So of course, here is another overdue update on my filmmaking life. I survived my first year at Stanford, and made not one, not two, but threefilms this year! It’s been a really rigorous program so far, but I can see I’m growing and learning from every project. Almost as soon as I was done with my final assignments, I jumped on a plane and flew halfway across the world to help my friend Kady on her thesis project. Kady is one of the people I owe my filmmaking career to. She started a documentary film club at Emerson college, before there was really a documentary program established there, and got me involved with a bunch of people who loved to make documentaries. Kady is currently in American University’s documentary film MFA program, and so it was really interesting to compare notes on what we are learning in our very similar, but also very different grad programs. The her thesis film, called Exile No More, is about the African refugee population living in South Tel Aviv. It was a very challenging topic for many reasons, and I still feel like I’m processing the entire experience. It really opened my eyes to some serious issues facing modern day Israel, and it is way more complex of an issue than is covered in the media.
After returning from Israel, I’ve had some time to regroup. I’ve started thinking about my own thesis project, though it seems incredibly daunting at the moment. I’m so grateful for this long summer break and will be spending the next month jumping back into all things film. Some exciting news is that several of the films I produced this year have started traveling the film festival circuit. Blank Canvas has made its appearance at the Sarasota Film Festival and the San Francisco Women’s Film Festival, and will have upcoming screenings at Docutah, Lunafest, and the United Nations Association Film Festival. Between Land and Sea will be screening at the Pacific Film Archive and the Palo Alto International Film Festival. I’m really looking forward to the month of September because there will be a bunch of local screenings and press events I will be attending. This past year has been a pretty wild ride, but I’m so grateful for it and I look forward to where the next year will take me.