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Pamela Falkenberg and Jack Cochran – a ‘blackbird’ masterclass in making poetry films

As many people in the poetry film world will know, Americans Pamela Falkenberg and Jack Cochran (Outlier Moving Pictures) are the masters of the activist ecopoetry film. Recently, I have been lucky enough to get to know them better, and I am excited to say they will be writing articles for Liberated Words, as and when they feel the muse takes them.  In the meantime they are going to contribute a series of three major pieces  of writing on their own work, which should provide a really edifying experience for those poetry filmmakers just starting out.  

Their major accomplishment – Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird is from the well-known and much loved poem by American modernist poet Wallace Stevens, where a series of short haiku-like stanzas (some more abstract than others) create different images relating to blackbirds. Pam and Jack combine highly detailed compositing, animating and editing with vast treks to source material, so the actual process of making their films is a narrative in itself. To find out more about their painstaking process please read Thirteen Ways of Looking at How to Make a Poetry Film of Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird by Pamela Falkenberg. I am looking forward to the next essay in the coming months!