I’m back in Yellow Springs this summer for a 2-month Artist Residency, working with editor Jim Klein to turn our 25+ rough cut sequences into a MOVIE. No kidding: Jim is generously housing me for NINE weeks, and putting in long days in the studio, where we’ve already made incredible progress in our first 10 days of work.
Other attractions of this one-of-a-kind residency include exploring the beautiful surrounding countryside on my great borrowed bike, and the groovy village of Yellow Springs itself; cooking splendid meals together, and enjoying a couple of excellent local restaurants; and frequent jazz piano serenades by the multi-talented Mr. Klein.
Mostly what I’ve been learning as we work at this stage of the project is about storytelling itself–shaping character and story through editing. Not that I have just been shooting aimlessly all this time. But it has been particularly gratifying to watch the material shot over a period of 10 years, begin to fit together like a zillion-piece puzzle, to watch the essence of “characters” whom I’ve gotten to know so well over these years come into focus on the screen in 3-dimensional living color, as if Jim were translating my own perspective through his editing.
It is a strange and mysterious process, filming real people’s lives, and then crafting from that material something that feels MORE real and moving than just the uncut raw footage could ever be. Jim has been honing this craft for over forty years, and it is a pleasure and a revelation to work beside him to bring this film to life.