(If you’re new to this project – here’s the background on the film)
Weeks ago we put out a call for locations and many of you filled our inbox with suggestions. Thanks!
Many of you also said “Film us!” which was sweet and charming. Since you folks made the film possible we’ve come up with a way to make your request possible – at least for one of you.
The WE MAKE SEATTLE location contest
We’re inviting you to take your cellphone camera out and film where you work and the cool people in it. Tell us a brief story of where you work, and share on camera how fun and awesome you are.
Answer the question: Why should your workplace represent creativity in Seattle to the world? Show us.
Rules and instructions:
- Get a camera (your phone will do)
- Make a 60-120 second video showing us why where you work should be in the film
- Show us how fun and creative your coworkers are
- Show us cool interiors, funky workplace setups or unusual but inspiring places of work
- Post the video on YouTube and send us a link
- We’ll review all the submissions and the winner will be an (interior) location that we’ll film for use in the We Make Seattle project
There are no other restrictions: any kind of work or workplace qualifies, including home offices, building rooftops, coworking spaces or wherever you do your thing.
Submissions will be judged on two criteria: location + fun/creativity of people shown.
Deadline is Friday July 25th 5pm. Have Fun. Any questions? Leave a comment.
Dan and I will be shooting at the Sculpture garden and Myrtle Edwards Park tomorrow (map). At noon/lunchtime we can use a few extras – want to be in the film? Here’s your first chance.
You can bring a lunch and hang out on what should be a gorgeous day – now and then we may ask you to do certain extra like things (like walk on the trail, or sit in certain places). Please feel free to bring your friends or coworkers.
Leave a comment or contact me by email so we can work out details. Cheers.
We had our first day of shooting at Seattle’s Folklife Festival. I’m glad we choose to film here as it was, as suspected, filled with interesting Seattle-ites doing interesting and creative things. Despite the weather forecast we had surprisingly good weather. Tony Bocci joined us as AD for the shoot.
I’m working on planning our next shoots. If you want to help, take a look at our locations list and leave suggestions or ideas.
(Photo Credits: #1 Dan McComb, #2 Paoli Tosolini, #3-#6 Tony Bocci, #7-8 Berkun)
As we’re moving into production, it’s time to nail down primary filming locations. The audio track we’ve spent weeks putting together is the spine for the film, and will lead the way on deciding what locations to shoot in.
Here’s my list of 5 primary locations with notes.
- Seattle folklife festival (May 24-26) – I’ve met with the organizers and this will be a great opportunity for us to get footage of artists and musicians (not office workers) doing their thing. We can also do two for one here: tighter shots of individuals working/performing, as well as wide shots of the huge number of creative people and Seattleites at the festival. (An alternative could be the next Maker Faire or a busy day at Makerhaus).
- Myrtle Edwards Park / Sculpture park – Facing to the north, we can shoot the running trail through the park, and the small beach (“find a starfish on every run” – Karen at 1:30 in the audio). Facing to the South, we can get a shot of the Seattle skyline. It’s a two for one. We can also get some B-roll in the sculpture park particularly the (Richard Sera Wake sculpture, and the view from the bridge down to Elliot ave).
- Startup Office TBD: We will need footage from a working tech company office. We’d need to do some scouting to find suitable locations. UpGlobal might work if they’d have us. What we want is a grungy, low-fi place, preferably in an old building or loft, with high energy happy people working and collaborating. Makerhaus on a busy day could also work, as handcrafts are more cinematic than people typing at laptops.
- Fancy impressive Office TBD. A high end, beautifully architected modern workplace, as counterpoint to the startup office. Ideally the vibe juxtaposes the architecture, with a lively light-funky atmosphere fitting for Seattle. Something that says modern and technical but not hospital sterile.
- Restaurant / Kitchen / Bar TBD. At the 3 minute mark is a riff on the audio track about neighborhoods and restaurants. We’ll need at least one interior location of a busy, friendly bar, and an open kitchen with people working, and happy people eating/drinking.
B-Roll / Secondary Footage
I have specific thoughts for secondary footage we’re going to need. We’ll likely need some hand picked extras to participate in the shots. In will be harder to co-ordinate, but I can imagine having the same “cast” of 4 or 5 people who show up in many of these short scenes (e.g. dancing with the dance steps on Broadway, and running through the Wake sculpture at the sculpture park).
- Seattle public library, yellow escalators & red floor
- Street Murals / Street Art (pickups of some of our best: the dance steps, Hendrix on Broadway, the murals on 4th ave? others?)
- An art studio where work is being made / Makerhaus? / Seattle Art Walk?
- 15th avenue, bars & street scene (mentioned by Jesse at ~3:30 in the audio track)
- WA State Ferries in the sound from the waterfront (mentioned by Karen at ~2:30)
- I-90 facing east from Seattle, with the lake in view, and boats on the lake
How you can help
Read the above list again, carefully please.
If you have a suggestion for a location that might fit what we’re looking for, please let us know. If you know someone who owns / runs a location that might work that’s great too.
Please leave a comment or email me directly. Provide a photo or two if it’s a private location so we can see for ourselves which will answer most of our basic questions quickly without dozens of emails.
Volunteer wanted: Anyone interested in being our locations scout, and lead the process of finding, securing locations? We’d love to hear from you.
We’re hard at work scouting locations for We Make Seattle. One possible location for some filming is the Northwest Folklife Festival, which takes place later this month at the Seattle Center (May 23-26).
I reached out to the organizers to talk about the project and soon discovered they had their own story of helping make Seattle a great place for creative people. I met with Michael Chandler (Festival Production Director) and Kelli Faryar (Programs Manager) at Cherry Street coffee on Denny and 5th yesterday.
I knew it was a big event, but was surprised to consider the true scale of Northwest Folklife Festival: 100s of acts perform each day over the 4 days of the event (full schedule here). Seen below is the scheduling board they use to build and track the entire event – if you complain about your weekly schedule, you should stop now (Photo by Kelli Faryar).
Folklife is one of the few all-ages, free events that anyone in the Seattle area can enjoy. Part of why the event is of interest for our film is it’s one of the few venues that has large crowds of people of all ages and lifestyles participating in the creativity of music, dance, crafts and more. All of the musicians and artists perform for free: no one is paid, which is stunning when you think of how many professional and world class performers fill out the schedule.
Both Chandler and Faryar moved to Seattle years ago. While they came for different reasons, both soon found themselves volunteering with the Folklife Festival. Eventually they took on full time roles with Northwest Folklife, as part of a small staff that works year round. For the festival they take on ~800 volunteers who play roles from helping with mailings and posters, to collecting donations and helping people find their way at the event. You can sign up to be a volunteer here.
We may need some PA help for shooting at Folklife Festival, so if you’re interested in lending a hand let me know.
In my interviews it was surprising how often Seattle’s quiet places, the parks, the seascapes and the waterfronts, came up as sources for inspiration. One of the magical things about Seattle is that for a city of its size it has an astounding number of public parks.
Last year Linnea Westerlind decided to go to every park in Seattle and document what she found on yearofseattleparks.com. The result is great local resource for finding parks near you that you didn’t even know about (including a list of secret parks). Every few days she writes up the summary of another park with details on what she found, tagged in a searchable blog: check it out.
Hi everyone. Welcome to spring. Here’s some good news for you.
On the road to getting the rough audio track completed, the WMS team interviewed six local creatives and entrepreneurs. I wanted to announce them here and thank them for lending their voices (quite literally) to the project.
They each let us interview them for an hour about Seattle, entrepreneurship, creativity and why they chose to pursue their work here in our city. And a 5 minute audio track, edited down from hours of recording, is the basis for the actual film.
As a general update, now that spring is here our pace is finally picking up. We’re working on locations and a shooting schedule this week. More soon.
Hi folks. Apologies for the long silence (I’m hanging my head in shame as I write this). Without the audio track narrative put together, not much other work could be done, and I didn’t see the point in empty, fluffy updates.
I’m posting with good news and a nice sized update. The major task at hand had been working the 6 hours of audio interviews down into a 4 minute track. That sounds like a magic trick and it is. It takes much time to reduce time, especially if the audio is going to be the spine of the film. I’ve been splicing, editing, revising, listening, reviewing, note taking and then revising again like mad.
I worked all weekend to finally get this step complete and I was successful. Yay.
I’ll be meeting with the rest of the crew to get feedback on it, and if all goes well, draft preliminary plans for a shot list, shooting schedule and any any audio pick ups we’ll need to do.
The general plan is still to film late spring and early summer, and have the final project released to the world before the summer is out.
I’ll have more frequent updates and invitations for how you can participate soon. As the pace of production will be ramping up soon.
Interesting how many of these fall into our non-goals for the film. Lots of cliches and common references (Space Needle, Fremont Troll) show up in here.
I’d like to put together a similar list, but comprised of places, elements and aspects that aren’t commonly talked about. The real Seattle that locals love, not what earns attention from the tourist.