Traditional Chinese Wedding

I donated a day of videography to my daughter’s Montessori school auction last spring, and it was given as a gift for a couple here in Quincy for their wedding day. I don’t normally film weddings – I don’t normally like to film weddings – but this one was special and I had a great time.

It was a traditional Chinese wedding in Quincy’s large Asian community. Lisa Chiu was marrying Hong Chao “Frankie” Zhong on a beautiful October day. I got to spend the day documenting the preparations, door games (the bridesmaids refuse to let the groomsmen through the door unless they complete a series of embarrassing tasks), Chinese tea ceremony (tea offerings and present exchange with all of the older relatives), photographs, reception, games, and dancing.

My colleague Shondra Burke edited the piece together into a 40-minute video for the family. It felt a little more like a documentary project than the usual cheesy wedding video. Lisa and Frankie were fun to work with, and let me post a little of the final result here.

BU Production I Screening

Last night my Production I students at Boston University screened the short films they made in the second half of this semester. I am quite impressed with how quickly students progressed from knowing almost nothing about photography and filmmaking to confidently conceiving, writing, planning, shooting and editing compelling fiction films.

The fifteen pieces included Justin Geldzahler's comedic One Night Friend, about young man who goes home for the weekend hoping to bond with his little brother but finds himself making friends with an unlikely stranger instead; Michael Halpern's Crossing Paths (pictured above), about two men who pass each other every day without realizing their connection; and Danny Lim's Dreams for Sale, about a young man who seeks an unusual diversion from his job frying noodles in a Chinese restaurant.

Shifting the Public Health Paradigm

We have recently completed a long-term documentation project for the Center for Health Equity and Social Justice at the Boston Public Health Commission. We spent over a year filming communities across New England in their work to decrease the disparities in health outcomes among residents of different ethnic and racial groups.

Our final video presents the Center's unique approach to collaborating with communities. Going beyond traditional "behavior modification" strategies, this approach includes an emphasis on mobilizing residents, addressing racism and the social determinants of health, and advancing long-term policy and systems change. It's about promoting social justice to improve public health.

Earlier this year, we also produced a trailer for the Center, with highlights from this video. Congratulations to the Center and their grantee partners for all their important work!

BU Student Film Audition

My Production I class at Boston University will be holding auditions for their final films this week:

Thursday, October 28, 5-8pm
640 Commonwealth Ave, Room 100
Boston, MA

We are seeking actors and actresses of all ages to perform in fifteen 3-6 minute films. Shooting will take place November 9-18 and will involve 1 or 2 shoots per film. This is an unpaid gig, but we will provide food and a copy of the finished film.

Please email if you have any questions.

Housing Choice Video

The Maine Affordable Housing Coalition, in collaboration with several other organizations, has just released a powerful video sharing the stories of several families whose lives have been changed by public housing support.

The piece, Along the Way Home, aims to bring public attention to the housing needs of lower income people and highlight successful models for addressing those needs. It was produced by Maine-based Pull-Start Pictures, and can be seen on YouTube or on its website.

Please help spread the word about this video and its important message.