"Community," an over worked and vague term at times...the word is used here to mean engaging people in one geography or a group in the process of creating art. For me, it means both collaborating with people to make a film or a photo series, in a community-based production. It also means taking part in process where others pick up the camera or paintbrush to share their stories or gather stories of others. And that process of involvement, including twists and turns and problem solving along the way is an essential part of the work.
For example, while organizing a youth run art-making group, I asked some high school students what they noticed in town. They said it was "No Loitering" signs. In their reply, I saw both a metaphor and a title for a film. So as we talked about exclusion and feeling voiceless, we put on dances, made a mural and several zines, and created the film: No Loitering.
Together we took ownership for what we'd showed the community and others who saw our work broadcast across the country. Along the way, we dealt with the loss of a mural we made, painted over before we knew it--the negative response to some of the content in our zines and the issues of freedom of expression and censorship so important to these kids.