ShAFF 2021: Adventure Bites

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24 Leeches 10 minutes

24 Leeches is a camping story told by my son Josiah when he was 8 years old. The film takes place during a 10-day canoeing and camping trip to the Slate Islands of Ontario, Canada on Lake Superior. It was scripted from campfire conversations that we shared during this and other trips. In August 2019 I lost my sweet boy to a fungal brain infection contracted during treatment for leukemia. He was 10 years old. This project has now become a memorial to my best friend and adventure buddy, a very special kid that is missed dearly. I ache to know what he would have become.

Broken 7 minutes
After losing his leg to cancer as a young adult, Jon Wilson struggled with the emotions of feeling broken. Challenging himself in the outdoors presented a possible remedy. Today, crutching up and skiing down mountains at night provides a distinct backdrop for Jon to explore, accept, and embrace the idea of “brokenness,” allowing him to find a more sincere, genuine and honest connection with life.

Charge 2 4 minutes
We took five top freeskiers and a World Champion drone pilot to Mustang Powder Cat Skiing in BC for one week. Their instructions: charge as hard as you can. Featuring Stan Rey Leah Evans Alexi Godbout Josh Daiek Drew Petersen

Choosing To Live 8 minutes
While mourning her late husband, Sarah Hornby craved an opportunity to connect with him through his biggest passion. Her goal was simple. She would attempt all 10 routes he created while researching his Bikepacking in the Canadian Rockies guidebook, in a single year. As she pedaled, her story transformed. From sadness and loss to a profound celebration of both his life and her own unique journey, she was choosing to live.
In Loving Memory of Ryan Correy
Featuring: Sarah Hornby
Produced and Directed by:
Jeff Bartlett/Jeff Bartlett Media | Instagram | Facebook
Matthew Clark/Stirl and Rae Media Haus | Instagram | Facebook
Audio mixed by: Kevin Horton
Special Thanks to: Sarah Hornby, Megan Dunn, Katrina Rosen, Penny Lawless, Katie von Gaza, Guy Stuart, Ainsley Bosch, Neil Sheppard, Huw Oliver
Sponsored by: Salsa Cycles

Concrete Solitude 4 minutes
As Covid-19 clears the streets of San Francisco, we find solitude amongst the concrete jungle. This film documents the emptiness throughout San Francisco during Covid-19, using skateboarding as the catalyst.

Freedom Of The Moors 7 minutes
Produced by Lancashire based Northern Heart Films in collaboration with theatre group Beggars Belief Collective the entire cast was made up of local young actors from Runshaw College. The film was also directed by Scott Bradley from Blackburn and produced by Natasha Hawthornthwaite from Darwen, so the film is a truly home made production. The film was funded locally and specifically created to be included in the The National Lottery Heritage Fund bid to restore the magnificent tower to it’s former glory. The bid was initially rejected but emulating the stubborn determination of Darwen’s forbearers the funding was eventually secured, ensuring the tower will be around for many generations to come.

From The Ash 4 minutes
When shooting action sports I always try to inject a broader theme, something that connects deeper then what the athlete is doing on the surface. For me the core of this project revolves around the idea of pushing forward when the world seemingly crumbles around you. That even when the road ahead may look bleak, to push on, to put one foot in front of the other. Charles Bukowski has this quote I like, “what matters most is how well you walk through the fire”. 2020 was one of those years that has shown that a lot of hardships in life are often events that are totally out of our control, that the only real control we have is how to decide to pick up the pieces, how we carry on through hardship. In a weird sense of irony, the struggles of making From The Ash, made me truly practice what I am preaching. We had multiple struggles with weather forcing expensive reshoots and as we went into post production the pandemic hit. This caused a major sponsor to dropout as their factory had to close due to COVID and left me to personally finance a large part of the project while also under the financial distress of not working due to COVID. There were so many times the completion of this project literally hung on by a thread and often I wondered if it was really worth it to push past the obstacles and complete it. Ultimately the answer is “yes it was worth it”. The struggle of making this film has made me grow in ways that in the end has helped me become better at my craft. Many years ago I was filming in a forest that had recently been scorched by a wildfire. As we were filming, a low fog rolled in and enveloped the forest. It was one of the most haunting and striking scenes I had ever seen. There was something so graphic about seeing these blackened trees silhouetted against this cold monochromatic backdrop. It stuck with me, for a lack of a better word I was haunted by it and always wanted to recreate the feeling it gave me, 15 years later I was in New Mexico to film From the Ash. Even though the underlying theme of this project is about perseverance, at the forefront is the destructive power of wildfires. In May of 2018 the Ute Park wildfire burnt 36,740 acres; a large swath of it was on the Philmont Scout Ranch. Thank you to the Boy Scouts of America for allowing us to film on location at Philmont. Everything was shot in a controlled setting on private land during the winter in a recently scorched wildfire area. The crew was under the supervision of forestry professionals to ensure everything was executed safely. There wasn’t a single live tree touched throughout our entire production. Thank you to the men and women who put their lives at risk fighting real wildfires around the world. Please be responsible this wildfire season.

Gritstone 3 minutes
BD Ambassador Chris Schulte recently made a pilgrimage to explore “god’s own stone,” otherwise known as England’s famed and notorious gritstone. In his own words, everything you’ve heard about the “grit” is true … “except when it’s not.”

Strong Winds 3 minutes
“Matagi Mālohi tells the story of our journey to uplift our people and shape a narrative that paints us not as victims of the climate crisis but as the leaders, the healers, the nurturers, the artists, the gardeners, the growers, the seafarers and the navigators we are.”

Surfer Dan 8 minutes
In a time when it can feel like you need to fly to the opposite side of the globe to find adventure and challenge. Surfer Dan proves that with dedication, grit and a little creativity you might already have all you need outside you own backdoor. 

1 hour 59 minutes


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