The latest film documenting our fieldwork and research in Thailand has just been finished and the DVDs should be arriving this week. In a few days I will also post the film on Youtube, on our GeologicalSciences channel.
Plastic Buddha has done a great job – beautiful footage, nice transitions between interviews and action, and of course including some of the science: why we are checking out all these Thai lakes and why we are collecting meters of mud in these lakes, and why we are in Thailand at all. Not on the famous beaches, but deep inside the country, to places unexplored by tourists.
People often ask me why I am getting so engaged in these video films, and why I find it necessary to document our work. The answer is really simple: if I am telling someone that I am coring sediments from the bottom of a lake and that I am going to analyse these sediments to better understand past variations in monsoon intensity, then the person usually just stares at me without understanding what I am saying. Who would go and grab the mud from the bottom of a lake? Who would want to understand how the monsoon varied in the past, when all we want to know is about the future? But – if I have a film, showing how we do it, and explaining why we do it, if we combine an exciting story with moving pictures, then most people will be able to get a much better visualized understanding for our work. And it is really nice to being able to give a DVD of the film as a small present to people who have been helping us in the field or with logistic arrangements.
The next big step after all these great fieldwork movies will be to document the laboratory work and to tell the full science story, i.e. how do we get results, what results do we actually get, how can these be interpreted and which implications do these interpretations have? However such a film will have to wait until all our results are ready and until I have found enough funding for another film.