Remembering Nanook of the North [Full Version]

Nanook of the North (also known as Nanook of the North: A Story Of Life and Love In the Actual Arctic) is a 1922 silent documentary film by Robert J. Flaherty. In the tradition of what would later be called salvage ethnography, Flaherty captured the struggles of the Inuk Nanook and his family in the Canadian arctic. The film is considered the first feature-length documentary, though Flaherty has been criticized for staging several sequences and thereby distorting the reality of his subjects’ lives.

In 1989, this film was one of the first 25 films to be selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".

File:Nanook of the north.jpgThe film was shot near Inukjuak, on Hudson Bay in Arctic Quebec, Canada. Having worked as a prospector and explorer in Arctic Canada among the Inuit, Flaherty was familiar with his subjects and set out to document their lifestyle. Flaherty had shot film in the region prior to this period, but that footage was destroyed in a fire started when Flaherty dropped a cigarette onto the original camera negative (which was highly flammable nitrate stock). Flaherty therefore made Nanook of the North in its place. Funded by French fur company Revillon Frères, the film was shot from August 1920 to August 1921.

As the first nonfiction work of its scale, Nanook of the North was ground-breaking cinema. It captured an exotic culture (that is, Indigenous and considered exotic to European colonizers) in a remote location, rather than a facsimile of reality using actors and props on a studio set. Traditional Inuit methods of hunting, fishing, igloo-building, and other customs were shown with accuracy, and the compelling story of a man and his family struggling against nature met with great success in North America and abroad.

Flaherty has been criticized for deceptively portraying staged events as reality, although staging events for the camera was the norm of documentary filmmakers of the time. "Nanook" was in fact named Allakariallak, while the "wife" shown in the film was not really his wife. According to Charles Nayoumealuk, who was interviewed in Nanook Revisited (1988), "the two women in Nanook – Nyla (Alice [?] Nuvalinga) and Cunayoo (whose real name we do not know) were not Allakariallak’s wives, but were in fact common-law wives of Flaherty.” And although Allakariallak normally used a gun when hunting, Flaherty encouraged him to hunt after the fashion of his recent ancestors in order to capture the way the Inuit lived before European influence. On the other hand, while Flaherty made his Inuit actors use spears instead of guns during the walrus and seal hunts, the hunting actually involved wild animals. Flaherty also exaggerated the peril to Inuit hunters with his claim, often repeated, that Allakariallak had died of starvation two years after the film was completed, whereas in fact he died at home, likely of tuberculosis.

Flaherty defended his work by stating that a filmmaker must often distort a thing to catch its true spirit. Later filmmakers have pointed out that the only cameras available to Flaherty at the time were both large and immobile, making it impossible to effectively capture most interior shots or unstructured exterior scenes without significantly modifying the environment and subject action. For example, the Inuit crew had to build a special three-walled igloo for Flaherty’s bulky camera so that there would be enough light for it to capture interior shots.

File:Robert Flaherty Nyla 1920.jpg

At the time, few documentaries had been filmed and there was little precedent to guide Flaherty’s work. Since Flaherty’s time both staging action and attempting to steer documentary action have come to be considered unethical amongst cinéma vérité purists, because they believe such reenactments deceive the audience.

Family Trees Tribal Totems and Tattoo Designs

Seeking deeper meaning in a tattoo is a hard task, to find a life altering image empowering enough to emblazon your breast likened as Superman’s famous S… let alone creating an original idea as a coverup, for old not so good tattoos, without being a clone to copycat art and flash. When ink is in your blood though, you can see many things from a more combined and creative light.

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As I walked the forest of life blinded by the trees, now I see the forest and know my roots. These each in their own way helped me find a new way to grow my tree of life and be awakened every time I see it. That my friends, random readers and those who really know, is a glisten of soul brighter than gold.

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Bob Marley – Three Little Birds Lyrics

Don’t worry about a thing,
cause every little thing gonna be all right.
Singin: don’t worry about a thing,
cause every little thing gonna be all right!
Rise up this mornin,
Smiled with the risin sun,
Three little birds
Pitch by my doorstep
Singin sweet songs
Of melodies pure and true,
Sayin, (this is my message to you-ou-ou:)
Singin: don’t worry bout a thing,
cause every little thing gonna be all right.
Singin: don’t worry (don’t worry) bout a thing,
cause every little thing gonna be all right!
Rise up this mornin,
Smiled with the risin sun,
Three little birds
Pitch by my doorstep
Singin sweet songs
Of melodies pure and true,
Sayin, this is my message to you-ou-ou:
Singin: don’t worry about a thing, worry about a thing, oh!
Every little thing gonna be all right. don’t worry!
Singin: don’t worry about a thing – I wont worry!
cause every little thing gonna be all right.
Singin: don’t worry about a thing,
cause every little thing gonna be all right – I wont worry!
Singin: don’t worry about a thing,
cause every little thing gonna be all right.
Singin: don’t worry about a thing, oh no!
cause every little thing gonna be all right!