Directing a Music Video for Afton Prater

This creative one-day music video shoot reminds me of the importance of a creative and resourceful production crew.

Directing a Music Video for Afton Prater in Seabeck WA.

I had a unique opportunity to direct and co-DP for this music video featuring NW talent Afton Prater and an army of young line dancers from Kitsap County. Afton is a bright young star on the rise and with her talented band and supportive community I know she will go far!

The Dream Team

My producer Suzanne Finnell of Beverly Boy Productions did an amazing job helping me gather a solid crew, develop and adapt our shot list and deal with changing conditions in the field. March 26th, 2016 started out nicely but ended in pouring rain. A typical spring day here in the NW. We filmed on some the country roads near Seabeck Washington. Our dream team included co-DP Jeremiah Kaynor who did some amazing work on his gimbal.

Disaster! (averted)

You will notice one aerial shot of Afton walking along the road. Shortly after that Jeremiah’s DJI Inspire quadcopter experienced a mechanical malfunction and landed in the pond. Due to some quick work with towels, a blow dryer, and a big bag of rice the Inspire was mostly okay. While the quadcopter was getting repaired gaffer Casey Schmidt jumped onto a jeep and helped us gather a long tracking shot that really works well in the video. Our PA, Lucas Chapel went above and beyond to help make everything come together; allowing his vehicle to be used as a show car and doing work as an AC, sound mixer, and best boy to help keep our show on the road.

The Rains

Once the rains began to fall my team’s resourcefulness really came into play. Suzanne helped keep us going through shot after shot. And Afton was a real trooper singing and dancing for multiple shots and locations over a 10 hour day. No complaints from her,though. Her shining light helped show the way. This is only my second music video. But a real joy. I moved away from Kitsap County back in 2000 after 4 years working as a counselor at Kitsap Mental Health.  I’m glad to see that the folks there still have great compassion and creativity. I’m always impressed with the relaxed pace of life there, the warm, friendly people and the romantic countryside.

Reviving the Broken Marionette

I’m stepping outside of my normal role here as photographer & filmmaker to talk about something that is very important to me. In 1987 I was struck with profound fatigue after many years living as an adult with an active physical lifestyle. Some of my joys including stage acting, modern dance, bicycling and hiking. For the next 4 year this unexplainable fatigue had a profound effect on my health & outlook on life. Eventually I regained much of my former vigor. But only by accepting that I could no longer burn the candle at both ends. That and lot’s of vitamins, exercise and an otherwise healthy lifestyle. I was recently reading the Reviving the Heat Blog, ( and I saw this article on Maija Haavisto and her book “Reviving the Broken Marionette”. I’ve included here a link to her book on Amazon and her website.

Now back to making movies! The 1st day of auditions for the Das Dhoom Music Video project went very well. We should be in production in some regards later this week. Later was the annual dinner and slideshow for the American Society of Media Photographers, (ASMP). I feel so honored to have my image up on the same screen with some of Seattle’s best. Here are a few of those.