Liz Canning reports on how her documentary is progressing:
Lots of small triumphs and challenges to report.
UCLA professor Andy Rice asked me to show and discuss LCMG video in his class on video activism and I took the opportunity to explore the budding LA bike scene. Lane Kagay of CETMA made it possible for me to interview Dutch expat Anne-Marij Berendsen of Aika Trading (exclusive importer of Yepp, Gazelle, etc.), the very eloquent Josef Bray-Ali of the Flying Pigeon, and Lane himself at his new work space.
Then, on the last day, CicLAvia South LA blew my mind! You’ve never seen so many different types of people having a blast riding bikes together. Close as I get to a religious experience. I was cargo on Lane’s CETMA, hands free to shoot happy riders and dedicated bike lovers like Cynthia Rose, Devon Tsuno, Mark Philips!
On the editing front, I’ve begun working with an assistant (Hallelujah!) and hoping to add another via a University of San Francisco internship program. LCMG Backer Marilyn Delaure–a USF professor and fellow mom-of-a first-grader–is on the lookout for the student destined to become a LCMG Co-Director.
I’m especially glad for the help given I’ve over 4 terabytes of media to work with! With this in mind, I’m also looking into hiring a story consultant to ensure that LCMG has a riveting narrative structure. Karen Everett at New Doc Editing looks like the woman for the job. I’ve also upgraded my editing software. May not sound like a big deal, but having used Final Cut Pro virtually all of my editing life, it had become second nature to me. Thing is, the most recent release of this software is really more of a redesign: it’s brilliant and revolutionary and totally different from what I know so well! Ultimately, the power of the new application will save countless hours and make LCMG a better doc, but at the moment I feel clumsy!
Thankfully the quality of the footage I’m currently cutting almost makes up for my clumsiness. Last year Stacy Bisker and Brent Patterson (4 kids, 2 cargo bikes, NO car. In Buffalo, NY!) were interviewed by a professional documentarian, Cigdem Slankard. She made this short film about them for the International Documentary Challenge, and then submitted her wonderful footage (see S & B riding in the snow?) to LCMG. Highlights of her media combined with the great stuff Brent has sent me is going to make an excellent segment.
Submissions keep coming in! I’m very excited about footage from new Co-Director Tim Flores. His family is part of a tight-knit bike community in Belling-ham Washington and he shared the story (via photos, video, aerial footage and text) of this group’s amazing response to the theft of his wife’s Xtracycle. Such a wonderful tale that I felt the we needed a good interview session to complement the great visuals Tim had accumulated. Lo and behold Tim has found a shooter–Max Romney–and we are talking about capturing interviews while the family is riding bikes!
Yuba Bicycles sent in some great new material and I’m hoping that Steve Bode will be adding moving images from Yuba’s Power-Up nation-wide tour promoting electric bikes! Paul Freedman of Rock the Bike says they are filling a drive with documentation of their work and the many educational, activist and musical events they put on/attend. Psychologist Dave Cohen, Go! Vermont’s Bike Commuting Specialist, has teamed up with filmmaker Ted White (We Are Traffic!, Return of the Scorcher) to capture Dave’s take on “car trance” and innovative cargo bike advocacy.
Filmmaker Michael Bauch made Riding Bikes with the Dutch about his familiy’s experience spending a month in Amsterdam and returning to a newly bike-friendly LA. He’s planning to become a LCMG Co-Director and recently sent me a sample of thrilling riding footage–including aerial shots–of himself and his boys zooming around his SoCal neighborhood on their bakfiets.
Last week I shipped a GoPro and mounts to Davey Oil, a major donor to the LCMG Kickstarter and owner of G&O Family Cyclery. iPhone “selfie sticks” and external microphones also were sent out to be shared by Sara Daum Fowle, Gabrielle Bryen, Heather Sowder, Marni Duffy, Dena Driscoll, Courtney Van Fossan, Stephanie Funke Crary, and Shawn Medero. I hope this equipment circulates widely, facilitates much fun and produces beautiful video. Next LCMG purchase will be a drone for capturing aerial footage. It’s been recommended that I learn how to fly the thing using a cheap model before going for a high-quality drone.
Whew, this is a long one. A lot to say about a project that’s a long haul. I’m working hard to get it done as soon as possible. Thanks again for your support and your patience! xo Liz and the LCMG Co-Directors