Frequently (and not so frequently) Asked Questions
What inspired the story?
I'm not sure. Not any one thing, I guess.
Why only use still photos?
Two reasons, I suppose.
1. Time. During production I could cover a lot more scenes in a much shorter amount of time, which was important because each performer was spending less than 18 hours of time on the project.
2. Artistic interest. I wanted to see what could come about when I gave myself a very considerable amount of constraints. And I hadn't seen any longer-form photo movie projects out there besides Chris Marker's La Jetee, so I was very curious about what a more straightforward narrative could look like in a photo movie.
I wanted to be very intentional about the conversations that this story generated. It's not too often that I have peoples' attention for 50 minutes. And it's not too often that folks are asked to relate to the feelings of gay characters, or to gay people in general. So, put those two together, and this is what you get.
How come we only ever see four people? Where's everyone else?
Everyone else is there. Just invisible or something.
Is that symbolic?
Because if I made a movie about straight people, not very many folks would ask me about the sexuality of the characters.
Why in the world can't Michelle just tell Lorraine that she likes her???
Because she's kind of shy......
I mean, really? Really???
...… very shy......?
How long did it to make the movie?
It took the entire history of the universe.
I mean, how long did it take you?
The answer you're probably looking for: about 3 years. That's counting from the moment I decided I would make a movie, to the moment I decided I was done editing. I spent about 2 years on the script, which was a steady, deliberate process, because I had a myriad of other projects and schoolwork that I was primarily focused on throughout that time. The photos were taken in the span of about 6 weeks. And the editing and music production took place here and there over the course of about 6 months.
What was your favorite scene to make?
It's hard to pick one. Maybe the scene where we see all four characters for the first time. So emotional! Gets me every time. And a lot of the photos for that scene were taken on the first day of shooting, which was also the only day that I had all four performers together.
Because I hadn't ever seen a movie that had a lesbian Native-American as the lead character.
Where did you make the movie?
The pictures were taken at the campus of the Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington.
How many pictures did you take?
Somewhere between 2600 and 2700.
How many pictures did you use in the final movie?
What camera did you use?
Canon PowerShot SD1400 IS – Digital Elph (orange!)
Which video editing software did you use?
Adobe Premiere Elements.
Are you gay?
I don't usually answer that question directly.
Because I wanted to see a straight, male director make a movie with lesbian characters that didn't hypersexualize / objectify / dehumanize and otherwise degrade said lesbian characters.
Would you have changed the story if you decided to switch the roles to men?
No. The only differences in the production would have been in how the individual performances would have been different just due to the parts being played by different people.
Although, I imagine it would be perceived a bit differently, because of our general conceptions of men and masculinity.
Why didn't you use the Evergreen Longhouse in any of your scenes?
I wanted most of the visual images that folks would generally associate with indigeneity to be in Michelle's room.
Is that symbolic of something?
I wanted a different ending.
Me too :(
I liked the ending.
Me too :)
Because it wasn't my first thought. And I thought a lot about why it wasn't.
Why were two of the characters voiced by someone different than the performer?
Well, I really like the idea of the voices of characters being different from the voices of the people playing the characters. It makes them cyborgs(!), patchwork people. And because every character I write is very much a patchwork woven together from my personal experiences and my interactions with everyone around me, I find it very fitting.
Then... why did you have the other two voice their own characters?
What's with those two photos that Michelle has on her wall?
That's for me to know, and for you to speculate.
Are they symbolic?
I imagine so.
Well, sometimes when when you're writing, the characters you write take on traits of people near and dear to you.
Is [insert character here] based on me?
I don't think so......?
Whoa! Her backpack just disappeared!
Yeah, there were some continuity errors, for sure. That being said, maybe when the camera cut away she slid her backpack off and chucked it through that open door back 20 feet behind her. Stranger things have happened.
What does the C in your name stand for?
What's with the oranges? Are they symbolic?
They sure show up a lot.
What did you learn through making this movie?
That writing for a movie is fantastic fun!
That taking pictures is fantastic fun!
That it can be a fantastic struggle for certain people to get to campus by 11am on a Saturday, so it's best not to worry.
Why angsty lesbians?
I don't know. Because sometimes I'm angsty?
I saw Chickbot!
A little robot.
Have a question I haven't answered? Let me know.
Frequently (and not so frequently) Asked Questions