As artists, we are constantly inspired to create impact: on the world, on fellow artists, and on ourselves. This desire to make a difference through creativity, to put momentum behind ideas, has guided every 12FPS project since before we officially existed!
In 2006, the Adobe Foundation launched its flagship program, Adobe Youth Voices. Its goal was to ignite creativity in young artists around the world by working with educators and providing them resources for rich digital storytelling. Through a stroke of serendipity, our founder Adam Shaening-Pokrasso struck up a fantastic partnership with AYV that has helped shape our story and values.
Before he established 12FPS, Adam (then a video instructor) formed a bond with AYV, visiting media arts programs in the San Francisco Bay Area to facilitate storytelling through technology and work with educators to empower youth to create social change. It wasn’t long before he met Adam Kennedy, whose involvement with AYV evolved from student to assistant media mentor to a position at the fledgling 12FPS.
The new team produced inspiring video and design content for AYV, helping the program expand across the globe. Over the past decade, roughly 250,000 young people in 60 countries participated at some 1,000 program sites, making media and telling stories that matter. Adobe Youth Voices made it possible for young people in struggling and oppressed communities to express themselves. It’s not just about creativity, it’s about harnessing a pure voice to influence our world without being held back by differences in race, gender, culture and politics – a critical part of maintaining integrity in our society. Youth have the power to play this essential role, overcoming fears, standing up to create change in their communities and throughout the world.
The countless creative projects of varying mediums and themes are not only a testament to the creative potential in young artists, but a reflection of what issues matter the most in the world. As our burgeoning team of creatives continued to tell stories for AYV and dozens of other organizations, our desire to create impact, inspire and motivate wove into the fabric of our company. Our tight-knit partnership with AYV took on numerous shapes and made it possible for 12FPS to travel the world, further extending our advocacy for youth storytelling.
The AYV initiative officially wraps this month, but their global network of educators and alumni continues to spark in pursuit of self-expression and social equality. As young media makers grow out of their academic settings and into their careers, they bring with them tools to think critically about messaging in the world. Whether or not they pursue a career in a creative field, this confidence and understanding of thoughtful storytelling makes for a generation that is tuned in to real-world changes and issues from a global perspective.
As young people become increasingly connected and passionate about sharing their perspectives, it makes perfect sense to put the right tools in their hands and let their visions come to life. 12FPS will work hard to carry on the mission of Adobe Youth Voices. At this point, it’s part of our DNA.