Heartstone Studios – Washington Access Fund

A collaboration between Kleven Creative and Heartstone for Washington Access Fund

The video “Opening Doors” was completed in the Fall of 2015. The project documents the amazing work WAF does to support access to assistive technology. In addition, WAF is regarded as a leader in financial literacy and business education for disabled individuals. Washington Access Fund Development and Communications Director Andrea Travis had an essential role in the creation of this video.

Washington Access Fund provides access to technology and financial education to disabled individuals in the Pacific Northwest. We were proud to have had the opportunity to work with them and to highlight the deep impact they have had in people’s lives. The video was created through Heartstone Studios. Michael Kleven and Elke Hautala were co-directors, co-producers and shared editing duties on this project. Kleven was DP and Sound Mixer on this project.

Heartstone is known for producing high-quality promotional videos and documentaries for non-profits, corporations, and professional artists. Ongoing projects include, I Missed my Train. This film tells the story of Dutch Holocaust survivor Ernst Van Gelderen. Heartstone clients have included, The Center for Wooden Boats, United Churches Emergency Fund, and Washington Access Fund. Current projects include a feature documentary “Finding Light” about Preston Singletary’s transformative work in music and glass.

Filming in Holland
Michael and Elke at the Oranjhotel at The Hague, Netherlands

In 2012, Michael Kleven and Elke Hautala began their collaboration. It began with a project for glass artist and musician Preston Singletary. In 2015, they founded Heartstone Studios LLC. Heartstone delivers high-quality video production for documentary and nonprofit clients.

Heartstone co-director and collaborator Elke Hautala with her baby at Kenmore’s Logboom Park.

Elke and her newborn son
Elke and baby Chance

Kleven and Hautala are excited about their continued collaboration focusing on nonprofits and long form documentary.

Reunion 2062

Poster for the short film “Reunion 2062”

This is a fun project I put together with the help of a classmate Leslie Stark for our 30th reunion. It tells the story of the last living member of our class in the year 2062. It was a fun film to make and went along well with the idea that we grow as artists by maintaining several active personal projects. The reunion was a big success. Friday we met for a mixer at Fairhaven’s Big Fat Fish Company  right after Seattle Seahawks victory over Kanses City. Emotions were high. It was fun as we attempted to reconnect these mature faces with the people we recalled from our youth. It is literally true that we become cooler people the older we get. We become more self assured and comfortable with ourselves. But don’t tell a teenager that. It was great to find that old friends had become even more charming with time. Some of the old stories were pretty funny. I’m glad I’ve grown up.

That next day we met out at Camp Firwood for a family picnic. I got to experience my first attempt at Paddle Boarding along the lovely shores of South Lake Whatcom. That evening we gathered for the main event at the Silver Reef Casino on the Lummi Indian Reservation near Ferndale. Smooth talking musician Dave Klander acted as MC and Garret Smith the Comic Fireman provided the jokes. Next came the short film I’d made for the reunion; “Reunion 2062”. As with any debut the filmmaker is nervous. Perhaps more so when it is for a room filled with old friends. I think they liked it, laughing at the right places and being generous with their praise. The food served by Silver Reef Casino was delicious and the staff helpful with technical issues. The 80’s cover music band Blind Fate was super fun. It all got really crazy when Kevin Mellon took the mic and everyone including myself started dancing.

Here is the short film I made for the reunion. Hopefully it will inspire you to do something fun and creative for your next school, church, family, corporate or similar social event or gathering.

Reunion 2062 from Michael Kleven on Vimeo.

This was a project I put together with Leslie Stark for our 30th reunion. I wanted the film to be fun and funny.  We planned to make it with resources that we had on hand. Luckily we are both performers, have degree in film production and motion graphics and thank goodness have production gear on hand.

Thanks to reunion organizer Val Vogel Lee for her support and to our friends and classmates at BHS. You can find out more about our professional media work on our websites:
Kleven Creative Services: http://www.michaelkleven.com
Bella Luna Studio: http://www.bellalunastudio.net/

 

A Guide to Wintertime Survival

A Guide to Survival in Winter

Seattle’s had been experiencing a very mild Winter until the epic snowstorm of January 2012. While maybe not epic to those outside of Seattle it was a welcome break from the regular. Now that rains has returned and slush flows freely in the streets I and many like me have returned to the norm. My response to the brief exposure to cabin fever was to double down my focus on creative pursuits doable in or near my home.

A Winter Road

The first project was a set of  HDR photos of the farm up on 88th. It’s a lovely vista with a peak of Lake Washington in the distance. I hope that 10 years from now that it isn’t being converted to Apartments!

 

 

The Yellow Bird

The next project happened when I was getting ready to ride my mountain bike in the snow. I had the door open as I got my gear ready for the ride. I saw lovely yellow and black bird flying around the porch maybe looking for some shelter from that snow. Suddenly he was in the house. I grabbed my camera and shot some video before I attempted my rescue. Watch the short film to find out what happened next. Turns out he was a Townsend’s Warbler who had been fooled my our mild winter.

My other big projects this week were two days of Gaffing and Cinematography for the web series GLITCH and a portfolio set starring my bike in the snow. I’ll try to post that group soon. It includes an interesting 360 degree panorama of my bike in the snowy forest. I’ll search for a place to host it online.

Other good news this week includes 3 jobs in addition to GLITCH, includes documentary and portrait photography commemorating the 50th Anniversary of Dr Donald and Mary Malins, a promotional video for Dex One – Rooster Down Tattoo Gallery and a series of videos for an Eastside SEO guru. The week before I landed a gig to do work as a boom pole operator/sound mixer for a short film highlighting the treatment on Filipino veterans of WWII. 2012 is off to a good start!

Making a Music Video: Ending to Dhoom!

This is Michael Kleven’s 1st music video. Ending to Dhoom is now available for viewing on both Youtube and Vimeo. The project was a collaboration between me and James Whetzel the lead singer of Seattle indie rock band Das Dhoom. James also appears in the video as “the boyfriend” and again singing and playing the traditional Indian instrument the sarod. Deepayin Archarjya appears in the video playsing the dhol and Sebastian Lange is seen in the video performing on the violin.

This work would not have been possible if not for the creative contribution of members of Seattle’s indie film, fashion, dance and photography communities. The video was shot primarily on the Canon EOS 7D. Leave it to say that I love that camera. My editor Sanjeev Tandle provided some interesting effects to the footage and some interesting creative choices, influenced no doubt by his experience working on Bollywood features. Lead actress Ronee Collins is a veteran of Northwest stages and Indie films including my award winning film MARCELL. The “other man” was played by Bjorn Whitney. Local model and actress Stephanie Raven was “the new girl”. My AD Patricia Bennet helps manage her husbands photography business when she isn’t working on film projects. Her husband Patrick helped out, with shooting on the fire sequence. Additional cameras for this sequence were provided by Mike Gurley of Canon Camera. Amalia Cuthbert was our principle dancer. Will Carson was our stunt coordinator and primary fire breather. Jennalee Evavold, (I know, quite the name), was our animator. For the scene where James enters the water this was necessary lest we forfeit our PG 13 rating.

The two versions differ slightly. The Youtube version can be viewed at full 1080 and has 10 seconds of additional credits. For the Vimeo version we cut the credits back a bit and did some extra effects work on the footage where James enters the fantasy with the dancer, (Amalia). The scene with James and Deepayin was filmed in the water tower at Volunteer Park. The scenes with Ronee and Bjorn were filmed on the monorail, outside of McCaw Hall at Seattle Center and in the conservatory at Volunteer Park. The silhouette scene with Sebastian on violin and Amalia belly dancing was filmed near Marshall Park on Seattle’s Queen Ann Hill.

“Marcell” at Film Music Festival at Park City in May

My film “Marcell” was recently selected for the Film Music Festival at Park City Utah! This is indeed a great honor for me. My composer Wenda Zonmefeld deserves special props not only for her compelling score but for completing the ardues application process. With this Marcell qualifies for an IMDB page: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1893281/ This film was inspired by Marcell Ivanyi’s insurmountable short film “Wind”. Marcell was originally filmed in an industrial neighborhood near South Lake Union in 2009. I want to give a shout out to the members of my cast. Michael Brill has worked with me on a number of productions since our first meeting that day. His craft continues to guide. Ronee Collins recently completed shooting the Ending to Dhoom music video for me. Expect to see her stunning performance shortly. David Reyes worked with me on “TacoMan”. Filmed in the Summer of 2010 in Tacoma. Craig Stratton and John Elkin my classmates in film school, continue their careers as filmmakers here in Seattle. The film could not have been made without the intelligent guidance of filmmaker Sandy Cioffi.

Park City Film Music Festival, aka Park City Film Festival – Impact of Music in Film Competitions.

 

Scilla Andreen, Soup and Kookies & Aesthetica Pics!

Howdy Folks. I am crazy busy these days. Today I was cinematographer and production manager for an interview with Indieflix CEO Scilla Andreen. The interview was conducted by Nick Blake of Apartment 18 Productions. We had production help from Lainy Bagwell and John Elkin on lights and sound. Scilla helps indie filmmakers make money  with their films. In the interview she will detail that and also talk about important work being done by the Indieflix foundation. Later the same day we taped a promo for the Soup and Kookies event coming up at Coleman Park in Seattle’s Central District. Actors Tom Ricciardelli and Andi  Norris were hilarious as pernicious squirrels fighting over where to bury a nut. You guys are awesome and so talented. I’ll be sure to post something here when Lainy has completed these edits. Oh, and by the way, please enjoy the photos above. They are available for sale or license at http://michael-kleven.photoshelter.com/portfolio or by clicking on the images in the slide show above.

Cheers, Michael Kleven