Way behind on hellos here but just wanted to say that Mariam is one of the finest human beings I know and I'm so glad she found her way here!
In reply to Doug Block's post on Mon 8 Nov 2010 :
Thanks Doug. I don't know where you're located, but maybe you can rent it at your local video store!
They're all gone with the wind, David. And I'm talking NYC.
Oh, THE COCKETTES is really wonderful, it made me laugh a lot. I hope you can see it Doug.
WE WERE HERE is wonderful in a different way; I laughed sometimes through my tears, and I am still thinking about its lessons.
Hello all,my name is Mark Weldy.
I dont have any projects completed unless you count HS A/V club.I am pursuing the idea of a off grid/survival mini/multiple doc for publishing on the web and to DVD.Just trying to get some insight from experienced people here as this site was highly recommended to me.
Look forward to chatting with you guys and gaining some needed knowledge.
Hello, i am ariel saturay and member of kodao productions. Kodao is an indigenous term from our local tribe meaning a knotted rattan string that served as the Philippinesâ€™ first calendar. But instead of days, the knot represents a particular community event making Kodao a unique calendar. A chronicle of events instead of a list of days. And just like the unique calendar we named ourselves after, we chronicle in multimedia, the Filipino people as they make history. check out www.kodao.org
In reply to Linda Blackaby's post on Tue 9 Nov 2010 :
Mark and Ariel, welcome to The D-Word.
Ariel, you should apply to become a full member. It's free but not automatic.
Hello Everyone: I'm Jack and I discovered this web community just last week after seeing Doug and his film at the Laemmle here. Beautiful and brave work.
Doug, I kept thinking how lucky the three of you are to have each other. And, yeah, it's clear who the kids are in the title.
I'm working on my second film at the moment and I'm thankful to have this community as a resource. All the best to you and your family from a fellow Islander.
Thanks, Jack. Appreciate the kind words. And very glad you found your way to The D-Word. I think you'll like it here.
Just got hip to D-Word last night after the Doc U event at Cinefamily. Thanks, Marj! Incidentally--and I said as much to her last night--I so appreciated how Marj handled the panel. Very linear and easy to follow discussion, one panelist at a time. Everybody got their turn and was able to fully state their point of view on distributing your documentary.
Hi Ryan. Well done for joining up! As I said last night, D-Word is the single smartest resource when trying to get your doc done and out there. Jump right in!
BTW, thought of a VW doc I saw last year you might be interested in checking out: http://www.pbs.org/itvs/globalvoices/beetle.html
Hi everyone, my name is Magela and Im originally from Uruguay but have been living in the US for almost 10 years now. Im a cinematographer working both in fiction films and documentaries, I fell in love with documentaries while studying at nyu with George Stoney, an amazing professor and human being, and Im excited to join this fine community of people.
Hi. I am the director of the Legacy Film Series (www.legacyfilmseries.com), presenting films celebrating older adults at various venues, and renting the films to various organizations. Also the director of the Legacy Film FEstival on Aging (www.legacyfilmfestivalonaging.org) slated for presentation in March 2011. I am also looking for Tina Flemmerer, who has a nice film Leslie Day, City Naturalist, that I would like to represent.
Love documentaries, so if anyone has one on the subject of aging, please contact me.
Welcome, Sheila. I'll be contacting you about 51 Birch Street for the Legacy Film Series.
Hey D-Word. I've got a doc project in mind. Tell me what ya'll think: Whenever people talk about New Orleans they say, "it's such a wonderful city. The music is great, the food is great, and the culture . . ." That's all true, but it doesn't capture why this city is important. New Orleans is magic. For real. A primordial groove seeps down all the streets. Even the buzzing locusts and the dripping drain pipes keep a rhythm. New Orleans moves you, whoever you are.
But this is a city in crises. The wetlands are sinking at the rate of one football field every 38 minutes. Without the wetlands, we have no protection from hurricanes. In order to save this city, a lot of money and time needs to be spent on rebuilding the wetlands. This isn't happening nearly as quickly as it needs to be.
Many films have been made on this topic, the most recent being the Big Uneasy. But most of what's been done focuses on the political problems and the higher-up people in charge.
I would like to make a mood-doc, akin to Searching for the Wrong-Eyed Jesus, about the feeling of New Orleans. I want to give people around the country a sense of why this city is a cultural epicenter, why it's vital to our American identity, and why it's so wierd wild and wonderful.
If anybody wants to help or contribute ideas, let me know.
I am a professor by training but I have been working on my camera skills for years. I have written five books and I as start my sixth book I will no longer simply write. I am putting my documentary skills to work as this new book will be packaged with a documentary. I love making films and I have been doing this for years but now I am committing my life to the documentary form as a teaching tool (for me and my students). As I embark on this adventure I want to swim with documentary film makers who know of the waters I am about to explore more deeply.
Welcome Ralph. Feel free to register for full member status here to gain access to all 50 discussion topics.
Welcome, as well, Will. Good luck with your project.
Hi Doug. I am a first time doc filmmaker with a short called The Marina Experiment. I'm having a bit of trouble understanding how to navigate this forum – the information I need ASAP is about getting an educational license for my 18 minute film so I can sell it for more money to libraries. Specifically, a public library just purchased my film at my retail price and would like to amend this right away. I don't know what I need or where to get it. Please help!
Marina, I've moved the follow-up discussion to the Marketing and Distribution topic. I'll reply to you there.
(Marth, I removed your post from here and moved it to M&D, as well, because the Introduce Yourself topic is public and will show up in Google searches. Be very careful about giving out email addresses and cell phone numbers in this topic everyone!)
Hello, I am an editor, director, producer of short films and a feature.
Several years ago I sat in line with Star Wars fans for three weeks and created the documentary "The Big Line". My current project is working with Marth on "Walk Right In" the Yale summer high school movie.
Here are some more tidbits from a bio that I have used in the past:
Eric Morgret is co-owner of Maelstrom Productions. With this company he has directed/edited several shorts and the feature film: â€œStrange Aeonsâ€. As he crawls around in the nether regions of Seattle film he is working on several different projects. Eric is the Festival Director and Head of Programming for the Maelstrom International Fantastic Film Festival, a genre film festival in its 3rd year. MIFFF brings the best genre films to the SIFF Cinema in Seattle.
Hello, I have been lurking around here and would really like to get involved with this community. I am documentary director with a feature currently in post. I could really use the support that seems available in this community. Any pointers on where or how to get involved? My films website is www.glacierdocumentary.com.
Just keep posting away, Cory. That's all any of us involved people do.
Eric, welcome, as well, and feel free to register for full membership.
I figured I'll re-introduce myself and see if I still qualify to stay in D-Word :)
I am a Screenwriter & Filmmaker newly relocated to Beirut, Lebanon.
I worked for 5 years at Al Jazeera Network in Doha, Qatar and at the same time was completing my MFA in Screenwriting at Hollins University in Virginia, USA.
I am now back to unemployment, or freedom, or independent filmmaking :) Just got me a Canon 7D and a MacBook Pro to try and keep up with short doc production along my narrative career.
I'm a member of D-word since 2004 (?) probably but I was busy for a while and now I am intending to tune in regularly to benefit from al the great things I learned – and can definitely still learn- from this home.
Peace all around :)
Welcome back Niam!
I'm a new member and interested in opportunities to help people with their projects. Let me tell you a bit more and if you're interested please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I'm a recent NYU grad film grad and here is a link to some of my doc work:
I've done both camera and some sound before, and I won a short doc contest last year called Madrid Dares You that was covered in the NY Daily News:
In addition to being a filmmaker I was a journalist for 10 years, so I have lots of applicable skills.
I've worked exclusively on student projects before so I'm most interested in helping people at the 'professional' level (or pretty close), people who have made documentaries before that have been distributed or broadcast, and are savvy about the nuances of getting projects funded. I'm glad to work for free right now to get the experience. I'd particularly like to become more technically proficient with the nuances of doing docs with tiny or no crews, such as how to do camera, sound and lightning all by yourself.
Much appreciated either way, and thanks for having a Web site like this.
Welcome, Neil, and great to have you back, Niam.
I am working on my first documentary. I am eager to pick your brains on lots of topics like funding and labor. I currently work at one of the three televison networks in New York.
In reply to Doug Block's post on Tue 25 Nov 2008 : Doug
I don't know whether you remember me but I had the pleasure to work along side you for a very short period of time. You were finishing 51 Birch Street. (brillant) I knew nothing then and I know just a little more now. I have started a documentary on the 'undocumented Irish in New York' and I have a trailer and treatment. I look forward to reading more on this website.
Thanks, Charles. I remember you well and greatly appreciated your help on 51 Birch. Glad to see you made your way here and best of luck with your doc.
Hi, I'm Stephanie Wang-Breal, the filmmaker behind Wo Ai Ni Mommy (I Love You, Mommy). I am consulting producing on another film that I think would do well at the Hotdocs Pitch forum. anyone pitch their film there? did it result in any pre-sales/ or funding? and is it just plain worth the costs? looking forward to being part of this online doc community.
Hey, Stephanie, great to have you posting here. However, this is the topic for people to introduce themselves. I'll repost your questions in the Finding Funding topic.
Hello to all of you,
I am a sociologist and I have been researching on immigration and youth here in Barcelona, for about 3 years now. This has implied a lot of workfield in different public spaces on peripheral neighbourghoods. This adds to my interest in visual culture and in documentary practice, I have attended to some courses on technical matters ("experimenting with documentary") and also visual anthropology. Some days ago, I met, together with a colleague, a group of enthusiastic young men from Dominican Republic, who started to produce short films about "street-stories". We proposed to them to help on technical matters (lend them a better camera, script development), and at the same time we learn a lot from them and film the process of making this short film they want to present to a local competition (ending the 20th of december). We all want to continue with the experience after the competition ends, offering to them formation on script development, and they allow us to keep filming the process, with the idea of making a doc on their experience in a context such as the society, and the neighbourghood they live in.
It would be great if I could learn from the experience of others who have underwent these kind of processes... as well as sharing what I have learnt from the sociological (or anthropological) ethnography practice, "participational observation", etc.
Welcome Stephanie and Nadia :)
Hello everyone at D-Word! My name's Christina and I specialize in making feature documentary films about Brazil. I grew up in Brazil, now live in London, and am interested in bringing contemporary stories about Brazil to a large international audience. You may have seen Only When I Dance, a feature about two teenage ballet dancers from Rio's most violent favelas that make it to the highest eschelons of the international world of ballet, which I co-produced. I'm new to this site and am looking forward to meeting others here with a passion for international feature docs (and maybe even some clues as to how to make a living out of them?!) as well as a great mutual exchange of info and help all round. All the best from snowy London!
I specialize in analyzing sports mechanics (how an athlete moves) with frame-by-frame video analysis. My Olympic athletes have won 44 Gold Medals and have set 11 World Records. You can see examples of our analyses on our YouTube channel 'somaxperformance'. I joined because I will be producing a documentary on our project to break the 2-hour mark in the marathon--currently thought to be impossible. We will also be needing videographers to record during race day, and I thought that this forum would be a good way to find local talent.
Welcome Christina and Bob!
My dad was an athlete in the 60ies (100 meters, 200 meters, high jump) and marvels how technology is helping athletes these days. Good luck with your project.
How to make a living from docs, Christina? Get thee to the Our Daily Bread topic.
Good to have both you and Bob with us.
I am Andrew with Green Solutions. We are a US West and East coast DVD, CD, Blu-ray and Eco Friendly packaging company. We've been in business for almost 14 years. I have worked with hundreds of independent producers over the years. While self distributing can be difficult, I believe we have the ability to help. We work with a web fulfillment company in CA, who can set up your shopping cart, credit card merchant account (giving you complete control of the finances) and handle the drop shipping to your customers. Even if we don't do your work, I am dedicated to the Documentary Producer and will answer any questions related to authoring, packaging, replication, duplication, printing, credit card processing and fulfillment. I'm here to help.
Great, Andrew. I'm sure there are a ton of members here who would love to pick your brain about such matters. We talk about self-distribution all the time in the Marketing and Distribution topic, so feel free to hang out there.
My good friend Joshua Z. Weinstein recommended I check out this site and I'm excited to join such a supportive and knowledgeable online community. I'm an aspiring editor with three years of experience assisting on features and shorts (including 2010 SXSW-nominated "Dirty Pictures"). I'm currently looking for my next project so if anyone is interested in hiring an intelligent, experienced, and friendly AE feel free to e-mail me at email@example.com. You can see a few videos I edited here: http://vimeo.com/jeremiahglazer. Thanks!
Office Share Available! 1 to 3 desks avail in office in historic Cable Building at corner of Broadway & Houston, downtown Manhattan (aka Angelika Film Theater Bldg; aka Crate & Barrel Bldg). 24/7 access building, lot of light, best n'hood. Anyone interested or know anyone interested, please contact me directly! (firstname.lastname@example.org) Thank you!
My name is Larry Paros and I'm new here. I've just directed and produced a film called "Walk Right In." It's the perfect counterpoint to "Waiting for Superman" and "The Race to Nowhere," but we don't have the resources or contacts to get the word out. Help!
Welcome to The D-Word, Larry, and good luck with your film. You might want to check out the Marketing and Distribution topic, as well as Social Networking.
Pleasure to be aboard. I'm new to the D-Word and currently in pre-production on both my first documentary and my first feature length project. After obsessively agonizing on cameras, knowing full well the content matters more than the camera, I settled on the Panasonic GH1 for it's DOF capabilities, the fact that you could hack the bitrate settings (which I have done) and it seemed to be the only hi-def still/video camera that was capable of shooting for longer than 15mins at a clip without the camera overheating and or cutting off the clip at the 12-14min mark (as in the ever popular Canon DSLRs). So far I'm very happy.
I'll be posting more updates as I go but my main area of focus now is quality sound capture. I have a good indy rig but no wireless LAVs. I will post more on that in another section of the website and will certainly be looking for pointers and recommendations. I'm certainly in the market for some good multi-channel LAV mics if anyone has tips there.
My documentary is a "son gets to know his Jazz Musician father through his music and those who loved him and his music". And yes, I've seen "My Architect: A Son's Journey". GREAT film that was a major inspiration. If you've seen that film there are some very similar themes for me. My father was lost to me when I was fairly young (19), we didn't have much chance to get to know each other (family drama and his obsessive dedication to his music) and within the Jazz community he is rather legendary for those who really know his music.
I hope to explore the reasons why those fans and devotes of my father's music keep insisting he is a genius improviser and one of the top three improvisers of the 20th century (often listed with Charlie Parker and Lester Young others). These are odd things to digest about about someone whom you saw in a very different light growing up. I both seek to tribute my father but also get to know him better through his music. Hopefully both the viewing audiences and myself will get to know him a little better and come out the other side with a better understanding of what makes his particular stripe of musician so special.
So, next steps for me? Editing a fundraising snippet for Kickstarter and other online fundraising sights, finding some good wireless lavs and continuing to seek encouragement for this daunting task.
I do have a producer by the way. He is a former Cal Arts screen-writing instructor and huge fan/devote of my father's music. Wonderful fellow named Eddie Richey. My wife is also an ever-present producing partner and the other half of Leo Rising productions.
Here's to getting to know everyone better and most certainly sharing about the process.
Welcome, K.C. You might want to know about a similar doc by D-Word member Stan Warnow called "Deconstructing Dad", which is about his own famous musician father. Not to worry, though, since each filmmaker's journey is their own unique story.
Great recommendation! I'm not worried. I love the other stories like this. The Glenn Gould docs were also wonderful.
32 Short Films About Glenn Gould isn't exactly a doc, but it's one of my all-time favorite films.
True, there is also a brand new doc that I just saw at a theater in Pasadena. It was much more of a traditional doc. I saw both of them back to back and was lumping them together. Both wonderful pieces. The new doc has some amazing archival footage. "32 Short Films..." reminded me of a book written about my dad in which the author wrote as if he was my father (1st person) narrating his own life. Fascinating and brave way to tackle a subject. My producer is leaning toward experimental with the style and he told me to watch "32 Short Flms...". Loved it.
Hi Everyone –
I stumbled upon this community and am happy to have found you all. This seems like an incredibly supportive environment, and that's a huge testament to both the members and the moderators. Kudos!
So, a little about me – Iâ€™m a multi-hyphenate Creative Producer/Writer/Marketing Consultant with over 15 years of experience working in the entertainment industry. More specifically, I've produced everything from the visuals for the groundbreaking documentary feature, THE KID STAYS IN THE PICTURE – to broadcast design packages for major cable networks. I also co-created and produced a grassroots media conference in NYC and LA, served as a publicist at a MGM/United Artists in NYC for four years and wrote a book (published by the Princeton Review).
I recently moved to LA to focus my career on producing larger-scale projects and seem to keep finding myself gravitating toward the documentary world. I dipped my toe into reality TV development and sold a pitch to Sony Pictures Television a few years ago but ended up backing out of the deal for personal reasons (the subjects were friends of mine, and Sony wasn't willing to give me Exec Producer credit because I had never run a show before – so, in the interest of protecting their interests, I pulled the plug). What's that they say about not being involved/close to your doc's subjects? Learned that the hard way...
Onward and upward! I'm now producing the visuals for a feature doc that's based up in Oakland and have recently started developing another non-fiction project about the business of cancer that has numerous media extensions, including a feature component. Having never helmed a project of this size, I'm here to absorb as much info as I can from the community – and to give back, as well.
That said, I'm a huge fan of indie empowerment and have been doing quite a bit of research re: Hybrid Distribution that I'm happy to share. I also have solid experience creating grassroots marketing and outreach strategies.
If anyone here would like a free outreach consultation for their project, please get in touch with me. I'd be happy to help point you in the right direction.
One question – do D-Listers ever get together for local in-person gatherings? As I mentioned, I'm fairly new to LA and am eager to meet like-minded folks.
Great to have you joining us, Jennifer! Feel free to leap right into the various discussions going on here and all the best with your projects.
Yes, there are quite a number of LA-based D-Word members, including our co-hostess with the mostess, Marj Safinia. They're often up for in-person F2F's, so don't hesitate to organize one (on the F2F topic). You might also want to join DocuLink, which is a mostly LA-based listserve for doc filmmakers.
Welcome, Jennifer! Good to have you here :)
I am the head of the documentary division at Muse Entertainment (www.muse.ca), a major independent film and television production house and an emerging force in international co-productions. We've won numerous international awards and were just nominated for a Golden Globe Award for the mini series Pillars of the Earth which we co-produced with Germany's Tandem Communications in association with Scott Free Films. We are mostly a live action, fiction producer but we are keen to work in the documentary world as well. The first documentary we co-produced with Switzerland and filmed in Jamaica was the successful doc feature Rocksteady: The Roots of Reggae. Our head office is in Montreal but we also have a US operation based in LA and a sales office in London, England. We are happy to look at documentary projects that would be relevant to Canadian audiences specifically but also of interest to international audiences.
Great to have you here with us, Betty. How far along with their project would someone need to be before approaching you? Would you at the least need to see a fairly polished work-in-progress sample?
Hi all – I'm a documentary sound guy from New York and happy to have found this community! I have been lurking for a few months, and I've enjoyed reading about (and participating in) your challenges and victories. I've been lucky enough to do some work with Josh Weinstein, Nick Higgins, and Amy Berg. I'm always looking for a good subject and a new challenge for work, and I'm happy to give advice where it's needed (I know a lot of you work alone).
Happy Solstice y'all . . see you on the other side!
HOPE EVERYONE IS WICKED, AND HOPE EVERYONE HAS AN AMAZING CHRISTMAS!
I JOINED UP IN SEARCH OF HELP FOR MY DISSERTATION I AM DOING, IN FILM PRODUCTION AND TECHNOLOGY
I AM DOING IT ON:
An evaluation of the technology incorporated into documentaries targeted for cinema release
IF ANYONE COULD HELP, THAT WOULD BE WICKED!! ITS MAINLY ON CAMERAS USED FOR DOCU'S AND WHY? THE SOUND AND LIGHTING...AND WHAT THE FUTURE HAS IN STORE FOR DOCUMENTARY FILM MAKERS..
APPRECIATE ANY HELP ANYBODY COULD GIVE ME..
HAVE A WICKED NEW YEAR!
In reply to Abe Dolinger's post on Tue 21 Dec 2010 :
HEY, HOW YOU DOING ABE?
BOY AM I GLAD I SAW YOUR INTRODUCTION!
YOU MIGHT OF READ MINE...AND I WAS WONDERING, BECAUSE YOUR SOMEONE WHO WORKS WITH SOUND AND YOU HAVE FIRST HAND EXPERIENCE, WOULD YOU BE ABLE TO HELP ME...
IT WOULD BE LIKE AN INTERVIEW SORT OF THING...IF YOU COULD HELP, PLEASE PLEASE GIVE ME A SHOUT, IT WOULD BE WICKED TO INTERVIEW SOMEONE WHO WORKS IN THE ACTUAL INDUSTRY RATHER THAN JUST RELY ON BOOKS. IF NOT THEN HEY, THANKS FOR TAKING THE TIME OUT AND READING THIS.
HOPE TO HEAR FROM YOU SOON
TAKE CARE ABE
In reply to Magela Crosignani's post on Thu 18 Nov 2010 :
hey, how you doing?
I noticed you were a cinematographer and you work on documentaries.
im currently doing a dissertation on the production technology used for cinema release documentaries, and i thought maybe you could help me with the camera technology used for documentaries.
i understand if you are busy and if you unable to help, and thats cool...but hey, it's a try right.
maybe I could interview you, ask you a couple of questions?
if you do have some time, that would be great, if not, i understand. hope you have an amazing Christmas and new year.
In reply to Jennifer Campbell's post on Sat 30 Oct 2010 :
hey, how you doing Jennifer?
it cant be colder than it is down here in the UK! The weather is crazy, but its wicked!...but hey...
I was looking through the pages, to see if there was anyone would could help me with a bit of work, and noticed you was kind of fresh out of uni.
im in the last year now, and have to write a dissertation. I know this is a long shot, but hey, what's the worse that could happen.
my dissertations on, the technologies used for cinema release documentaries, and I was wondering if you had covered any of the technology side in your course...
if you aren't to busy and you got a little time, it would be wicked if you could help. but if you cant, well hey, thanks for taking time out and reading this
have a wicked Christmas, and an amazing new year. :)
In reply to chithra jeyaram's post on Wed 4 Aug 2010 :
hey, how you doing?
I noticed you studied film production.
im studying film production and technology, now in my final year, im currently working on a dissertation on the production technology used for cinema release documentaries, and i thought maybe you could help me with the technology side of documentary film making. im not to sure if you studied the technology side but, its worth a try right.
i understand if you are busy and if you unable to help, and thats cool...
if you do have some time, that would be great, if not, i understand. hope you have an amazing Christmas and new year.
Ok, Jaggy, good to see you calmed down and stopped shouting in ALL CAPS. Time to take your pleas for help to the Mentoring Room topic. This is just a place to introduce yourself, which you certainly have done enough of. And have a wicked Christmas, yourself.
In reply to Doug Block's post on Wed 22 Dec 2010 :
Sorry. And a happy New Year.
Hello everybody. I'm a brazilian filmmaker, this year I've showed in some brazilian festivals my first film, a short documentary called "Hands of October". This film proposes a new way of looking at CÃrio de NazarÃ© in the city of BelÃ©m, Brazil, using the perspective of the hands. A poetic, almost surreal approach. The characters are the hands of marchers, workmen, sculptors, and others. The voices are just their memories. The duality of hands, which simultaneously suggest materialness and spirituality, constructs one of the biggest faith marches in Brazil. If you're interesting, visit film's website (unfortunately not translated to the English yet): www.maosdeoutubro.com
Welcome, Vitor. Good to have you here at The D-Word.
In answer to your question: Yes the proposal would need to be very polished; not just idea stage but well researched on its subject, characters, relevance and uniqueness.
Betty, would be great if you registered as a full member , which would give you access to all 50 of our discussion topics, including fundraising and distribution.
My name is Mark. I am a software developer and film student. I decided to go to film school because I had a documentary that was set to go twice and the production company flaked on me both times. The story is so close to my heart that I decided to learn how to do the doc my self. That was in 2008 and I have just finished preproduction. Production to start in March.
Welcome, Mark. You may find the story of D-Word member Jon Foy inspiring. He was in the same boat as you, now heading off to Sundance with his first doc.
Hello, I'm Nancy, communications coordinator for the British Columbia chapter of the Documentary Organization of Canada. I'm gonna be in here every week or so looking for news and stuff to share with the DOC BC membership and I'm curious to hear what other people are up to in terms of financing and developing their own films.
Welcome to The D-Word, Nancy! (Blame it on the holidays that nobody has greeted you yet...)
You should also apply for Professional status here ...
Welcome, Nancy :)
Hello folks, and Happy New Year!
My name is Errol, and I'm a documentary cinematographer based in Baltimore, Maryland. Last year turned out to be a particularly good year for me with the film that I shot, 'Music by Prudence', winning an Academy Award for Best Documentary Short – most easily remembered as the film behind the "Oscar Kanye moment." lol. Since then, I've worked on projects in various African countries and along America's eastern seaboard.
In Summer 2010 Elinor Burkett & I finished another documentary, 'iThemba,' which went on to premiere at IDFA this past November as well as showing at various other festivals in Europe and Africa. iThemba is now in the distribution stage.
In Brooklyn NY, I'm working with director, Michele Stephenson on 'An American Promise' – a coming-of-age documentary that's 11 years in the making, about 2 African-American boys and explores the dynamics that surround them as they matriculate a private High School in Manhattan.
Additionally, in the Catskill Mountains of Upstate New York, we've begun shooting a nature-doc in the fall with director, Mike Mathis, on the life of Naturalist & Essayist, John Burroughs, who grew in notoriety for his research and activism in the early 1900s. For this shoot, all the footage (sans the interviews) was shot solely on the, now popular, Canon HDSLRs. There are many pros and cons to this new technology, but while working with the camera for the entire shoot, I was able to find ways to combat the issues that normally plague video shot on the any Canon HDSLR.
My forte is shooting – it's what I love doing and have been doing since 2003. Every day I try to learn something new, whether it be from other docs or from simply watching a TV Show and picking scenes apart. I'm a stickler for good sound and lighting and am maniacal about shooting things right, even if it means agonizing over a shot for another minute or two til it's just right, time permitting, of course.
Now where editing is concerned, I gained about 40,000 hours of my editing experience with Final Cut Pro while still in college, which helped greatly post-college when I started my documentary career in 2008. I do documentary editing but not nearly as much as I shoot. I find myself spending many hours now soaking up all I can about video and various technology because the more I know, the better I am able to become creatively. Plus I'll be prepared when it comes to video troubleshooting which I do a lot of for people when they're stuck in say, a Final Cut Pro problem...right upon a deadline, or making suggestions for their next camera/equipment purchase. So I hope I'll be of some help on some of the threads on the D-Word.
With this new year, my goal is to create more great work with great people, make new contacts and build friendships in this close-knit weave which is the documentary film world. I wish you all a very productive and successful 2011!
Welcome, Errol. Great to have you here with us. There's a lot of collective knowledge in the various discussion topics for you to soak up. And I'm sure we'll be learning a lot from you, too.
Hi Everyone – I'm a Director/Producer/ Camera-person from Asheville, North Carolina. Last year I finished a film called ON COAL RIVER with my wife/co-director and we're starting another project now. I signed up for D-Word a few months ago, but I'm just now starting to poke around the threads and appreciating the resource this is! I'm looking forward to learning a lot :)
Good to have you come out of the darkness at last, Adams.
Hi Adams, saw On Coal River at STF last year. Great job, good luck with your new film.
I just heard the sad news about Judy Bonds from On Coal River. My condolences.
Hello everyone – Thanks to a tip from another doc maker I've been lurking about the forums for months now, trying to soak up as much wisdom as possible, but as 2011 dawns I figure it's time to wave hello.
I'm a writer/director currently stationed in Los Angeles and am in post on my first documentary project: a series about five starkly disparate elementary and high schools in New Orleans and Baltimore, the unusual historical origin they all share, and the stories of what it's like to educate inside their respective walls today. Thanks, all of you, for creating such a great collective resource and community, and Happy New Year!
Welcome, Steve. Feel free to register as a professional member. You'll gain access to all 50 discussion topics.
Thanks for the welcome, Doug!
Good to have you joining us, Steve. Say goodbye to all your free time ;-)
Hi D-Word. Happy to be here. I just finished my first feature doc this past year and its been on the festival circuit having a pretty good time. The film is called A Life Ascending. You can find a trailer at ALifeAscending.com Im starting to enter the world of hybrid distribution and anxious to learn from others and share what Im learning along the way. Im also looking for some interns to share some of the experience with and to help with some of the research and marketing work. cheers, Stephen
Congratulations on completing your film, Stephen and welcome as a full D-Word Member too – feel free to explore the place. You may also wish to re-post your request for interns (perhaps with some more details) in the Public Classifieds Topic
Iâ€™ve just joined the D-Word, thanks to John Burgan for the connection. It seems like a terrific space/collective resource. I hope to make a useful contribution. Here are some headlines re my background.
These days I work at the intersection of documentary and participatory media. I was co-founder and producer of BBC2â€™s award winning Video Nation project, for which people across the UK recorded everyday life in the 90s, which we edited, with their approval, into over twenty hours of diverse TV output. I was Executive Producer of the BBC Capture Wales digital storytelling project, the first major initiative of its kind in the UK, which was informed by the work of The Center for Digital Storytelling in Berkeley, and resulted in a wealth of autobiographical stories made in workshops around Wales, and contributed to a continuing.digital storytelling culture here.
I still live in South Wales though Iâ€™m now a Research Fellow at the Digital Cultures Research Centre, at the University of the West of England in Bristol. My research explores the emergence of collaborative online documentary. Iâ€™m interested in how a collaborative approach and the online network might enhance documentaryâ€™s role in the public sphere.
I blog at http://collabdocs.wordpress.com/
In the 90s I was a producer/director of documentary and arts TV. My work pursued themes of culture and identity â€“ in Hilda at Darjeeling for Channel Four British women looked back on their role in India under the Raj, in Meeting the Masai Mob for BBC2, Aboriginal Australians met with Masai people to share experiences over land rights. Iâ€™ve also made work about culture and media â€“ Pictures in the Post (BBC2) was a history of the 20th century told through postcards and their messages. Verite Today (BBC2) looked at ideas of truth in British documentary and included interviews with Jean Rouch Nick Broomfield and Richard Leacock. How the West was Lost (Channel 4) looked at Native American representations in Hollywood, and in Navajo Media.
Right now Iâ€™m looking for participants for a web based collaborative project. Within my practice based research Iâ€™m revisiting Jean Rouch and Edgar Morinâ€™s seminal 1960 documentary, Chronicle of a Summer, in particular the question which opens the film, in the classic vox pops sequence, Are you happy? You can see a clip on the site homepage – â€¨http://theareyouhappyproject.org/
Iâ€™m seeking collaborators who are interested in getting involved by asking that question on video in their locality. This could be an interesting brief for media studies or documentary students. â€¨If that interests any teachers here I could offer a briefing via Skype, and could put the call to action into context, both of the original film and of the growing field of collaborative online documentary. (I should mention that I have some teaching experience. ) â€¨Thanks for reading. â€¨My email â€“ email@example.com
What a fascinating background, Mandy. We did a bunch of collaborative projects here at The D-Word in our first few years, but sadly none since then. A shame since such great potential exists for it within a strong and supportive worldwide community like this. So certainly hope your presence helps inspire some more collaborations.
Great to have you here, Mandy. I will definitely be encouraging colleagues and students to participate in the Are you happy? project
Thanks Doug, John. I look forward to D-Wording. Have a good weekend.
Hi D-Word community,
My name is Jeff Girard. Iâ€™ve been an activist since 2000 primarily in the area of bettering the LGBT community. I started the first visible LGBT group in my hometown in 2003, led it through the end of 2007, and then became employed as a volunteer recruiter and trainer with the NO on 8 campaign in San Francisco and Sacramento. Since 2009, Iâ€™ve been in the east bay.
In late 2009, I bought a program to hook up my VCR to my computer to transfer my home movies to digital format. It came with a simple video editing program and once I started using it my creative side was reinvigorated after having been set aside while I focused on activism. It started to occur to me that I could merge my creativity and activism by making viral videos and films.
My areas of interests regarding activism and documentary filmmaking include:
-initiating sustainable gay groups in rural/isolated areas, which is needed in many places in CA
-preventing the destruction of the human food supply
-voter empowerment: required open debates; instant runoff voting; repealing Prop. 14; the advancement of alternative parties and independents
-access to affordable genuinely-healthy food for all
-healthy sexual education inclusive to LGBT teens; opposition to the glorification of un-protected sex
-freedom from the big-brother/nanny state
I am here seeking collaborators and mentors. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to collaborate with me or offer a mentorship opportunity in the Sacramento, east bay, or southern CA areas. (Note: I apologize if sharing email is against TOS but I am unable to find whether or not it is)
Weâ€™ve heard a lot about â€œit gets betterâ€ for LGBT folks recently. I hope that promise is not just for teens but for the LGBT folks who endure adversities in their adulthood. Iâ€™ve found it to be a challenge to find mentors in the LGBT community. Maybe I just donâ€™t know the right people. To be clear, I am open to working with people of all walks of life â€“ not just LGBT folks.
I want to continue to do good works as an activist â€“ I just need to make enough to pay for my vehicle and food. My hope is that I can find a mentor who sees the record of good works Iâ€™ve done as an activist to mentor me and help me become even more equipped to do good in the world while being able to take care of myself too.
With all humility, I was the only person in my family to graduate high school and not get into drugs or become an alcoholic. I come from a tough background with no examples of successful people in my family. When I became an adult I had to start working to survive and since then I have avoided student loan debt. I may not be a college educated person, but Iâ€™m certainly an intelligent and creative person. Well, I did take one public speaking class. I got an â€œA.â€
I became unemployed last November and am trying to do all I can to find a place for me to utilize my passion for activism and creativity. Iâ€™m hoping to work on projects and partner with or create a nonprofit to fund my projects. Iâ€™m living in my vehicle by choice and I could not be happier about it. Itâ€™s equipped me to push myself harder to move forward. In case you're wondering, I shower utilizing couch surfing. I'm quite clean and organized considering I live in a vehicle.
Because I am living in my vehicle, for now, I can go anyway. For now, Iâ€™m still in the east bay near San Francisco.
Thank you for your consideration.
PS: At http://www.youtube.com/user/noonprop14theatre you can see an example of my work. I directed, wrote, edited, and appeared in the project.
Welcome, Jeff. Feel free to take one more step and register for professional membership here. It'll give you access to all 50 of our discussion topics.
And keep up the good work.
Hello. I've been reading the constructive and generous posts here for a few months- it's time to introduce myself. I work for a weekly documentary show named World Report. The segments aired are a mix of traditional news (with correspondents) and more impressionistic pieces. My specialty is the latter. Here are a few samples:
Look forward to adding whatever I can to the discussions.
Good to have you posting at last, David. Sometimes wonder what we have to do to lure the lurkers out into the sunshine and light of the written word ;-)
(Trembling as I type)It's either a post-nervous breakdown, mid-life crisis or a recent trip to India that has me working backwards to becoming a documentary film maker. I was asked to photograph (I'm a classically trained professional photographer making money by doing weddings and freelance work for periodicals)AND "film" for a project dealing with spinal cord injured persons in India last November. With a handycam and digital recorder I "documented" what escip does (look at www.escip.org). I've come back inspired to go back to what I started to do (1st year of college; cinematography major) but didn't complete due to a series of unforeseen events. My goal and agenda at this point to continue bringing social awareness to our generation and inspire the future to also be inspired to film. I would like to teach eventually, how to film in 3rd world countries as a way to heal from pasts that were harmful and painful. I'm at the zenith of my creativity and am ready to share it with the world!!! So, hello and encourage me if you can! NAMASTE
No need to tremble, Karina. We don't bite and we do encourage. Really glad you found us and screwed up the courage to jump right in and start posting. That's the only way we can get to know you.
Welcome and all the best with your ambitious goals.
I've known about D-Word for so long that I can't believe I am only now joining. For the past couple of years I've been attending the Stranger than Fiction series at IFC in NY and have loved the little community that has formed around that event so I am hoping to broaden that now on the D-Word. In the past 7 or 8 years I've worked primarily as an editor, but do occasionally direct my own work as well. I look forward to learning from everyone here as well as sharing some of my own experiences from the field. Samples of my work can be found here: www.rachelshuman.com
Thanks for taking a look!
Banner day at The D-Word! Finally. We. Get. Rachel. To. Join. Us.
(Sorry, folks, but we go way back. And it's taken years.)
Welcome, Rachel, and feel free to leap right into the discussions.
Thanks, Doug, for the warm welcome! I know...I can't believe how long it's been, but just glad to be here now. It's impressive how much the site has grown; what a wonderful resource and place for community. I hope to see you soon.
I'm completely new to documentary film-making, and was recommended to the D-word as a place to connect with others in the field. Here is a little bit about my background:
I'm currently a M.A. student at The New School studying Political Science. The issues that drive my studies include: economic inequality, poverty, and human rights to name but a few. My plan for about 5 years now was to pursue a career as an academic, addressing these issues through classroom teaching, research, and political activism. Teaching and research are exciting for me, so being a professor seemed like the most logical route for me.
About a year ago however, I began to think about film (specifically documentary) as a medium for researching and communicating the ideas that drive me. Documentary film-making seemed exciting; it provided a new, and seemingly broader, medium to research and communicate with people about my areas of concern. The type of research I have been working on in graduate school has been geared more towards academic crowds – indeed this is the norm, and necessary for career advancement. I've always been interested in communicating with broad audiences though, and above all, that is why I am now turning to documentary film-making. Putting together a real-life account of the lives and experiences of others is REALLY EXCITING for me. I admire those documentary filmmakers who have pulled this feat off with success, and I hope that I can one day do the same.
I should mention that despite my enthusiasm for documentary film-making, I did not pursue it initially. There are several reasons for this. First, I was already so invested in academia. Second, I knew very little about film-making, and did not know anyone personally that was in the film-making profession. Finally, I don't have the funds for film school, and wasn't interested in taking out more student loans to do so.
Despite these obstacles, my desire to pursue documentary has only grown during the past year, to the point where I needed to address it!. About a month ago I finally did, when I set out on my first documentary on subway musicians, which I am currently working on. I'm learning a lot from being on the ground, and have came across some interesting people and resources along the way that have really helped my development. I'm hoping that the D-Word will be another great resource where I can share my experiences, and gather knowledge from other filmmakers. Additionally, I am interested in finding work with documentary film crews, so that I can learn more about the art and draft of documentary film-making (I will post an ad in the classifieds stating that I am looking to find work with documentary crews).
Okay, I'm going to stop now because this introduction is probably entirely too wrong, but thanks for having me here, and I look forward to getting to know all of you!
Lots of good energy there, Dean. I'm sure you already know of the very well-regarded graduate documentary programme at the New School
It's great to join this amazing resource and on-line community. There's not a lot to tell about myself. I studied Television and Film Production for undergrad but took several years off in between and after serving with a non-profit Christian education and development organization in the Philippines. I was able to do some filming while there but my work kept me too busy to do much filmmaking. I've actually travelled to quite a few countries in South America and Asia putting together short videos on the work various church organizations are doing but it's always felt unfulfilling... there was a specific agenda and target audience that I didn't want to be stuck with.
I came back to the states and got married in 2008 and now my wife & I are a traveling production crew. It's been great to work together as a team on various corporate/volunteer projects and we're hoping to branch out into more independent type work that can actually pay the bills... and if not, hopefully the stock footage I sell from some of these projects will help at least!
I kinda took a gamble and used all my money to buy a used Sony EX1 on craigslist and jobs just started coming. I'm still using that EX1 but I've kept reinvesting in equipment as much as possible, learning from my own mistakes, and doing the best I can for each job. I'd love to move towards a DSLR at some point but I'm so heavily invested in my Sony setup that I'm going to work on honing my skills, saving my money, and be comfortable with the equipment I have for a while.
Right now, my wife & I are working on a story of a friend that was a bush pilot in Venezuela that went missing with a plane load of people in a Cessna 182 about 2 years ago. There's an incredible local and international grass roots movement to find the wreckage and get closure for the family. I'm hoping to use the search effort(from scientists at NASA to a private unmanned drone company, satellite images, ground searches through the jungle) as a platform for also examining the kind of person this pilot was: a volunteer pilot with no stipend or salary 100% sustained on donations who saved hundreds of lives flying into ~900 foot runways in remote jungle villages. Ya, it's probably going to have a Christian theme to it because that's who he was and part of the reason he did what he did, but I still believe the human interest aspect of this story could hold someone's attention regardless of their faith or lack of it... I don't want to make another "... and this is why you should be a Christian" film... I want a "do something that matters and die in the saddle" angle... but who knows at this point. If you're interested, www.findingbobnorton.org has some info on the whole search effort.
Well, that's a bit of an introduction. Thanks for having me on The D-Word. I look forward to getting to be a part of this community.