An interview with adventure filmmaker Dominic Gill
I don’t know about you. But I’ve got a hard time getting motivated, especially when it comes to doing something hard, something that might take a lot of time, cost a bit of money or might even be a little scary. Life’s journey can be tough enough just trying to get by making it from day to the next. But every once in a while, someone comes along that prompts you to action. They get you psyched up and excited because you can see they’re going places and the next thing you know you get swept up in the momentum and just like your own life’s journey heads in a whole new direction. You follow that person right down a new road of adventure. Last fall I met a guy just like that.
Dominic Gill was one a one of a few dozen movie producers I met during the 2009 Banff Film Festival. His documentary called Take A Seat follows his two-year journey by tandem bicycle over 20,000 mile of open road. Asking total strangers to pedal behind him on what his calls the stoker seat his travels brought a fresh sense of adventure into hearts and minds of everyone he met or who tagged along for the ride.
It’s been more than a month since the last podcast. Thanks to everyone for all the emails and Facebook messages asking for the next edition. After an action packed first season of production, the realities of life came crashing down like a devastating wave. The recession of 2009 made times a bit tough. Simply put the project was placed indefinite hold while I scrambled together a few odd writing jobs through the end of December and all of January. I had to work to make enough cash to pay our property tax bill. I’m happy to say that I recently wrote a fat check to city of Madison and now the project is back on track.
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I’ve learned a lot through that first season. With the collapse of traditional media, as newspapers and magazine continue to fold up under the weight of an antiquated model of communication, I’ve discovered that this form of storytelling, sharing music, art and adventure online is the wave of the future. With many creative souls out there building new high quality content for Internet there’s no shortage of great stories to tell. If you’ve been following along on the blog and on Facebook, you’ll know that I’ve been more than a little busy still traveling and finding new subjects to share with you. And in the process I’ve become thoroughly inspired by the work of many others who are pushing the boundaries of creative expression as they explore the heights and depths of the human spirit.
You’ve heard me mention my friend Fitz Cahall. He’s the creator of my favorite podcast The Dirtbag Diaries. Fitz has new project that recently posted the Internet, a series of short films that depict the lives of adventurers chasing their passion through course of a year, a season.
I connected with Fitz toward the end of last year during the Banff Mountain Film Festival. There I saw the premiere edition of the 22 part film series The Season. It’s an exciting yet, moderately paced thoughtful contemplation on what motivates ordinary people who do exceptional things in the outdoors. At the Banff Centre for mountain culture, in Alberta Canada, I also met Fitz’s partner co-producer and director of the SeasonBryan Smith.
Produced exclusively for distribution online, the Season brings Internet adventure storytelling to a new level. Directed by Bryan Smith this new film series illustrates the narrative behind the lives of people like each of us who aspire to lead a rich live in adventure.
We’ve explored much of the modern world. Today very little is left to tempt the imagination. We’ve succeeded in climbing the highest mountains. We’ve traveled to the depths of the ocean. There’s not much of our planet that we haven’t seen. It would seem then now that what remains of adventure, at least on earth, isn’t to discover where human beings have yet to go but instead where we’ve been.
A new film by produced in cooperation PBS and National Geographic takes a look at the discovery and exploration of an ancient civilization. The new film The Secrets of Shangri-La: Quest for Secret Caves premiered at the 2009 Banff Mountain Film Festival. In this edition of The Joy Trip Project producer and professional mountain guide Peter Athans takes us on an amazing journey to reveal the great mysteries of a long-ago culture once forgotten.
An intermittent wireless connection drove me from my room to the lobby for better service. Otherwise accommodations in Lloyd Hall at Canada’s Banff Centre were incredible. Nestled in a valley surrounded by the snow-covered Rockies of Alberta, you’d be hard pressed to find much fault with the home of the 34th annual Banff Mountain Film and Book Festival.
Just had a terrific interview with filmmaker Dominic Gill at the Banff Mountain Film Festival. His movie called "Take a Seat" follows his journey from Alaska to the tip of South America on a tandem bicycle, a journey of 20,000 Miles.