Since the Spring of 2012 I’ve been pushing a bunch of time and effort towards learning the art of filmmaking. Between the new gear involved, the composing for motion, thinking about audio, learning the software, developing interviewing skills. . . it’s been a steep but fulfilling learning curve. As rewarding as thinking about storytelling in a new way has been, what’s been really fun has been building up my body of work. Because when you have no work to show, what you do is find willing guinea pigs who would benefit from the work, who may not have been able to afford it otherwise. Creating a portfolio is an opportunity to at least try to help, without thoughts of money sneaking into the process.
One example from this year, which I’m posting an embarrassingly long time after it was first launched this Spring, is the above piece for Growing Lots Urban Farm. I love Growing Lots. I first met them a few years ago when they were just getting started right in my South Minneapolis neighborhood. Stefan and Mike, the farmers of Growing Lots, are now my respected friends. They’ve taken blighted urban industrial land and created a farm with upwards of 100 CSA shareholders. They’re pioneering urban farmers in Minnesota.
I’m proud to say that they doubled their CSA subscriptions this year, and while it’s impossible to say how big an impact this video had, my hope is that it made some small impact. It was launched right before their peak sign up period and it was immediately picked up by MinnPost, an awesome surprise that led to hundreds of views.
In exchange for the video, my family and I have enjoyed a Growing Lots CSA share throughout the summer and now into the fall. Did you know that there’s a difference between heads of broccoli? Cucumbers? I had no idea personally, but now I know that vegetables – even head to head between organic veggies – aren’t all created equal. And the carrots? Don’t get me started.