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Will you Stand with Me? I need your help to tell a story

I Need your help

Will you stand with me? I need your help to complete a documentary film that is scheduled to be released in Indianapolis on Saturday, March 23, 2019, called We Are Family. Specifically, I need your help to make the story come alive through financing a sound track and final video production costs.

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Why the story should be told

Racial divides continue in our nation. But in the darkness of division there are stories of hope. The We Are Family documentary tells the inspiring story of how a basketball team from an urban school in the heart of Hoosier basketball country united around an impossible dream, how they forged a bond as family and how they inspired a whole community.

After Arsenal Tech High School in downtown Indianapolis won the Indiana High School Basketball Championship in March 2014, Bob Kravitz, a journalist for the Indianapolis Star wrote:

 “Landmark State Title proves inspiration to entire Tech community”

“From the time they are young, these kids who attend Indianapolis Public Schools are told they can’t. Parents try, teachers try, mentors try to lift them up and out of their circumstances, but the lowly graduation rates at schools such as Arsenal Tech do not lie, nor does the alarming drop-out rate.

On Saturday night at Bankers Life, though, the talented and composed young men of Arsenal Tech believed they could do something very special, something that hasn’t been done since Broad Ripple earned the IPS’ last state title in 1980. And they did, knocking off Lake Central, 63-59, winning the Class 4A state title, showing everybody, yes, they could.

Sixty years ago this week, Milan won one for all those small schools.

Saturday night, Tech won one for all the schools and the students who have been told they aren’t good enough to ascend the greatest heights.

Remember the Titans.”

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We Are Family remembers the Titans by telling the story of that season. It explores the impact of this victory on the lives of the players, coaches, school and Indianapolis Public School community five years later. It proves that the relationships that are built when a team comes together as a family really do endure.

I believe that this story is important because it tells the truth about what happened – and what can happen – in inner city schools.  I know this personally. For thirteen years our family lived in Indy we were a part of Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS). Our kids attended IPS schools. And the IPS community became a family to us. This is my way of saying “thanks” to and standing in solidarity with IPS.

 

I’ve been working on this project for the last four years. Now I need your help to raise $25,000 to pay for a sound track and final video production costs to bring the project to completion. Will you help me tell this story?

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Kickstarter Campaign Costs and rewards 

To raise $25,000, I am launching a Kickstarter “crowd-funding” campaign on November 1st, 2018. The way Kickstarter works is that people sponsor a creative project through an on-line donation and receive a reward in return. If the project meets its goal that money will be debited. If the project does not meet its goal then that money is not debited. In other words, it is all or nothing!

Budget for the WE ARE FAMILY Kickstarter project

  •  $ 8,000 Musicians/Composers
  • $ 2,000 Sound Track Mix/Mastering
  • $1,000 Documentary Trailer
  • $7,500 Video editing
  • $3,250 Production Costs
  • $ 2,000 Rewards Cost for art prints, shipping and handling, etc.
  • $1,250 Kickstarter Percentage, 5%

 

Rewards for giving to the WE ARE FAMILY Kickstarter project

  •  Friends who support this project at $10 will receive a digital version of the sound track.
  • Friends who support this project at $40 will receive a digital version of the movie.
  • Friends who support this project at $100 will receive a digital version of the “uncut” movie: bloopers, extra footage, etc.

 

  • Patrons who support this project at $200, $400, $600 and $800 get to choose a beautiful print of one of two of my brother Jed’s paintings – either “The Golden Hour” or “Good Morning Indy”.[i]

 

  • Producers who support this project at or above $1,000 will receive the following:
    • Named in the credits of We are Family as a Producer.
    • Invitation to a VIP documentary release party in Indianapolis, IN on Saturday, March 23rd, 2019
    • Public thanks at the release of the documentary in Indianapolis, March 23rd, 2019.

 

  • Mega-Producers who support this project at or above $5,000 will receive all of the above plus:
    • A week long (7 days) stay at Sunnyshore Studio on beautiful Camano Island.[ii]
    • (Optional) An Identity Discovery Session and Five Life Coaching[iii] sessions with Jason Dorsey.

 

The Team

I’ve assembled a great team of video editors/producers and musicians/composers to complete the documentary. I want to tell the story in a way that packs a punch.  I’m thrilled that some of the contributors are IPS and Arsenal Tech alumni.

 Two ways you can stand with us

Here are two ways that you can stand with us in bringing this story to completion:

  1. Contribute to the Kickstarter Campaign: On November 1st I will share the link to our Kickstarter campaign. Any amount of support helps!
  1. Advocate for the Kickstarter Campaign: Advocate for the project when the 30 day Kickstarter campaign launches on Nov. 1 by:
  • sending a personal e-mail/text to five friends with the kickstarter link asking them to stand with us in this project.
  • sharing the kickstarter project on your social media platforms.

 Thanks for standing with us on this project!

We are Family is being produced by Sunnyshore Studio: www.sunnyshorestudio.com

You can learn more about our project here:

[i] Jed is a full-time artist who lived in Indy and was a big fan during that Championship season. He is offering us prints of these two paintings at his cost. To learn more about Jed and his art: www.Jeddorseyart.com

[ii]Sunnyshore Studio is located on Camano Island, in Washington State. Learn more here:  www.sunnyshorestudio.com

[iii] In his work as a Presbyterian pastor, Jason Dorsey has developed a curriculum that helps people understand their identity and step boldly into their calling. It is called “Identity Mapping”. The Identity Discovery Session is a two hour session where Jason listens to your story and helps you name your Identity. In the Life Coaching sessions  he helps you identify your roles and responsibilities in each sphere of your calling:  personal, family, work, community and place and coach you

24 Days Late the 2nd book in “I Remember” series sent to printer

Sunnyshore Studio’s Artistic Director, Jason Dorsey, and his dad, prominent Northwest watercolor artist, Jack Dorsey, have once again teamed up to tell a story of the adventures of a boy growing up on an Island. It is titled I Remember Running Through the Woods. 

“I hoped to send it to our printer in Salem, OR by October 1st. That would have allowed us to have the books in hand for the opening of our ‘Christmas in Miniature’ show on December 1st at the Studio,” Jason says.  “We’ll still showcase the illustrations at the Christmas in Miniature show and our guest will be able to check out a rough copy and purchase the book advance.  We worked hard, but just couldn’t make our deadline.

“In I Remember Running Through the Woods  I wanted to explore change through the lens of the woods that surrounded me, the ever changing woods of my childhood,” Jason says.

The story begins with a nod to the logging days on Camano Island.

“An old logging path led from my parents home to my uncle’s farm,” Jason remembers. There were old growth stumps along this path. During the daytime, it was an enchanting woodland but when my sister, brother, and I came home after dark it was terrifying.”

In preparation for the book, Jason spent time in the woods of his childhood. “The stumps are still there,” he says. “I took lots of pictures.”

“One stump in particular became the ‘model’ for the ‘scary stump’ in the story,” Jason pointed out. It is a stump across from his parents house, on the road that leads down to Sunnyshore Acres Beach.

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“The huckleberry tree on top of the stump reminds me of scary arms reaching out”, Jason says.

His dad, noted Northwest watercolor artist, partnered in the illustrations.

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“Dad worked his wonders again, just like he did with the illustrations of our first book I Remember Running Through the Woods. I had the ideas, and would begin the paintings. But he brought many, most of them to completion, Jason notes.

Jack even pulled out his old bayonet and sheet for one illustration.

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While all ages will find the story enchanting, Jason thinks that boys especially will like it. “With the military gear, face-painting, and adventures in the woods, this book is tailor made for boys,” Jason says.

While Jason is expected to be positive about his new book, others agree about the value of the story.  Three recommendations grace the back cover of the book.

Jennifer Kelly

Jennifer Kelly, Jason’s high school English teacher, and for 10 years a columnist for the Stanwood-Camano news wrote this:

Jason Dorsey’s second story in the series about his childhood, I Remember Running through the Woods, is a literary and visionary charm of a book.  Parents and children alike will take delight in the monsters that moo and stumps with eyes, and think about life through the quiet, calm words and enchanting illustrations of a man who revels in the youthful adventures that made him the father he is today.  Let’s all go running through the woods again and again and again!

Steven Garber

Steven Garber, author of Visions of Vocation: Common Grace for the Common Good, and professor of marketplace theology at Regent College, Vancouver, B.C., said this:

I love the world that is beyond our doors, the meadows and forests, the fields and pastures—in Wendell Berry’s poetic metaphor, “timbered choirs” each one. Through our senses we come to know in ways that deepen us. In Jason Dorsey’s artful remembering of his boyhood on Camano Island, we too are alive amidst the trees and the seasons, the fires at night and the noises in the tent, our own hopes and fears still near. I Remember Running Through the Woods is a window into a long love, of a boy who once was and is now the man he must be, giving us the grace of looking over his shoulder and through his heart into the wonders of his world. 

Mary Nease

Mary Nease, a homeschooling mother of five she has spent the last 15 years reading thousands of books to her children, who spends much of her time combing libraries and bookstores for good children’s books, had this to say:

Through his delightful watercolor illustrations and accompanying descriptive prose, author and illustrator Jason Dorsey invites the reader into his precious childhood memories. Although Running Through the Woods takes place on Camano Island in the lush Pacific Northwest, the reader is quickly transported in his own mind to the sacred places of his own life’s story. Jason has crafted an endearing and humorous, as well as poignant and exquisite, piece of art, able to captivate and delight the youngest reader while striking a deep chord in the souls of all ages.

Cover - I Remember Running Through the Woods

The cover and contents have been sent into Your Town Press in Salem, OR. “We anticipate having the books a few days before Christmas, Jason says.

You will be able to order your copy of the book December 1st. 

Video Production Team for “We are Family” Movie gearing up for last push

I’ve worked on a documentary project sincet 2014 that tells the story of how the Arsenal Tech high school basketball team – against all odds – won the Indiana Basketball Championship and inspired as city as they did.

Now four years later, I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. In fact, a date to release the movie in Indianapolis has been set for Saturday, March 23rd!

I want to introduce you to the Video Production team members who are working on this project. I could not do this without an amazing team to work with. I will start with my first collaborator, my son, Julian.

Julian Dorsey, Production Assistant

Julian

Julian has been with me from day one. In fact, it was his idea to film that season. He was a junior at Arsenal Tech then, and played on the basketball team. In August of 2014, Julian and I went to the head basketball coach, Jason Delaney and asked him for permission to shoot video throughout the season. He said “Yes”. So we went out an bought a video camera.

After Tech won the State Championship, Julian went through and organized all the video. I’m so thankful for his video help and technical support through thick and thin. Here’s his bio:

Julian Dorsey was a junior on the state championship team. Now a senior at George Mason in Washington D.C. studying Government and International Relations, he is excited to finish telling the story of the championship season!

David Lichty, Video and Audio Technician

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My friend, David Lichty,  has been my right hand man in the documentary project. From the beginning – after Tech had won the IN State Basketball Championship and I shared with David my dream of telling the story in a documentary – David believed in the project.

David has already spent over 300 hours already – all freely and cheerfully given – in organizing the footage we have, in shooting interviews, and getting lots of B-Roll footage.

We’re now in the fun part of telling the story: bringing it all together into a story. David has at least another 300 hours + of work to complete the documentary.  Being able to compensate him just a little bit for his upcoming work is one of the reasons I’m launching a Kickstarter “social funding” campaign November 1st.

A side benefit of working on this project together is that I get to stay in touch with one of my Indy friends. Here’s a little bit more about David:

David has had movies in his blood since childhood, and film making as the solid dream, and a passion, since 7th grade. He has a degree he invented at Indiana University, a BA in Film Making, has put together short film series of his own and has worked closely with larger film festivals. Presently, he primarily edits both narrative and documentary style work. It’s not what he does for money, but when asked what he does, this is what he does.

Tremayne Rayner, Film Trailer Producer

Tremayne Rayner

I learned of Tremayne through Julian. They were classmates at Crispus Attucks Medical Magnet, which was both a middle and high school. Julian told me that Tremayne was an up-and-coming video producer and that I should talk with him.

I’ve asked Tremayne to create the Trailer for the movie. When I asked him to be on the team, he said that he was working hard at his professional career in video, had bought lots of expensive equipment, was taking his work very seriously, and couldn’t do this work for free. I affirmed him in that, and we worked out a contract. I’m thrilled to be able to be part of his professional work as an up-and-coming producer!

Meet Tremayne in his own words:

“Coming from the Far Eastside of Indianapolis I always had a dream. My name is Tremayne Reed A.K.A as a Young King. Although, I wasn’t sure of what I wanted out of life, coming of age I always knew I never wanted to become a product of my environment. God allowed me to form a passion for filming and with hard work and dedication I was able to self invested in the equipment/gear that I needed to provide fulfilling video services to my clients. I am happy with what I do and everyday my goal is to become greater that yesterday. God Bless. -T.REEDVISUAL.”

Jeffrey L. Sparks, Consultant

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I’m so very thankful to have my friend, Jeffrey L. Sparks, has graciously agreed to be a consultant on the We are Family documentary.  As a rookie Director/Producer, it means a ton for me to have the wisdom and counsel of someone with his experience. I’ve already greatly benefited from his wisdom based in decades of experience, and you can see from his resume:

Jeff got his Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre from the University of Evansville, and a Master of Fine Arts in Directing from Florida State University. He worked as Professor of Theatre at St. Leo College, St. Leo, Florida 1978 – 80. He then served as the Executive Director of the Indiana Children’s Christian Home, a residential treatment center for emotionally disturbed youth, from 1980 – 1990. He is a Founding Board member and was the Executive Director of The New Harmony Project, a writer’s laboratory developing new scripts for theatre and film, from 1987-1999.

Jeff was the President/CEO and Founding Board Member of Heartland Truly Moving Pictures from 1991 to 2013. With Heartland Jeff developed the concept of a film festival and presented that idea to sponsors and funders which resulted in getting the festival started in 1992, oversaw all aspects of the festival including artistic, business, and fund raising for the first ten years, and spearheaded the development of a management team to help take the festival from a regional event to a national movement. Jeff continues as Founder and President Emeritus, Heartland Truly Moving Pictures from 2013 to present.

Currently Jeff serves as Senior Fellow of Sagamore Institute where he is working on community development in the Twin Aire Neighborhood of Indianapolis. Recently Jeff completed his book, Changing Culture Through Stories: The New Harmony Project, Heartland Film Festival, and Beyond…

Jason Dorsey, Producer and Director

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Just a bit about myself. I’m definitely a rookie when it comes to producing/directing a film. Over the last few years I’ve done some film editing, so I have a general grasp of what that involves. But I suppose my main qualification is that I’m passionate about this project. I believe this story should be told and I want it to be told well!

Telling this story is the culmination of my calling in Indianapolis. From 2002 – 2015 I served as the lead pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in downtown Indianapolis, IN. During that time my wife, Jenny, and I were very involved in the Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS) where we sent all four of our kids. We wanted to be a part of renewing IPS. But when we left Indy to head back to the Pacific Northwest to care for my mom who was battling breast cancer, we realized that IPS had given far more to us than we had done for it. And more importantly, the kids, their parents, the teachers and administrators had become a family to us!

Telling this story of Arsenal Tech’s basketball team’s magical year, of the great young men that were on the team, and how they inspired a city as they achieved an almost impossible dream is my way of saying “thanks” to the IPS kids, parents and community.

“We are Family.”

 

Jason Dorsey is working on second Children’s Picture Book in the “I Remember” series

Jason Dorsey is working on the second book in the I Remember series. This series tells stories of a boy growing up on an island (Camano), to explore sacred memories in the formation of children. Fyodor Dostoyevsky says this about sacred memories in his novel The Brothers Karamazov:

“… there’s nothing higher, stronger, more wholesome and more useful in life than some good memory, especially when it goes back to the days of your childhood, to the days of your life at home. You are told a lot about your education, but some beautiful, sacred memory, preserved since, is perhaps the best education of all.”

Jason Dorsey published I Remember Fishing with Dad in December 2015. It was well received and sold briskly.

IRFD Cover

Jason is close to completing the second book in this projected 12 book series. I Remember Running Through the Woods shows that the places we remember are part of who we are today. Jason reflects, “The woods which surrounded me in childhood are a part of me.” In this book, like the first, Jason is working with his father to do the illustrations.

“It’s been fun to go back to the woods of my childhood,” says Jason. “I’ve been trouncing through them to get photographs including photographs of a “scary stump” just like the ones I remember when I was young.

Jason and his Dad, renown Northwest artist Jack Dorsey, are collaborating on the illustrations just as they did in the first book.

“Our painting styles are similar,” Jason says. “I typically get the painting started and then bring it to Dad to finish. I’m able to get a good, fresh watercolor started; and Dad, with his eye for strong values and details is able to finish it.”

“I’m super thankful I have this opportunity to share in the painting of these illustrations with my Dad,” Jason says. “He’s super supportive. I don’t know if I could do this without him.”

I Remember Running Through The Woods is based on my own experiences in the woods that surrounded our little white home on Camano,” Jason says, “including a camping adveture with my friend Tom H. We skipped our High School Tolo to spend the night in the woods. Tom had all of this great Marine Corp gear and I guess we were more into that than girls. It turned out to be a super cold night and we had lots of adventures that night that I share in the book.”

Jason Dorsey and Tom Hamilton 1984

Jason also has enjoyed tying the story all the way back to the early days on Camano Island when loggers felled massive Fir and Cedar trees. I’m enjoying sharing this beautiful place (Camano) through these stories,” Jason reflects.

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He projects that I Remember Running Through The Woods will be (barely) back from the printers just in time to make it under the tree for Christmas 2018.

If you’d like to view the original illustrations they will be displayed at Sunnyshore Studio’s Christmas in Miniature art show that runs Saturdays, December 1st and 8th, 10:00am – 5:00pm.

Sunnyshore Studio to host first art show on web

Sunnyshore Studio is committed to being a “bricks and mortar” gallery and studio. We love showcasing art, hosting workshops, and being a hub for creativity on the south end of Camano Island, WA. But we know that many of the friends, collectors and patrons of the artists we showcase can’t make the pilgrimage to our beautiful corner of the the northwest.

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So on Saturday, October 20th, we will host our first internet based art show in conjunction with Jed Dorsey’s solo show of new art “Home: places of the heart” that opens at 10:00am at our gallery on Camano (2803 S.E. Camano Drive, Camano Island, WA). Our web Gallery will open two hours later on October 20th at 12:00pm (Noon).

Because Sunnyshore Studio takes a low commission, Jed’s art will be on sale at a 20% discount. We are excited to provide affordable art for Jed’s friends, collectors and patrons across the US and beyond.

Jed’s art sells fast. So you’ll want to arrive early (either physically or digitally)!  Jed’s Home: Places of the Heart show will open at www.sunnyshorestudio.com on Saturday, October 20th, 12:00pm.  

We look forward to sharing his beautiful acrylics with you. And maybe you will find a painting that represents a place of your heart.

Skagit Valley Summer - 20x16

 

 

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