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
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.
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)
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 …
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.
Red-Eye: Up Against the Wall
A visit to the red line does much for visual wonders and recently, our red line research took us up-close and against a wall of colorful evidence. With red line writers Fame & Grave as our tour guides, we found ourselves somewhere in between Ft. Totten and Brookland — or was it Ft. Totten and Takoma? All we know for sure was there was graffiti high, low and in abundance. See for yourself …
Take a Ride with Red Line D.C.!
My, my, my … how time flies. It was this time last year that we applied for a small/planning grant with the Humanities Council of Washington, DC and as we take stock of our work, so far, we thought we’d share a portion of our submitted project narrative:
The main idea of The Red Line D.C. project is to integrate the typically disparate players associated with illegal public art – those creating it, those consuming it and those covering it up. In a communal environment like the D.C. metro a mosaic of opinions exist about the images and messages populating the ride. Some view metro graffiti as blight, while others support it a means for free expression. Similarly, as the space around the red line metro begins to change, questions about valuation and gentrification begin to arise. The Red Line D.C. project intends to address the many interrelated issues associated with illegal public art by inquiring what one space means to many.
The mention of “disparate players” and singular space reinforces our red line goals. The red line has and continues to have different functions for the many different people who use it. Thus, we’re constantly on the grind to collect more voices, more stories, more experiences on the metro. Though, we’ve filmed and interviewed a good amount of graffiti writers, commuters and property owners have been, surprisingly, reluctant to bite. Currently, we’re on the hunt for one (or more!) metro rider(s) who might be willing to let us film their day’s commute on the red line. If you’re down for commuter cause and interested in being involved with our documentary, please contact us at email@example.com. If not, please pass on the word to someone who might be. We and our cameras are super ready to roll … but don’t worry, we’ll be gentle.
Without Further Ado …
Here’s the rough cut of Red Line D.C.‘s first installment, See Something, Say Something. Check out our efforts in this first part of the red line series then let us know what you think in the comments section or by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org . We hope you like what you see!
Work in Progress …
With 2012 approaching, we’re preparing for a new release from Red Line D.C. Editing is currently underway for See Something, Say Something (working title), a short film about the indirect relationship between graffiti writers who get up on the red line and the commuters who ride it everyday. In the weeks past we’ve been reviewing interviews, and archiving photos from “the Line” which a handful of writers have been kind enough to share. Here are a few snapshots that graffiti writer Nepal sent our way to give you a sense of what’s to come.
Word on the Street: Red Line Riders Speak Out!
This site is in need of some fresh multimedia! A little audio inspiration is exactly what we need to pickup momentum on discussion about red line aesthetics and history. Straight from the Red Line D.C. vault and submitted for your approval, a quickie interview with a willing red line commuter named Ellen. As we work with WordPress (and on our ever-growing technical skills), we’ll do our best to share more of these conversational gems with you. Hopefully, this recorded fodder will inspire you to share your own experiences on the red line. Hear what one commuter has to say and sound off with your own opinion at email@example.com or down below in the comments section.
Walk a Little, Talk a Little Art
This weekend, Red Line D.C. went east of the river to attend a panel discussion, The Importance of Art in Public, at Anacostia Library. In a public building showing off its own aesthetic appeal, local residents gathered to hear what the artists, gatekeepers and administrators behind citywide public art projects had to say about their work’s significance. Moderating the panel was Phillip Kennicott, arts and culture writer for the Washington Post. Kennicott kicked things off by asking the panelists to consider how they defined public art and how that art “finishes a space; keeps a space present.” Though, all the participants made interesting points, standout quotes from the Saturday afternoon event came by way of Dierde Thayer Ehlen, public art manager for the D.C. Commission on the Arts & Humanities, and Wanda Aikens, executive director of Ward 7 Arts Collaborative. It was Ehlen’s belief, for example, that public art be “molded into the fabric of a community,” while Aikens thought it essential for a city to have “fertile ground for people to create.” Always ready to keep the red line relevant, we asked the panelists if they valued illegal public art, like metro graffiti. Talk of the Metro-Branch Trail and marginalized artworks ensued. (Excerpted video of their responses TK!)
After talking about public art at the panel, we wandered around Anacostia to find the real thing. A nearby MuralsDC site at Bread for the City (Good Hope Rd & 10th St, SE) had just been completed last week. And, not far from there, lead artist Bryan Conner and his apprentice artists were putting in work on a massive parking lot mural off Martin Luther King Blvd. Take a look at the flicks to see whats been done and what’s in-store to see for the future. To follow Aikens’ advice, public art productions, like these, are good for “waking up brain cells with color.”
MuralsDC Celebrates a Summer of Graffiti at the H Street Temporium
WBL’s “The Show,” which displays the work of MuralsDC’s lead and apprentice artists will be taking place at the Temporium (1300 H st, NE) until September 13th. Check it out while you can!
Read All About It …
As a fitting farewell to our summer of graffiti, this week’s issue of the Washington City Paper featured a cover story on the city’s complicated relationship with legal murals and unsanctioned art. Writer Jonna McKone included some familiar names to the fray: Cory Stowers, art director of Words, Beats & Life, Inc.; artist Tim Conlon; and writer FAME — all of whom have been interviewed or involved in Red Line D.C.‘s development in some way, shape or form. (The documentary was given a quick shout-out, too. Woot! Woot!) Before reporting out the WCP article, entitled “Tagging Rights,” McKone did a similar story for WAMU that followed FAME as he hit the line. Both pieces of reporting point to the odd positioning of graffiti culture in D.C., and elsewhere, as more street art finds its way into classrooms, galleries and public art exhibits.
The cultural and artistic tensions that McKone discusses directly inform our work for this project. As MuralsDC adds color to more legal walls around the city, including those along the red line, the significance of these open displays of art becomes increasingly difficult to frame. Is the red line just an old relic of underground art legends, a low-stakes territory for little-known, newbie writers or a transitional place seeing “progress” through public artworks? Clearly, there’s still lots for us to mull over at Red Line D.C. Though, our minds are fixed on a spring/summer release for the documentary, we remain open to the myriad of possibilities for our project. The growing interest in graffiti culture and resulting media attention pushes us to ask: What will Red Line D.C. contribute to the discussion? McKone leaves much room for questioning, as well. She writes, “As the graffiti bubble grows bigger and bigger, its contradictions are being painted in vivid color.” And its with this vast, contradicting color palette in mind, that we set off to paint our own picture …
Come for the Grub, Stay for the Graffiti
Our last pre-fall hoorah has arrived! To wrap up a summer of art across the city, WBL will be hosting an exhibit and BBQ Tuesday night at 1300 H Street, NE. Besides graffiti talk and good grub, expect to find gallery pieces by lead artists and apprentice artists who have contributed to the latest crop of public art projects throughout the District. And keep a lookout for our project, as well. We’ll be bugging you to supply questions for future Red Line D.C. interviews and showing footage of MuralsDC leaving its mark on the red line. Click here, to find out more info. on tonight’s event. If you can’t make it or just can’t wait till then, enjoy a sneak peek below:
More video snippets can be seen here on our Vimeo page. Subscribe to our channel or keep checking back for new Red Line D.C. remixes and teasers.