Introduce Yourself: Sign In Here First

Introduce Yourself

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Welcome to The D-Word! Stop in and sign the guest book - let us know a little (or a lot) about yourself.

Please note that this is one of our Public Topics, so best to enter email addresses with (at) to prevent them being harvested. Spam will be deleted.

Ben Kempas
Your English is perfect, Yoram. As this is our public forum, please
make sure to check out our private conference for documentary
professionals as well. It's located at {LINK NOT IMPORTED}, and if
you want to join us (yes, it's free, as we are all fighting for our
existence), here's how to do it: !!!

A big welcome to all new visitors at The D-Word.
Jay D Marlow
Hello all,

My name is JD Marlow and I'm an independent documentary film maker.
I learned about this site through,
which is a great site. I have been involved in making films for a
little over 2 years now. The project I'm working on now is a feature
length documentary called "Street Music". My web site has all sorts
of information about it.

I look forward to participating in these forums and meeting all of

Doug Block
A big welcome to JD, Yoram and Duncan (and happy new year)!

Duncan, I don't have experience with biographical docs but I do with
personal ones. They're very hard to do well and without coming off as
self-indulgent, narcisistic and all the other qualities the Charlie
Kaufman character accuses himself of being in "Adaptation."

Mainly, you need to ask yourself why a personal story about your
father would be compelling to a general audience. And I'd also add
that a little humor goes a long way, no matter how serious the subject
matter. Try not to be overly reverent (even though it's your father).
Jay D Marlow

Thanks for the welcome. On the note of personal documentaries,
you're exactly right. I just finished one about my own experience in
my first film festival. It was 25 minutes long and fun to put
together, however for a general audience I don't think it would work
very well. It is tough to make a personal doc suitable for general
audiences to watch. It is a great kick for me and my family, but
difficult for others.

You have to almost pretend like it's not about you, even though it
is. You also must constantly be deciding between what works for
yourself, and what works as a story for an audience. Good Luck!

Adele Schmidt
Hello all, my name is Adele Schmidt. I am a German
documentary film maker, who lives since 2001 in Washington
D.C. My friend Erica Ginsberg introduced me to d-word and I am
happy, that I finally got here to introduce myself. I hope to start a
productive relationship with you.

I worked as an independent documentary film maker in Mexico
City for six years. I wrote, directed, produced and edited one long
format documentary shot in DV CAM and two short
documentaries in Super 16mm, released in 35mm. My films
focus on social issues: 'Juana's Journey' is about a young
women who lives in the streets of Mexico City. Her mayor conflict
is between being a mother of a three years old and hanging
around with her friends who live in the streets like her. 'Land of
Mennonites' is a long format documentary about the Mennonite
community in Northern Mexico. The mayor conflict here is the
question : What happens, when modernity enters in to a closed
community. 'The universe apart' is a short film about one of the
most famous Mexican painters Francisco Toledo.
In Mexico I was also a lecturer for documentary film making at
the filmschool (CCC) of the National Center of Arts . I loved to be
with the students, develop ideas of the new generation and try to
get the ideas to the screen. Documentary film making is my
passion, I love to discuss new tendencies in documentary film
making as well as to develop new ideas on how to get a
documentary to the audience.

In 2001 I moved to Washington D.C. and I am working now for
Journey Films in Alexandria as an Associate Producer on the
long feature documentary film BONHOEFFER, a film about the
German priest Dietrich Bonhoeffer who resisted the Nazi regime.
I will talk a little bit more about that film in your Sundance section,
because the film will be screened in three churches in Park City
during the Sundance Film Festival.

For now I will stop the introduction on my self and hope to enter
in discussion with you soon.

hasta pronto
bis bald
best wishes
Adele Schmidt
Doug Block
Adele, welcome, but I think you're confusing the public D-Word Forum
with the private D-Word Community, where all the registered members
hang out.

Go to: and click on the logo for The D-Word Community
("members log-in"). I suggest you re-post your intro above.
Adele Schmidt
Thanks Doug, I would be happy to join the d-word community, but I am
not a memebr yet. So, what do I need to do?
Doug Block
I took care of it, Adele. You're now a member. Look forward to
having you there - especially when we have our week-long online
discussion with the heads of EDN (European Documentary Network)
starting Jan. 27.
Adele Schmidt
Thanks Doug, I am happy to be a member now. I am also a
member of the EDN, and I am looking forward to discuss the
different tendencies of documentary film making in the USA and
Deleted User
Thanks, Doug, for the post and I'm so glad to see that the D-word site is still
going strong. I first started following it as an outgrowth of your "Home Page"
project. Congrats to you and Ben for a helpful and supportive site!
Regarding my biographical film, I see two approaches to it. I can make a film
just for the family that provides a lot of factual information (dates, important
accomplishments & events etc.) Obviously, if the subject is not widely known,
there wouldn't be a broad appeal.
But what if I approached it more thematically? What if it became more of a
personal meditation, with pictures and music, that explored areas of loss,
roots and the foggy outlines of memory and family history? I guess the
success of a project like this would rely on what original thoughts and
observations I could bring to these subjects. And I agree, there MUST be
humor. Thanks again.
Therese Shechter
Hi everyone! I'm here because Doug (who always asks the tough questions at seminars and is therefore my hero) told me to join. I met him at Fernanda Rossi's inspiring Doctoring Your Doc workshop. My doc is called "I Was A Teenage Feminist" which is a first-person feature doc about rediscovering and reconnecting to the feminist movement today, whatever the heck it may be. And it's funny, at least I hope it is, but people do seem to laugh when they watch the trailer. I have bigger words to describe the project to potential funders (like socio-political), but you get the idea. This is my first doc, although I have worked on films for others and made some short shorts. I will be at Sundance volunteering at the House of Docs/Filmmakers Lodge so come say hi. t.

Doug Block
Welcome, Therese. I'll be hanging out a lot at House of Docs (Jan
17- 22) so let's be on the lookout for each other.
Deleted User
Hello. I am Stephanie Davy, and I have a habit of thinking I can
do anything- just do it, and learn as you go. It's worked so far-in
the rest of my life, but reading these pages is scaring me.I'm on
Long Island, NY and wqould love to hear from other people who
have done this stuff by the skin of their teeth.
I'm planning on a documentary about 3 sisters who are amazing
musicians who play together, and normal kids from Long Island,
too. I'm planning on doing everything. Am I nuts?
Robert Goodman
yes as you will find out. However, don't let that stop you. A lot of
nutty people (cause you have to be) make docs. I will say that
you'll save yourself a bit of trouble reinventing the wheel if you
connect with a few experienced hands, virtual or real.
Doug Block
Actually, sounds like you already KNOW you're nuts, Stephanie. Which
is healthy. Or, as my daughter would say, "it's a conundrum."

Anyway, welcome to the nuthouse, Stephanie. You're in good company.
Gioia Marchetti
Hi, I'm Gioia and I work for a production/distribution company of non-
fiction programming in Rome. Glad to hear I can participate to the
forum on Jan. 27 and I look forward to "meeting" many of you on the

Ben Kempas
Welcome, Gioia! This place is getting more and more international by
the day. People like you certainly qualify for {LINK NOT IMPORTED}
as well, which is our private forum for professionals. To join us
there, please follow the instructions on
Henrik Svanberg
I'm a doc.filmmaker/photographer working as an independent with some
work run on local PBS.

To Stephanie, You can do it all by yourself but maybe not
simultaneously. It helps to get a pro. on sound or camera. Good
luck. /HS
Erga Netz
Hi there!
Looking forward to meeting you all at the next forum.
I'm a TV documentary producer, and I also develope other projects
such as game show concepts, sitcoms etc.
There's much info on myself, my colleague and our previous, present
and future projects on our web site
See you soon!
Doug Block
Welcome, Erga and Henrik. Nice to have you join us.
Dani Dion
Therese, are you still kicking around? I checked out your website
today and read your Sundance journal...but you've left it hanging!
It's very funny stuff and I'd love for you to let us know when you've
posted more. It also sounds like your doc is going to be very
interesting, with a definite capacity for humour.
Lisa Russell
I am a former relief worker who has, over the last 3 years, decided
to blend my development experiences and expertise with my keen
interest in sensitively portraying personal stories to address
international issues with a creatively urban appeal.

Currently, I'm producing and directing "Settling in Seattle" which is
a one-hour doc that highlights the stories of four refugee youth from
the Sudan, Kosovo, Vietnam and Iraq who have resettled in the Seattle
area. The film is part of a larger outreach campaign intended to
promote youth participation and the use of film/video, music and
multimedia as a means to educate the public about refugee issues in
the US for World Refugee Day. Politically, the project highlights
the work of the US resettlement program and how deeply it was
affected by the events of September 11th.

I'm hoping to use this forum to get feedback on the production and
promotional process of this film b/c I am already finding it a
challenge to integrate the "pressing needs" of the resettlement
community wihtout sacrificing the artistic merit of the film (meaning
not coming across too journalistic.) I'd appreciate and welcome your

For those of you who are interested, more info about the project can
be found at Also, if you are in New
York, we are having an event on Feb 2nd that you are welcome to
attend. More info about the event is at

Looking forward to challenging discussions with you all...
Doug Block
Welcome, Lisa. For the kind of discussions you want, you should join
The D-Word Community: No need to email us your
background, since you just posted it.
W Keith Mcmanus

I'm a documentary still photographer and filmmaker with over 35 years of experience.
I now live in Western New York [Rochester]
My work has been mostly here in the U.S. with topics ranging from national politics, spring break, rural & small town life to AIDS (PBS doc "Mending Hearts, living with AIDS].