This quarter I am starting an exciting adventure: the production of my senior film! I will be spending the next 11 weeks on the pre-production of my film. Following pre-production, I will engage in producing and editing my film over the next 9 months. The next year is going to be an exciting time in my collegiate career. This project will give me the opportunity to take everything i've learned, and create a compelling short film that represents my hard work. Over the next year, I will be sharing weekly journals covering the filmmaking process, and I will also be using it to share things that inspire me along the way!
We are now at the beginning of Week 2 and we are already well into the process of constructing our stories. Last week we were able to listen to advice from the senior post-production students who have already gone through the preparation. It was very beneficial to hear what they had to say and what they would do differently if they had another opportunity. Last week we wrote up initial synopses for potential stories. This first half of the quarter will be the most challenging one for me. Although I may not the strongest writer, I want to push myself out of my comfort zone and write a script I can be proud of. I want to write a narrative piece so that I can further improve my scriptwriting abilities. I already know that I enjoy producing documentaries, so working on a narrative piece will be a fantastic opportunity to grove as a writer.
For many weeks I've struggled with what I could possibly write for my senior film. Recently, I had the pleasure of meeting an incredibly inspiring young man. His experiences and hardships instantly gravitated myself towards sharing his story. I knew that I already wanted to produce a narrative, but when this great documentary opportunity presented itself, I could not pass it up. I really found this man's story to be inspiring, and I knew that others would be just as interested in his story as I was.
The young man's name is Joe. I met him through a mutual friend and when I met him I fell in love with his story. After two hours talking with him, I left feeling so inspired and eager to learn more from him. Last August, Joe was involved in a speed flying accident that was truly life-altering. This accident caused him to permanently lose mobility in his legs. He was diagnosed as an incomplete c-7 quadriplegic; a spinal cord injury that causes paralysis from the waist down.
Throughout his recovery, Joe has displayed the workings of a true fighter. As an extremely active man with a passion for the outdoors, he has had no regrets for the hobby that took away his ability to walk. He says, if he still had the ability to walk, Joe would continue speed flying. With four months in several hospitals, Joe responded very well to physical therapy and worked VERY hard to gain back his independence.
He is currently training to hand cycle 105 miles through Glacier National Park, which he hopes to accomplish before the 1 year anniversary of his accident. Along the way, he hopes to meet the people responsible for saving his life. He wants to show how much he has been able to accomplish within that first year following his accident. Most people in similar situations as Joe would still be dealing with the regret, and questioning why they were put in that position. However, Joe's attitude towards an otherwise debilitating and traumatic accident has been unique. Joe does not feel the need to dwell on the past, but rather wants to find out how he can benefit from the new life he has been given.
This is a remarkable story and I want to share it with a greater audience. It is people like Joe that not only help others appreciate the life they have been given, but motivate them to enrich their lives, no matter the situation.
This past week I decided that I would like to tell his story by writing a script that follows his journey through recovery. I want the film to showcase Joe's understanding of paralysis. I want to show him working through the recovery process. This includes, physical therapy, finding new ways to enjoy his life, and regaining independence. Joe's love for the outdoors kept him motivated throughout the recovery process. By constructing a narrative through conversations with Joe, his whole experience will give a true representation of a man overcoming adversity.
Tomorrow morning I am meeting up with Joe to talk more about his story. This time I would like to capture audio of our discussion in order to get as much insight as I possibly can. I will journal more about our discussion afterward.