Tammy Clemons is a native Kentuckian, media artist, and teacher who is interested in multimedia and multimodal storytelling, whether researching what people document about themselves and on behalf of others, or supporting communities and individuals in telling their own stories. She has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Berea College, a Master of Theological Studies degree from Harvard Divinity School, and Master of Arts degree from the University of Kentucky (UK), and she is currently a Ph.D. candidate in the University of Kentucky Department of Anthropology. As a media artist, she has made more than 40 short videos over the past two decades and she coproduces a multimedia documentary project about her partners’ grandparents Frances and John Reedy, who were founding bluegrass musicians and songwriters from Harlan, Ky. She is a recipient of a 2009 Appalachian Sound Archives Fellowship, a 2009 Kentucky Foundation for Women Artist Enrichment Grant, a 2010 Alternate ROOTS Artistic Assistance Grant and a 2017-18 Kentucky Oral History Commission Project Grant.
Through her professional and artistic endeavors, she has proficiency and experience with several different audio and video editing software applications as well as online social networking and media distribution platforms. She also has experience teaching various topics to different age groups and audiences including elementary school, high school, and college-level classes.
As a media teacher, she has mentored and assisted with the production of more than two dozen digital storytelling projects by young people in the Appalachian region. She has taught media in formal and informal settings, including college-level courses, summer camps for high school girls, conference workshops, and one-on-one mentoring/collaboration. She has also co-produced several film screenings and festivals, including the local Clear Creek Film Festival from 2007-2011. As a theatre artist, she has participated in or supported several community productions in Madison, Rockcastle, Letcher, and Owsley counties.
Potential Residency Project
I have implemented several simple projects with young people that can be adapted to different settings and completed with whatever media resources are available. Some exercises that I adapted from friends/peer mentors require only paper and pencils for storyboarding. For example, the “Favorite Place” exercise incorporates both narrative writing and storyboarding to practice basic storytelling elements and organization (adapted from Devin Preston). The “Snapshot” exercise builds trust between pairs who walk one another around with their eyes closed to capture visual images framed by their partner and then storyboard what they saw (adapted from Bob Martin). One simple media-based exercise is creating “Visual Postcards” (adapted from Paul Ramsey), which can be produced using a smartphone camera/video app and entails composition/framing for 30 seconds of stationary footage of ambient sound/visuals (e.g., horses in a field with flowers). This exercise can also be expanded into the more involved process of producing “Sensory Postcards,” which might feature audio soundscapes along with ambient data (possibly a static visual) recorded in a particular place and time (adapted from Milena Droumeva). The “Where I’m From” poem (adapted from George Ella Lyon) is a great project because it is place-based and can be as simple as a written exercise and as complex as an edited digital story incorporating multiple voices and images. Finally, I believe “Digital Checkups” should become routine for media consumers/producers of all ages in which they are guided on how to check privacy and security settings on their personal devices, social media accounts, etc. Cross-curricular connections include writing, language arts, social studies, visual and Appalachian culture.