A Post-Post Post on Post-Production
OK … so maybe I overdid it. But the P-word has certainly warranted some dedicated attention. First, there’s the Washington Post article about Red Line D.C., which appeared this past Sunday in the Metro section. That same day, we were also featured in the Our City Film Festival, where I participated in a brief, post-screening Q&A.
The profile in the Post and experience at Our City were both timely and sweet, humbling opportunities that have reminded me of the stakes behind Red Line D.C., as well as the project’s place within the community. No journey is ever completed without patient support and guidance along the way. The same can be said of the filmmaking process.
The making of Red Line D.C. has constituted 3+ years of my life; a long and winding road that’s still not quite finished. In the process of post-production, I have learned that concrete deadlines are only mirages in the distance. Limited funding, technical setbacks and inevitable dead-ends can turn any documentary filmmaker into a weary traveler. And that has definitely been the case for me. But all the creative help, community support and positive feedback I’ve gotten, especially as of late, has been a huge affirmation of my efforts.
So, I had to reflect, pipe up and speak to you directly with this blog post. I just can’t thank you all enough for your ongoing encouragement and interest in Red Line D.C. The sense of purpose behind the documentary has continually been renewed for me. Right now, I’m eager to push through–and past–post-production to deliver The Red Line D.C. Project DVD; a final cut of the awesome, two-part series I know you’ve been waiting for.
Stay tuned and, as always, state your piece below!
Director & Producer
The Red Line D.C. Project
Are We There Yet?
As 2013 approaches, we know you’re eager for the big reveal of Red Line D.C.‘s final two-part documentary series. Trust us when we say, so are we!
Having finished the fine cuts of (part one) “See Something, Say Something” and (part two, tentatively titled), “Crossing the Line,” director/producer Saaret Yoseph has tagged in some essential support to help her champion–and finally complete–this three-year long project The remaining elements include, visual effects and a soundtrack by local legend Damu the Fudgemunk, a surefire combo package to compliment our documentary efforts.
We know that you are just as excited as we are to see these final touches come together. No doubt, a little impatient, as well. But fret not. With a few months to go until completion, we wouldn’t pass the time without giving you a taste of what’s to come. Here’s a slideshow featuring some of the fantastic, never-before-seen photos of Red line graffiti that we’ll be including in both films. These images have been collected by Cory Stowers, one of our featured interviewees and co-owner of the custom design shop Art Under Pressure. We have him to thank for holding you over until we get our act together.
Enjoy! And, as always, feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below!
It’s been a bumpy ride, but the winding road down #RedLineDC is nearly over. And what a ride it has been! Today we had the pleasure of being featured in The Express, a Washington Post publication that’s often read on the very Red line ride we’ve been focusing our energy on all these years. Director/producer Saaret Yoseph shared her behind-these-scenes experiences, motivations for creating the project as well as the major themes addressed in the documentary. It’s an honor for Red Line D.C. to be featured in the paper and we’re proud to consider ourselves a part of the many visual and communal elements of your commute! If you missed the write-up in print, you can find it online, right here. Take a look!
From Theory to Practice
We’re back with another sampling from the #RedLineDC video vault. This time with an excerpt from last year’s interview with art historian and culture theorist Martin Irvine, the founding professor of Georgetown University’s Communication, Culture & Technology program.
We asked Professor Irvine about the academic concepts evident in graffiti subculture. What’s the big idea behind the writings on the wall? Why has the tradition of graffiti returned to the Red line, again and again? Irvine weighs in on the lure of metro graffiti and explains why we need to give these everyday aesthetics a closer look. See for yourself and share your thoughts in the comments section below.
All editing and no play makes Red Line D. C. a dull project, so luckily there’s a silver lining up ahead. Next month we’ll be screening new footage and discussing the final phase of our efforts at two upcoming events. The first, on Saturday, October 13th, (7pm) will be hosted by neighborhood initiative DeanwoodxDesign. The second, a collaboration between human resource-hub Knowledge Commons and BloomBars, a community arts space in Columbia Heights, will be held the following week on Saturday, October 20th (12-2pm).
Respectively, these three awesome organizations are breathing new offline life to Red Line D.C. We’ll be showing unseen footage from the two-part film and both events will feature live discussion with Saaret Yoseph, the documentary’s director and producer. Yoseph will talk about post-production progress and plans for release, as well as the stakes behind Red Line D. C. and the 3-year process that led to this point in the project.
Oh, and in case you missed it last week, Yoseph did a guest spot on WAMU‘s The Kojo Nnamdi Show. She was included in an episode about public art and graffiti alongside a couple Red Line D. C. interviewees, including art director Cory Stowers and Nancee Lyons from the Department of Public Works. The lively chat should hold you over if you’re in need of a little Red line action until we see you next month.
But in the meantime, check back for more event details and project updates.
Reviving the Red Line
For weeks now, we’ve been hiding out in an edit studio trying to piece together the two-part documentary series that will encompass all the underlying issues of Red Line D.C. With a rough cut of part one already under our belt, the bulk of our attention has been focused on building part two, a story that will address the Metro-Branch Trail’s development; how changes in access to the Red line have in turn affected aesthetics and the value of wall space. This process has been slow, but steady. And sadly, because of our tunnel vision video-making, the online presence of #redlinedc has dwindled. For this, we sincerely apologize.
Hopefully, our absence has only made your heart fonder of the film’s potential. But in case it hasn’t, here’s some bonus footage to rekindle your interest. In this video excerpt, Prof. Zachary Schrag, author of The Great Society Subway, reminds us why Washington metro matters are so important to understanding the District.
While you patiently await our film’s final cuts, we’ll do our best to post more video clips like this one to hold you over. So until then, bear with us folks, documentary work in progress …
Just 5 days left for fundraising on Indiegogo! In a little over a month, we’ve been able to raise more than half of our $6000 goal and get the word out about Red Line D. C. to countless locals. All thanks to you, of course. And as a thanks for all your effort and contributions, we’re offering up the long-awaited Red Line D.C.: The Mixtape.
This playlist has the potential to jazz up your commute with a soundtrack curated by none other than Yodith Dammlash, our resident photog. Though, Dammlash is adept at eye-catching photographs, she lent us her ear for music when we needed her. (Sadly, our crowd-sourcing plans didn’t pan out.) So while we’re hard at work in the edit studio, making sense of the last two years, feast your ears on this mix tailor-made for your ride.
Oh, and if you like what you hear, don’t be shy about showing it. Five days is still plenty of time to make a difference …
Who You Gonna Call?
There’s nothing like an 80′s classic to kickoff the week. And, folks, it doesn’t get more “I Love the 80′s” than Ghostbusters. This retro single from the film’s soundtrack is our subtle way of signaling the last #redlinedc event of the summer. Come Wednesday, we’ll be wrapping things up right, with an outdoor screening near New York Avenue metro station.
Before featuring that ghostly, cult comedy, our partners at NoMa will show a rough cut version of See Something, Say Something, the first installment of our two-part documentary. We can’t think of a better way to wind down our events and amp up our online fundraising than a screening that’s smack dab on the Red line.
So, come join us on the grass and get cozy … It’s nearly showtime.
The Blacker the Byrdie …
Thursday night’s event at Blackbyrd went off without a hitch! We’re, now, a little over $1700 on Indiegogo and feeling oh-so-good about ourselves. Still plenty of fundraising and post-production work ahead, but the closeout fundraising party gave us lots of motivation to keep up the momentum and keep having fun in the process.
Check out the photos from the event, compliments of our photo editor Yodith Dammlash. There are also a few aerial shots of the crowd, courtesy of Mr. Damu the Fudgemunk, himself. Dammlash’s P.O.V. works the crowd, while the talented musician offers his birds-eye view. Lots of memorable moments throughout. See for yourself …
(And don’t forget to join us for the very last #redlinedc event: An outdoor screening of See Something, Say Something by New York Ave. metro station on Wednesday, June 27th. Details TK!)
Thursday Night Lights
We can hardly wait for tomorrow! The long-awaited closeout fundraising party for Red Line D.C. is finally here and happening at Blackbyrd, Thursday night from 6-9 p.m. Though, this won’t be our last event in June, it will be the last cocktail-fueled occasion With one month left on our Indiegogo campaign, the contributions during and after our closeout party will be used to see us through the last phase of the documentary–post-production.
But to fund that final stretch, we need to familiarize more folks with the project. Which means, bring a friend or two, because tomorrow’s happiest of happy hours will be our final in-person push. Sample footage will be projected while His Dope-ness, Damu the Fudgemunk works the 1′s & 2′s. There’s no point even missing this, people!
So, before we go back into our dark and isolated editing cave for the rest of the summer, we want to see you and bask in the spotlight. Maybe even have a dance or two.
So, How Was Your Weekend?
This past Friday was a great success for Red Line D.C. The people were present, the music was thumping and #RasPunch was being poured in abundance. Our end-of-the-week happy hour offered, yet, another opportunity to generate interest in the project. As sneak peek footage from the documentary played in the background, filmmaker Saaret Yoseph mingled with the crowd and appealed to attendees to support the efforts they saw on-screen.
We raised nearly $600 that one night, thanks to small contributions and sales from our first batch of Red Line D.C. T-shirts. Check out the photos from the evening. And, in case you missed all the action at Ras, be sure to join us this Thursday night at our closeout party at Blackbyrd (6-9 p.m., 2005 14th St, NW). No doubt, this next event will be just as fun & fruitful as the last.
The Mixtape Effect
Earlier this week we announced our most recent Red Line D.C. remix. You might have seen us tweeting about it or caught the call-to-action in this WTOP interview with Saaret Yoseph,Red Line D.C.’s director and producer. However you got wind of the news, here’s the down-and-dirty: We’re trying to crowdsource a soundtrack for the Red line.
Originally, the idea was to get an old school graffiti writer, like SMK, to curate a Red Line D.C. Mixtape. But instead, we’re taking a slightly different route. The goal of the project–in all its different forms–has always been to bridge the gap of experience with the Red line. So, what better way to do that than with a mixtape composed by the masses? We created a Twitter hashtag, #RedLineDC, to collect any songs and/or tracks suggested. Feel free to email us as well at firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “#RedLineDC Mixtape.” We’re open to all submissions, just keep in mind the themes of transit, graffiti and the city.
Here’s hoping for a fun and active experiment. You never know what you’ll get, when you get on-board the Red line. But what if, the next time you took a ride, the person sitting beside you was looking out of the window, too, and nodding along to the same song?
A Cure for the Mondays
Nothing starts the week off right like good news. And ours offers something to look forward to this Friday: A sneak peek of Red Line D.C. On June 15th, from 6-9 p.m., director and producer Saaret Yoseph will be screening footage, photos and snippets from the documentary at Ras Restaurant & Lounge. Join us for happy hour drinks and discussion. Find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for event updates and information.
Hope to see you then!
The Pink & Red Special
Last night, we kicked off our event-filled summer with a Salon Contra hosted by The Pink Line Project. It was an intimate, RSVP event at the Pink Line headquarters off U st, NW. Red Line D.C. director and producer, Saaret Yoseph lead a discussion about the project and the overlapping issues connected to the Red line’s development and aesthetic changes. Besides all the great conversation, the highlight of the evening was the food. Hondo Coffee and Chez Hareg Bakery, two establishments located on & adjacent to the Red line offered up their tasty nibbles to us. Good food and fodder. What more can we ask for?
Check out snapshots from the evening:
Main Event(s): Show Up & Show Love
Remember those promises we made about Red Line D.C. and summer fun? Well, summer is upon us, people, so set your sights–and synchronize your calendars–for all the fun in-store for you. In preparation for upcoming events, we just launched a seven-week long fundraising campaign to promote the project and pay for the costs & labor needed to make Red Line D.C. come to life. Please check out our campaign page and contribute what you can.
In the meantime, show some love at one (or ALL) of the events we have planned for June. Bring yourself, a few friends and a lot of enthusiasm. We’ll be expecting you …
UPCOMING RED LINE D.C. EVENTS:
Red Line D.C. Happy Hour & Sneak Peek Screening
Friday, June 15th
4809 Georgia Ave, NW
(btw. Decatur St. & Delafield Pl.)
Red Line D.C. Closeout Party
Thursday, June 21st
2005 14th St, NW
(btw. V & U st)
Hello, My Name is SMK
It’s been way too long since we’ve had a guest blogger. And, as we begin to reach the end of Red Line D.C.‘s journey, it seems only fitting to hear from someone who’s experience with “the Line” goes back decades. Writer SMK is allegedly one of the first to get up on the Red line. Yet, despite his OG status, he’s been kind enough to collaborate with us on the Red Line D.C. Mixtape, a playlist of transit-inspired songs and sounds. SMK will be curating for your FREE listening pleasure to help promote events and fundraising this month. Stay tuned for more on that …
But until then, here’s a word or two from the man, himself, as well as a few metro graffiti flicks from his personal collection:
I do not philosophize about what I do. I just want to get my shit off. (paint) with the least amount of attention, until the graffiti is visible the next day.
I am a Graffiti writer not a graffiti artist, nothing artsy about me, nor do I really care to express my feelings, emotions, to the public. Everything I have to say is on whatever media I paint on.
As 1st order of the Free Agents
Have You Missed Us?
Lately, you may have noticed the absence of Red Line D.C. online. But there’s a reason behind our disappearing act. While our blog updates and Twitter timeline have been neglected, we’ve been holed up in the editing room and huddled around tables planning events.
In anticipation of the documentary’s summer release, we’ve amped up the momentum of post-production. By day, we pore through footage, edit and arrange a storyline about the aesthetics and experience of the Red line; by night, we ride the route ourselves and see first-hand how much of that story continues to unfold.
With that said, if you’ve been jonesing for a helping of Red line D.C., we’ve got the cure. In the weeks leading up to the release, we’ll do our best to share snippets like this one from the cutting room floor. Here, interviewee Cory Stowers, a former Red line writer and local business owner, shares an anecdote about graffiti and the late, great go-go legend Chuck Brown. Check it out …
The Red Line’s Nerdy Side
It isn’t easy explaining all the moving parts of Red Line D.C., but director and producer Saaret Yoseph did her best last week. Presenting in front of faculty at Georgetown University, she defended the research and remixing done for the project over the past two years. Saaret discussed the transient elements of graffiti and transit as well as her motivations for exploring the everyday aesthetics of our Red line commute. The event was a marker of Red Line D.C. ‘s progress and a milestone in her graduate career in the Communication, Culture & Technology program at Georgetown. If you’re looking for insight on what makes this whole interactive, multimedia project work, get into geek-mode and take a look at this snippet from the presentation:
PHOTOS: Metro Flashback
If you think you’ve seen all there is to see of the Red line, think again! We got our hands on some amazing black and white photos from the Washingtoniana section of the Martin Luther King Library and revisited the Red line metro of decades past. Walk down memory lane with these historic photos of metro construction, early ridership and the Red line before graffiti.
Great Minds Blog Alike
Finally, someone as obsessed with trainspotting as we are! In our constant search for all things metro, we came across the very visual and like-minded blog DC Metro People. The blog creator and fellow transit enthusiast Ryan Reed has amassed hundreds of self-captured snapshots of metro riders with nothing but his iPhone at the ready. His growing photo collection and the video montage below take a poetic approach to portraying the metro experience as well as the captivating strangers we all encounter on-board.
According to his Q&A with TBD’s “On Foot” blog, Reed’s inspiration for the site was sparked by his own transit encounters and, like us, he sees the space as fertile ground for discussion. Cheers to his effort and others, like Red Line DC, that look to re-engage city-dwellers with their everyday space. We love finding kindred creative spirit …
The Graffiti-Fueled Field Trip
It was a typical Sunday with extraordinary ambition. A small group of strangers convened at Metro Center this past weekend with only their curiosity in common. After a quick exchange of names and pleasantries, they boarded a train toward Glenmont and gave little thought to the destination. This was an afternoon commute that was all about the journey; an art-filled event steeped in the metro experience. And of course, Red Line D.C. was along for the ride.
The event, hosted by Knowledge Commons DC, was a part of the metro poetry series, Slam the Rails. In last weekend’s session, Joseph Ross shared poetry inspired by the work of graffiti writer Cool Disco Dan. As the the last car of the train ascended out of the tunnel and above ground, Ross began his reading. Attendees (and unsuspecting riders) took in the names and sights of the red line–some even for the first time! After a couple of unexpected stops along the way, the ride ended at Takoma station, where participants were invited to reflect on the ride and its surrounding graffiti.
Check out the flicks from our graffiti-fueled field trip!
In honor of the new spring forward, here’s another remix via Red Line D.C. This time, we left the film techniques behind to record our first-ever podcast with red line writer (and willing guinea pig) Nepal. As a featured participant in the video See Something, Say Something, Nepal was invited to share his feedback and feelings regarding part one of the documentary with its director and producer Saaret Yoseph. In an informal conversation between filmmaker and subject, the two talk about filmmaking ethics, the outdated “outlaw experience” and the red line ‘s future with D.C. Check out the chatter below …
* Podcast music composed by Timothy Morrison.
Waxing Poetic, Metro-Style
Imagine combining your public transit experience with poetry. Try describing the feeling while underground or when emerging from a tunnel to face graffiti outside your window. Picture adding word and rhyme to the rhythm of shuffling feet, to the sight of bodies in motion, rocking along with the train. That’s exactly the goal of poet Joseph Ross and the folks at Knowledge Commons DC, whose Slam the Rails series looks to inject ”spoken word in a context often defined by silence.” Ross will be in our neck of the woods on March 18th, reading poems on the red line (toward Glenmont). Riders are invited to hop the last car and hear him read, to take in his poetry along with the miles-long view of spray-painted murals and names.
Like us, Ross has been fascinated by the “ever changing graffiti landscape of the metro.” His poetry explores the work of local graffiti legend Cool Disco Dan and the significance of graffiti as a public name-writing practice. Here, he explains more about his curiosity with metro graffiti …
I am really interested in two areas of graffiti art. First, for me, is the “naming” element. I think it’s so interesting to explore what it means for someone to come out in the middle of the night and paint their name is 5 foot letters. I wonder how “unseen” that person might feel? I wonder about what kind of self-proclamation it is. It seems to be a way of saying “I’m here” to a world that does not see this person. It seems like a baptism, of a sort. Second, I am interested in the “memorializing” element of graffiti art. Often you see the name of someone from a neighborhood who has been killed– showing up in a memorial of some kind. Some are of famous people but some are from folks whose names the rest of us would never know. There is also something very transient about graffiti art– like a Buddhist sand painting where it’s created, it’s beautiful, but everyone knows it will blow away. That impermanence fascinates me too.I’ve often thought of the Red Line from Union Station to Silver Spring as a kind of constantly changing graffiti art museum. You never know what you’ll see. A name can be there one day and gone the next.