot more confidence to go out to end, [00:09:37] recruit people from probably a broader range of backgrounds, [00:09:45] probably through [00:09:48] a variety of networks and advertising. And [00:09:52] I think I've got more [00:09:55] certainly more established myself and the guy world in [00:09:59] heaven, much broader range of networks and context than I did the end. [00:10:04] So would probably do it a little bit differently. If I was doing it again. [00:10:08] When you initially asked people, what was the response? Like, how do people? [00:10:15] How do people respond? [00:10:17] The take up right, if you want to call it that was surprisingly high. [00:10:26] I'd have to go back to my notes and records to see exactly what proportion of people that say, yes, they'd be interested, but I think it was, would have been 75, or 80% of the people I spoke to. [00:10:37] And [00:10:40] partly, I see that is the desire, as I said, from a group of people whose stories have often been hidden, or whose lives have often been hidden, to actually have these stories heard. And, in being here, the stories of food. So on the whole had a very positive response from the people I approached. In the meantime, most of the guys and me alone, me together were over the past middle age. Remember, that was going back nearly 10 years [00:11:20] when I started work on it. [00:11:23] But on the whole, the response was, yeah, affirming and positive, and people were keen to be part of it. [00:11:32] When you pitch the idea, were you pitching it in terms of this is for publication offices for a private archive, [00:11:40] very much for publication. Yeah, I had in mind from the start that this was going to be a book. [00:11:46] In so I said, I'm working on a book, I also explained that the photographs will be exhibited. And I should say that we're talking about oral history. But when I sit out and doing this, my intention is always that the samples will be transcribed for publication and print. So it's a little bit different from the, I suppose the traditional approach to our own history, which is of creating sound files that will be listened to, or exist in their own right? [00:12:22] And did you have a scope for the types of information that you're wanting from people, or how narrow or how broad was that [00:12:31] was pretty broad. And my idea was, [00:12:35] to create a picture of the person verbal portraits to accompany the the photographic portrait, [00:12:43] I had a range of a list of [00:12:48] broad areas or topics or subjects to cover. But I'd always start out simply with an invitation to the person to tell me about themselves. And for me, part of the interest lies in seeing how people would respond to that question. [00:13:08] And at this time I started, I also [00:13:14] was working with the idea that [00:13:17] part of the picture of the person live in what they chose to tell. [00:13:24] And so I tended to encourage them or allowed him to speak [00:13:33] without being very directive and questioning. [00:13:39] And again, I probably do that slightly differently if I was doing it now. [00:13:44] In fact, the more recent work, I have sort of [00:13:50] changed that approach slightly. But at the time, it was very much about allowing them to present what they wish to proceed of themselves. So my questions would be, [00:14:05] if they were talking about Christmas would be quite, quite brief. And just allow them to keep on with the narrative. [00:14:14] If people seem to come to the end of what they were saying, then, as I said, I was working with a list of broad subject areas that I was interested in. And I'd ask them specific questions. What kind of broad subject areas [00:14:31] people's early life, their background, their their upbringing with, I grew up [00:14:38] what I did, [00:14:41] the [00:14:43] pattern of relationships for couples, how they met, [00:14:51] I was interested in allowing people to tell me the story of how they live, you know how they got to the point in life that they read. [00:15:00] I wasn't interested so much in recording coming out stories, because they've been an awful lot of it done. So I didn't specifically ask people questions like, when did you realize you were gay. But in fact, a lot of people did talk about that. [00:15:17] But I was more interested in creating broad picture of the person. So [00:15:28] and, and sometimes people will just talk freely, like, one of the first interviews I did. [00:15:35] And at that stage, because I said this was, I had very little experience at that stage. And I did the interview evening, I think we went through three bottles of wine. [00:15:49] And [00:15:51] it turned out to be a very free and open conversation, [00:15:59] which [00:16:01] gave quite a lively and animated picture of the two mean. [00:16:09] Others, you know, followed through, sort of more chronologically, and, you know, we talked about, as I said, people's home life, their childhood, their upbringing, their careers, they work, [00:16:22] the values in life, [00:16:26] what things they were good at this important. [00:16:31] I was concerned about spirituality as well, because that's been kind of my background, told often ask people about that. It was interesting to see the answers that people would give [00:16:45] to [00:16:48] those sorts of questions. [00:16:50] The first question you mentioned about, you know, describing yourself that sort of a very tricky question, huh, what kind of responses to do get? [00:17:00] The responses would vary from saying that's too broad? Can you be more specific [00:17:09] to giving an encapsulated picture of themselves? You know, I'm 46. I live in Wellington, and I do this and that, and yeah, so very encapsulate picture. [00:17:22] And occasionally, people will just launch into a, into a into a conversation or a monologue, which could be quite interesting. So the responses were quite varied. [00:17:35] It's probably a useful starting point, because it can be interesting to see how people respond. [00:17:42] But it's often not an adequate starting point. [00:17:46] And you often need to be more specific in terms of what you ask to get people started on the conversation, [00:17:54] had many of the participants done or history or had been interviewed before? [00:17:59] I don't I think any of them hit to my knowledge. Well, [00:18:07] this one couple of done has been very prominent in the media. And so they would have had any interviews [00:18:17] is another. [00:18:20] Some other guys who'd been part of a documentary, a TV style documentary, [00:18:30] most of the rest, I think it would have been at this time, things like that. [00:18:37] With a nervous [00:18:42] some slightly, but I don't think particularly, I don't think nervousness was a great part of the [00:18:51] part of the emotional response people here. [00:18:54] Do you have any tips for putting people at ease or I know three bottles of wines from the UK [00:19:00] the [00:19:02] normal way, [00:19:04] that [00:19:06] will, again, be the process, I work with what's usually a three part process. So I meet the person initially, [00:19:16] find out a little bit about them explain the nature of the project, and decide if they were interested in going here. So we would already have met on on an initial occasion. And I'd [00:19:31] use that to, as I said, find out a little bit about them, and give me an idea of the sorts of things I might be interested in asking. And then we go back on a secret occasion, and I do the interview, record the interview. [00:19:46] And then I go back, usually on the third occasion, and do the photographs, in terms of putting people at ease, I think [00:19:58] I think having a respect for the person is, is a big part of it. And I certainly wasn't taking a [00:20:08] journalistic approach to looking for, you know, looking for the exciting bits or looking for the skeletons in the closet or looking for the [00:20:22] the juicy stories, although [00:20:25] it was interesting to read the juicy stories, but [00:20:30] certainly, that I wasn't taking an aggressive journalistic approach, I was allowing the person to speak and present what they wanted, what they chose to tell me. So I think having respect for the person and allowing them to [00:20:47] tell me as much or as little as they wish to, [00:20:51] was an important part to opening up the interview process. [00:20:56] And usually, I found that with people [00:21:00] unable to speak freely, and having listening ear, people would often [00:21:09] open up sometime in quite an amazing way. And one of the guys I spoke to not familiar with me together, but for another project that I've been working on, so that you could never had that amount of undivided attention. We probably spent an hour and a half. [00:21:29] For him, it was a totally new experience to have [00:21:33] the space and the attention to tell his story in that detail. for him. He found a quite a cathartic process with certain what wasn't what I wasn't sitting out to do. But and you know, it was what he he derived from the experience. So for many people, I think the opportunity to have someone paying attention to them someone listening respectfully to what they're saying. def allows him to open up in in share, what can often be quite intimate details their lives. [00:22:10] Did you ever feel [00:22:13] I'm not sure if the word is uneasy, but sometimes in these situations where people like giving you almost too much information, knowing that this is for publication, were there ever times where you thought Actually, this is something you should really hold on to yourself rather than putting it out there in the [00:22:29] public. And [00:22:34] not at the time I was doing the interviews because the process I was working with was that [00:22:43] certainly for me in line me together, the people I spoke to would have the opportunity to review the material before it was published. So part of the deal was that people would be able to read over what was going to be published before and approval or request operations before. [00:23:04] Before we through. [00:23:09] So no, I didn't have that sense of unease. At the time was doing the interviews. [00:23:17] Happy I suppose. [00:23:23] Because the things that you look back later, inside, goodness, which the publishing the search can actually be some of the quite interesting things that he get quite interesting stories to hear. [00:23:35] And again, although as I said, I wasn't sitting out with the journalistic content, there is a tension that you have to balance between [00:23:45] what you know is going to be interesting to read what you know, is going to be revealing, and what is good insight for the person to be sharing for publication. [00:24:00] So there's a, you know, there is a delicate balance that you've got to strike between [00:24:09] having a story that is [00:24:14] engaging. [00:24:18] This, you know, being respectful and [00:24:25] wise for the person sharing that story to be bringing to the public domain. [00:24:33] So with this project, that type of editing actually happened post recording near you, someone was kind of trying to stop you from saying stuff. [00:24:43] And no, I wasn't No, No, I didn't. [00:24:47] It as I said, the intent in doing the recordings was that these will be for transcription for publication. So there wasn't an intent to make the record, put the recordings in the public domain. [00:25:02] So from that point of view, I was quite happy to let people talk freely knowing that if there was stuff that we wanted to pull back that we could do that subsequently. And sometimes people would say, [00:25:13] No, don't put this down. But and tell you something, it was actually quite interesting. And on one or two occasions, I got away with putting that in and they live Yeah, once they read it through that little guy. [00:25:25] And that was obviously there was no happy with it. So. [00:25:31] So that was that was good. And on other occasions, people tell you stuff, I mean, even things like that they'd subsequently edited out, which is fair enough, even things like you know, someone talking about smoking pot or something, which [00:25:48] technically is illegal, but trivially so I suppose but you know, obviously he decided he wanted it out of the public domain. So that was that was fair enough. Although, in a sense, it was a little bit disappointing because it adds to the flavor and color to that. Its richness to the to the picture you're building up. So [00:26:08] you just got to respect people's [00:26:11] wishes and the judgment. [00:26:14] As the interviews went on, and you went from person to person, did you find that you were pushing the interviews in particular directions? [00:26:21] Yes, certainly as [00:26:25] the word The product was almost done in two halves, the first half was done in 2003, when I was doing the BFA the final year of it, and that I finished that, and then it sort of set on the back burner for a year or so. Now, I picked it up again in 2005. And the rest of it in 2005, 2006. [00:26:45] And certainly that second half, I was much more prepared to be directive and the questioning, much more prepared to [00:26:57] pick up [00:26:57] on [00:26:59] this will be details or hints that there might actually be something beneath what the person was saying and follow that through. [00:27:06] And so yes, that that did evolve. [00:27:10] Just getting back to some of the ways of making people feel comfortable in these kind of situations. Did you? Do you have any thoughts on, you know, the best locations for doing these type of recordings and the best times of day, and [00:27:26] mostly, I tend to turn to the people in their homes. I think in fact, most of the ones I've done have been in the homes. And I think that's probably important, well, people will always be more comfortable in the home territory. [00:27:39] And for me, that's actually an important part of engaging with the person is having them in a domestic environment environment that create. [00:27:48] It would feel rather odd to me to do this sort of thing in a recording studio or some anonymous office space. [00:28:00] I don't think is one, one couple I did recording my at my place. [00:28:08] I can't quite remember why. But we did the interview the [00:28:12] that mostly in people's homes, time of day. [00:28:19] For convenience with working people, it's often in the evenings, [00:28:24] although it's good is with the photographs to select the time and people aren't going to be tired, and are going to be pressured for time. [00:28:34] So in terms of deciding a time, I think those would be the the issues. [00:28:42] But I think often you just have to be pragmatic about it. And for the interviews, yeah, we'd often just do them in the evenings at the present time. [00:28:50] And how long would a recording session generally go [00:28:52] for a minimum of an hour, I was doing the recordings on audio cassettes and I [00:28:59] usually get through [00:29:01] something more than 160 cassette. So minimum of an hour? [00:29:09] Only on one occasion, did it go for more than two hours. So about an hour and a half, I think would be the average [00:29:17] often found [00:29:19] my experience of doing interviews, often it takes maybe half an hour for the person to become comfortable. And sometimes it takes an hour to kind of just get down to like some really inner truths. Did you find that did you find it took a while to for people to kind of get down to that level. [00:29:42] Now on the whole, I actually found that within within 20 minutes or so I think I was had a reason if there was going to be a rapport, which [00:29:54] then it was established by that time. But as I said, part of my the way I work was at the end of you would always be on a second meeting with the subject. So. [00:30:05] So there was already that degree of familiarity, and I had already found out a little bit about them. From our initial conversations. [00:30:16] And your initial conversations, what kind of questions would you be asking? [00:30:20] The sort of broad questions that you asked when you meet someone for the first time and [00:30:27] what they what they do, obviously, I found out where they live, what the jobs were to, [00:30:35] possibly a little bit about what happened when I grew up, where they're from, [00:30:47] perhaps [00:30:51] whether they [00:30:54] were in a relationship, whether this was a new thing, run, long established plan, [00:31:01] enough to get a feel for the person and enough to get, as I say, have an idea of whether they were going to be any specific things that I would want to talk about tonight to the interview. [00:31:11] So was there a difference between interviewing a couple or singles? Did you find that [00:31:18] there was a difference? Yes, there could be [00:31:24] some couples, the the interview almost became a dialogue between the two people. And that could be quite, quite fascinating in itself. [00:31:34] And other couples, you know, one person would speak for a while. And then now the other person to say the piece and they give each other space, whereas others were sort of interjecting and cutting across each other. And that was challenging for transcribing, challenging for writing up. But [00:31:55] quite fun, actually, [00:31:56] yeah. [00:32:01] I think on the whole, if you're speaking to someone one on one, [00:32:09] the potential for them [00:32:13] opening up and sharing with you stuff that's quite intimate as possibly greater. [00:32:21] And certainly, in talking to people about relationships, you will very much got to be aware that if you're talking to both, you know, both [00:32:31] members of a couple at the same time, then [00:32:35] obviously how they describe their relationship is going to be different from if you were speaking to them individually. [00:32:42] But again, the I suppose the approach I took was that the way people choose to present themselves as part of the portrait of the person. [00:32:51] And [00:32:53] yes, you very much got to keep that in mind that that what people say is how they present themselves at that point in time in that in that context. And I've likened it to taking a photograph that if I take a photograph of someone, that's how they look, on that day, at that time, in that place. [00:33:15] It's just to use it with a snapshot. [00:33:20] It's not the entirety of that person. And it's not how that person may look on a different day, or in different circumstances. And so with the the recording, that what they say, at that time is simply that. And you can start wondering and talking about, you know, objective truth and that sort of thing, which I think you have to say that you don't get good from [00:33:48] Well, [00:33:50] you don't get nothing but objective truth from a single hour to interview you get [00:33:59] i a snapshot of of the person at that particular time. [00:34:06] When you're working with a couple hundred you sit up the recording situation was around like a table or certain comfortable chairs are [00:34:15] usually uncomfortable chairs actually. Yeah. [00:34:18] Usually in there, mostly would have been in people sit in rooms. And [00:34:26] I started off when I was doing it through my head access to professional grade sound recording a portable sound kit. And I think I had a couple of lapel mics. [00:34:38] So that was it was good quality recording. And then the second half of it when I was working independently, and probably a bit embarrassed to say this, but I just used an office dictaphone. And because I was the intent was to create material for transcription that was actually adequate for my purposes, [00:34:58] certainly wouldn't have been broadcast quality. What was the transcription? [00:35:05] Do you think there were any specific things [00:35:10] that you need to be aware of when interviewing gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender people, in terms of the different types of relationships, all the different wording, that they may use other things that you kind of looked out for? [00:35:26] I suppose, because I was a gay man interviewing gay me. And [00:35:30] I assumed that the language that I would would use would be language that they would be comfortable with. And [00:35:38] given that I was talking on the whole to mean around my age or older. [00:35:43] So in other words, I was operating as an insider, as part of the part of the community. [00:35:51] I wasn't consciously [00:35:55] aware of the language I was using, or consciously moderating the language I was using. [00:36:03] And [00:36:05] in during the interviews, [00:36:08] I think if [00:36:12] you're working as someone outside of particular community, then that becomes talking to people members of a particular community or sub [00:36:21] subculture, then that the issues become much more problematic. And [00:36:28] even the very question of [00:36:33] as an outsider going into a community has now become quite, quite problematic. So they might be different issues. The, from my own partner, I wasn't [00:36:44] particularly conscious of [00:36:47] the language I was using. [00:36:49] What about things like, as I say about relationships with them may vary a bit from say, like a straight or hitch normative kind of relationship? Did you have did you have to kind of navigate how you identified relationships and what relationships were and [00:37:11] again, it was talking either to people who are manifestly single, or two people who were living in the capitals, or in my case of threesome in [00:37:24] two or three people living in a domestic environment and domestic relationship. [00:37:29] So [00:37:32] I wasn't exploring other kinds of relationships. And arguably, it would have been possibly interesting to worthwhile to do so. [00:37:44] But that [00:37:45] wasn't the focus of what I [00:37:46] was doing. I guess I'm just interested in [00:37:50] trying to [00:37:52] find out if you kind of change your ear to specific things that people were saying that you are, [00:38:00] that's an entry point into kind of a line of questioning that you wouldn't necessarily find another [00:38:06] straight? Oh, yes, yes. Yes, you certainly do. And you certainly become aware of, [00:38:15] especially with experience, you become aware of cues. And [00:38:24] especially I think, with some people talking about events in the past, [00:38:30] you become aware that there is possibly a lot more to [00:38:37] encounter encounters or friendships or [00:38:41] people that they might have mentioned, then, is immediately apparent. [00:38:50] And I think that really is a case of [00:38:56] experience of doing this, but also experience of reading queer history and knowing the sorts of things that might be there, if you look. [00:39:07] And it's almost as if [00:39:11] someone be talking about something and you know, that if you ask, they will be [00:39:19] a relationship, or there will be have been some trauma, or they will have been some debate. [00:39:29] It's almost a sixth sense, I suppose that [00:39:34] comes from well, life experience and experience in doing the oral histories and experience in reading queer history. So it's difficult to give specific [00:39:47] instances. [00:39:50] But certainly, you do become aware that [00:39:54] some things people will say, will be, you know, you just have to ask them to open up a whole, [00:40:01] whole whole [00:40:04] world of other material. [00:40:07] I think there's an example I recall in hearing and a couple of oral histories where the interviewer asks, you know, have you been married? And the person says, No, but basically, that completely negates any other type of kind of relationship, you know, and then then then the interviewer moves on, so that, [00:40:26] yeah, they weren't married, but they might [00:40:28] have had other advice, or one of the things certainly, probably one of the most basic things is is never to ask those questions like that, unless you're asking for one very specific piece of information. But certainly, very much part of my practice was never to ask those questions. So the way you phrase your questions is always inviting the person to speak. [00:40:54] So I wouldn't say have you ever been married? But [00:41:01] can you tell me about any past relationships? You have? You've had war? [00:41:07] Can you tell me about any experiences with women? Or can you tell me about any [00:41:14] early relationships with men? [00:41:18] Can you tell me about that? Yeah. So it's an invitation to speak rather than asking, yes, no questions. [00:41:28] Did you find the wisdom in the difficulty and talking to people of an older age group than [00:41:34] yourself? No, I found that quite easy. And [00:41:39] probably easier than talking to younger people. In fact, once I'm not sure exactly. [00:41:49] The older people I spoke to seemed, again, very, [00:42:00] came to have these stories, told the stories heard. [00:42:09] I found the process quite easy. And I think on the hallway, I did as well. [00:42:18] Not sure why [00:42:21] did you find you hit to alter the type of language you're using for somebody that had same grown up with with different language like I mean, for instance, using the word gay or queer, does it change, [00:42:33] and certainly would now, as I said, doing this status out, [00:42:40] in 2003, working through into 2006, and working mostly with guys of middle aged and the word gay was the word to use. [00:42:49] I did ask a few people about the language that they use for describing [00:42:56] the identity. And [00:43:00] the time that I was doing it. And with the group I was I was doing within gave a sip of the word that people were using there are very few of the guys and middle aged men together would have identified themselves as queer. Although, you know, that's very, increasingly the term that people use. [00:43:18] Certainly turn the time. quite comfortable with, for myself. [00:43:24] But [00:43:26] and then if people talked about language, words like camp, and what's really hit, going out and use, by the time I was doing these interviews, all that the some of the guys, that had been the language that they used, [00:43:42] yeah, probably in the 50s, and 60s. But through from the 70s, I think he was the word that people will use, [00:43:50] did you at the beginning of the project want kind of a representative sample of the community or you are very much kind of targeting people you knew, and then people that they knew [00:44:03] I was targeting people that are new, and working out from there. Again, if I was, when I did the second half of that I was more conscious of wanting to [00:44:18] create more of a representative sample. And again, I think that probably comes from experience and confidence and doing the project. And [00:44:28] I guess I have to say that when I started out, it was with a fair degree of trepidations to the audacious of doing this. [00:44:38] Suppose having done it, [00:44:42] and we've done one project like this, and having it under my belt, and as I said, My confidence for going out and actually [00:44:49] looking for people from a broad range of backgrounds would be much greater. [00:44:54] So you did the interviews, and then between the time you did the, and then the photography session, what was going through your head, did that alter [00:45:07] how you photographed somebody from [00:45:09] the interview? [00:45:12] Now, I don't think during the interview, per se, positive I photographed the impact that the interview process had on the photography was that I had a chance to become familiar with the environment and the people get a feel for how it might work within that environment, [00:45:28] to impact on the participant in terms of the change how they react to you. [00:45:36] I think well I imagine that having got to know me, and become more familiar with me, it would help to put them at ease for the photographic process. [00:45:47] It was Susan, my assumption in that, you know, that [00:45:52] had this conversation with me, which was often had quite some dates. [00:45:59] And so so as you put them at ease for the photography, [00:46:04] can you take me through the photography sessions? how did how did they work? [00:46:10] At arrive, I have a camera and a tripod, I was working with available light, so I didn't bring lighting equipment with me, [00:46:22] I would have some idea of locations within the home that I might position personal people in [00:46:36] we would start out in one particular place and [00:46:41] not set the camera up. [00:46:46] part of the process of the of the photographic process is also engaging the person so [00:46:55] there's a conversation that goes on in your must work in your mind almost in two places is you're having this conversation engaging with the person on half of the brain that the other half you're working with the technical aspects of setting up the camera, [00:47:10] so forth, get him focused, and and get in competition. [00:47:18] So I [00:47:21] usually typically work I mean, depending on the house and the setting. [00:47:27] New several different locations within the home several different positions, standing sitting. [00:47:36] Domestic environments can be quite challenging to photograph people in. [00:47:42] And [00:47:45] the right, or the best position or the best answer to that is not always [00:47:53] straightforward. [00:47:56] So usually protect me now to an hour and a half. [00:48:02] To do the photography, I was working on medium format films, she [00:48:09] typically six roles at 120. So that's 12 on a roll. [00:48:18] Sometimes inside the house, outside as well as inside, [00:48:23] I was always looking for one single image, the one the way I was working that stage in the right was to have one single image that I felt encapsulated the person it was photographically a strong image. [00:48:37] So that would emerge now go there comprises the film and look at the proof sheets. [00:48:47] Yes, with that process of sitting with the with the images over a period of time, they usually want to be obvious as the one that I wanted to use. [00:48:56] What to Mexico strong image. [00:49:01] Firstly, engagement with the subject. [00:49:04] In terms of the sort of portraiture that I'm doing [00:49:08] it since that the the person photographing is actually engaged with me or engage with the camera. And [00:49:16] then there's a whole raft of elements of lighting and composition and [00:49:25] title balance and [00:49:29] a whole lot of things that really [00:49:33] sit together, I mean, they almost come together, again, that's an unconscious level, and you have an image that you just notice, [00:49:43] is working well. And then after the events, you can often go back and sort of analyze it. [00:49:52] But the process usually comes together as a master sort of Gestalt. [00:49:58] You look at it, and you think this is the [00:50:02] and there'll be elements of engagement with the person but [00:50:08] you know, interest in the environment. [00:50:11] And in some people's homes are quite interesting in themselves and [00:50:19] how much that you see of the environment can actually be an important part of whether the photographs with [00:50:26] again, had the participants ever been photographed on that particular way before? [00:50:30] Show them I think, yeah, I think [00:50:34] Silverman net net considered a manner. [00:50:38] And this you've been to a [00:50:42] photographic studio or engaged a professional photographer to come to your house as people used to do. [00:50:48] The baby photos and things. I think few people would have had that. That experience, certainly not recently. [00:50:56] It must be. I mean, both in the recording and photographing people. I mean, it was quite out of the ordinary, isn't it? [00:51:04] Yes, it is. For the people doing it, I suppose. Is the person conducting the interviews and doing the photographs? Because it's something that I do. To me, it's perfectly ordinary in the now. [00:51:20] But yes, [00:51:21] I think you're right for probably for the person [00:51:25] who's being photographed, it is a new experience. But people adapt very well, [00:51:32] to new experiences. I'm just wondering if it's some, like you were saying before about respect, you know, if you show people respect in terms of how you're photographing them, because I think a lot of people can get very nervous about how they will come on portrayed. Do you have any tips for [00:51:51] you know, working with those kind of anxieties. [00:51:54] And again, I think, as you've said, starting with respect for the person is it is paramount. [00:52:03] and respect and kindness, I think, [00:52:10] you know, I'm not sitting out to make people look awkward or freakish, like Diane Arbus did. [00:52:20] I'm not [00:52:22] setting out to show people as [00:52:31] types or exemplars of anything in particular. [00:52:37] I'm simply sitting up to allow [00:52:43] to portray them as I see them, but to allow them to be seen as individuals. [00:52:49] And I think, you know, I think respect for the person does have to be paramount. And then there's [00:52:57] there's the subtleties on [00:53:02] the manner in which you approach someone [00:53:09] which are difficult to put into words, but I think being not being aggressive in your approach not being hurried, is a very important thing, allowing plenty of time for the photoshoot. So [00:53:23] I always try and schedule it. [00:53:28] Certainly, at a time, and I didn't have to rush away to anything else. And [00:53:36] not often that mostly the photographs would be taken on a weekend, day. [00:53:45] So schedule the photoshoot so that the people I'm photographing and the pressure of time. [00:53:55] And you do have to allow [00:54:01] seen, sometimes you'll most count on throwing away the first role or to a film. [00:54:07] Talking about films probably sounds a bit [00:54:13] anachronistic in today's digital world, but the same thing applies. [00:54:21] You almost count on [00:54:23] me, some people even pretend used to pretend to shoot a roll with the camera unloaded. [00:54:32] Don't do that. But yeah. [00:54:36] My grandmother used to save cooking pancakes, the first pancake you make is going to be no good because the pants never going to be hot enough. And the last one you make is going to be no good. Because you're too tired by then it's a bit like that with photographs, you know that the first few times, you're just basically you're the subject to getting into the space of working together [00:54:58] into partly the entry point is it for the process of doing it? [00:55:02] In somewhere in the middle of it all, you know, often you know, you've got what you want. And then you [00:55:08] you finish off knowing that the finishing office sometimes just a formality. [00:55:14] Was there any talk between your participants in terms of how they wanted to be presented? [00:55:21] Not a lot at that stage. And I think again, if I were doing it, now I would [00:55:29] I would invite more of a dialogue as to how they wanted to present themselves. Sometimes people would ask me, what should I wear? Or what address? Sometimes I wouldn't if I didn't ask me about clothes, I'd say something we're what you're comfortable with. [00:55:46] About the only thing I do is discourage people from wearing white shirts, which [00:55:52] you know, visually in photographically quite [00:55:57] draw attention away from the from the face. So [00:56:03] the only thing I do is say don't wear a white a very light colored shirt. Yeah. And then, you know, just invite them to races, they feel comfortable. And again, that was part of my certainly my ethos at the time was just allowing them. They knew that this was for publication, they knew that this was for exhibition, [00:56:23] and allowing them to make the choice of how they presented themselves. [00:56:29] And [00:56:31] I don't think people particularly dressed up I mean, a couple of the guys in the book are just in a sort of shorts and T shirts. And [00:56:40] mostly people just wore their everyday clothes when a [00:56:46] couple of these, you know, these guys have obviously [00:56:50] put on a smart casual gear. [00:56:54] There's one guy sort of very eloquently crisp, but it's really wises. [00:57:01] What about the idea, when you just flicking through the book now that especially with couples, the idea of how intimate you get in a photograph in terms of you know, are the arms around each other either kissing and hugging? Can you talk to me about that kind of negotiation? Yes. [00:57:21] Again, I allowed my people to decide on the degree of intimacy that they were happy with. [00:57:28] But I wasn't looking for Schwartz. And [00:57:33] I wasn't looking for [00:57:42] theatrical displays of intimacy or emotionality. [00:57:48] And I was more interested in seeing the sort of intimacy that people were comfortable with, in their own home with a relative stranger. [00:58:00] I wasn't trying to recreate in a sort of cinematic style, [00:58:07] the kind of intimacy that people might display when they were alone or with with close friends. So [00:58:18] you know, some of these guys are, [00:58:20] you know, they've got their arms around each other and, and [00:58:26] some of them are, a lot of them actually have the capitals, they've got their arms around each other one way or another. But I certainly wasn't looking for. [00:58:37] Yeah, the guys kissing without much twice I did just for that. So yeah, let's have a kiss. And [00:58:46] I tend not to be the images that are used. [00:58:52] Yeah, [00:58:54] I was more looking for how people would [00:58:58] present themselves spontaneously to a relative stranger. And often, as I said, often there is at least an arm around each other. [00:59:08] sitting side by side, in fact, more often than not, that's how people generally chose to [00:59:16] chose to present themselves here. [00:59:20] So the photographs have been the interview, it's been transcribed. When you present that back to the participants, can you talk about the kind of negotiation between how you see them and how they see themselves? And what, [00:59:35] what how did that work here? [00:59:41] mostly in, you know, there's 30 chapters in that book. And in the vast majority of them, people were happy with what I'd written and [00:59:55] the [00:59:57] alterations they request, we're very much along the lines of simply sometimes changing the names of third parties. [01:00:09] Or [01:00:12] just somewhat disguising circumstances of it. Usually, third parties or previous lovers wouldn't be identifiable from the, from the narrative. In just a couple of cases. [01:00:28] People wanted to feel the extensive rewrites, and that became quite a negotiating process. [01:00:39] It was a matter of explaining, going back and explaining the intent that this was meant to be that the This was meant to read like a conversation that we weren't looking for good grammar, if we were looking for necessarily have written style of language. [01:01:01] Okay, we were looking for the spontaneity and so one, in one case, it was a matter of explaining that and going through that, and then [01:01:13] also, and that dealt with a lot of the issues and then going through bit by bit working out what they were actually comfortable with, because this was a couple and they'd actually talked about [01:01:30] in the conversation, they talked about stuff that they subsequently didn't want, put in the public domain. So it was a question of carefully negotiating exactly how much they were prepared to [01:01:44] have published and how much they really didn't want to. [01:01:49] And that [01:01:54] actually, they were out of town. So it was [01:01:57] one or two very long telephone conversations. We've actually got through it. [01:02:05] And then in another case, [01:02:09] I think similar issues were going on in [01:02:15] and again, it was a question of explaining the process and negotiating and given take and [01:02:26] some compromise on my part, in terms of [01:02:35] not so much giving away. material that I thought was interesting. [01:02:43] But [01:02:51] the shape of the, the shape of the story in [01:02:59] but you and again, it was a long conversation by by telephone, because he was out of town, [01:03:06] posting a tweet arrived at understanding of what I was really trying to do, then I think we got there where we did get there in the end. But at the time, it was actually fairly stressful. [01:03:16] And they both cases, I got back things that have been completely rewritten. [01:03:23] You know that they had taken them and completely rewritten that. [01:03:30] So that was a matter of explaining and working [01:03:34] through. What about in terms of the photographs that people accept how they appear in the photos, what [01:03:42] I think they did, I mean, I didn't in terms of the agreement, and the release that I had with him was something that had photographed him and [01:03:53] in so [01:03:55] the arrangement was that the photographs would be better than that. [01:04:01] I didn't hear any adverse comment on the photographs. [01:04:05] I suppose people wouldn't really. [01:04:09] I don't think anyone said no, you can't use Yeah, no, I didn't notice it. No, I don't want you using that image. And again, that's the prices of being respectful. I wasn't obviously choosing images that work out to make people look funny on the walk with God. [01:04:26] But in this case, I didn't give people in other work I have done I have given people a writer feet high, but the images but in this case, I didn't. I didn't get any feedback that people were unhappy with it. [01:04:39] So one area we haven't really covered is release form. So I'm wondering, one, are they important, and at what point you get things signed? [01:04:48] Yeah. So yes, release forms are clearly very important, especially if you're going to be putting material into the public domain. [01:05:00] When I was doing the environment together, I started off with a very broad release form, [01:05:06] which in subsequent work, I've actually modify [01:05:11] the release form. [01:05:16] Or in the release form, the person I'm interviewing makes it clear that they realize that this is the recording is for [01:05:24] with the intent of publication, [01:05:28] I covered the fact that they would have the opportunity to review any written material prior to publication. [01:05:36] And also got them to sign copyright and the sound recording to me. Because my reading, the time I started was that the my understanding was that the copyright in the in the recording is actually with the participant. [01:05:53] And I haven't looked again at that. [01:05:56] So I covered the copyright aspect as well. And then the release for the photographs. [01:06:04] It was pretty straightforward that the person graced the being photographed in the exhibition and publication inside Lyft as a bed. And [01:06:16] I'm about to embark on a new project, which has been done through Watkins University in history go through the university ethics committee process, and the requirements much, much more rigorous. And I think it's fair to say that the requirements of institutional ethics committees, certainly designed to protect the safety of the participants. [01:06:44] I think one has to say that they're also designed to protect the university from litigation. [01:06:53] And the requirements, I'm Russ to the point of potentially restricting, particularly being restrictive and what you can actually do. But anyway, that's what we have to work with. But for an institutional ethics committee, [01:07:12] there has to be quite an extensive informed consent process and a very detailed explanation, for example of who's going to be doing the transcribing. And the fact that the transcription is going to be confidential. And, [01:07:27] again, working with [01:07:31] within the framework of a university based project, [01:07:37] they're required that there's a very strong [01:07:41] desire that the participants have the opportunity to review and edit the transcript before anything is done [01:07:47] with it. [01:07:51] which certainly passes teachings in terms of a documentary process [01:07:57] in [01:08:00] and, you know, being faithful to what was actually said at the time. [01:08:07] But which, in fact, means that once the persons edited the transcript and signed off on that, then the material is released that publication, so that's probably quite a good way of working. [01:08:21] In other photographic projects, I've [01:08:27] offered people the [01:08:30] right of veto on space on the photographs before I use them. [01:08:37] That's my the in terms of a different project, I didn't mean on race. So that's looking at nudes. And I think in that context, I was happy to give people more [01:08:51] more control over watching the facade of us. [01:08:55] And again, I said, it's a [01:08:57] process of negotiation with the surgeon in involves method, combat comes back to the question of respect for the subject, how much for the person you photographing how much we draw the line of [01:09:12] control over the use of the images. And I think that's something that people have to work out possibly on a project by project basis, possibly on a case by case basis, according to what people are comfortable with. [01:09:26] It sounds low budget for all of your projects. Just the awareness that there will be negotiation is a key thing. Not Not Not that you can just go on record or photograph and that says, Yeah, that was always going to be some Yes. [01:09:41] I think so. And matches one I [01:09:46] like to get Yeah, in the beginner journalistic approach. Very possibly be together and do the interview, take the photographs, and then do what you what what you like with him. [01:10:01] And much as that may have an appeal in terms of getting all sorts of interesting and particularly juicy of salacious material, I think that's not really the way you can work with. [01:10:14] When you're asking people to open up their lives, I think you've got to be very respectful and careful of things, and also that people are cooling off period, because I did find that during the interview process, people will open up and they [01:10:31] almost become sometimes it can almost become a confessional situation. And people will open up and not always but sometimes they'll tell you all sorts of things. That is we were saying before we started the recording, sometimes you think actually, this wouldn't be wise for them to put in the public domain. So allowing that precedent negotiation, it's always been important to me, in terms of releasing the sound files, it becomes a bit more tricky. [01:10:57] In with the current project that I'm about to embark on, [01:11:01] the way it's probably going to be going to work is that [01:11:08] what I'll be able to release the sound files will be material that corresponds to what's been signed off and the edited transcript. So that is stuff that that specifically deleted or or edited in the transcript in a way to use the corresponding pass the sound files. [01:11:31] So the seven files for misalignment together, where are they now? [01:11:36] I've got them at home. And my intention is to deposit them with logins or or with the account of timber library and [01:11:46] those things in my [01:11:49] box. But that was always my intention that I deposit the title of that tape sexually, [01:11:57] and what kind of restrictions? Or would you put restrictions on the material? [01:12:03] Part of the reason I've not gone ahead with doing it is that something I didn't specifically discuss with the subject. So I think what I'm going to have to do [01:12:13] is go back to try and get in touch with the individuals and say, Look, I want to deposit these are set. Okay. And if it's not okay within the not presumably to destroy the apps. [01:12:24] But I think that's probably what I have to do. [01:12:28] So again, with a new projects are embarking on that's all covered in the upfront and the consent process that down the track, I can deposit the material and an archive. And the restriction there will be that, again, if this is approved by the ethics committee will be that [01:12:49] access to the sound files will be restricted to benefit a researchers in it in a use of the material will be restricted to what's already been clear for publication [01:13:00] for putting a bag on a 50 or 60 years or something, you know, it should cover two people and Christina [01:13:09] did [01:13:10] I suppose [01:13:11] another interesting element with with your book as well is that some of the chapters are quite old, and they die. Does the family have any rights to access that material? Do any thoughts [01:13:28] I haven't [01:13:31] thought about it and great teaser one of the guys had in fact i by the time I was you know the year after the interview, so was his daughter that I got to sign off on the [01:13:42] on the written material. And she was quite happy to do that. [01:13:50] Deal with families can become difficult in terms of especially if there are different names in the family and different views about the parents of specialists clear, okay, parents, different members of the family have different views about [01:14:03] their, their parents [01:14:05] or their relatives sexuality. [01:14:09] So it's potentially quite a difficult area to work in. [01:14:17] And I haven't, as I said, the one chap, I know his died, his daughter would be quite happy with [01:14:25] the positive the positive in the material, I'm sure [01:14:30] how hard [01:14:31] was it finding a publisher [01:14:35] I sent the material to two or three publishers initially [01:14:42] was material and got turned down and someone recommended their content steal Roberts who were happy to take it on. And [01:14:54] this is [01:14:56] as I understand it, publishing nonfiction is a difficult market [01:15:01] in the guessing a [01:15:04] you know, a large publishers take on something [01:15:08] in the nature of queer history is [01:15:15] not going to be easy. Because the market is small. I have to say that working with Robert steel steel Robert side, I in fact, substantially rewrote that sentence three sample chapters and substantially rewrite those, it was a lot of editing [01:15:37] to produce something that was actually [01:15:43] engaging and readable and written text. [01:15:48] If you look at a lot of published oral history is actually not [01:15:57] not interesting to read. [01:16:00] Because of the repetitions and the secret locations, and the [01:16:05] which reproduces the way people speak but actually requires a lot of concentration, a lot of attention to read. And so once again, it was [01:16:15] initially I saw it as a you know, a compromise of of the of the process [01:16:22] was editing the material in a way that made it without destroying the [01:16:32] hopefully without destroying the spontaneity and the feeling of direct speech is actually creating something that worked is as written text, rather than simply a transcript of an interview. And so that was the [01:16:47] big task I worked with. [01:16:51] Roger steel, and [01:16:54] perhaps if I've done this initially, other publishers might have looked at looked at the different because I think it was in terms of creating something for publication was much better for [01:17:07] what was the response on publication? How has it been received, [01:17:12] it's been received quite favorably, I mean, had [01:17:17] the book forms here, and we're like another book launch from Oakland. [01:17:24] Were well attended, [01:17:28] didn't get much tension outside of the guy praise got reviewed and expressed and on gain actually did get a review on the listener which was good. [01:17:41] And was going to feed from the classic writers and readers. If we can then they had the earthquakes. The September earthquake in [01:17:51] 2010. Yeah, so stick around for that. And then next [01:18:00] least of the casualties from [01:18:06] that Sorry, I was [01:18:09] I was pleased with the response given the [01:18:15] given the specificity of the subject matter and potentially [01:18:21] limited audience. [01:18:23] just wrapping up this chat now on on oral histories. And I'm wondering if you can maybe reflect back on the last day on a bit that we've been chatting and just kind of bullet point for me some of the key things that if I was just starting out, what would be the key things I would need to, to think about in terms of doing an oral history and on a queer subject. [01:18:48] So firstly, read, all you can get your hands on, because it has been quite a lot published, both from New Zealand and overseas. [01:19:00] Queer history, first person accounts of history. So you Well, the way I would approach it would be to read as much as you can. [01:19:08] I know that the oral history Association in New Zealand runs workshops in doing oral history, and I and I haven't done any of those, I would think that for someone starting out, that would be a very, presumably a very valuable place to start. [01:19:27] I [01:19:30] think the next thing would be to define your project to work out specifically what you're interested in, and work out in what ways what you're doing differs from what's been done before. [01:19:44] And sitting in terms of documentary work, photographic and in oral history, looking at a specific [01:19:53] group of people that haven't been looked at previously is always going to be part of what makes the event the documentary look, [01:20:05] I think you do need to have some be informed to some extent about [01:20:11] copyright [01:20:13] in because the copyright and the recordings and the transcripts. And you do need to have thought about the process of consent and the ways in which the material can be released for publication. And [01:20:33] from my point of view, I certainly advocate the two step process that I've used, which can be frustrating from a writer or an author's point of view. [01:20:44] But I think ultimately works for the [01:20:50] protection of the individual, and respect the individual. In other words, given the writer feet in a cooling off period to look up what the spoken, what they've talked about. [01:21:03] Certainly, if you're preparing stuff for publication, [01:21:09] we didn't particularly talk about accuracy, but [01:21:15] we touched on it, but I think you do need to be aware that what the person is telling you is [01:21:22] the reality for them at that time. That's the reality, and the truth for them at that particular point in their lives in that particular context speaking to that particular person for that particular audience. [01:21:37] In [01:21:39] it might be a different truth to be heard from a different audience, or if you went back and spoke to them at a different time, or if you spoken to them as different point in life. [01:21:49] So I do go back and check on methods, historical fact, dates, and so on. And [01:21:55] that's, again, part of the core review process as people can check on that. But other than that, realizing that [01:22:06] this is the specific truth for a particular time. [01:22:14] In terms of allowing the person to engage, I think, respectfully individuals, taking enough time for the process, having spent some time introducing yourself to them. [01:22:28] Allowing them to be at ease with the process is really important. And then if there's a rapport, then they will open up [01:22:38] using open questions [01:22:41] that [01:22:42] encourage the person to speak, certainly avoiding questions that demand a yes, no answer, or even this is specifically going back to check on facts, even, you know, [01:22:58] avoiding questions that just require theory, factual online response. [01:23:06] recording equipment, obviously, I mean, very basic equipment is, can be adequate. So if you're looking for something for transfer material for transcription, but if you're looking for broadcast quality material, and you need to look at getting high quality equipment, [01:23:24] as much as possible, being in control of the environment, so that it's not a noisy environment, distractions, [01:23:31] normally, [01:23:33] top of the game, and you're not dealing with people who've got kids in the house, that sort of thing. But even a ticking clock can be quite distracting, which you the sort of thing that you don't notice, [01:23:44] initially until you listen to the tape, and this is a ticking clock. [01:23:52] Thing aware of how long you can go before people start to get fatigued. And as I said, about an hour and a half or so there's a good time, sometimes with a break. [01:24:01] Once I did go on for three hours, but the guy was stoned. [01:24:06] And that was a very [01:24:10] it's 10 o'clock in the morning. And it was [01:24:14] it was a very discursive thing and took a lot of the annotate Yeah. [01:24:20] Serious editing to get a coherent narrative out of it. [01:24:28] And thinking in advance about what you're going to do with the material afterwards, so that you can actually prepare for it. And [01:24:37] so that you don't need to keep going back to people cracking it down after the event. [01:24:45] And having people fully aware of what you're going to do with the material so that you've been completely transparent with them as to what your we are to publish as much to do with it. [01:24:58] I think those would be the the key points. [01:25:02] And one thing that you've been doing, and took me a while to realize is that as the interviewer you have to suppress all those usual nonverbal cues [01:25:13] in the [01:25:14] ear, and all the conversational interjections [01:25:20] that we're so used to using to express our interest in express our [01:25:26] attention, but will become very, very distracting on the tape. So you do have to learn is the interviewer to ask the questions and the quiet and you make eye contact or do what have you do. The other thing I should say that I do is I take extensive notes. [01:25:47] And [01:25:47] for two reasons, firstly, as a backup in case there's any problem with the recording. [01:25:53] And secondly, because because of me, I've been working [01:26:00] material for transcription [01:26:03] to create a record a written taste. And then as I go, I've been noticing, often noting points that I might want to come back to amplify. [01:26:16] So without breaking into the dialogue or breaking into the conversation, but noting points that I may wish to come back to end upon and that goes back to some of the stuff you mentioned hidden entry points into queer or hidden Quantic just flag the afternoon [01:26:36] because you don't want to interrupt what the person saying that could lead you somewhere quite, quite wonderful. But you know, coming back either at the conclusion or to you know, natural hiatus in the process, and filling in on those details. So, I do take extensive notes but Naka, [01:26:54] psychologist writing [01:26:57] but that's the way I work.

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