VIDEO: An ornamental operation
NOTES: At The Bear Wood Company, they specialize in hand-hewn wooden images in the shape of  West Virginia, often made from reclaimed wood. Three years ago, they began making ornaments in the shape of the state. They sold a few dozen. Now, they sell thousands.
LENGTH: 59 seconds

VIDEO: A “100 Seconds” installment that shows how to put up a Christmas tree in 100 seconds flat.
NOTES: Part of the mission of the “100 Seconds” video series is to showcase videos shot using only smartphones to showcase  “lo-fi media” capabilities. (Not that smartphones are all that lo-fi, these days, as they pack more computing power than the NASA computer that landed Neil Armstrong on the moon.)

 

VIDEO: Bill takes on the West Virginia Symphony
NOTES: Charleston Gazette-Mail staffer Bill Lynch takes on a new challenge for his “One Month at a Time” series, preparing to perform with the West Virginia Symphony. Only one problem: he’d not played an instrument since he was 15 years old. He’s a lot older than that now.

VIDEO: City and rural kids write themselves a song.
NOTES: This mini-doc tracks from start to finish how city kids and rural kids came together at a summer music camp at Big Ugly Community Center in Big Ugly, W.Va., (yes, that’s what it’s called),  to craft an original song. With help from singer-songwriters Chuck Costa and Mira Stanley, of the award-winning group The Sea The Sea and other teachers, the summer campers wrote the music and lyrics to the songs then performed it with a little help from their friends.
LENGTH: 4 min 25 sec

 

VIDEO: Laotong Yoga Prison Project
NOTES: Still images can tell just as a vivid  a story as video. This slideshow portrays the non-profit Laotong Yoga Prison Project (www.laotongyoga.org), which brings yoga and meditation to the adult incarcerated populations across  West Virginia. I joined the Laotong Prison Project board in 2016 and produced the video for the group’s 2017 fundraiser, with images drawn from a prior documentary on the project.
SOUNDTRACK: “Grand Final’e” by Lucas the Flow. (I recommend having a son who is an electronic music composer, if you happen to need a lot of varied video soundtracks.)

VIDEO: The Making of an Elephant, Part 2
NOTES: It is not just that often that elephants wander about West Virginia. But where do you get one and how do you get it here? The people behind the parade that concluded the 2011 All Together Arts Week in Mercer County, West Virginia on April 3, 2011, had always dearly desired an elephant for the event. Then, they manifested one. Not without a whole lot of work. Elephants, it must be remembered, are rather on the chunky side. It was a very special elephant – and this is her story, the concluding video in a special two-part WestVirginiaVille.com video report from our Large Animal Bureau. Part 2 of a two-part series. View Part 1 here.
LENGTH: 3 min 21 sec