Do You Dream in Color? Interview Questions:
Sarah Ivy (Director/ Producer)
What inspired you to seek out these incredible individuals and make this film?
When we graduated film school, we had a passion for documentary film and would brainstorm ideas. One questions was ‘How do individuals who are blind experience the world?’ By the nature of our profession, we felt we were so reliant on our vision, it seemed like a distant experience of the world without it. Though, once we started meeting individuals who are blind a visually impaired, we quickly realized that it’s not dichotomous at all.
How did you first come in contact with these students?
Initially, we started volunteering with the youth program at Junior Blind of America – a wonderful organization based in Los Angeles – letting them know we were interested in exploring the idea of a documentary about youth who are blind. After we spent months going on teen campouts, attending holiday fairs and other youth events, we started to focus on working with teenagers because it’s such a relatable age. The blind community is incredibly tight-knit and JBA connected us with the Braille Institute in Orange County, LightHouse for the Blind in San Francisco and Society for the Blind in Sacramento. Each of these fantastic organizations worked with us to really understand the project, allowed us to attend their youth events and camps and ultimately helped us reach an incredible group of youth – not just the ones in the film.
Were any of the parents hesitant to have their son or daughter participate in this film?
Ivy grew up working with kids since she was about age 13. For that reason, there was already a deep understanding that for this film to work, both the kids and their families had to be onboard and a part of the process. Before the cameras ever rolled, we spent months meeting kids, their families, doing interviews, learning from the blind community and sharing whatever part of ourselves we good to establish trust and understanding of the project.
Have you ever considered making a narrative feature or short based on one of the lives of the students?
No. The teens (now adults) in our film share such and intimate and honest portrayal of how teens with any sort of visual impairment experience the world, trying to re-create that or interpret that in our own way would feel lesser than what they have to offer.
What is your personal dream for this unstoppable group?
I think that their dreams and our dreams for them are synonymous. Ultimately, we’d love to see them live happy and fulfilling lives where they get to pursue the passions they wish to, experience the world without bias and make choices based on their capabilities rather than presumptions of what others assume they can do!
Do you see things differently after making this film? If so, in what way?
Absolutely! As mentioned above, we couldn’t imagine how someone without vision could experience the world in the same way – hence why we asked the question that actualized the film. What we learned and, ideally demonstrated in the film, is that we all have our own unique way to experience the world, and that one way is not better or more fulfilling that the other.