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Student-Produced Short Film on a Day in the Life of an Anologist

Wednesday, July 11, 2018 5:07
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Water anole (Anolis aquaticus), photo by Lindsey Swierk

For three years now, my students and I have studied the fantastic water anole (Anolis aquaticus) at Las Cruces Biological Station in Costa Rica. Each summer, I work with aspiring undergraduate scientists of minority backgrounds on their independent research projects on this quirky anole species. This year, my students had the opportunity to participate in a science filmmaking workshop while in the field. Specifically, they wanted to show everyone what it’s like to be an anole field researcher! In their own words:

In the last two days, we had the amazing opportunity to be part of a science communication workshop led by Nate and Kori from Day’s Edge Productions to learn more about making science films and all the behind-the-scenes action that happens behind the camera. In groups of four, we were given the challenge to plan, shoot, and edit a short film in less than 24 hours (more like 12).”  – Diana Lopera (University of Hawaii)

We decided to try to capture a day in a life of a field biologist to showcase the hard work that happens behind the scenes of research. I am super happy with what our group was able to come up with and hope to really show our appreciation for those film artists and scientists alike working hard to understand these difficult questions.” – Maegan Delfin (University of Guam)

Special thanks to my colleague, Bree Putman, and her students Austin Carriere and Andrea Fondren for being brilliant water anole collaborators and inspirations in the field. Aside from providing an interview, Bree and I had no involvement with the filming or storyboarding, so the video represents our students’ perspective on field research – and is all the better for it!

At the end of each day, we come out of the forest with more than just data. We come out with a greater appreciation for the hard work scientists do to find the answers to better understanding the natural world.”  – Diana

Also special thanks to Day’s Edge Productions for a great workshop that inspired all of our students in this REU program to become enthusiastic science communicators.

Enjoy the peek into the daily grind of an anologist!


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