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Victoria Video Club
Six decades for local video club
Saanich News article: Wednesday November 24, 2004

   After almost 60 years, the Victoria Video Club members still have a love "for creating and enjoying motion pictures."
   Although the club was formed in 1945, during the "film" era (8 mm and 16 mm), it has successfully adapted to modern technology with both analogue and digital video.
   Doug Flintoff was the founder of the camera club in 1945, when it was called the Victoria, B.C., Amateur Movie Club.
   The club's crest and badge symbolized the number 16/8 superimposed on top of each other.
   One of the early members was Dr. Clifford Carl, Curator of the Royal B.C. Museum, and the club often met in the museum.
   The more serious members used 16 mm film but most used 8 mm. Another member, Ernest Henn, had a valuable collection of movie and camera equipment as well as films, posters and other memorabilia.
   When he passed away, other club members and the Saanich Historical Artifacts Society made an effort to keep the


Pages Past
colletion intact for displays and archival interest.  
   However, it was eventually split up and sold to people in the United States.
   Today, the club has a library of films and and videos that exceeds 100.
   Two early productions were Mungo Makes a Mask by Dr. Carl and A City At Work by Colin Frenshan.
   Member Al Lincoln had a 16 mm sound camera which was used, so part of this latter film has sound.
   Len Thomas assisted with the production.
   For 25 years, the club put on public displays at least four times per year.
   The shows were organized by Morris Aldersmith, who built most of the props.
   He "ingeniously" made drapes allowing the screen to open and close by using an electric motor.
   Local church halls were often used for these productions, which included professional introductions, intermissions and endings.
   Throughout the year, clinics were also held in Aldersmith's own home.
   Eventually, video came into its own and members now produce videos using many different types of editing systems.
   Meetings are held on the last Tuesday of every month, at 7:30 p.m. (except for February, July, August and December).
   The venue is the Cadboro Bay United Church at 2625 Arbutus Road.
   The club also holds a Summer picnic in July or August and a Christmas Dinner in December. An annual awards banquet is held the first Friday in March in one of Victoria's hotels, where award winning videos are shown and awards are presented to the winners.
 At their regular monthly meetings, videos are viewed as well as award-winning entries from Canadian, American and overseas international contests.
   This way, some of the best amateur productions from around the world are shared with members. The club is affiliated with the Society of Canadian Cine Amateurs, the Canadian International Association, The Ten Best of the West in Western Canada and the United States, and both the American Motion Picture Society and the Amateur Movie Makers Association.
   Other events that happen during the year include five video-making contests.
   The main purpose of hte club, however, is still simply to have fun and enjoy a great hobby.
   As their brochure proclaims, "every amateur video makers' club has viewers adn doers, and all of us are both."
   One of the club's highest priorities is to help beginners. Meetings leave plenty of opportunity to learn and ask questions.
   For more information, contact Margaret Chamberlain at 658-0439 or visit