But that is what happened to 28 year 11 pupils from Alderman Peel High School in Wells-next-the-Sea, Norfolk.
The project began when Statkraft, Norway’s leading energy company, asked the school to produce a series of one-minute videos celebrating the local environment.
Statkraft sponsored the recent Edvard Munch: The Modern Eye exhibition at Tate Modern and the company was keen for pupils to take inspiration from the Norwegian artist’s experimental video techniques.
The youngsters worked with leading UK film-maker Ivana Bobic, who visited the school twice to talk about Munch’s work and her own films. The pupils were then divided into groups, given flip video cameras and asked to shoot five short segments of high-quality film. Shots ranged from the wild Norfolk coast and sky to skateboards and fruit machines.
“We live in a really beautiful part of the world and a lot of them used that,” explained art teacher Amelia Light, who co-ordinated the project and was helped by ICT teacher Naomi Chapman.
“They used their environment, landscape and everyday life but they had to get their message across in five-second shots. Then they worked together in their groups to edit their work and put it together in a way that told the best story.”
When it came to judging the videos, the standard proved so high that Statkraft could not decide between the best. So they chose two – A Day in Norfolk by Joe Glass, Ellen Parr and Emma-Rose Hooker and One Day by Anisia Dobrean and Lucy Pink.
Both films were shown at a special event at the Tate Modern earlier this month, with the five winning students on hand to celebrate their achievements. The pupils, who will use the films as part of their GCSE coursework, were also presented with awards by Statkraft CEO Bjørn Drangsholt.
“They were grinning from ear to ear when they saw their films,” said Ms Light. “We are still pinching ourselves and for me it’s one of the most exciting things that has happened professionally.”
The Edvard Munch exhibition also coincided with the opening of the Sheringham Shoal offshore wind farm project, which Statkraft has been involved in since 2009.
The students’ finished videos can be viewed at http://vimeo.com/50754787 CAPTION: Action! (From top) Alderman Peel students working on their DVDs and with Statkraft CEO Bjørn Drangsholt at London’s Tate Modern gallery