This week's round-up is a typical grab bag of creativity and charisma. We've got indie filmmaker Matt Porterfield's latest devotion to his craft, a fictitious yearbook in need of your mug, a DC dance opera, a post-new age electronic record, and one "little blue guy" who pays rent in Jolly Ranchers. Trying to tease out a theme here may prove fruitless, but distilling order from chaos is for nerds, and diversity is divine! Here are five new projects not to be missed. Happy backing!
Spoiler alert: this project video is next-level f---ed up! Matt Porterfield has spent the past decade honing his craft--a uniquely empathetic brand of realist Baltimore filmmaking where truths emerge through the atmosphere and sincerity is not a dirty word. Just like his Kickstarter videos, Porterfield's films are honest, reflective, and quietly urgent. He describes I Used To Be Darker as a film about "people finding each other and letting each other go." We were so pleased to see Putty Hill (which includes its own long tattooing scene full of hypnotic buzz) grow from Kickstarter project to festival darling to theatrical release, and we have no doubt his next film will be equally as thoughtful and engaging as the last. As this project video attests, Porterfield is most definitely in it to win it. Good to have you back, sir. -- Elisabeth H.
Cartoonist Jim Ethers made up a high school, called it "Red Pines," and decided to make a fictitious yearbook for it. Everything inside of the book will be fake: the friendly notes, the commemorative poem, the clubs, the dances. Everything, that is, except the staff and the student body, which will be populated by Ethers' playfully reimagined versions of his Kickstarter project backers. There are 45 available slots including Principle, and there will be 45 totally unique yearbooks. Every backer will receive an original oil-painted portrait as well. If you've seen the totally-bonkers-out-there style of Ethers' artwork (and that's a compliment, mind you), you'll know what I mean when I say that this is not an opportunity to be missed. -- Cassie M.
The renowned Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, has a very cool program of free daily performances at their Millennium Stage, and dance group Deviated Theatre has secured a September performance slot. They'll be premiering a piece called siGHt, which delves into motifs of family and crisis and involves folding chairs, aerial silks, and a cute little girl who inspired the story. If you're not from the metro area, check out the show via live stream! -- Daniella J.
The burning sensation of a weekend hangover coupled with hellish heat, building construction, and a hankering for unlimited ice coffee could add up to a semi-stressful Monday morning. However, the vast scapes of Yoko K's "Heaven's Library" blew all those peripheral thoughts out the window with a simple coo. Her project is a new "organic electronica" record, which may make you think Enya, and yeah, that wouldn't be too far off, but it's got more of a pulse than Enya and her post-new age compatriots. Soothing sounds for a morning where soothing is much needed. -- Mike M.
Walt is a "little blue guy" who is just trying to make his way in the world like the rest of us. Little blue Walt embodies one of my favorite cartoon premises, wherein the main character is ambiguously non-human and everyone around him is human, and life goes on. I appreciate that in a cartoon, especially when said non-human is ADORABLE! And tries to pay his rent in Jolly Ranchers. I mean, been there, amiright? It is also worth nothing that you back this project $15, you too can get a Jolly Rancher from Walt, which I hear is the going price for Jolly Ranchers gifted to you by a non-human little blue guy. -- Meaghan O.