Publications & Resources

Resources on Home Movies and Amateur Filmmaking

The Center for Home Movies (See also Home Movie Day.)

Story-telling Home Movies

Background Music And Sound Effects For Your Home Movies

Background Music For Home Movies Vol. 1

On the Amateur Cinema League

Best Practices for Identifying and Preserving Your Films/Videos

“How to Preserve Your Films” (Downloadable)

The Film Preservation Guide (Downloadable)

“Audiovisual Formats: Audiovisual Formats: A guide to identification” (Downloadable)

“Preserving Your Digital Memories” (Downloadable)

Community Archiving Workshop | Resources and La Lotería Audiovisual

Audiovisual Formats: A guide to identification (Downloadable)

Videotape — A Basic Guide

Little Film

Folkstreams | Video Aids to Film Preservation

More than One Hundred Years of Film Sizes

Filmcare.org

National Film and Sound Archive of Australia | Technical Preservation Handbook

Museum of Obsolete Media

Preservation Grants

Al Larvick Conservation Fund Preservation Grants

National Film Preservation Foundation Preservation Grants

California Revealed

Digitization Services (A short list)

Pro8mm (We know others who have used their services and trust them.)

Media Preserve (We know others who have used their services and trust them.)

Ping Pong Media (We have used their services and can recommend.)

AV Geeks (We have used their services and can recommend.)

BAVC Media (We know them and trust them.)

Digmypics Memory Box (We don’t know them, but may be worth a try.)

Educational Films/Videos on Home Movies

For best viewing experience, choose the 720p or higher setting on the player. For films in our collection captions in [brackets], whenever possible, include labels from the original item in “quotation marks.”
“Traveling Through Time with Obsolete Media,” for Modernism Week 2021. By Melissa Dollman and Devin Orgeron.
No More Road Trips? (Rick Prelinger, 2013)
#160. [“Brownie Movie Team Demonstration Reel”, ca.1955.] 8mm. Color.
“The Craft of Robbins Barstow,” by David Barstow and Kimberly Tarr. Courtesy of The Center for Home Movies and Northeast Historic Film.
DR#2 [Root Family Watches Their Mid-late 1950s 8mm Home Movies and Narrates, ca.1980-1981.] VHS. Color. Sound. This video (and others) came from an estate sale after our neighbor David Root (1940-2022) died here in Palm Springs in early 2022. Mr. Root during the 1980s-1990s seems to have been a prolific videographer and before that small-gauge home movie maker (and A/V Geek!) When we purchased these tapes for about $20), we had the great privilege to watch all of Root’s home movies (in one weekend!), and gave this stranger a little spiritual send-off of sorts since we could not find notices of either a funeral or even an obituary. We have discovered some biographical information about Root. He was raised in Lawrence, Kansas, with his parents siblings, and earned his BA in Art Education at Wichita State and his MA in Art from Kansas State.

We include this video in the “Publications and Resources” section because it serves as such a great example of how to capture memories and shared stories from family members (and/or friends) while watching home movies together. Here David Root projects the family’s 1950s 8mm films onto the wall and uses his portable Quasar VH5200RQ video cassette recorder (see DR#3 on our “A Longer Drive” page for how we know that) to record his mother and grandmother narrating and reacting. Footage includes tornado devastation of Higgins and Glazier, Texas, in 1947; a backyard puppet show called “Nip and Tuck” (David Root’s parents, Noah and Elizabeth, seem to have been professional, traveling puppeteers under the name “The Roots” at one point), home movies with handmade titles, more puppets, travel, etc. To watch Root’s other videos: DR#5 on this page, DR#15 on our “Holidays, Special Events, Parties, & Weird Stuff” page and DR#1, DR#3, DR#6, and DR#8 on “A Longer Drive.”

[Note: We know the approximate year this was recorded because in DR#3 under “A Longer Drive,” Root recorded a video a letter to his parents in which he addresses their letter about they might view their old 8mm home movies. He suggests that next time he comes back to see them they project the films onto the wall and he’ll video record them talking about them. And they did it!]
DR#5. [“Misc. Home Movies”, 1966 through the ’70s.] VHS. Color. Sound. Like DR#2, in this video David Root projects his own 8mm and or Super 8mm onto the wall as he videorecords both the films and his narration as he watches. Footage includes his cats and friends; swimming; a Hare Krishna parade as it enters Golden Gate Park; Sausalito; a Renaissance Pleasure Faire in Novato, CA; skiing in 1971 or ’72 at the Boy Scouts Camp Bray on Mount Diablo near Strawberry Canyon, with a group of students; his old apartment and car; friends on Castro Street and near the Ferry Building (when the freeway still went past it), and the fountain by the Hyatt Regency in San Francisco; the Buchanan Field Airport in Concord when his friend Paul pilots his first flight; a 1966 road trip with friend Gary to the Gulf of Mexico; friends dressing up for the Renaissance Faire in his backyard; from inside a small plane as his friend flies it and they land in Mexico at Aeropuerto Internacional General Jose María Yañez in Sonora where they go on some adventures and fly home looks like the same day or the next; and back at his home in Concord. To watch Root’s other videos: DR#2 on this page, DR#15 on our “Holidays, Special Events, Parties, & Weird Stuff” page, and DR#1, DR#3, DR#6, and DR#8 on “A Longer Drive.”

Publications and Presentations on Home Movies and Nontheatrical Films by Melissa Dollman and Devin Orgeron

Melissa Dollman – Publications

  • “Mobilizing Women In a Few Easy Steps! (A Feminist Triptych).” Video essay, Journal of Videographic Film & Moving Image Studies. [Forthcoming 2023.]
  • “’Carol Lane’ and the Cinematic Life of Shell Oil’s First Living Trademark.” Energy Imaginaries, eds. Marina L. Dahlquist and Patrick Vondereau [Forthcoming.]
  • “Tribesourcing Southwest Films: Counter-Narrations and Reclamation,” KULA: Knowledge Creation, Dissemination, and Preservation Studies on Indigenous Knowledges, co-authored with Dr. Jennifer Jenkins and Rhiannon Sorrell (June 2021).
  • Gone Estray.” Video essay, Journal of Videographic Film & Moving Image Studies, 5.4, 2019.
  • “Opening The Can: Home Movies In The Public Sphere.” Eds. Martha McNamara and Karan Sheldon. Amateur Movie Making: Aesthetics of the Everyday in New England, 1915-1960 (Indiana University Press, 2017). Winner of Society For Cinema and Media Studies’s 2018 book award for best edited collection.

Melissa Dollman – Presentations

  • “The Tribesourcing Southwest Film Project: A Diné Response to the Sponsored Educational Film The Navajo Moves Into the Electronic Age.” With Dr. Jennifer Jenkins, Rhiannon Sorrell, and Michael Parrish, Orphan Film Symposium, Concordia University, Montréal, QC, Canada, June 16, 2022.
  • “Traveling Through Time with Obsolete Media,” online Home Movie Day experience for Modernism Week 2021, co-hosted with Devin Orgeron, April 15-May 31, 2021. (See video above.)
  • “Archival Screening Night Roadshow” screening for Desert Film Society. Co-hosted and Q&A with Devin Orgeron. Palm Springs Cultural Center, May 2, 2020 [Postponed due Covid-19 pandemic — Intro and film prerecorded for June 13, 2020.]
  • “Tribesourcing Vintage Educational Films: Repurposing with Native Narrations.” With Jennifer Jenkins, Rhiannon Sorrell, and Amy Fatzinger. International Conference of Indigenous Archives, Libraries, and Museums, Temecula, CA, October 8-10, 2019.
  • “Regional Film in the Classroom,” Co-presenter with Devin Orgeron. Northeast Historic Film Symposium, Bucksport, ME, July 2017.
  • “Acting Locally: Regional Media and The Pedagogical Mission.” Co-presenter. EYE Museum, The Netherlands, July 2016.
  • Local History through the Camera Lens” screening featuring the State Archives of North Carolina’s Century Film Productions Motion Picture Films Collection. Speaker, researcher, organizer, and promotion. Curated and digitized films, wrote captions, and edited highlights clip reel. Panel discussion with Dr. Devin Orgeron, associate professor of Film Studies at NC State, Kim Andersen of the State Archives, and Skip Elsheimer (A/V Geeks). Century Film Studios screening trailer. Raleigh, NC, October 2015.
  • “Taking it to the Mat: Footage from the Golden Age of Regional Wrestling with Raleigh’s own Curtis ‘Toad’ White.” With Devin Orgeron. Bastard Film Encounter, April 25-28, 2013, Raleigh, NC.
  • “Access to Three Family Collections: How’d We Do It?” Chair and moderator. Speakers: Rick Prelinger, Ned Thanhouser, and Kim Stanton. Association of Moving Image Archivists annual conference, Austin, TX, November 2011.
  • “Margaret Cook Thomson’s Home Movies in China.” Speaker. Orphan Film Symposium, New York University, April 2010.
  • Movie Night at the Schlesinger Library: “Travel Films.” Speaker and co-presenter, with Jeremy Blatter. Schlesinger Library, Harvard University, November 2009.
  • “Cast and Crew as Family, Family as Cast and Crew: Henry Koster’s Home Movies.” Presenter. Northeast Historic Film Symposium, Bucksport, ME, July 2006.

Devin Orgeron – Publications

  • “Learning to Drive: Midcentury Guidance Films and The Middle of the Road Politics of the American Road Movie.” The Global Road Movie. Jose Duarte and Timothy Corrigan, eds. Intellect, 2017: 1-18. (page proofs).
  • “Edgar Ulmer, The NTA, and the Power of Sermonic Medicine.” Medical Movies on the Web (sponsored and hosted by The National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health). 2017. (equivalent to 25 pages and peer-reviewed).
  • “The Bear Facts: Commercial Archeology and the Sugar Bear Campaign.” With Skip Elsheimer. Films that Sell: Moving Pictures and Advertising. Nico De Klerk and Patrick Vondreau, eds., BFI Cultural Histories of Cinema Series (eds. Lee Grieveson and Haidee Wasson), 2016: 194-208. (50%)
  • “Spreading the Word: Race, Religion, and the Rhetoric of Contagion in Edgar G. Ulmer’s T.B. Films.” Learning with the Lights Off: An Educational Film Reader. Devin Orgeron, Marsha Orgeron and Dan Streible, eds. Oxford University Press, 2012: 295-315.
  • “A History of Learning with the Lights Off.” With Dan Streible and Marsha Orgeron. Learning With the Lights Off: Educational Film in the United States. Devin Orgeron, Marsha Orgeron and Dan Streible, eds. Oxford University Press, 2012: 15-66. (Work divided in thirds). Winner of Society For Cinema and Media Studies’s 2013 book award for best edited collection.
  • “Nothing Could be Finer…?: George Stoney’s Tar Heel Family and the Tar Heel State on film. For a special “Orphan Film Symposium” issue of The Moving Image 9.1 (2009): 161-182.
  • “Visual Media and the Tyranny of the Real.” Ed. Robert Kolker. The Oxford Handbook of Film and Media Studies. Oxford University Press, 2008: 83-113.
  • “Familial Pursuits, Editorial Acts: Documentaries after the Age of Home Video.” With Marsha Orgeron for special documentary issue of The Velvet Light Trap. Issue 60 (Fall 2007): 47-62. (50%)
  • “Mobile Home Movies: Travel and la Politque des Amateurs.” The Moving Image. Vol. 6, No. 2 (Fall 2006): 74-100.

Devin Orgeron – Presentations

  • “Archival Screening Night Roadshow” screening for Desert Film Society. Co-hosted and Q&A with Melissa Dollman. Palm Springs Cultural Center, May 2, 2020 [Postponed due Covid-19 pandemic — Intro and film prerecorded for June 13, 2020.]
  • “Regional Film in the Classroom: Carolina Case Studies.” With Melissa Dollman. Northeast Historic Film Summer Symposium, July 20-22, 2017, Bucksport, ME.
  • “Taking it to the Mat: Footage from the Golden Age of Regional Wrestling with Raleigh’s own Curtis ‘Toad’ White.” With Melissa Dollman. Bastard Film Encounter, April 25-28, 2013, Raleigh, NC.
  • “Fatally Flawed Film Format: At Home with Kodacolor.” Association of Moving Image Archivists annual conference, November 2011, Austin, TX.
  • “Lenticular Spectacles: Kodacolor’s Fit in the Amateur Arsenal.” NHF, July 28-30, 2011, Bucksport, ME.
  • “Travel and the Post-War Home Movie Aesthetic.” Popular/American Culture Association, March 2005, San Diego, CA.
  • “There’s No Place Like Home: The Imperialist Imperative in the Golden Age of Amateur Cinematography. ” The American Literature Association, May 2004, San Francisco, CA.
  • Mobile Home Movies: Amateur Cinematography and Technologies of Transportation.” The Orphan Film Symposium, March 25-27, 2004, Columbia, SC.

Courses and Workshops

  • “Personal Archiving Best Practices Workshop.” Presented by Melissa Dollman. The Learning Center, Palm Springs Public Library, March 9, 2022.
  • Home Movies and American History.” Co-taught by Melissa Dollman and Devin Orgeron. University of California – Riverside/Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (remote). Winter 2022.
  • Protocols Webinar Series (3): Providing Context through Centering Indigenous Voices.” Webinar produced in collaboration with the Society of American Archivists Native American Archives Section and The Association of Moving Image Archivists and hosted by Jennifer O’Neal, with Melissa Dollman, Jennifer Jenkins, Rhiannon Sorrell, and Crystal Littleben, June 2020.
  • “The Status of Nonfiction: Documentary (Studies) and Nonfiction Non-Theatrical (Studies).” Workshop. With Joshua Malitsky, Jenny Horne, Melissa Dollman, Devin Orgeron and Alice Lovejoy. Visible Evidence XX, Stockholm, Sweden, August 15-18, 2013.
  • “Working with Nontheatrical Archives (workshop).” With Devin Orgeron. Society of Cinema and Media Studies annual conference, March 17-21, 2010, Los Angeles, CA.