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2011 CLIENT REVIEW: EDITING WILD CAUGHT ALASKAN SALMON

April 2nd, 2012

With the Alaskan salmon season approaching, I thought I’d share some work I produced last year for Dan Lamont, a fellow photographer and board member with the Blue Earth Alliance. He needed an extra set of hands to finish up a project with the Seafood Producers Co-Op. Multimedia is time consuming; working as a team can make all the difference.

The Co-Op was updating its website with new content Dan had shot. They wanted to tell the salmon story, and why wild-caught salmon is so special, through video. With all the assets already shot by Dan, my job was to make a short overview piece for the Co-Op, plus a subject-specific short.

The challenge for me lay in careful image and video selection. Dan had already produced a couple of other subject-specific shorts, and we didn’t want the entire package to be reusing the same visuals. He had spent several days in Alaska capturing all the footage and stills, but working alone he could only gather so much footage, and only so many stories, and stay within budget. Having shot fishing stories in Alaska myself, I know how time intensive and expensive it can be.

Working in Dan’s editing suite, I was thankful for how he’d organized his assets, provided a rough audio track, and outlined the themes. All I had to do was clean up the audio and build the visual sequence in Final Cut.

It was fun to work in a collaborative atmosphere, and to enjoy Dan’s excellent culinary skills (lunch was on him!).

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Posted in client, collaboration, corporate, editing, multimedia, technique, work of others Comments Off on 2011 CLIENT REVIEW: EDITING WILD CAUGHT ALASKAN SALMON

DOCUMENTING “PRISON PHOTOGRAPHY ON THE ROAD” WITH PETE BROOK

December 10th, 2011

With an eye toward prison reform, writer and academic Pete Brook analyzes prison photography from behind his desk. After three years, he decided it was time to get out, on the road, and meet the people he’d written about. Especially the prisoners.

Pete is clear that he isn’t a photographer. Instead, he writes for Wired.com’s RAW File and runs his own blog where he dissects photography about the prison system in America. I knew him peripherally through the photo community and through introduction several years ago by a mutual friend. I like what he does, so when he put out an ask to help make a Kickstarter video, I offered to shoot it and Seattle Times staffer Erica Schultz edited it with Pete in an 11 hour binge.

Prison Photography has built a community over the years. There’s no money involved, so for Pete to get on the road, he had to ask for help. The Kickstarter campaign began. By using social media and crowd-sourced funding, he successfully raised more than he thought it would cost to make the grand American tour, meeting photographers in person, visiting prisons, and seeing education programs at work.

Click here or below to read more and see a scene cut from the video.

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KIVALINA WORK FEATURED IN WINk MAGAZINE

August 26th, 2011

My Kivalina work was recently included in a grant to the Open Society Institute by film maker Jenni Monet as part of her distribution plan. Subsequently, the photo agency Worldwide Image Navigation (WIN-Initiative), which holds an “image collection from the independent minds and unique creative perspectives of gifted photographers worldwide,” featured my work with a joint interview in their WINk Magazine, an online publication with a very attractive presentation. Click through to Page 75 to read the article.

The slow creep of things like climate change means stories created a few years ago are still extremely relevant. In 2008 I went to the remote Alaskan village of Kivalina on assignment for Germany’s Spiegel Magazine. My five days in Alaska was an amazing experience; having grown up in the northwest and having a librarian for a mother, I was exposed to many stories about native cultures. Reading about whale hunting is one thing, actually going out on the sea ice for a whale hunt is something I’d never imagined actually doing.

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COMMITTING TO LONG-FORM STORYTELLING

June 29th, 2011

I couldn’t help but write about another Tucker Walsh post at the Digital Naturalist because he interviewed Noah and Tim Hussin or America reCycled. I was one of the 103 backers who donated a (meager) sum to their Kickstarter campaign, and continue to enjoy their long-form storytelling as they bicycle across the country and document “people…finding innovative ways to come together and make revolutionary change on a local level, to regain control of their lives, rediscover independence, and recycle the American Dream.”

Along with their Kickstarter campaign, they won a $5000 grant from National Geographic, have a PayPal button, and manage to get by living simply on the road.

It’s definitely a commitment to a lifestyle, and having met Tim Hussin in the MediaStorm office (he’s another alumnus of the MediaStorm family…and another Tim) before he left on the trip, I enjoyed getting a glimpse of how the journey is unfolding. If you read the interview, you’ll find a lot of the MediaStorm ethos in the brothers’ words, as well as some insight in their process.

Say the brothers (and I agree):

“…it’s common that people hardly spend time producing their stories, so how can they expect people to spend the time to watch them? We spend months shooting and editing some of the longer stories in this project, so in the end 20 minutes of material isn’t really too much.

“We firmly believe that as long as a story is interesting and engaging, then people will continue to watch and listen. And it’s important to show and prove to people that the content you produce is in fact worth dedicating more than three minutes of your time to. Then, when people come to your site to watch whatever you’ve produced, they’ve already set aside enough time to watch it all. ”

Set some time aside, I think you’ll enjoy it.

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Posted in Canon 5D Mark II, coolness, inspiration, media, multimedia, work of others Comments Off on COMMITTING TO LONG-FORM STORYTELLING

NON-PROFITS AND NGO’S NEED STORYTELLING: WHY CHARITY WATER IS LEADING THE WAY

June 20th, 2011

During my morning ritual of sipping coffee and going over the news, RSS, and social media feeds, I saw a post at The Digital Naturalist. It’s a profile on charity: water, an organization successful at generating buzz, getting people to donate, and then going out and securing clean water for communities in developing countries. It’s a simple concept, with a simple message, and it doesn’t hurt that its founder, Scott Harrison, used to be a promoter in NYC.

Tucker Walsh interviewed Mo Scarpelli, of charity: water, about the non profit’s messaging. For the non profits and NGO’s out there, I think the take-away is that charity: water emphasizes how important communications and social networking are to its mission. For instance, they have leveraged a new communication tool to become, they say, the first non profit with more than one million twitter followers. Tweeting can be much more effective, and is much less expensive, than direct mail–or even email.

The story of charity: water – The 2009 September Campaign Trailer from charity: water.

I can’t definitively say that charity: water is leading the way, but it’s a good example. The organization has raised millions in a few short years, holds creative and well attended events, has made some excellent partnerships, and helps average people get involved through innovative fundraising models. Additionally, with the help of substantial private donations to cover operating costs, the organization can commit 100 percent of public donations toward direct services (building wells).

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Posted in activisim, advocacy, fundraising, multimedia, NGO, non profit, technique, work of others Comments Off on NON-PROFITS AND NGO’S NEED STORYTELLING: WHY CHARITY WATER IS LEADING THE WAY

FROM JAPAN’S TSUNAMI

March 16th, 2011

Matt Allard, for Al Jezeera, and Dan Chung, for the Guardian, have filed some video reports from Japan’s earthquake and tsunami.

Allard for Al Jezeera (more newsy):

Japan Earthquake, Natori from Matthew Allard.

Chung for The Guardian (more cinematic with a lot of dolly shots):

Aftermath – The Japanese Tsunami from Dan Chung.

Courtesy of DSLR Shooter.

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Posted in Canon 5D Mark II, media, video, work of others Comments Off on FROM JAPAN’S TSUNAMI

TIMELAPSE CINEMATOGRAPHY

March 3rd, 2011

Thanks to the Twitter Feed, I came across this time lapse work by Tom Lowe. Aside from getting in some climbing and canyoneering, I can’t thing of a better way to spend a summer than to travel across the American Southwest and shoot amazing footage with all this gear. Yes, I do like gear, and I can’t wait to have a shoot where I get to use such a long dolly shot or incorporate a crane! Here’s a behind the scenes video of this shoot.

TimeScapes: Rapture from Tom Lowe @ Timescapes on Vimeo.

Says Tom Lowe (included in total because I know how important sponsors and assistants are!):

“This is production footage I shot over the summer for my debut film, “TimeScapes,” a modern portrait of the American Southwest. I used Canon and Red MX cameras.

“Follow the production of the film at: http://twitter.com/timescapes

“Also here: http://timescapes.org and here http://timescapes.org/blog

“A huge thank you to my assistants/Associate Producers who helped me film this, Dustin Kukuk (http://twitter.com/drkanab), Nilo Recalde (http://twitter.com/nilomr) and Chris M (http://twitter.com/visceralway). And, as always, my most sincere and humble respect goes to Ron Fricke, Mark Magidson, Terrence Malick and Godfrey Reggio.

“Thank you to my sponsors: Kessler Crane, camBLOCK Canon USA, Vinten, KATA & Cinevate.

“Music is by the film’s composer Nigel “John” Stanford: http://johnstanfordmusic.com Make sure to turn the volume and bass way up!”

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Posted in Canon 5D Mark II, coolness, gear, photography, RED, technique, video, work of others Comments Off on TIMELAPSE CINEMATOGRAPHY

PRESS PHOTO CONTEST AWARDS

February 25th, 2011

This year’s photo contests, at least the major press photography ones, are wrapping up and I wanted to share some of my favorites. Definitely, there is a lot of strong stuff, and definitely, there are a lot of similarities to previous years and styles. One criticism I heard, and can’t really argue with, is that there must be a dead body in the image for it to win. While there are a lot of dead bodies, I do think it’s both gratuitous and representative of a reality, and necessary to show.

You could certainly spend a good chunk of time this weekend looking at the winning images and multimedia at World Press Photo and Pictures of the Year International.

There was also some discussion around the use of cell phone images, and the “apps” used to process the images; another discussion was about the unorthodox use of images captured by that Google mapping car–you know, the one with the cameras on top that creates the “Street View” images we use in Google maps?

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Posted in award, coolness, journalism, photography, Uncategorized, work of others Comments Off on PRESS PHOTO CONTEST AWARDS

MARINES CANCEL BASETRACK

February 8th, 2011

Picture 12I wrote about Basetrack not too long ago; it’s a novel concept for journalism, a new way to report on the war in Afghanistan. Embedded journalists, supported by a stateside team, use a combination of social media and a website interface to report on a battalion of Marines. The primary audience are the friends and family of the 1000 Marines, but if you’ve visited the site or are on their Facebook feed, you’ll see that it’s a repository for a lot of things relating to the war in Afghanistan. Considering today’s fractured audience, and the ability to pull content from various feeds (thus avoiding “traditional” media), I really do think it’s a novel way to report on a war. “We’ve been calling it a media experiment,” says Teru Kuwayama, the idea guy behind it.

Today word got around that the Marine Corps, over the weekend, decided to cancel the requisite embed making Basetrack what it is. From what I could glean, and many seem puzzled, the chief reasons are operational security (OPSEC) and available resources.

From the letter the Marine Corps sent Basetrack:

“Basetrack is also being asked to leave 1/8’s positions due to perceived Operational Security violations on portions of their website. These concerns are legitimate. Specifically the websites tie in to google maps to display friendly force locations…this Public Affairs office also deems an undue burden on the remaining personnel as the Executive Officer, the primary liaison to Basetrack, rotates back to CONUS.”

Find that letter here, at the Basetrack site.

I’ll let Teru Kuwayama explain the rest here on this downloadable mp3 fromPRI’s “The World,” broadcast today.

Also, read about it here, at the Neiman Journalism Lab.

However, maybe the two most important links are:
The Basetrack Website
The Basetrack Facebook page

And one other, on the use of the iPhone as a primary camera on the battlefield.

Picture 4

Picture 5

Picture 10

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Posted in afghanistan, journalism, photography, publishing, research, war, work of others Comments Off on MARINES CANCEL BASETRACK

INTERVIEW WITH BENJAMIN DRUMMOND ON “HOZOMEEN” MULTIMEDIA

January 7th, 2011

I love looking at other people’s work, especially multimedia. Benjamin Drummond and Sara Joy Steele, a husband-wife creative team, recently produced a piece on chert. “Chert?” you might ask. Yes, chert. It’s a rock that’s easily shaped into stone tools historically used by indigenous peoples of the Pacific Northwest, and there’s a stash of it in the heart of the rugged North Cascades.

Benjamin and Sara are using the new tools of today’s evolving media industry, and I was noting the techniques they used, the pacing, the music, and how the story gets told. Afterward, I wanted to know about the business end of it; how did they get the work? How did they budget it? How did they manage the multiple roles?

While it’s still a tough time for the editorial market (and commercial, too), it’s also exciting because of multimedia, social media, and the hardware and software allowing small teams to become full production studios.

It’s about tools, style, and…chert. Read the interview and learn about the tools from today, and days gone by.

Watch the video and click through the jump for the interview! Post to comments if you’ve more questions.

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