Storybench and Northeastern University’s Media Innovation program yesterday announced the launch of Ochre, a site dedicated exclusively to showcasing longform visual storytelling.
Ochre’s first story edited by the Media Innovation program centers around “The Boat,” an interactive graphic novel published by SBS Australia. Ochre’s piece dissects the digital techniques and aesthetics used while creating “The Boat,” which tells the fictional story of a 16-year-old Vietnamese girl whose parents send her to Australia by boat to save her from conflict.
Ochre’s content asks questions that range from overcoming aesthetic issues to determining the most sustainable revenue models for fostering innovative visual storytelling. Its stories have examined how nonprofits like Human Rights Watch use video storytelling to promote their message and have outlined the effects of virtual reality on journalism.
In covering these topics, it hopes to discover the best practices of visual journalism that can be collectively shared across the industry.
“The Ochre site is a perfect fit for the Media Innovation program, where we are training journalists for the digital age and constantly asking the question: how do we best tell a story?” said Jonathan Kaufman, director of Northeastern’s School of Journalism. “As our students explore and unpack some of the finest visual storytelling out there today through their Ochre pieces, we are excited to pass on what we are learning and what inspires us most.”
Graduate students and staff at Northeastern’s Media Innovation program will publish one story per month relating to the tools, industry or inspiration of the visual storytelling craft. Editors at Storybench, a site dedicated to finding new digital storytelling tools and techniques, will oversee the stories’ production and editing.
Ochre, previously owned by Blue Chalk Media, will continue to work toward its mission: asking questions about today’s visual journalism landscape and contributing to its future.
“It was our intention to create a space for visual journalists to debate their collective future,” said Greg Moyer, Blue Chalk founder and CEO. “It seems only natural to house Ochre at a place where inquiry is a daily event.”
Main image is a screenshot from “The Boat.”