Sea Change Film Festival

Sea Change is a professional development lab and public film festival from Screen Argyll celebrating women in film which takes place annually on the beautiful and remote Isle of Tiree.

Following a highly successful pilot event in 2018, a full event in 2019 and an online event in 2021, we are delighted to announce that planning is underway for Sea Change 2022

We are in the process of securing funding to run the lab again in September, followed by a public film festival which will start on Friday 23 September and celebrate female talent behind the camera, with hand-picked critically acclaimed films directed by women to be enjoyed on the big screen. 

If you are interested in attending the lab and/or the festival, or you would like to join our mailing list, please get in touch by emailing or filling out an expression of interest form by the 8th of July 2022:

Sea Change Development Lab 2022

I have come away feeling like I have a whole new support network which is precious in a precarious and financially stretched industry. I have been inspired by so many individuals here, too many to detail, but each brought something unique’ (Feedback from a previous participant)  

Sea Change is a professional development lab celebrating and supporting women in film, taking place on the beautiful and remote Isle of Tiree from Wednesday 21 – Friday 23 September 2022. 

Screen Argyll will bring together experienced practitioners and respected  industry experts to inspire participants to explore new ways of working, promote discussion and facilitate learning around the challenges and barriers facing women in the UK screen industries. 

The lab enables attendees from across the UK to share their experiences, make connections, and have space to reflect personally and professionally with daily coaching, wrap-around outdoor activities and industry speaker-led sessions. 

The location and setting will bring fresh air and insight to the participants’ immediate and distant horizons. Sea Change allows us to make new connections and build a stronger network with women working in the screen industries here in the UK and further afield with several other film festivals including, for 2022, the Midnight Sun Film Festival and The Finnish Institute. 

Sessions will help participants explore new ideas and solutions to developing new audiences for film, gain new programming ideas and insights from industry leaders as to how we can enable positive change within our industry and our own working environments to create welcoming, inclusive and accessible spaces.  

You will be supported by some amazing female mentors over the three days, all of whom have attended previous Sea Change Development Labs and have many years experience in film exhibition and include Rachel Hayward (HOME in Manchester), Sally Griffith (formerly of Chapter Arts, Cardiff) and Holly Tarquini (Film Bath and F Rated).

Themes this year include:

  • How Can We Best Lead and Work By Our Own Values
  • Inclusion
  • Building A Stronger Community
  • Curating from the Archives

Confirmed speakers include: 

Sessions will be based at An Talla, the island’s community centre just over the road from one of the island’s many  beautiful white beaches enabling us to include wrap around beach walk sessions, wild swimming and pilates on the beach led by local instructor, Bella, the animator who designed Jessica Rabbit! 

The cost, including food (provided for the lab days), the lab sessions and shared accommodation (available for a full week) is £350. Sea Change Development Lab participants can also buy a festival pass at the discounted rate of £35 for the full weekend.

The public festival will start on Friday 23rd September and this year, we are delighted to announce, will include seven films supported by the Swedish Cultural Foundation and The Finnish Institute and films celebrating the life and work of Moomins creator, Tove Jansson.

Here’s a taste of Sea Change 2018

Sea Change Development Lab 2022 Fees:

The Sea Change Development Lab will run from 21-23 September (inclusive). The fee for 2022 is £350 per person, including one weeks shared accommodation (from Tuesday 20 – Monday 26 September), development lab fees and catering from Wednesday evening to Friday evening. Daily outdoor swimming sessions will be provided by Tiree Polar Bears and pilates sessions by Bella Bremner. The shared accommodation allows participants to stay on Tiree for our public film festival and to explore the island. 

Sea Change Film Festival 2022 

This year we are partnering with The Finnish Institute to screen seven titles from Finland, each of which will be introduced by the film or festival director as part of the Sea Change Film Festival 2022.

Milja Mokkola from the Midnight Sun Film Festival will work with young people and set up a cinema space using a 16mm projector to screen Finnish shorts. The Finnish Institute will support workshops and talks linked to the programme, including the director and producer of Tove,  Zaida Bergroth and Andrea Reuter. The Isle of Tiree is the ideal place to celebrate and explore the work of an author and illustrator who was so inspired by remote islands, sea, and nature. Our public programme of family and adult workshops will use the landscape of Tiree to explore these inspirations. Tove was a Swedish speaker – considered a minority language in Finland – and because of this we are delighted to work with MG ALBA to support the Gaelic screening of the Moomins during the festival. 

The programme is rich in screen heritage. Travels with Tove (1993) chronicles the 8mm home movies shot by the graphic designer and artist Tuulikki Pietilä together with her partner Tove Jansson on their trips to Japan, Hawaii, Mexico and the United States between 1971-1972. The screening will be introduced by the film’s director, Kanerva Cederström. Also screening as part of the festival is The Camera is Ours touring programme curated by the Independent Cinema Office, which features trailblazing British women documentary makers from the 1930s to the late sixties.

We are screening two Scottish Documentaries including Hermit of Treig which will appeal to local Highland and Island audiences and another to be confirmed from the Scottish Documentary Institute, who will be discussing as part of the development lab their 50/50+ Women Direct campaign which aims by 2025 that 50% of Scotland’s documentaries will be made by women. We will also be partnering with Modern Films, a female-led, social issues-driven film production, distribution and virtual UK cinema company that champions diverse and distinct contemporary stories to programme a special film for the Festival and our streaming platform, Stream Argyll

‘That was totally fantastic – I don’t mind if I don’t see another film all year! Loved it.’ (Feedback from an attendee)

Sea Change Film Festival Tickets:

Early Bird Pass: £55 (includes workshops – Early Bird offer ends Monday 5th September)

Full Weekend Festival Pass: £70 (includes workshops)

Discounted Film Pass: £35 (under 25s, low income) 

Feedback on Sea Change Development Lab from previous participants:

‘I thought there were some great women in the industry already, now I know a whole new raft of people who are shaping the sector: this is inspiring.’

‘The passion and openness of the organisers helped set the tone which meant the group embraces the process so quickly. The location was also incredible, it helped the lab feel almost magical which helped create a very special experience.’

‘I was surprised at how quickly I went from being terrified of coming, to making a huge decision to share something I keep hidden. I learnt that opening yourself up and showing vulnerability can be an empowering and shared experience.’

‘I have come away feeling like I have a whole new support network which is precious in a precarious and financially stretched industry. I have been inspired by so many individuals here, too many to detail, but each brought something unique.’

‘I feel like I have been dropped momentarily into a utopia of supportive, strong, caring, and talented women and it was an honour to learn from their collective experiences. I would love this group to continue a relationship and have a date in the future to reconnect. Thank you, Jen, for creating this, you are the beating heart that fuels it.’ 

‘It’s so difficult to articulate why and how Sea Change has been such an inspiration, useful and essential. It’s a combination of: the women here have fed my mind, Tiree had fed my soul and Lizzie and the team have nourished my body. I had no idea how much I needed these days, I feel reinvigorated, I have fallen in love with my job and feel incredibly lucky.’