In 1998, with the support of Charles Street Video, Inside Out initiated the Queer Youth Digital Video Project to provide opportunities for youth to learn video production in a supportive atmosphere. The Youth Project provided young artists with the hands-on access to the latest video technology - which historically has been financially out of reach for most youth. As well, the Project provided one-on-one mentorship and training with professional artists. Often post-secondary programs do not offer safe, supportive, queer and anti-oppressive environments for queer youth to express themselves and be creative. The QYDVP provided this important outlet. Queer youth under the age of 25 were mentored through the process of making their first videos - from storyboarding and shooting to post-production and editing. In 2009, Inside Out switched to working with high definition camera equipment and produced HD videos, providing young artists access to the latest technologies in video production.
In 2010, Inside Out presented a special edition of the Project called the Legacy Video Project as part of the 20th Anniversary Festival. Much like queer youth, elders also often lack access to professional educational mentorships, new technologies and opportunities to engage with their peers in a supportive, LGBT-positive environment. There is often a gap between the young and older generations. With the Legacy Video Project, our goal was to have youth and elders share their experiences and stories while working together.
After completion the works are screened at the Inside Out Toronto LGBT Film Festival and many have gone on to play at festivals around the globe. Each year, the videos are compiled on DVD and distributed free to schools and community organizations. To date, over 100 new filmmakers have created work through the Project.