Please help me to upgrade my film equipment to create meaningful films.
I am an independent documentary filmmaker following my spiritual journey. I deeply believe that the key to achieving world peace is to bring about change on a spiritual level. This is my motivation to create films. My last award-winning documentary “Bhikkhunī – Buddhism, Sri Lanka, Revolution” explores the revival of women’s ordination in Theravāda Buddhism.
In June 2019, I left my home country of Poland in order to travel and make films. Few days later I arrived at Chenrezig Institute, a Buddhist retreat and study centre nestled in the hills of the Sunshine Coast hinterland in Queensland, Australia. I have been here ever since. Established in 1974, the Institute was among the first Tibetan Buddhist centres in the western world and remains one of the largest. It is a registered charitable organisation affiliated with the Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition (FPMT).
I have been volunteering full-time at Chenrezig Institute for over two years. My service to the centre began by helping out in the kitchen. When Covid changed the world in March 2020 I had the privilege and opportunity to use my technical skills and background to establish an in-house multimedia team to livestream teachings and special events, not just locally and regionally, but beyond Australia. My role in the set up and growth of our online platform brings me great joy, as it is helping take dharma teachings beyond the gompa. It has been an incredible honour to contribute to Chenrezig this way and work closely with sangha.
As well as my work facilitating online teachings, I am excited to be creating my second documentary film, which will tell the story of Chenrezig Institute’s unique history of and its important place in the growth of Buddhism in Australia. I am also recording the great daily richness of life at the centre, a thriving monastic community with a resident Tibetan Buddhist teacher and western sangha which attracts many visitors. I am the producer, director, scriptwriter, cinematographer and editor of the film.
I am seeking your help to make this film as compelling and wonderful as the subject matter. Your donations will help me buy a new camera to ensure the highest quality filming process and viewing experience.
After much time comparing camera reviews my choice of equipment would be:
- Sony a7III Mirrorless Camera Body: around $2,300 AUD
- Sony FE 24-70mm f/2.8 GM Lens: around $2,400 AUD
- DJI Ronin RSC 2 Gimbal $600
- Wireless Microphone $400
The model may change, but this price range reflects the best technical specifications for the best result.
Please share this campaign with your friends and help my documentary come to life!
Thank you for your help.
Learn more ABOUT THE FILMMAKER
Małgorzata Dobrowolska is an activist and documentary filmmaker. Her last film “Bhikkhunī – Buddhism, Sri Lanka, Revolution” was screened at film festivals worldwide and won two first prizes: Best international documentary at AFC Global Fest in Kolkata and First prize in the religious movie category at Viva Film Festival in Sarajevo.
Małgorzata Dobrowolska holds a master degree in psychology and postgraduate degree in multimedia and has participated in many filmmaking courses such as a reportage workshop, Norwegian-Polish documentary workshops, Video Clip School and a screenwriting course at the Historical Film Academy. She is President of Wonderwoods Film Foundation.
Learn more ABOUT THE FILM
Part 1. “Chenrezig. The Origin of Tibetan Buddhism in Australia”
The film is based on the history of the Chenrezig Institute and explores how Tibetan Buddhism moved from Tibet to the western world. My intention is to show the dynamics of this process and challenges faced through personal stories of the people involved in the creation of the Chenrezig Institute, the first center of Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa in the West.
Main speakers: Kathy Vichta, Tom Vichta, Ven. Ailsa, Ven. Pende, Colin Crosbie, Garrey Foulkes. Length of the film: approximately 60 minutes. The film will include archival materials (photos, videos, interviews with Lama Yeshe) taken from the Lama Yeshe Wisdom Archive
Part 2. “Chenrezig. Tibetan Buddhism in Australia: challenges and hopes”
Based on the contemporary activities of the Chenrezig Institute, I would like to show the kinds of challenges that are connected with transmission of Tibetan Buddhism to Australia. The main topics of the film are women’s issues (full ordination in Tibetan Buddhism, Geshema degree), indigenous peoples issues and what Buddhism has to offer to the western world. It also intends to answer the questions: ‘Does the center meet the vision of Lama Yeshe?’ and ‘What has been achieved since 1974?’
Main speakers: Geshe Phuntsok Tsultrim, Ven. Thubten Chokyi, Ven. Ailsa, Ven. Tsultrim, Ven. Demchog, Ven. Pende, Kathy Vichta, Tom Vichta, Colin Crosbie, Garrey Foulkes, Andy Weber, volunteers and students. Length of the film: approximately 60 minutes
I estimate the premier of the films to be held in June 2023.
The films will be made available online.