The Trapper Family Tradition
With our clients Detour Gold, the Silverpoint team traveled to Lake Kattawagami, 149km north of Cochrane, to create an heirloom film for the Trappers, a Cree First Nations family. We documented their traditional process of hide tanning, as well as the making of crafts such as gloves and moccasins. In addition to learning the step-by-step process of hide tanning, we also shed light on the importance of learning one’s history and culture, and the risk of losing a family or community’s identity.
The film won a Bronze Telly award in 2015, in the Corporate Image category.
Since the conception of the mine at Detour Lake, Detour Gold has for many years continued to build an ever growing relationship with the aboriginal communities and families that call the surrounding land home. As a result, Detour Gold wanted to produce an heirloom film for one of those families, the Trappers, thanking them for their continued efforts towards their relationship, as well as show Detour’s support towards the aboriginal community’s preservation of tradition and culture.
The goal was two-fold; produce an heirloom film that the Trapper family could cherish and look back on, something personal like a home video of sorts, as well as create a film that could touch people both in and out of the aboriginal community to care about the passing of cultural traditions.
In order to accomplish both goals Silverpoint needed to focus on several themes, including the passing of knowledge through multiple generations, the risk of loosing a family’s tradition and identity, the preservation of culture, the lack of interest from younger generations and the reasons why young aboriginals should care.
However the key to portray the themes in an effective matter was to ultimately capture the Trapper family during intimate moments of conversation and interaction. The film had to show how one modern aboriginal family was currently dealing with the various social and generational issues themselves. What the audience saw and heard had to be real, had to be genuine.
Using a documentary approach, the Silverpoint team spent two full days at the Trapper home capturing the process of moose hide tanning, as well as the relationships and interactions of the various family members. Like with any documentary, especially one in which the characters are in a highly personal environment, the key to capturing authentic moments was to build a strong bond with the family – a sense of trust. With this trust, the Trappers let us into their lives allowing us to capture truly genuine moments and personal thoughts, unfiltered and for the most part uninterrupted.