Over the course of the last four years, I’ve been filming the story of one very soulful family farm. The filming for the documentary is complete and I'm ready to move the film into postproduction, but I need your help to make this goal a reality.
We made it to our goal!! Farmsteaders has been receiving amazing feedback and support from folks so far, and I am just bursting with gratitude. Folks have been asking and yes, you can keep pledging!
The goal of $10,000 was the minimum amount needed to bring Farmsteaders to life. Every penny that we can fund above that baseline will help me make this film experience even more amazing! Can you help Farmsteaders raise $20,000?
The money for the new goal will help me:
- Hire a co-editor
- Expand the film's community outreach strategy
- Score original music: The original plan was to license pre-recorded music, but more funding would make it possible to work with a composer to create a unique musical score and soundscape just for Farmsteaders
- Create education curriculum(!): This is my favorite plan for more funds and something I've been dreaming about for awhile! I can hire an assistant-editor to help me create a 5 minute version of the film that focuses on the Nolan kids living life on the farm. And, together with the help of a team of professional educators, I will create a lesson plan with fun, engaging project prompts all about food and farming. This will be available as a free (or pay-what-you-can) educational package that is geared toward engaging middle-school aged students to learn about nutrition and connect to the sources of their food.
The fog is rolling slowly, nestled in between the hills - the breath of the little creek across the pasture. A calf was born this morning. The big maple tree in front of the house - the one Grandpa planted - is just starting to turn fire red. Over there is the hill where Grandpa died that September day. Nick swears at a tractor that just broke out in the field. He’s a red headed, sinewy, Appalachian prodigal son. Celeste is making a list of things to do that is almost too long for the paper she's writing it on. She's hopeful and steady like a deep river. The kids are out in the yard somewhere, thinking about the arrowheads they found and groaning about chores.
Farmsteaders immerses you in the world of one family who is choosing to stay and fight in the economically distressed foothills of Southeastern Ohio. The film reveals their spirit of resistance and resilience. There are other families like the Nolans, and it's time we start paying attention.
If you are alive and you eat food, thank a farmer! Did you know that only 1% of the American population claims farming as their occupation? The amount of food that we produce is increasing steadily, but the production is primarily controlled by 10 major corporations who grow through huge corporate farms. The small scale family farm is going extinct.
My goals as a filmmaker are to tell a beautiful and honest story about a family doing everything they can to make it, and to help viewers deepen their understanding of the toll it takes on small scale farmers trying to do things the right way.
Take a look at the extended trailer for an even better sense of the film:
The Big Picture
Farmsteaders takes place in the lush, rolling foothills of Ohio, just a few miles north of the Ohio River. The region is like countless other places in rural America. It was once a thriving agriculture economy, but for years farmers have fallen victim to the pressures of big agribusiness. Fertile farmland is unused, barns are falling over, health issues are skyrocketing. This is the land of plenty and people are going hungry every day.
The film is shot mostly in a cinéma vérité style (fly on the wall). You are able to watch the children grow over the years, and I pay a deep reverence to the rhythms of the changing seasons. The film explores the daily experience of life on a farm, family legacy, choices, resilience and adaptation in the face of a changing industry.
Make Hay While the Sun is Shining
Now is the time to stand up and fight for the family farm. All of us. Together. In all of the ways that we are able.
This film is a hopeful voice in the larger conversation at hand, and I believe it is of great value. It's time to bring the final pieces together and bring the story to life! Your generosity will help move this film into post-production, which means color correction and sound design, finish editing, and initial marketing and outreach including free community screenings, film festivals, publication and creating online access.
How Will the Funds be Used?
Over the years, I have poured all of my time, energy and financial resources into Farmsteaders. Fortunately, the film has been shot already - the footage is ready to go! But post-production is not cheap. I need to raise at least $10,000 to make this film a reality.
All of the money we raise through this Kickstarter campaign will go toward covering major post production costs. Please help me make this story come to life! I cannot do it without your sweet support.
How the Funds Will be Distributed:
- 30% Final color and sound design
- 20% Finish Editing
- 18% Music
- 10% Initial Community Outreach
- 9% Kickstarter Donor Rewards
- 8% Kickstarter and Third Party Payment Processing
- 5% Harddrives (for editing)
I am currently on track to have the initial film rough cut by September. This autumn, I will be embarking on a grass roots screening tour and showing the Farmsteaders rough cut around the country in discussion/feedback sessions. The fine cut edit will follow in January, and the finished 40 minute long documentary film premiere in early 2016.
$10,000 is the minimum needed to complete Farmsteaders. If we are able to raise more than that goal, the extra money will go toward creating the next phase of outreach - a free educational package with a short video edit from the project geared toward kids, along with engaging project ideas that encourage middle-school aged students to have fun learning about nutrition and the sources of their food.
Get These Wonderful Rewards!
You can read more about this photographer on the Farmsteaders' blog - click here.
All of these awesome rewards have been made with love by yours truly, my very talented family members, or donated by wonderfully creative friends!
How You Can Help:
Donate! Every single dollar counts. Your donation will help fund the completion of this film!
Spread the Word! Share this campaign and the Farmsteaders project with your family and friends on social media.
Find Farmsteaders on:
From the bottom of my heart, THANK YOU!!!
Risks and challenges
Making an independant film is a HUGE undertaking, and this project has been no exception. There are unexpected hardships and hurdles every step of the way.
The good news is that after putting in years worth of work, I've already met many of the challenges head on! We are in the home stretch and I am truly committed to this story. Over the years, I've seen this project evolve with help from my community, and I'm ready to meet any challenges that may arise.
The greatest risk we run now is not meeting the Kickstarter goal for funding.
With your support, we can complete the film and build the team for distribution, education, and impact.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (27 days)