Northern Arapaho story told in 360 virtual reality

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Wyoming Community Media’s Alan O’Hashi and Glenn Reese teamed up with the Maker Space 307 to teach students about virtual reality.

The Northern Arapaho Tribe has a tribal priority to reintroduce and preserve the Arapaho language.

Even though the language is taught in school, students spend the majority of their time at home or in the community interacting with family and friends where there is inconsistent reinforcement of cultural cues learned in the classroom since there are many levels of cultural knowledge and experience.

How can a traditionally oral language be made relevant to young people who are digitally connected to games, and other mass media screens?

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Glenn Reese sets the Vuze camera at the historic Arapaho Ranch mansion.

To answer this question, Wyoming Community Media and it’s producers Alan O’Hashi and Glenn Reese teamed up with Lorre Hoffman and the Maker Space 307 summer youth service learning program, based in Fort Washakie on the Wind River Reservation.

Four students participated during the three-day class and production project.

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Arapaho Gary Collins and Arapaho story teller Merle Haas pose with Alan and Glenn after she read the Fox and Woodtick in Arapaho

Northern Arapaho elder and story teller Merle Haas wrote down a short story passed down to her from her great grandfather, Chief Yellow Calf.

“The Fox and the Woodtick” teaches a lesson about “thinking outside the box.”

Northern Arapaho Eagle Drum Society singer and drummer Alison Sage spoke about the traditional importance and healing properties of making music.

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Artist Robert Martinez gives a workshop about tribal art and how it is still a story telling medium.

Artist Robert Martinez gave a presentation about how tribal artwork has evolved over the years and continues to be an important means of storytelling.

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Eagle Drum Society member Allison Sage demonstrates his original songs.

We worked closely with Bob Ottinger and the Reality Garage in Boulder, Colorado who loaned us a Vuze virtual reality camera, a Samsung 360 camera and a high speed computer.

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The Reality Garage in Boulder, Colorado loaned the project the Vuze camera and a high speed lap top.

When it was all said and done, the youth combined their self-composed music and original art to tell Merle’s folk tale in two dimensions and 360 degree virtual reality on location at the historic Arapaho Ranch Mansion north of Thermopolis, Wyoming.

This is a pilot project that demonstrates an efficient way for tribes to present traditional language and cultural preservation efforts in a not-so-traditional format to tribal and non-tribal cultures.

The ‘Aging Gratefully’ in cohousing film series now available to stream

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Book a personal appearance by “Aging Gratefully: The Power of Good Health and Good Neighbors” filmmaker Alan O’Hashi who will screen the film and facilitate a discussion. Stipend is negotiable!

The “Aging Gratefully in Cohousing” documentary series Video on Demand is now available. The three movies can be rented or purchased.

WCM and BCM are developing a mixed use intentional and creative community in Cheyenne called Lincoln Court. If people are interested in some of the concepts and ideas about cohousing, check out these movies.

You can also book a screening for your community or general audience by obtaining a screening license for a nominal donation.

To purchase or rent, click on the Video On Demand (VOD) links below:

“Aging Gratefully: The Power of Good Health and Good Neighbors” (Run Time: 50min – 2017) Filmmaker and Silver Sage Village senior cohousing resident Alan O’Hashi is mostly recovered from his death bed illness in 2013. As a result of that experience he’s become much more aware of his health. One of his neighbors circulated information about a research study at the University of Colorado about the effects of exercise on brain health. Curious, he was selected to be a research subject. To measure success, one of the criteria is emotional health and strength of relationship building.

Does living in a cohousing community be an added benefit to physical exercise? He interviewed six residents of newly-formed Germantown Commons to find out their motivations to living in cohousing and whether living intentionally with neighbors was a positive experience and what physical activities happen in a group setting.

Germantown Commons Residents:

  • Essie Sappenfield (retired)
  • Doug Luckes (still working)
  • Suzanne Glasgow (still working)
  • Sarah Carroll (single mom)
  • Chris Corby (still working)
  • Ginger Lange (retired)
  • Vicki Metzgar (retired)

Also Appearing:

  • Bryan Bowen, AIA (Caddis Architects)
  • Angela Bryan PhD,( Principal Investigator CU FORCE study)
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Book a personal appearance by “Aging Gratefully: The Power of Culture and Traditions” filmmaker Alan O’Hashi who will screen the film and facilitate a discussion about his experiences. Stipend is negotiable.

“Aging Gratefully: The Power of Culture and Traditions” (Run Time: 30 min – 2017) My latest trek took me to South Africa where I’m investigating a third documentary in the Aging Gratefully series. This pilot is mostly based some initial research and my impressions that span from Tolstoy to Gandhi to Mandela to the present time.

There’s an intentional community being formed in the Town of Memel and the Township of Zamani in the South African Free State Province by a friend and colleague, Steven Ablondi and his wife Cindy Burns. Steve and I serve on the National Cohousing Association board of directors.

I tagged along with the Memel Global Community architect and my across the street neighbor Bryan Bowen and a couple of his crew, Jamison and Molly. Bryan lives in the Wild Sage Cohousing community in Boulder.

I embedded myself with a local buy named Shakes in the Black African community and even though it was only for a couple days, I gained quite a bit of insight into the cultural dynamics, which are not unlike those I encounter among my Northern Arapaho tribal member friends.

As this story develops, how Native American tribes could incorporate cohousing concepts into its growing housing demand will also be investigated. There are generations-long traditional tribal cultures that have a norm about multi-generational care for elders. Does it it makes any sense to form intentional communities around these customs?

This is a 30 minutes pilot of my visit shot mainly on an iPhone 6s and I’m not sure if anything will come of this story. I’m collaborating with a fellow filmmaker, Pieter Lombaard, who appears in the short. We’re trying to figure out a good story with a great arc. What do you think?

Memel Global Community featured denizens:

  • Steven Ablondi (cofounder)
  • Bryan Bowen (Caddis Architects)
  • Shakes Mafanela (SheWins sports coordinator)
  • Marley Hauser (SheWins volunteer)
  • Pieter Lombaard (Binary Film Works)
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Book a personal appearance by “Aging Gratefully: The Power of Community” filmmaker Alan O’Hashi who will screen the film and facilitate a discussion about his experiences. Stipend is negotiable!

“Aging Gratefully: The Power of Community” (Run Time: 51min – 2015) In the first of the series, what if 25 senior citizens decided to grow old together in a cohousing community? Learn about their illness, angst, and fun times while owning and maintaining 16 condos, a common house and community gardens.

Cohousing is a collaborative living arrangement. Residents own their own homes, live private lives but share in the ownership and upkeep of common spaces such the garden and common house.

It’s a challenging way to live, but living together more intentionally is a hedge against being alone and isolated through the twilight years of life.

Filmmaker and Silver Sage Village resident Alan O’Hashi was on his death bed in December 2013. Following a 6 week hospital and rehab stay and a month of home confinement, he joined a yoga community to regain his strength, but learned more about himself than just getting healthier.

Through his reflections, he recounts his continuing recovery and weaves those experiences with the perspectives of neighbors with Parkinson’s Disease, Alzheimer’s Disease and those who find themselves in supportive neighborly care giving roles.

Cohousing pioneers Katie McCamant and Chuck Durrett and gerontologist Anne Glass phD offer their perspectives about senior cohousing living.

Silver Sage Village featured residents:

  • Lindy Cook (nurse)
  • John Huyler (facilitator)
  • Henry and Jean Kroll (retired from San Francisco)
  • Dan Knifong (retired professor)
  • Jim Leach (Silver Sage Village developer)
  • Margaret Porter (retired federal government)

Also Appearing:

  • Anne Glass phD (University of North Carolina Wilmington Gerontology Program Coordinator)
  • Chuck Durrett AIA (McCamant and Durrett Architects)
  • Katie McCamant (The Cohousing Company)
  • Larissa Ortiz (teacher The Little Yoga Studio)

The Denver Post published a story prior to “Aging Gratefully” production beginning and KGNU radio did a story about it post production

If you have questions about purchase, rental or booking a screening, email Boulder Community Media

We need your ‘like’ for ‘Plein Air in Thin Air’

Click on this image and watch the two minute trailer. Click the ❤️ . You’ll be asked to log in with your facebook or set up an account.

I’m working on a documentary to be shot in Wyoming during August and we’re trying to win the Wyoming Short Film Contest. The theme is “WY am I Here?”

Please watch the trailer and give us a “like!” You’ll be asked to log in with your facebook account if you’re not already a vimeo user.

The Wyoming Film Office gives away $25,000 to the winner that goes toward a Wyoming production. We’ll be making the movie in Grand Teton National Park this August.

The top-10 are decided by popularity contest with no regard to production value. The winner is picked by a panel of judges based on the dogs selected by the production team friends and family – it’s click bait from the Wyoming Film Office. Everyone is having a problem with this, but it cuts down on those who sit at their computers and hit play, over and over.

The main voting criteria has to do with promotion of Wyoming.

Please watch the trailer and give us a “like!” You may have to log in with your facebook if you’re not already a vimeo user.

“WY Am I Here”? What if a 62-year-old grandfather of six decides to climb the spectacular Grand Teton and make never-before drawn pastel views of the expansive landscape?

Laramie artist Joe Arnold has been mountaineering for 50 years. He and his son, Jason, are planning an expedition to Grand Teton National Park for an ascent of the Grand Teton (13,776′) North Ridge route (rated 5.8).

It will be a five-day bonding experience for two generations of climbers with an unusual but creative mission at the summit.

Art 321 in Casper was the location for the CLICK! conference. Watch the Plein Air in Thin Air trailer and ‘like ‘

How did I come across this project?
I went to the Wyoming Arts Council CLICK! conference in Casper a couple weeks ago.

I ran into Joe Arnold. We were each presenting about our art works at the conference.

A couple years ago, Joe won a Wyoming Arts Council fellowship. I did a tribute video about his project which was a trek to Patagonia.

We got to talking. I was looking for a movie to make for the film office contest. I thought about my two works-in-progress, but wasn’t inspired.

Joe has a trailer finished, making it the perfect project.

Take a look and click on the heart in the upper right hand corner of the video player. We want to get into the top-10 of the beauty pageant.

Here’s the rest of the team:

  • Director and Director of Photography: Eric Randall
  • Production Assistants: Jacob Chmielowiec and Tim Hall
  • Music By: Dave Beegle davebeegle.com
  • Produced by: Alan O’Hashi and wyocomedia.com
  • Associate Producer: Jason Arnold
  • Executive Producer: Joe Arnold joearnold.org

CIFF and FFMF end 9-year run – watch for the WSFF

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It was a good run. Wyoming Community Media ended a nine year run of the FAST Filmmaking Festival (formerly the Shootout) and the Cheyenne International Film Festival.

There was a method to the madness. The Cheyenne International Film Festival converged with the FAST Filmmaking Festival as the Cheyenne International FAST Film Festival in 2015, the final year.

There will no longer be stand alone festivals or filmmaking contests, so watch for the Whistle Stop FILM Festival – WSFF, chugging into a town near you, not only in Wyoming, Colorado and Nebraska, but across the country.

7th CIFF 2015 now accepting film entries through March 30th

The 2015 edition of the Cheyenne International Film Festival is now accepting films for the May 26 - 30 event in Downtown Cheyenne.

The 2015 edition of the Cheyenne International Film Festival is now accepting films for the May 26 – 30 event in Downtown Cheyenne.

The 7th CIFF 2015 is now accepting entries.

As usual, we’re partial to movies with Wyoming story lines, made by Wyoming people, and/or shot in Wyoming.

Categories include shorts and features length documentaries and narratives as well as animations.

The festival is May 25 – 30, 2015 in Downtown Cheyenne including the Atlas Theatre. The CIFF provides a way for local communities to discuss their issues within the safe haven of the arts.

The entry fee is minimal, so please pay it. Check out the website by opening the CIFF logo on the left.

New Deal Artists in Wyoming documentary funded

Jackson Pollock and Thomas Hart Benton visited the Saratoga rodeo in 1938. Benton painted this mural with Pollock as the harmonica player at the card table on the left.

Jackson Pollock and Thomas Hart Benton visited the Saratoga rodeo in 1938. Benton painted this mural with Pollock as the harmonica player at the card table on the left.

WCM was funded by the Wyoming Humanities Council and the Wyoming Arts Council to produce a documentary about New Deal artists in Wyoming. We have some leads but need more. Are there any historians out there who have any info or can point us in the right direction:
– EE Stevens murals in Niobrara County
– Jackson Pollock and Thomas Hart Benson in Saratoga during July 4th in the 1930s
– Alan True asked by Lester Hunt to design the license plate bucking horse
– Robert Russin did his WPA art elsewhere but moved to Wyoming and taught at UW
Production will happen when the weather breaks in the spring.

FAST Filmmaking Festival winners announced

The FAST Filmmaking Festival in Cheyenne screened the top movies and presented awards at the Historic Atlas Theatre in Downtown Cheyenne. The top films can be watched on the YouTube Channel.

“Preservation” by Shawn Crochet and “The Diary of Robert Metchum Dodge” tied for Best Picture. Here are the films that played at the event, including the Cheyenne Historic Preservation Board documentary about the board’s work and it’s sponsorship of the FFMF.

1) Cheyenne Historic Preservation Board Documentary

2) Wyoming Hereford Ranch – Directed by Barbara Sandick

– Best Historic Preservation Treatment $50

– Best Cinematography $50

3) Historic Haunting – Directed by Steve Stoner

– (tie) Best Comedy $25

4) Why Historic Preservation Matters – Produced by Keefe Van Dyke

– (tie) Best Comedy $25

– Best Actor – Keefe Van Dyke $50

5) Power to Forgive – Produced – Directed by Jake Ward

– (tie) Best Youth Film $100

6) New Friends – Directed by Brendon Threewitt (movie shot on an iPad)

– (tie) Best Youth Film $100

7) Tunnels – Directed by Miranda Threewitt

– Silver Spur – two free youth entry fees in 2015

8) Found – Produced by Yari Figueroa

– Silver Spur – two free regular entry fees in 2015

9) Preservation – Directed by Shawn Crochet

– (tie) Best Film – Shawn Crochet $250

– Best Actress – Morgan Martin $50

– Best Director – Shawn Crochet $50

– Best Screen Play – Shawn Crochet $50

10) Diary of Robert Metcham Dodge – Directed by Cole Smith

– (tie) Best Film – Cole Smith $250

– Best Music – Walker Smith $50