Native Wisdom at OMSI

Getting excited about the upcoming showing of two films I directed for Wisdom of the Elders about Oregon Native People and how climate change is affecting traditional foods, Monday October 13th, 7-9pm at OMSI, 1945 SE Water Ave, Portland, Oregon 97214.

Coos and Coquille boatman try out a traditional canoe, Sunset Bay, Oregon.

Come on out and enjoy a look at Oregon’s Coastal and Interior Tribes and some of the great things their doing in habitat and species restoration to benefit all of us.  Here’s a link to the Facebook event.

Unveiling Uncle Plaster

Uncle Plaster.

We’ve started a new company called Uncle Plaster, specializing in Larry’s particular brand of 2D animation. Our latest is a segment of the web series My American Waistline, from Smash the Hive Productions.  The series comments on America’s obsession with weight and body image. The latest, called “Slings and Arrows #1”, takes a look at body shaming over coffee.

Larry drew the cartoon entirely with a Bic ball point pen, as though someone were sitting in a coffee shop sketching in a composition book.  “Every cartoon has to start with a concept, a visual approach that is appropriate to the story,” Larry says. “Without that you’re just doodling in the dark.

“Slings and Arrows #1” was drawn entirely with Bic ball point pens.

Research and drawings of the Hydra in “Slings and Arrows #1”.

Here’s a look at the final product.  Let us know what you think!  More at Uncle Plaster!

Native Film Festival

Climate and Native Wisdom

Larry w camera Barrow, AK

Lawrence Johnson on the Arctic Ocean

On Saturday, April 15th, Wisdom of the Elders, Inc. teamed up with Portland Art Museum/NW Film Center to present an afternoon of films tracking climate change and how it is affecting Native First Foods.  Lawrence Johnson has been working on these films since 2012. Wisdom’s executive director Rose High Bear and I traveled to Barrow and Anchorage, Alaska, to record elders and wisdom keepers about whaling, hunting and gathering practices. On Alaska’s coastline, villages are literally being washed into the sea because the shore-ice that normally protects the coast from erosion due to fall storms arrives later in the season.  We made two 30-minute films: Alaskan Native Wisdom: The People of the Whale and The People of the Caribou.

(l to r) Linda Nicholas-figueroa, Emily Wilson (Inupiat), Rose High Bear (Athabascan)

Linda Nicholas-Figueroa (Coordinator) and Rose High Bear (Executive Director) with Emily Wilson (Inupiat Elder)

We also premiered the two just-completed films we made about Oregon: Native Wisdom: The People pf the Oregon Coast and The People of Oregon’s Interior.  The films will be used to educate in schools and at community listening sessions around the Pacific Northwest. Find out more at Wisdom of the Elders, Inc.

Tom Younker (Coquille) interviewed by Rose Highbear

Coquille Elder Tom Younker interviewed by Rose High Bear overlooking South Slough, near Charleston, Oregon.

Out of the Shadows

Here’s a look at my new 13 minute video about mentoring prisoners in transition. America puts more people in prison than any other nation.  One out of every 100 U.S. citizens are behind bars.  When those folks get out, are they ready to be successful, or will they wind up back in prison because they are not prepared?  Mentors help prisoners adjust to life on the outside by acting as guides, as advisors, as friends. the film is sponsored by Mercy Corps Northwest and produced in a workshop by my organization HARRP (Highland Access, Reentry and Recovery Program).  Check it out!