We are nearing the end of the editing process for our new film "Love Your Land" for Allegheny Land Trust. After filming most of the year in 2016, we are very pleased to be wrapping up the process and looking forward to a February release of our work.
For our DVD project for the Friends of Flight 93 National Memorial, we want to show each season and how this healing landscape evolves over the course of a year. With most of the leaves seeming to refuse to change color at their usual time this year, it was a challenge trying to capture the essence of Fall at the Memorial.
But sometimes, fantastic light, interesting weather conditions and touches of color can be enough to effectively represent the magic and beauty of autumn.
We are very grateful and honored to have the opportunity to produce the Flight 93 National Memorial DVD for the fantastic non-profit group Friends of Flight 93 National Memorial. It will feature the stunning architectural features designed by talented architects Paul and Milena Murdoch, the engraved wall of names and the healing landscape maintained and implemented by the National Park Service. This project will be our small tribute, in loving memory to the heroes... the passengers and crew of Flight 93. We have already begun filming for the DVD project and expect to be finished by summer 2017.
Awesome day filming a great group of eco-bikers at Dead Man's Hollow (DMH) for Allegheny Land Trust. The hills and valley of DMH made for some challenging biking but this talented crew handled it with ease. DMH is one of many conservation areas of Allegheny Land Trust that we are documenting for their film project. We expect to be finished shooting in fall 2016 with a December release of the film project. Thanks Lisa, Greg, Phil and Jesse for riding like pros and taking care of the trails and beautiful wild area that is Dead Man's Hollow!
Wild Excellence Films is thrilled to be working on a conservation film project for Allegheny Land Trust, highlighting their amazing organization, properties and urban conservation areas in the greater Pittsburgh area. Allegheny Land Trust has been excellent to work with throughout the process, and exploring their properties through our lenses helps us document them in new and exciting ways. We are about halfway through shooting for the project, and are looking at a 2016 release of the film to the public.
Wild Excellence Films (WEF) was in Cook Forest State Park yesterday to film the Hemlock Woolly Adelgid (HWA) Survey training day. Volunteers learned how to be citizen scientists to identify and report HWA to help park staff continue to battle the greatest threat to Cook Forest. HWA is an invasive insect that has a devastating effect on hemlock trees.
Many thanks to Environmental Education Specialist Dale Luthringer and the awesome volunteers for their work for the park and for agreeing to let WEF film them for our upcoming documentary "Cathedral: The Battle to Save the Ancient Hemlocks of Cook Forest."
It was hard to see at first, but once we spotted it, we started seeing it everywhere.
The Hemlock Woolly Adelgid (HWA) is tiny. These white, fuzzy spots are its egg sacs.
Accidentally introduced to North America from Japan, HWA was discovered in the eastern US in the 1950s. As of 2015, 90% of the geographic range of eastern hemlock in North America has been impacted by HWA.
The DCNR and the Forest Service is fighting the HWA outbreak in Cook Forest State Park in several ways, which will be detailed in our Cathedral film. It's a tough, long fight, but one that must be fought. We cannot lose the ancient hemlocks of Cook Forest. We would all be the poorer for it.
With mild daytime temperatures the day before and overnight lows in the upper teens, we suspected that the next morning would bring a foggy or frosty morning to Jennings Prairie, so we set out early to be on location at sunrise.
The frost seemed to have decorated the prairie for Christmas: a dusting of sugar on seedheads and leaves and glittering diamonds on grasses.
We had the place to ourselves, except for some song sparrows and a few woodpeckers. Mornings don't get much better than this.
As Wild Excellence Films continues to document the health of Cook Forest's trees and the spread of HWA for our Cathedral film, we had an amazing fall day shooting footage in the last, great, old growth forest of Pennsylvania.
With special permission from Cook Forest State Park managers, we were able to film a tape "drop," a method of measuring the huge ancient trees. We had not hiked in this particular area of the park too much, but this drainage was really special and beautiful.
Wild Excellence Films brought in a team of talented arborists from across the state who used a special 4-inch wide sling to hug the trees at the top to protect them in preparation for the climb. Needless to say, we got some outstanding, dramatic footage of the process.
The climbing team was simply amazing.... they are tremendous athletes and people. They are true conservationists who cared about the trees immensely, and our film project. We found no HWA in this section of the forest, which is great news! We were able to study and learn so much about these trees by being up in the canopy and collecting data from the ground up.
Special thanks to tree climbing expert/arborist T.C. Mazar and his team for organizing this special day. The ancient Hemlock and old White Pine we measured were well over 100 feet tall and perhaps as much as 300 years old. It was an honor to spend time with and film these magnificent trees, and awesome to make some new friends.