I'm very pleased with feedback from viewers. It seems the film captured their attention and they enjoyed seeing and hearing Charles discuss his world. His moments of time, of which have spanned over the last eight decades.
Both Charles and I have enjoyed the entire run of our project. We had a great time talking, being creative, and living in the moment during the six months of getting together on a near weekly basis. Not only did we create a film that we are both proud of, but also a formed a fast friendship that will continue.
Film festival 'an eclectic mix'
Originally published June 25, 2012
Originally published June 25, 2012
By Brian Englar
Photo by Bill Green
Artist Charles Forsyth was the subject of one of the films shown at the fourth annual Frederick Film Festival, which concluded Sunday.
The fourth annual Frederick Film Festival came to a close Sunday, wrapping up a weekend during which attendees had a choice of 13 films and a number of short pieces from around the world.
Some came for just one film, while others came for a whole day or more of screenings, organizer Walter Chalkley said. "We've had a great, great crowd of very enthusiastic film aficionados," Chalkley said.
Many of the films shown were the work of local filmmakers, including Sunday's last film, "The Flow of Forsythe," a 30-minute documentary by Keith Chester.
The film explores the life and work of Frederick County artist Charles Forsythe, a former Hood College art instructor and department chair whose untitled abstract oil paintings invite viewers to develop their own interpretations.
Forsythe said Chester approached him about making the documentary after the two were introduced by Forsythe's daughter, who met the filmmaker while the two were students at Gov. Thomas Johnson High School. The two struck up a friendship after learning they shared a mutual interest in the work of filmmaker David Lynch."What he's produced is a work of art," Forsythe said. "I'm more or less just a stage prop. It was a really interesting experience."
Frederick cinematographer/ director Hans Weise was on hand Sunday for the screening of his 25-minute documentary "Final Exposure." The film follows renowned National Geographic photographer Steve McCurry -- famous for his photo of Afghan refugee girl Sharbat Gula that appeared on the magazine's cover in 1985 -- as he shoots photos on the last roll of Kodak's Kodachrome film in existence.
"We had heard that Steve had asked them to shoot the last roll, and we thought it would be the perfect opportunity to make a film to document this moment in history," Weise said. "It reminds you in general how different it is in this age of digital. It's inconceivable now to think that you would have to shoot a roll of film and then send it halfway around the world and wait for it to be developed before you can even look at it."
Chalkley said two other locally produced films did well at the festival, including Jason Fraley's 18-minute "Liberty Road," which is set in Frederick County and tells the story of a young man who takes drastic action when he loses his job as a waiter at a seafood restaurant after an oil spill devastates the area fishing industry.
"Record Paradise: The Musical Life of Joe Lee," which documents the life of the legendary Silver Spring record store owner, producer and manager, was the top drawing film of the festival, bringing in people from throughout the metropolitan area, Chalkley said.
Steve Barney and Sally Alt, who came to see "The Flow of Forsythe," said they have seen at least one film at the festival for the past three years since moving to Frederick. The two hail from Austin, Texas, home of the prestigious South by Southwest film and music festival. They said they would like to see a similar level of enthusiasm develop for the Frederick Film Festival.
"It's likely that many of these same films would screen to packed houses at South by Southwest," Barney said. "I love film, and it's frustrates me that more folks don't attend the festival."
Mount Airy resident Bri Pope said she first heard about the festival on Friday, and after seeing a few films over the weekend, she said she plans on being a regular in the future.
"It was great," Pope said. "There was a very eclectic mix. It's great to see local filmmakers get together and really showcase this area. It's really hard to find local, as well as indpendent films here. It's really important for places like this, the Weinberg as well as other places in the area, to get involved with this."
Chalkley said interest in the festival, as well as in independent films in general, has been growing slowly but steadily in the area.
"We certainly hope to continue growing," he said. "The people who have come and been very enthusiastic have been asking "why isn't this sold out?'"
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In closing, I'd like to quote Charles, who let's us know, What's next?:
"One of the things I've discovered about myself is that if I talk too much about what I'm going to do, that's usually it. In other words, simply talk. And it never happens. So, we'll know when I get started what the next project is."