Monday, May 21, 2012

"you don't know what i got" Visits Manteo, North Carolina

  Manteo, North Carolina.  This was the perfect spot to end my tour.   It was a wonderful beach with  weather to match.  With only my shadow to keep me company, I headed out to explore.  I found great inspiration in the site of the first flight of Wilbur and Orville Wright.  To see that famous airstrip was fascinating and so familiar.   The photograph of the Wright brothers first flight is so engrained on my memory, I felt if I had been there before.

The little town of Manteo was a step into history and the Roanoke Island Festival Park provided a great opportunity to screen my film.  We showed to a small but interested crowd that asked great questions.

It was a perfect ending to a wonderful day and tour!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

"you don't know what I got" Visits ORANGEBURG, S.C.

 artist: Leonard Edward
My visit to Orangeburg was the most surprising I had on tour.   I knew it would be interesting to screen in a planetarium and I was looking forward to staying  in a "local's" home instead of the sterile Holiday Inn Express But I had no idea... The films looked and sounded amazing in the Planetarium!  I would personally travel back to Orangeburg just to screen in that space.  I was also impressed with the students at  SCSU. They were engaged and asked great questions, not to mention the excellent introduction I was given by a fellow student. 

But my surprises were far from over.  After a reception my host Ellen Zisholtz,  the Museum Director and a Professor at SCSU, took me to a delicious Thai restaurant.  We were joined by her other house guests - a visiting artist for Atlanta Donna Jackson and her son from California.  They were in town for the La Biennale 2012 Exhibit at the StanbackA fabulous collection of art including works by Donna and Ellen. 

The night continued, as we all went back to Ellen's home for a celebratory glass of champagne and I shared my last remaining "Gimme Jimmie Lemon Bars" with the group.   Southern hospitality oozed out of ever inch of Ellen's northern soul.  A transplant from the big apple/New Jersey she was a wonderful host and brought a very rich experience to my stay in Orangeburg, one I will not soon forget.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

"you don't know what i got" visits Madison GA

Cultural Center
MADISON GA.    I knew of Madison’s reputation before I arrived.  I was looking forward to seeing this little jewel of the south and I have to say it did not disappoint.  Madison is a beautiful town and the people are as lovely as the architecture. I was traveling alone on this leg of the tour, so it was tough to grab candids at the actual screening but I still managed to capture some of the sights.  The theater we screened in was absolutely amazing.  Once again it was great to share the films with the community and soak in scene.  I went back to the Cultural Center the following day just to take in the art and get some pics of the theater.   

The following day, I had a lovely conversation with Mamie Lee Hillman, the curator of the African American Museum.  She shared her stories on Greene County and gave me a personal tour of the museum.  She also taught me a new expression "That's a cutie".   Not sure I can pull it off like Mamie Lee but I’m going to try... Thank you Mamie Lee and Madison for an unforgettable experience.    
Mamie Lee Hillman, Curator of African American Museum

Thursday, April 19, 2012

"you don't know what i got" in Hapeville

Historic Church In Hapeville

HAPEVILLE, GA.   The screening in Hapeville was just magical.   It was such a treat and honor to have Julie Brunzell, one of the "wise five" women featured in the film,  on hand.  The Church was beautiful and the community gave a warm and wonderful reception.

The great thing about screening with the Southern Circuit is each screening is different  and you learn something new about a community and your film as it seen through their eyes.   The mayor of Hapeville laughed the loudest and longest whenever Jimmie came on screen.  It was a treat to see someone enjoy her stories and is always interesting to see which characters people connect with in the film.

Julie Brunzell on hand at reception and screening
The Mindflow Media Posse made it down for the show

Friday, April 13, 2012

Linda Duvoisin from Gainesville, GA

Gainesville Screening
 GAINESVILLE GA.   We had our first screening last night in Gainesville GA.  Our beautiful evening started by getting a little lost on campus until a very kind professor offered to jump in our car and direct us to the proper venue.  No surprise to find out that Charles was a professor in philosophy.  It was wonderful to screen the film again and to have some of my family and friends on-hand - a great posse for the first screening!
Family and Friend Posse

Q & A with Jeff Marker
GSU film professor Jeff Marker led the Q&A and had some wonderful insights into the film.  On the whole it was a fantastic start to the series.  I look forward to our next screening on Saturday.  Julie Brunzell, a woman featured in the film, will be on hand - so it should prove to be another eventful evening.

Lemon bars and DVDs a killer combo

Monday, August 8, 2011

Its the Cake, not the Icing...

In a year's time much has happened in our world and community.  There have been employment gains and job loss, the graduation rates rose or fell  and income levels have shifted.   In many ways, these are the statistics we use to measure the well-being and health of a community.  As a whole, humans seem to like to measure progress with numbers.

But what about the number of creative ideas that gave birth to new jobs or the inspiration from a story heard, seen or read that kept a student in school?  It is very difficult, if not impossible to accurately measure the impact of creativity on a community.  Although many have tried over years to attach a number to it,  my guess is that for every art project that we have "measurable statistics" there are thousands of immeasurable benefits that go unnoticed.   And that is no small thing.    Art feeds our imagination and opens our minds. Our greatest problems are solved through innovation. Art is not the icing on the cake for a community, it is the cake.

"Imagination is the beginning of creation. You imagine what you desire, you will what you imagine and at last you create what you will." - George Bernard Shaw.

This past year makework grantees filled our community with art and creativity, some of their efforts are measurable but the impact of the inspiration created by their work is not.  As a one of the makework grantees, I felt lucky to be among such a inspiring group of artists.   And although I can't measure the impact their work, I know I am better for it and so is our community.


Thursday, June 23, 2011

Leroy Phillips 1935-2011

Last month, as I sat working on a the Ed Johnson documentary, I received an email that Leroy Phillips had died.   Leroy was the reason I began the Ed Johnson documentary and he was also the reason I continued to work on the film.  His passion for the subject was contagious.  It was something we had in common.

I liked Leroy not just because he was a great interview with a natural gift to tell a story.  He was a nice man and always willing to help out or give me encouragement just when I was about to give up.  Independent films are hard to make. Inevitably you reach a point in the project where the money is dwindling or gone and the choice to continue on or quit  is before you.  I'm sure Leroy faced similar choices when he decided to defend a client that he knew would never be able to pay the bill. I never talked with Leroy about those choices, although I wish I had.   I do know that he would encourage me to keep working on the film.  

And I will.   I just wish he could have had a chance to see it....