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    Ballard filmmakers win at five-state festival
    Posted on 10/29/2014
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    Three short films by students from the Ballard High School Digital Filmmaking Program were winners at Fresh Film Northwest. This competitive regional festival is coordinated by the Northwest Film Center in Portland, Oregon.

    It accepts entries from filmmakers ages 13 to 19 in Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, and Washington. Only 10 films were winners at this year’s festival. This is the tenth year in a row that students from Ballard’s Digital Filmmaking Program have been winners at the event.

    The winning films include a visual story and two documentaries. The visual story Air Pressure, by Coleman Andersen, Leo Pfeifer & Josh Vredevoogd, is about a disaster at the World Balloon Animal Championship. The film has already been a winner in the Dominique Dunne Film Competition and been featured at the Chicago International Film Festival, the Seattle International Film Festival, and the Northwest High School Film Festival.

    Clipped Wings, by Coleman Andersen, Duncan Gowdy & Leo Pfeifer, made its festival premiere at the Northwest Film Forum’s regional festival last month. The short documentary explores the impact of the Boy Scouts of America’s ban on Gays. (Clipped Wings has received over 100,000 views online. Check it out at The festival jury also honored Clipped Wings with a Heart Award for “authenticity, originality, and humane treatment of a subject.” The other documentary is Raven Rock by Rachel Cole, Jaya Flanary & Meagen Tajalle. It concerns a treatment program that pairs survivors of childhood abuse with abused horses for mutual healing.

    The Northwest Film Center also recognized Audio Input - a documentary about the Seattle podcasting scene by Duncan Boszko, Jack O’Neal, Piper Phillips & Sho Schrock – with an Honorable Mention. The festival selected only five films for this honor.

    A jury of filmmakers and educators screened 80 entries from across the five state region to select winners for the festival. The festival seeks to celebrate “originality, freshness, authenticity, and conviction” in the voices of young filmmakers. The program will be screened and prizes awarded at the Portland Art Museum’s Whitsell Auditorium on Saturday, November 8 at 1 pm. Filmmakers, film lovers, and families are welcome to attend.

    To see new work by BHS filmmakers, attend the Ballard Film Festival on Saturday, Feb. 7 or Friday, Feb. 20 at 7 p.m. in the BHS auditorium. Tickets are $10 for adults or $8 for students. All proceeds support students in the BHS Digital Filmmaking Program.

    Since its beginning in the fall of 2001, students from the BHS Film Program have won hundreds of awards at regional, state, national, and international film festivals. Their work has frequently been nominated by the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, making them regular winners in the high school categories at the Northwest Regional Emmy Awards. Based on their portfolios they have won multiple honors from the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts.