Learn Filmmaking on YouTube

I made a special page for students on my website just so that I can share all of the amazing educational resources that I’ve found online. I arrived in film school eager to learn the secrets behind the scenes shortly after YouTube arrived on the web.

Today there has been an incredible amount of peer-to-peer learning going on in the form of video tutorials, filmmaker vlogs and do-it-yourself success stories that anyone with a web browser can access. Digital technology and the proliferation of easy-to-share content has given us nothing less than a mass media renaissance that has redefined what it means to be a filmmaker, and more importantly, who gets to be a filmmaker.

 

As a teacher I’m always looking for a better animated graphic of how lenses work or a really great video essay that summarizes an important filmmaking concept. I’ve collected the best of those videos in a series of YouTube playlists that I’ve organized into a curriculum that I like to think of as a “video textbook” which can be viewed as an online film school.

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New Neo-Noir Short Film

 

I’m very proud to announce that we’ve wrapped post-production on a new neo-noir short film written and directed by Christian Nelson, The Blue Heart of Lady Redd. He asked me to do all of the production sound, sound effects editing and post sound mix.

It was such a great learning experience. I even did all of the foley sound effects myself. That was a lot of fun. I’ve been doing sound forever but this is the first time I’ve gotten to do all of the sound for a fictional narrative. It allowed me to be really creative and play with a much more impressionistic sound palette. I had such a great time working on this.

It’s currently making the rounds at film festivals. More updates coming soon!

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Favorite Shorts and Anthologies

Still images from four short science fiction films.

I love short films and I’m always looking for inspiration for my next short film. So I rewatched all of my favorite shorts and then I went looking for more places to find them. There’s a lot to choose from and it’s hard for shorts to stand out these days.

In the age of YouTube and viral videos, are short films relevant anymore? Does the public care about short films or just us film nerds? Thankfully, recent developments seem to indicate that there is a growing appetite for more short-form cinematic storytelling.

What follows are some of my thoughts on short filmmaking and my recommendations after watching as many shorts and anthology series as my eyeballs can handle. If you’re looking for some good short films I’ve made a playlist of my favorites.

They’re mostly genre films and animation. I’m a genre junkie myself. Science fiction and horror are my favorites. So that’s what I’ve been looking for. These also appear to be the two most popular and numerous short film genres on the web. That’s not surprising. I’ll also be reviewing a few different places where you can watch these shorts and which ones I think are worth your time. I hope this helps you discover a few new favorites. Continue reading

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Don’t Frack With Denton

Don’t Frack With Denton is a new, feature-length documentary about civil disobedience and the movement to ban fracking in Denton Texas. It’s a heroic tale of courage and resistance from deep in the heart of America’s gas land.

This inspiring story of environmental activism premiered at the Dallas Video Fest in October of 2017 and then had its Denton debut at Thin Line’s Day of the Docs Fest. And now you can now watch the entire film online.

 

 

Don’t Frack With Denton director Garrett Graham was also interviewed on Good Morning Texas about the dangers of hydraulic fracturing, the reality of climate change and the future of the documentary itself. You can watch the full interview online.

WFAA Interview 2

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Don’t Frack With Denton Update

Hey everyone! We’ve got a quick video update for you all!

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THANK YOU SO MUCH to everyone who supported and shared our crowd funding campaign for our upcoming documentary, Don’t Frack With Denton (2016). Thanks to you we were able to fund our trip to Paris, France to follow some of the folks behind Denton’s fracking ban as they participated in some unprecedented mass demonstrations Screen Shot 2015-12-14 at 2.32.42 PMsurrounding the United Nations climate change summit (COP21). It was truly very exciting and we’re so thankful to be able to add this global perspective to our local story.

Candice Bernd, co-producer and co-writer of Don’t Frack With Denton, wrote an article for Truth-out about COP21 and why the future of the climate justice movement must be invested in local struggles like ours in Denton while Garrett Graham, the director, provided photos and video to accompany her article.

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Don’t Frack With Denton (2015)

We’ve been working for over a year on our new documentary, Don’t Frack With Denton, and when our hometown voted in a landslide to ban fracking over health and safety concerns we thought we had our happy ending and started editing our movie.

But, in the middle of our post-production schedule, lawmakers in Austin quickly approved a reactionary bill that was written by the oil and gas industry which makes it impossible for the people of Denton to enforce the fracking ban that they voted for. Even worse, this bill also makes it impossible for any other city in Texas to ban fracking, or to effectively regulate the oil and gas industry at all. We realized then that our job was far from over and that this story had just gotten much, much bigger. Continue reading

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Complete Transcript of Don’t Frack With Denton

This is a complete transcript of the first twenty minutes of my upcoming documentary, Don’t Frack With Denton (2015). It is provided here to make quotations easier for anyone who may want to cite this documentary for their own purposes. I hope it is useful to those who value this documentary and may wish to cite the information within.

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