Friday, November 04, 2005

Because somebody has to fulfill their art school dreams

This is Jim.

So is this.

Please excuse my lack of eyebrows.

Jim is good at a lot of things, like scratching*:

Killing big bugs for me:

Taking nice pictures:

He's also good at making movies.

That's why he was selected to take part in the Chicago-based Split Pillow project, Chicago 360. If you look at his website (permanently linked on the right, as well), you can learn a lot more about the project. Briefly, Chicago 360 is a project where 6 filmmakers produce a short documentary on a subject relating to Chicago. Also, they're given $360 to do the whole thing. I won't spill the beans on Jim's subject, but it's very interesting and you'll feel SUPER in-the-know-cool-artsy-kid-but-not-in-a-pretentious-way-of-course if you provide any support. This is the thing: Jim really doesn't want to have to ask people for support (e.g. cold, hard, cash), but he has to, so his friends have taken it upon themselves to ask for him. So you! With the wallet! You enjoy supporting the arts, right? You feel good when you write your $20 check to public radio or the modern art museum, right? Why not click on over to Jim's website, where he has so conveniently (for YOU) set up a donate button. Seriously, though: $360 is a very, very small budget, when one considers that nothing else -- no equipment, tools, crew, food, etc. -- is provided by Split Pillow. Jim is a simple man. He doesn't drive a fancy car. He doesn't wear nice jewelry. All he wants is to make neat, interesting films. So help him out, ok?

Here's Jim's side of the story:
Dear Friends, Family, Acquaintances, and All Others that This May Concern:

As you may or may not know, I have recently accepted an offer to direct a short documentary film. My completed work will be included in a project titled "Chicago 360," created by a Chicago-based, Not-for-Profit filmmaking organization called Split Pillow. The organization's Executive Director, Jason Stephens, was featured as one of the Chicago Tribune's "Top Chicagoans of 2004," regarding Split Pillow's outstanding devotion to media awareness in Chicago, as well its variety of projects that are ultimately geared towards giving aspiring Chicago filmmakers a voice, and an outlet for their talent.

I am undoubtedly elated, and honored, to have achieved this opportunity to create a commissioned work, particularly for an organization that promotes Chicago creative arts, and encourages artistic freedom. What makes this opportunity even more special for me, is the fact that I'm the youngest, and technically the least experienced filmmaker chosen for this project. I sent my application to Split Pillow, having relatively no commercial background in film, and so I believe that my being chosen was heavily based upon the strength of my no-budget, independently created short film collection, which I included with my application.

Naturally, I wish to make the most of this opportunity. The six filmmakers of "Chicago 360" have each been provided with a small stipend for the project. Aside from these funds, however, the project requires each filmmaker to employ their own crew, and seek their own equipment on an as-needed basis. Because I do not currently make a living from my filmmaking endeavors, and am relatively new to independent productions, especially to those of this caliber, I am a bit at odds in regards to having film equipment at my disposal. Because of this, and the numerous other costs required throughout the production process (even for a documentary 15 minutes in length), I am currently accepting donations for this project.

I would deeply appreciate contributions in any amount. No amount is too small, as every last cent will help. I only ask this from those of you that are interested, willing, and able to contribute. For those of you that do not wish, or are currently unable to donate, I completely understand, and thank you just as well.

Because the project will be produced through Split Pillow -- a Not-for-Profit organization -- your donation is 100% tax deductible. For more details on how you can donate, please visit my website (Small Scientist Films):

Through the website, you can either make a secure PayPal donation, or send a check/money order to the stated address.

Thank you for your consideration.

Jim Vendiola

//Small Scientist Films//

Here is a dead chipmunk's tail:


*not really, but he sure looks cute doing it.


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