Category — Events

Fall in Camden

Camden from Megunticook Mountain, Opening Day.

Just about a month ago I was at the 12th annual Camden International Film Festival, now part of the Points North Institute. This is my 12th festival involved in some organizational capacity, and my 6th as a board member. At 36 that means that for a third of my life CIFF has been a part of it.

It’s hard to quite capture what this experience is like, seeing the event growing bigger and better than we ever could have imagined in the early years. For me it is a tremendous mix of pride, respect and being ever, ever humbled by the talent that keeps CIFF and Points North always evolving and pushing. It is awe at the drive and courage of the filmmakers and storytellers whose work we all come together to celebrate. And it is gratitude and a deep feeling of connection with the community that has year after year shown its commitment to welcoming this type of exploration on the coast of Maine. I think that is a combination of feelings shared by so many of the attendees, and a framing that makes the experience so incredibly unique.

And then there’s opening night. Seeing the local and filmmaking communities coalesce in Camden’s beautiful Opera House. Remembering the first year we sold out the venue and what a milestone that was for the organization. The unveil of Jon Laurence’s newest bumper, fingers crossing that all the tech transitions go smoothly, and that first dive into a weekend of transportation with friends and family.

This year’s opening short film was one of my favorites of the entire festival: The Art of Flying by Jan van Ijken:

Friday morning’s Shorts First program blew me away. The new short from AJ Schnack, Speaking is Difficult managed to, for me, cut through the numbness that seems to pervade our nation’s growing mass shooting crisis:

Ian Cheney’s new short film, Smog of the Sea takes a very different but equally powerful approach to another systemic crisis, our relationship with the planet. Meditative, immersive cinematography, ethereal music from Jack Johnson, and Ian’s knack for making complex topics relatable and human take us on an epic quest to the Sargasso Sea. He shares a bit of the story and filming process here.

And last night I watched Brett Story’s The Prison in 12 Landscapes having missed it during the festival and wow, such an incredibly powerful portrait of the prison nation that has and continues to grow in our country. The film opens theatrically at Anthology Film Archive in NYC Nov 4-10 and it’s a topic that’s close to my heart, with work on the documentary film Criminal continuing here on the coast of Maine. Brett has a way of weaving together these seemingly disparate narratives in a way that captures the nuance and grays of the current situation in a way that only film can do:

And to me, that is the true power of documentary film: to move us in ways that the written word, dialogue or imagery alone cannot. To weave these together and hold up contrasts, build connections and share the human experience. The ultimate journey.

October 23, 2016   No Comments

Craft @ PopTech

I’ve been up on the coast of Maine for the past two months with the team at PopTech: prepping for “Sparks of Brilliance”, deep diving into the world of social change, stargazing, exploring, and listening to more than my fair share of country music.  This year’s conference is all about creativity – something that is close to my heart and I believe innate in each of us. We may show it in different ways but it is something so essentially human we can’t lose it no matter how hard we might try.

I can’t wait until Thursday when the Camden Opera House fills with guests from across the globe and speakers guide us on a journey of this central theme. If you can’t be there in person, tune in to watch Thursday and Friday via PopTech‘s live stream: – see you there!

October 22, 2013   No Comments

Forefront Church in Brooklyn

Jonathan Williams is not your typical Pastor. His services quote everything from Jack Handy’s “Deep Thoughts” to Homer Simpson to more traditional Bible passages. He’s a young father juggling the demands of family, work and community – all the while striving to make a difference however he can. So, when he approached me this summer about helping create a marketing campaign to support the launch of Forefront Church’s new outpost in Brooklyn, I knew it was a fit for the work we do at Craft.

True to Craft’s commitment to action-oriented campaigns and Forefront’s commitment to cultivating the community they serve, we sought out strategic partners to collaborate with – creating custom programming or supporting events already in the works.

The first of these is a storytelling event curated by Brooklyn Based and offered free with RSVP. Sleepless in Brooklyn: A Night of Storytelling with Parents, Writers and Performers. Saturday, October 6, 7:30pm-9pm, doors at 7pm @ Roulette.

OVERVIEW via Brooklyn Based:

“If you’re raising kids in Brooklyn, you’re already tougher than your average Brooklynite–able to navigate subways with strollers, ignore disapproving glares, and strong-arm your child’s way into a good school–all on two hours of sleep.

You commiserate plenty with your partner and friends, and spend part of any date night talking about your kids. Why not laugh about your crazy-makers with Brooklyn’s best storytellers, instead? Line up a sitter on Saturday, October 6, and join us at Roulette as parents and authors Amy Sohn (Motherland), Victoria Brown (Grace in the City), Eliza Factor (The Mercury Factor), Abby Sher (Amen, Amen, Amen), Dave Mandl (The Believer, The Brooklyn Rail) and comedian Charles Star, our host for the evening, share tales about the highs and lows of parenthood.”

We also decided to integrate a OOH component with posters in Park Slope featuring quotes that represent the type of thinking embodied in Forefront’s community.

Forefront Church begins its progressive services at Roulette this Sunday, September 23 at 11 am  (details here). Check them out!

September 20, 2012   No Comments

L’Oreal Partners with Women 2.0 Pitch NYC

Just 4 days left to apply for your chance to pitch at the upcoming PITCH NYC Conference & Competition. Presented by Women 2.0, a great organization supporting female entrepreneurs, this is their inaugural pitch program in NYC after 5 annual pitches in Silicon Valley. L’Oreal is on board to provide one finalist with a $25,000 L’Oreal Women in Digital grant which, in addition to the cash, “provides a year-long commitment from L’Oréal for coaching, mentorship and introductions to VC partners and L’Oréal brand leads for testing opportunities.”

Think you have a winning idea? Here’s their criteria:

“Open to early-stage high-growth ventures around the world, PITCH NYC 2012 invites companies with at least one female in the founding team to apply. Applying companies must be in beta stage and have received less than a million in funding. We’re looking for the most disruptive web/mobile ventures, connected device companies, etc.”

If you’ve never been through a pitch program I can say without a doubt that it will be a beneficial process to help you hone your business concept and gain valuable feedback from seasoned investors. Details and application here!

August 28, 2012   No Comments

The Greater Network

A great benefit event is coming up this Friday from Headsets and Highballs. Besides the obvious desire to drink and dance the night away after what is bound to be a killer 4 day week, all proceeds go to H&H partner The Ghetto Film School, a group dedicated to educating, developing and celebrating the next generation of great American storytellers.

H&H has been bringing together emerging and established players in the media industry at events every month since 2005. If you haven’t been to one, or have been and keep meaning to go back, join The Greater Network Friday in helping to support the future of media. Details below and BUY TICKETS here.

May 30, 2012   No Comments