11 Days, 12 Filmmakers, 4 Award-Winning Instructors


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Doug Pray and Peter J. Vogt, in association with Northwest Film Forum, are proud to announce the successful wrap-up of our 3rd annual Wild Mind Film Camp, an 11-day intensive master class for documentary filmmaking in the Washington Cascades.

This summer's 2014 program (July 16-27) was intensive and wild indeed, due to the largest forest fires in state history, which raged from all sides of our home base in Twisp, Washington, and forced our evacuation just 3 days into the program. After filming all we reasonably could of the fires, we relocated to Coupeville, Washington, on Whidbey Island, north of Seattle. There we focused our cameras on new characters and stories and shared them with the community at The Whidbey Playhouse in Oak Harbor. Our heart goes out to our friends in the Methow Valley who are still battling the fires, and will be recovering for some time. Special thanks to our new friends on Whidbey Island for graciously letting us descend into their lives with our cameras. Finally, we are deeply appreciative of this year's Wild Mind filmmakers and staff, who displayed incredible resilience, flexibility, and good humor (all characteristics of great documentary filmmaking), in the face of danger and constantly changing plans. Thank you all.

If you're visiting our website for the first time, the following is a brief overview of what we're about, and though we have not yet posted updated information about our 2015 program, you are welcome to submit an early application if interested, or to write us if you have any questions.

The term "Wild Mind" means "starting now, ready for anything." Gary Snyder, the American-Buddhist/poet/ecologist defines it as being "elegantly self-disciplined, self-regulating. That’s what wilderness is. Nobody has a management plan for it." Similarly, good filmmaking is a practice that can be prepared for but never completely controlled. It requires innovation in the moment, trust in the process, and a great deal of courage. A Wild Mind is focused, aware, and curious. It accepts rigor, enjoys challenge, endures failure, and delights in the documentary filmmaking process.

Wild Mind Film Camp is a hands-on, in-depth learning experience for twelve developing professionals and inspired nonfiction filmmakers who want to dramatically improve their documentary skills and knowledge. Each day features a mix of classes, workshops, and live production in a supportive community atmosphere. Amidst the astonishing beauty and fascinating culture of the Methow River Valley, this is a rare and excellent opportunity to work one-on-one with real pros, real equipment, and real subjects.

Learn. Listen. Observe. Shoot. Edit. Tell a story. Make a doc!

Erik ProulxA full-time graduate film school program is invaluable. But as a working father of two, that wasn't an option. Wild Mind taught me more about making films in 11 days than three years of doing it on my own ever did. Immersing myself in filmmaking under the incredible tutelage of Doug Pray, Pete Vogt, Shana Hagan, and John Jacobsen, in the serene utopia of Twisp, is not something I will ever forget. I cannot overstate how incredible the camp, the people, and the product were.

– 2012 Filmmaker Erik Proulx, Austin, TX
Northwest Film Forum
In association with Northwest Film Forum