I produced a short documentary called Heart of Stone, about grassroots
activism to preserve and protect climbing areas in the Southeast US.
“…a masterpiece that will help climbers and access for years to come.” – Dawson Wheeler, co-owner of Rock/Creek Outfitters
“The best climbing film I have seen yet!” – Kurt Smith
“…a great example of positive, constructive film-making and
a clear indicator of where web-based climbing movies will be heading: high quality and large format.” – Peter Beal, from Mountains and Water Blog
Our day with Brad McLeod of the Southeast Climbers Coalition was a great example of serendipity. Josh and I had hit the road with Brad one day to visit about a half-dozen closed crags around Alabama, just to get some far shots and chat with him about the project. While we set up a shot of the crags outside Steele, Alabama, Brad mentioned that a couple days ago he had chanced on a For Sale sign in a nearby yard. He had the realtor’s number in his phone. I suggested we call her up, knowing full well that the landowners in these parts have been stonewalling against climbing here for years. Well, a miracle happened that day – the realtor came out with a friendly landowner who offered to show us some of the cliffs above his property. We rolled footage on the whole encounter – a classic look at how the Southern sausage is made. That is the scene that opens the film.
Heart of Stone also features some unusual techniques. Most of the footage came from a Sony XDCAM EX1 HS camera, with some b-roll with a Canon HV1. The film also contains stills and stillmotion clips, which are 4K “ultra-HD” moving pictures which I shot entirely on a Nikon D3 still camera. See more stillmotion examples at my Vimeo site. Suprisingly the stillmotion blended well with the HD video footage and stills. I edited everything using Final Cut Pro.