As a filmmaker, I’m interested in community building. On an impressionable trip to Tijuana, Mexico at the age of 16 to build houses, I had seen satellite dishes jutting out of almost every corrugated shanty roof. I had wondered how the illusion of television was making an impression in these impoverished peoples lives. Then years later at the University of California at Santa Cruz, I had a professor who happened to grow up in the same Tijuana shantytown. From a film he made, I learned his impression of the United States from satellite TV. Due to this coincidence, I became interested in perception of the viewer and the vision of the media creator. I’m interested in exploring multiple points of view to bring better understanding of the guise and truths of illusions.


Previously I had explored this concept with layered screens and multiple characters in Ask Her (2001) a movie about articulation. After Ask Her, in Seeking Solace (2012) I utilized a split screen convention and something I call vertical poetics. The poetics of my film deviated from the Aristotelian horizontal plot to explore a more vertical plotline. This approach is modeled after the vertical poetics of Maya Deren in Meshes of an Afternoon. Seeking Solace morphed into a larger serial project, Sounds of Freedom. With Sounds of Freedom, I weave a horizontal story along with surreal scenes that explore my characters’ traumas using vertical poetics.

Sounds of Freedom uses vertical poetics along with sound.
To Julia and Charlie, the main characters in the Sounds of Freedom, sound can take these soldiers back to the battlefield. Sounds celebrating freedom and life sprinkle each episode.
I lead in with a character from the series and a sound that gives or means freedom to them. On exit of the episode, I play with how this sound has developed in terms of the meaning of freedom as events in the episode develop. For instance, in the pilot episode, to Don the newspaper delivery man, the sound of newspapers hitting front doors is his sound of freedom. By the end of the episode, the sound of newspapers hitting front doors is silenced due his car overheating. In the next episode this problem is resolved and a new sound is explored.

It is my intent to bring veteran’s issues to the forefront to encourage community support and start a dialogue about issues that affect us all.


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