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Questions of Copyright and Value: Where Does Inspiration Come From?

By Dan Sohner

Have you ever had an idea stolen? Copied maybe? It’s not a particularly great feeling. But now imagine that that idea ends up on the cover of, let’s say, National Geographic.

Photographer Tim Kemple has something to say about that. In short, Kemple made an image of an iconic rock climber on an iconic rock climb and another photographer, Jimmy Chin, made a nearly identical image, which he sold to National Geographic.

Jimmy Chin's image:

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Tim Kemple's image:

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You can imagine the conversation that happened. Mr. Kemple wasn’t very happy and Mr. Chin didn’t seem to see anything wrong.

Where does copyright begin and end? What is intellectual property, really? Is this ethical?

Where does inspiration truly come from?

As a creative person, I think it is sometimes hard to ask yourself where an idea came from or why you decided to create something in a certain way. When you start asking those questions, you start to discover your personal style, which then inevitably relates directly back to everything in this world which inspires you and has most likely inspired someone else at some point.

One of the hardest things we have to face as creatives is constantly figuring out how to stay relevant, fresh and innovative. It can be difficult to maintain uniqueness when there is such a saturation of content these days. But is the issue really about the physical production of a similar image, or is it more about the idea of something you made and believe is truly unique being recreated? Does this lessen the value of the unique way you see the world?

It is up to us as creatives to draw our own boundaries and direct the evolution of photography and video production in the manor we see fit because the conversations that arise are serving to shape our social values as a whole.

When producing content for clients, we have to make sure we can evolve the conversation while still maintaing the point and integrity of the story. As storytellers we give voice to those who may not have had the opportunity to share, and their voice is what inspires us to continue developing content. Even if the story we're telling has already been told, maybe it hasn't been told in this particular way by this particular person, and that interviewee getting their voice and message heard is what matters.

I think the point of visual storytelling, whether it's through photography or videography, is to present a platform that helps us all evolve the way we understand the world around us. We have to build off of things people can relate to and in doing that, have to accept the fact that some inspiration is borrowed. We have to tap into the collective conscience in order to build off of what has previously been done.

Shared experiences, like the ones we share through media, are some of the most powerful things we can feel as humans, only to be trumped, of course, by having an image on the cover of National Geographic…

Farmer to Cup

Farmer to Cup

Hi all, Things have been a little quiet lately on the blog because of a new project we’re working on, but we’re back online! We’ve been developing a new documentary with with a unique window into tea production practices in Kenya, the world export leader of black tea.

We spent the last couple of weeks in production in Kenya, meeting new people and discovering new stories on small tea farms. We are learning about the tea trade and synthesizing that information for a new media and storytelling platform. It’s exciting stuff! Not only are we capturing a unique story that has yet to be told in this light, but the way it’s going to be shared with viewers will be completely new.

We can’t wait to share these new stories with you! Until then, here are some pictures from the recent trip.

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Living with the Dead at the Intendence Film Festival

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Greetings! Our documentary Living With the Dead has been chosen to screen at the Intendence Film Festival the last week of June. We are excited and honored!

Living with the Dead is one of 13 films to be chosen from Colorado and 26 chosen from other states and countries. IFF's mission is to provide an inclusive film event that features the world-class talents of the Colorado film industry, while acknowledging good filmmaking wherever it originates. The festival also encourages and recognizes emerging young filmmakers. We are so happy to get Living With the Dead back out there for another screening.

Living With the Dead was our first feature-length documentary film researched and shot over a period of five years in Manila, Philippines. Manila is the most densely populated city in the world with an average of 43,000 people living per square kilometer. In the center of this heaving metropolis lies the North Cemetery which is home to a living community of more than 2,000 people. In a country where around 40 percent of people live below the poverty line, and population in Manila is reaching desperate proportions, the cemetery provides a unique residence for the hundreds of families that live and work within its walls. Our documentary explores the lives and dreams of several cemetery residents as well as the socioeconomic and political issues that brought them there.

We can’t wait to see what other incredible documentaries have been chosen to screen at the festival. There are so many stories that need to be told!

The Intendence Film Festival (IFF) will be screening films from Colorado and the rest of the world on Thursday, June 25, through Saturday, June 27, 2015, at the Open Media Foundation. Check out more information about the fest and film lineup at their Facebook page.

Documentaries at the Denver Film Society

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Greetings, Just in case you didn’t know, Denver Film Society is going crazy with documentaries during May, and we wanted to pass the word along! There is something for everyone.

If you like getting glimpses into artists’ private lives:

Cinema Q: Packed In A Trunk - The Lost Art Of Edith Lake Wilkinson

Edith Lake Wilkinson, an artist of the early 19th century, was committed to an asylum in 1924. This doc reveals some of the mysteries and work of Wilkinson’s life as her great niece goes on a journey to return some of her lost pieces to Provincetown. The documentary was funded by Kickstarter where 235 backers pledged $37,150 to bring the film into reality. Denver is one of the first cities to screen the doc, so don’t miss it!

Tickets

If you’re a late-90’s music lover, check out:

Heaven Adores You

Through the unique lens of Director Nickolas Rossi, the story of late musician Elliott Smith is told through an artful compilation of thirty-plus interviews. In the past his story has been told through the lens of addiction, drugs and darkness, but Rossi puts Smith’s music in front and center, with support from Smith’s friends and family members. This documentary also came to life through Kickstarter, raising $15,292 with 218 backers.

Tickets

If you’re interested in unique and curious portraits, see:

Meet the Hitlers

This documentary follows the lives of several of Hitler’s last descents, discovering along the way what’s in a name. The film captures individuals speaking about what it’s like to carry Hitler as a last name, and how it’s affected their lives and identities in a myriad of strange ways. The film challenges viewers to question their beliefs and biases about what a person’s last name really represents, if anything at all. Director Matt Ogens will be in attendance to answer questions after the viewing. For a peek into the director’s work, read Jamie Clifton’s interview with the director on Vice.com.  

Tickets

If you’re interested war and the mind’s of soldiers that have served….

In Country

A documentary teetering on the line of entertaining and disturbing, this film, also born of from a successful Kickstarter, peers into the lives of war veterans who spend their time reenacting their experiences abroad. The film follows the men, some of whom are still on an adrenaline rush from time recently spent in Iraq, as they reenact Vietnam war scenes in the thick forage of Oregon. It reveals personal footage of the men’s time spent in war mixed with old war movie footage to create a truly unsettling yet honest and vulnerable look into the lives of men struggling to reintegrate themselves back into the daily grind of American life after war. For some it’s a form of therapy, for others it’s purely a nostalgic act, and for the audience it’s a revealing, thoughtful and even historical account honoring those who’ve served. Catch it on it’s one and only viewing night at the Denver Film Center on May 25th.

Tickets

Read A.V. Club’s review of the film here.

A Letter to the Interviewee

A Letter to the Interviewee

Dear Interviewee, We’re going to show up to the scene with a multitude of cameras, lights and tripods. We’re going to set up a “stage” for you with lights all over and we’ll be standing behind and around the lenses asking you questions, but we don’t want these things to intimidate you, although we recognize that’s probably impossible.

We’re here to listen to you and tell your story. We value you.

The gear, the lights, the tripods - they’re just tools we are using to make your story beautiful to watch. It feels awkward right now, so keep in mind that we’re here for a larger goal. Your story is serving a purpose.

Now is your opportunity to say what you want an audience to hear, to tell your story honestly and without reserve. This is our opportunity to listen. We’ll take what you say and form new questions from it, keeping the flow of the conversation going very naturally. We like things to unfold organically. We’ll try to connect with you on an emotional level, if that’s where you want to go, because that is what will capture an audience the most.

Unless you’re delivering a thesis, there is no need to prepare. Who could know more about your experience than you? We’ve done enough research to know what questions to ask. We come to you having formulated some questions, but not all of them. We come to this conversation from a place of true curiosity. You have the story to tell, we have the job of weaving it together in the best way possible. You can leave the work and worry to us - all you have to do is show up and sit with us.

Being interviewed on camera is an extreme act of vulnerability and trust. That’s a lot to offer someone you just met. Trust that we appreciate this and in turn, we will treat your story with great care.

The secret is this: We have the gear, the knowledge, the expertise when it comes to making a video work. But your story is the reason we’ve all gathered here. So make “mistakes.” Ask to start over. Ask questions. Let’s collaborate for a goal beyond this awkward moment -- we’re ultimately here to educate, inspire and inform our community. When we remember that, we’ll do great work together… especially if you’ve never been on camera before.

Sincerely,

Chance Multimedia

 

Feature Photo:

Jessica Chance interviewing Hassan Latif for Take Care Health Matters. http://takecarehealthmatters.org/portfolio-item/hassan-latif

We spoke with Kevin Monteiro in 2014 for Take Care Health Matters. Kevin sat down with us 72 days after his release from a 30 year prison sentence. The experiences he shared, and more stories at takecarehealthmatters.org, are inspiring other justice-involved people to access health care.

http://takecarehealthmatters.org/portfolio-item/kevin-monteiro

Insights from Chance Multimedia's Director of Photography

Insights from Chance Multimedia's Director of Photography

Hi, Chloe here. Today I’m going to interview James Chance, our Director of Photography and co-owner of Chance Multimedia. He has been the creative eye behind all of Chance Multimedia’s shoots for 6 years, and had many years of shooting experience before the company’s inception. I’m curious to know how he does what he does, what exactly goes on in his brain while he’s on a shoot, and I’m sure you could glean some insight from it too.

Chloe: So James, first can you tell us how you came to be so enamored with shooting video?

James: My background is photojournalism, however, I always had an interest in video because it was another tool. Way back, in my early foundation courses I specialized in video rather than photography. It had always been at the back of my mind. As I got more serious about visual journalism, although my track was still photography, there was always an interest and it grew. Mainly because it offers so much as a medium for storytelling. You can only do so much with stills. Being able to hear someone’s voice… It’s just a an added layer of the story.

Chloe: What does it take for you to prepare for a shoot? What steps do you take beforehand?

James: I’m uber-organized. If I could give one piece of advice to people starting out, it would be ‘stay organized.’ Especially with video, there’s so much stuff, so much gear, being organized is essential. I put a lot of thought and prep in before getting on location to ensure I have everything I need and that it’s accessible.

I like to know ahead of time what’s expected. That’s the benefit of working with a team, it helps to have someone in a production role. Starting out, there’s a lot of people having to do the one-man-band thing and it’s challenging. For one person, staying organized when you’re dealing with complexity is tough. You need someone to keep you on track so you can lose yourself creatively in any moment. Coffee is also important.

Chloe: You have a very unique style to be sure. It is what sets Chance Multimedia apart from others. How do you achieve the unique movements that we see in shots, where we are following a character’s feet as they walk, or getting a sweeping overview of a landscape?

James: Specifically with equipment - you have to conceive the idea first and then apply it with equipment. Physically I can’t carry everything -- that’s how we’ve grown as a company in striving for better production value. The main pieces of equipment we use are jibs and sliders. We also recently got the Movi. These are all just tools to facilitate ideas and high production.

First and foremost we’re talking about motion. Motion defines video. So given that, I want to make the best motion I can, use motion to my advantage because it determines production value. In any visual medium, providing the viewer with intriguing or new perspectives is important. When I do workshops, I teach photographers and videographers that you always think about where you’re shooting from. If you don’t move that much and every picture is the same, it becomes very dull. You have to create interesting angles and perspectives so the viewer is challenged in a way. Great images offer a unique perspective. The tools and equipment are really just to provide fluid motion, because you can only do so much with a handheld camera. We still do a lot of handheld stuff, but it’s all about production value.

Chloe: I’ve also always wondered, how do you achieve the beautiful vignette that we see around certain shots? And what affect do you think this has on the overall aesthetic of the video?

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From “Rotary Projects in the Dominican Republic

James: This type of look is used a lot more in our documentary. Without getting too technical, a lot of times when shooting with lens apertures wide open, that vignette is created. Also, using neutral density filters is critical when shooting on DSLR cameras. However at their highest settings, they tend to vignette. This effect draws the viewer in toward the middle of the screen. It’s not something I deliberately seek, it just happens as a side product of the way I’m shooting through the lenses. We do it less with commercial stuff because it’s more difficult to shoot that way.

Chloe: What is the first thing you do when you get to a shoot location? How do you set up your shots and know what to capture?

James: Usually when we arrive we know there’s going to be an interview. So we scope the best location for the interview - looking for natural light and a clean area that’s not too cluttered. An important thing is to get a lot of distance behind the subject, because we’re using quite a shallow depth of field on the lenses to make the subject pop out. We do interviews first as a rule so that we can illustrate any points that were made. If the person talks about getting their eyes tested using a specific tool we need to get a shot of them doing that after the interview.

Generally with B-roll we work as a pair. One person will have the A-camera which is handheld with audio to make sure we’re getting the basics and the sound. Then the B-camera is usually a DSLR like a 5D, which is rigged on a slider or jib to complement the basic stuff with more high-production-value shots. The balance in necessary.

Now that’s for live action situations. Next we’ll pull away from that and look for specific pickups, shots that can fill spaces which aren’t dependent on a subject doing a specific thing. They’re more about a space, more detailed shots, more conceptual in nature. With that stuff we’ll use the equipment to achieve high production value. All the while I’m thinking about the editor as well. In order to make their job easier you have to use a combination of wide shots and close shots so that they have enough to make a very dynamic-looking video.

Chloe: How do you balance being behind the camera and also engaging with the subjects of your video? The people in front of the lens?

James: My history as a stills photographer taught me the huge importance of engaging with the person you’re shooting. As storytellers we all have different styles that are personal to us. As a photographer, I would spend a lot of time talking to people and hanging with them and getting to know them before shooting. We often don’t have that luxury now on video shoots because it’s go-go-go. But people being comfortable in front of the camera is everything. If people feel awkward or shy it absolutely is read by the viewer. Sometimes I’ll stop shooting and chat with people and goof around a bit, then we’ll start up again. You know, we’re not doing hard news generally, and although our responsibility to the clients is very important, I try not to make it all too serious. People are intimidated when the video guys come in, especially with a multi-person crew. So we just try to put people at ease by recognizing the fact that it’s a bit uncomfortable.

As far as engaging with the subject while I’m focusing on the shots...you kind of just get used to multitasking as you shoot. It becomes second nature, like how you can have a conversation and make a sandwich at the same time. You’ve made a lot of sandwiches, so you can do it. That’s where organization comes into it too, because when you know what points you have to hit coming in, you can move very freely within them, you don’t have to think too much. It becomes easier to find the right exposure and angles. Between shooting moments you can re-engage with the subject. If there’s action going on between two people, I’m not going to say anything, I just let it play out.

Chloe: Because we do impact reporting and uncover serious issues, there must be times where being behind the camera is difficult. What is the most difficult shoot you’ve been on? And what advice do you have for filmmakers in those situations?

James: The worst situation I’ve seen people surviving in is a community that lives around the landfill sites in Manila. There is a site we shot at specifically in Vitas, Tondo. The people there are surviving off two things - one is sorting through the landfill where all the trash is getting dropped off to find recyclables to sell. The other is producing charcoal .They are pulling scrap wood from wherever and cooking it down to produce charcoal. So this whole area is full of black smoke, and it’s just unbreathable. For shooting, I could duck in for 20 seconds at a time, breathing through a handkerchief, and then run out. Not only are people working in there all day, but there are communities living right next to it. There are kids with no clothes and bare feet just running around the trash. Not only was that tough on a physical level, but emotionally it’s just hard seeing people live that way. It’s always the kids that hit you emotionally. What future do they have?

My advice to other filmmakers that may put themselves in the same situations -- Be compassionate, be sensitive, work sensitively. Always put the subjects first. I’m not going to upset anyone to get a better shot. If they don’t want me there I’m just going to smile and wave and say ‘see you later.’ You have the responsibility of representing a whole field and that I take incredibly seriously. You also have a responsibility to represent your subjects honestly. If you’re in a situation where they are consenting to being recorded, with that comes a huge responsibility to tell their story correctly, truthfully. What are you doing if you’re providing misinformation? What’s the point? It doesn’t serve.

Chloe: What do you believe video and documentaries do for the people on the other end of the camera? The people and lives you’re featuring?

James: You hope that the window into other people’s lives promotes change in society as a whole. I try really hard not to be the bleeding heart. When I was 18 I thought I could save the world, but as you grow older you just realize all you can do is use your skills to help as much as possible. There are organizations that are far better set up to deal with the massive challenges.

Honestly, you do it selfishly and you do it for other people, it’s fifty-fifty. I can make a difference and I am satisfied by the work. I have a skillset, and I would rather offer my skill-set toward social change because it’s important.

Chloe: To end on a light note, what are the most inspiring types of shoots for you to go on? What do you enjoy capturing the most?

James: I like shoots where I can take my time. Time is the most valuable asset. It promotes creativity. It’s not so much subject matter that excites me the most, there’s a scale obviously, but it’s more about having the time to approach any subject as creatively as possible rather than having one morning in one situation to hit all the marks. We’re good at that now, but it’s not as satisfying because there’s not time to be as creative. It takes time to ingest a situation, wait for things to happen organically. There could be something twice as interesting an hour later but you just have to go with what you’ve got because you’re on the clock.

To answer the obvious side, I always enjoy working with people, telling their stories. It’s the personal stories that I like. It’s an honor to represent people, it’s a responsibility that I love. Some people open up about incredibly personal things and it’s not easy to do.

Introducing New Team Members

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  Spring greetings!

We have some great new content lined up to share with you throughout these upcoming months.

First things first, meet Chloe and Dan.

Chloe came to us as an intern, hungry for more knowledge and experience in the video production world. She admired our mission, having a passion both for working with nonprofits and using video and photography as mediums to tell the untold story. With a background in journalism from Colorado State University, she was eager to develop her skills in that field and gain some real-world experience. Her natural knack for listening and narrative development quickly earned her a spot on the team as a Creative Production Assistant, where she is able to get her hands dirty in a variety of areas. She enjoys being a jack of all trades. She is currently working on building up Chance’s website, attending shoots to assist the team, blog planning, updating Stories Without Borders.com, organizing video projects and narrative development as an assistant editor.

What inspires her the most?

“When I watch a finished draft of a story we’ve told, a story that I’ve been involved with from start to finish, I feel incredibly inspired. Creating a story takes so much work, so much attention to detail, so much listening and attentiveness to the people being featured...it’s amazing when it all comes together.”

Dan came to us as a skilled craft editor.

He came to Colorado by bicycle in 2013 and just recently landed at Chance Multimedia. Living in Ohio, he had attended Ohio University for Photojournalism and Film and held a position as a staff photographer at the Columbus Dispatch. While freelancing in Colorado for outdoor lifestyle clients, Daniel was looking for something bigger which would help him give back to a larger community. As an Editor and Cinematographer, he is able to help tell stories which, in turn, help inspire people to think outside of their immediate lives. Daniel has experience working with nonprofits such as Local Matters in Columbus, Ohio and Paradox Sports in Boulder, Colorado and is using those experiences to help communicate the stories we here at Chance Multimedia are passionate about.

What inspires him the most?

“I am inspired by passionate people or groups who are not afraid to stand up and make their voices heard. We often work with exceptionally driven subjects and try to tell their stories with as much conviction as they tell them. Being able to feel that energy and weave it into the work we are doing here is a very inspirational feeling.”

On Creating a Life of Value, and Forging Your Own Road (Guest Post)

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By Jessica Kutz Direction. Career Path. Life Planning. Talk about pressure. I come from a generation of people who with the advent of the Internet, the instant connectedness to anyone and anything, Skype, social media, and Google maps, the world and its infinite possibilities are instantly available with a high-speed internet connection.  How does one go about inserting themselves amongst all the noise and begin to look for a way to have a voice?

Maybe the answer isn’t looking, maybe it’s creating. I recently met with Jessica from Chance Multimedia. I was (and still am) at a point in my life were I am testing out all the different ways I can create a life and a life’s work that I find valuable. So I started reaching out to people who are doing things that I could envision myself doing in a couple of years, people who have forged their own road instead of following one. I had heard about Chance Multimedia through an internship I had at WorldDenver and felt instantly connected to the company.

I thought about majoring in journalism in university but I never really felt like I wanted to be producing mass media type news. I had little interest in five-second reports on gruesome murders, tsunami aftermath, or political candor.  Now with the prevalence of social media, a tweet of 140 characters, every thing served on a spoon, media is reaching more people and becoming less informative.  Now that’s a scary thought.

Thankfully there is a solution found in the Chance Multimedia/Stories without Borders approach. Empower the storyteller. There is a way to embrace the digital age, to evolve with the technology and let it bring us back to our oral traditions. Ancient history tells us that humans have always been storytellers but somewhere along the way it feels as though we have left that part of our culture behind.

I spent some time in the Australian outback and had the opportunity to work with and live with the Jaowyn –an aboriginal group in the Northern Territory. I remember one particular day I was talking to one of the Elder’s Johnnie and he was telling me dreamtime stories of the area. He talked about the Gorge created by Nabil the creation snake that carved its way through the hard barren Australian desert and created life and brought water. Aboriginals are well known for their dreamtime stories and even more so for their connection to the land. These stories are handed down orally from generation to generation and revolve around land formation and the creation of animals. A crucial part of these stories is that they create a deep respect and awe for the country. This tradition fosters a great sense of stewardship and a responsibility to protect and maintain the land.

It makes me wonder, if more news were focused on people’s stories rather than sensational events would we feel a greater sense of responsibility to protect humanity. Would we find more of ourselves in our neighbors than we thought possible? I think the answer is yes. I think if more media were focused on narrative rather than documentation, society as a whole would feel a greater responsibility to protect and enhance the lives of those around us.  Topics like the Syrian refugee crisis would no longer be discussed in numbers or by what international agency is plastered on their identical white tents, instead we would hear about the individuals, their unique struggles, their identities as humans- not numbers.

In short, that is why I reached out to Chance Multimedia because they are reaching for a medium that endorses humanity and validates the success and struggles of people.

As a recent grad I, like many of my peers are feeling a need to connect to people like Jessica and James so maybe this hyper sense of instant connectedness can be used to our advantage after all.

On a side note don’t forget to check out their the Living with the Dead documentary March 29th at Sie Film Center!

Editor's note: Jessica has been volunteering with us to create a film poster and flyer as well as distributing it and engaging the community. She found us and has been an unexpected and great asset. We recommend her personally to anyone looking for help from a self-starting, talented, inspired and value-driven individual. I can see her looking for the same kind of help, soon! - Jessica Chance

 

Living with the Dead - Notes from a Documentary Editor

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by Patrick Gillespie, Chance Multimedia Editor and Production Assistant

This project was a host of different firsts for me. My first professional documentary edit, my first feature, the first time I cut a documentary that I did not produce and direct. Coming into the project after all production was complete was by far the most difficult part for me. Sitting down in front of a blank timeline with days of footage and nearly a hundred pages of interview transcriptions from characters I had never met was daunting to say the least. I figured the easiest way to go about it was just like any other film I’ve cut, bit by bit. Start small, take an idea or a theme from an interview and cut together one scene. Pretty soon a couple seconds are down, then a small sequence. It does start to come together, bit by bit. Pretty soon you’re creating a story.

Or rather, the story begins to create itself. I began to see the characters beyond their transcriptions, as people with emotions and histories. These began to fall into place into a greater context- one character’s stories from WWII evolved into an exploration into the little-known history of Manila in WWII. The struggle of a family living within the cemetery walls was revealed to be a small piece in the same puzzle that also included the perils of overpopulation and a Reproductive Health Bill in limbo in the Philippine Congress. It’s been a process of evolution, discovery, and constant reconstruction- much like Manila itself. Sequences were added, deleted, re-worked and added again. There were the inevitable dull moments, yet surprising instances of excitement- finding parts of a crucial interview that I was unaware existed. The sheer labor involved in editing a film was thankfully not much of a surprise. Pulling a single sentence from a transcribed interview in Tagalog into the timeline and subtitling it often took five minutes or more.

 The author in a moment of repose during the epic Living with the Dead edit.

The author in a moment of repose during the epic Living with the Dead edit.

The author in a moment of repose.

As the film started to come together, I felt a sense of nervous pride as I played through it for the 1000th time. It truly is about the compassion, the resilience of the characters living in a situation that most couldn’t even conceive of. Their lives are the true story, one which we were fortunate enough to document. The direction I had over the story was a gift, one that I am grateful for. We’ve created a film here, each of us playing our respective parts, different in their own ways. I’ve felt fortunate to be a part of this process and a part of this team, challenged to take on a role and dedicating myself to see it through.

- Patrick

Pat did an amazing job with this edit. We're so grateful to have him as a part of our team! - Jessica Chance

Seeking a Creative Assistant, and a Fond Farewell

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Seeking a Creative Assistant, and a Fond Farewell Soon we’ll say goodbye to our friend, our very first hire, and the assistant that saved my sanity through the past year, Suandria Hall. She’s landed a full-time job in her chosen field, which is awesome: She'll be working in clinical research as an analyst, helping to make sure rural hospital and clinic patients can receive the latest in medical care. We can’t argue with that.

In fact, we’re very happy for her but can’t help but be sad to see her go.

She has always been personal, and allowed me to be, too. I had no idea what it meant to be someone’s “boss,” (be it part-time) and Sunnie nudged me in the right direction with grace and kindness.

We’re going to miss her.

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This also means, we’re looking for her replacement. Here’s Sunnie’s list of must-have qualities to work for our small but mighty team:

Multimedia Creative Assistant/Proposal Coordinator

10 -15 hrs a week

Position Requirements

  • Strong organizational skills
  • Knowledge of research tools to inform proposal development
  • Skilled at written and verbal communication skills
  • Budget formulation, tracking and reporting
  • Ability to handle multiple projects simultaneously and meet deadlines in a fast-paced environment

Administrative Responsibilities

  • Frequent client contact via email, phone and some face-to-face meetings.
  • Create and maintain electronic files (for clients and contractors)
  • Maintain FreshBooks activity for weekly project time tracking, client estimates and invoicing.
  • Document creation, editing and management (proposal and estimate templates, letterhead etc.)--
  • Maintain contact lists

Proposal/Project Coordination Responsibilities

  • Developing, writing, editing, and proofreading content for proposals, presentations, project descriptions, estimates, and related materials.
  • Participate creatively and strategically in writing proposals and project estimates.
  • Frequent proposal and estimate delivery, client invoicing, and in-house status reporting

Required Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s Degree or 1 – 2 years or equivalent professional experience preferred
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office, Word, Publisher, Excel, and PowerPoint
  • Financial management skills
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Flexible and able to work well independently and in teams
  • Outstanding organizational and interpersonal skills
  • Ability to work in a fast-paced, deadline-driven environment
  • Demonstrated ability to adapt and learn quickly in a challenging work environment
  • Demonstrated positive attitude and professionalism

Special note: Applicants with grant-writing experience and 501c3 development preferred.

On a personal note:

Sunnie, I can’t thank you enough for showing up and sticking with us the past year. Your help has been enormous and truly life-changing for me personally, and for Chance Multimedia. Your replacement has big shoes to fill. Best of luck to you… please keep in touch!

- Jessica