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Mountain Light

Not enough time to attend the full version of the Mountain? Consider attending our unique, informative and entertaining online nightly presentations Oct. 19, Oct 20 or Oct 21.

July 1registration opens

$35per evening session

$150for all three sessions

Mountain Light

Are you looking for inspiration, rejuvenation or a little of both but do not have the time to commit to an entire week of Mountain goodness? Then Mountain Light is the perfect ticket for you. Each evening starting Tuesday, Oct. 19, through Thursday, Oct. 21, the Mountain experience will be collaborating with a different organization to bring you inspiration, valuable information, helpful tips and opportunities to connect with industry professionals who can help you reach your goals in your visual storytelling career. These nightly sessions will be open to both Mountain Workshops participants (part of their workshops tuition) and the general public for $75 per night, or $150 for all three nights. All proceeds from these sessions will contribute to educational initiatives through WKU PJ and our nonprofit collaborators. If you attend any one session, you will be able to return for free on Friday, Oct. 22, for an evening of entertainment and an opportunity to mingle with Mountain participants, faculty and staff. We hope you will join us in celebrating 46 years of storytelling at the Mountain Workshops! Enrollment for any of these nightly events will be open up to 24 hours before the session begins.

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  CANCELLATION POLICY FOR MOUNTAIN LIGHT You can cancel your reservation at any time through October 18 by going to our contact page and tell us you wish to cancel your enrollment. Be sure to use the same email as the one you registered with. We will return your payment minus a 30% handling fee. After Oct. 18 we will not be able to offer refunds.  

Tuesday, October 19  •  Talking Eyes Media

For nearly two decades, Talking Eyes has been creating and distributing compelling media that celebrates diversity and advocates for positive social change. Founded by Julie Winokur and Ed Kashi, this nonprofit media organization is committed to uncovering underreported issues and spotlighting the people who make a difference. Talking Eyes works extensively with marginalized communities, nonprofits, and educators to produce films, photo essays, websites, interpretive exhibitions, and books. Talking Eyes’ media has appeared in The New York Times, The Atlantic, PBS, MSNBC, and National Geographic, and received numerous awards, including “Best Online Storytelling Project” of 2021 from Pictures of the Year International for the project Newest Americans. At the core of Talking Eyes’ efforts is extensive community outreach and nontraditional distribution. Through public programming, curricular materials, grassroots partnerships and community engagement, Talking Eyes approach is designed for impact beyond publication and broadcast to inspire meaningful social change. WHEN? Tuesday, October 19 6:00 - 10:00 PM Central Time WHERE? Nowhere – our virtual interactive world. A link specific to your purchased evening presentation(s) will be emailed to you by 11:00 am the day of the presentation. Be sure when you register for the event(s) you use an email that you monitor, this email will provide the secret key for your access into our exciting virtual world.

Our Guests

6:00 PM Central Time | Tuesday, October 19 Virtual vendors and our virtual lounge will be open if you would like to mingle and see who else lingers in the social space.   7:00 PM Central Time | Tuesday, October 19 Room 1   |   Isadora Kosofsky Language of Intimacy: the long-term and immersive approach to documentary photography  Isadora Kosofsky will reflect on the life-altering process, challenges, and relationships formed while working on storytelling projects for years. She will present an ongoing, longitudinal documentation that shadows one woman’s journey as she reckons with sustained traumas and transformation.

Biography:

Isadora Kosofsky is a Los Angeles based documentary photographer who is known for spending years shadowing individuals and communities. She is a contributor to National Geographic Magazine, the New York Times, the New York Times Magazine, TIME, Le Monde and others. Ms. Kosofsky was a 2012 Inge Morath Award recipient. She is a TED Fellow, part of a network of global changemakers, and gave a talk at TED 2018. Her monograph, Senior Love Triangle, was published by Kehrer Verlag in 2020. Ms. Kosofsky has reported extensively inside hospital ICUs during the pandemic and is responsible for some of the only photojournalism from inside a COVID+ nursing home in the US.   7:00 PM Central Time | Tuesday, October 19 Room 2   |   Salwan Georges The United States in 2020 In 2020, the world faced unimaginable challenges and difficult circumstances that collectively changed our lives forever. It was a tough year for many journalists who were simply doing their job knowing the risks. In the U.S., as a staff photojournalist for the Washington Post, Salwan Georges covered a racial reckoning in Minneapolis, an unforgettable election across the country, and a deadly pandemic. His verbal recollection and visual historic documentation of the year we want to forget, but cannot, will be sure to entertain, inform and enlighten all of us.

Biography:

Salwan Georges is an Iraqi-American Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist for The Washington Post. Before joining the Post, he was a staff photographer and videographer at the Detroit Free Press. He studied journalism at Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan. In 2020, Georges was awarded a Pulitzer Prize as part of a staff entry from The Washington Post covering climate change around the world and was awarded, a team finalist for Public Service, covering America’s deadly opioid epidemic. In 2021, Georges was named Photographer of The Year by Pictures of the Year International for covering a racial reckoning in Minneapolis, an unforgettable election across the U.S., and a deadly pandemic. Georges' work has been published and exhibited worldwide. His work on the Middle Eastern communities in the United States has been exhibited at the Arab American National Museum and has been added to a collection at the Library of Congress in D.C.   8:00 PM Central Time | Tuesday, October 19 Room 1   |   Ed Kashi Advocacy and Impact in Visual Storytelling Ed Kashi will share selections of projects that talk about the ways in which advocacy journalism in photography can be practiced, including personal projects, commissions from foundations, non profits and NGOs. He’ll illustrate how he uses this new paradigm with intention to create compelling stories that are ultimately published in the editorial sphere and the various impacts his work has had, from being a part of changing legislation to earning direct contributions to subjects whose story he’s told.

Biography:

Ed Kashi is a renowned photojournalist who uses photography, filmmaking and social media to explore geopolitical and social issues that define our times. He is also a dedicated educator and mentor to photographers around the world and lectures frequently on visual storytelling, human rights and the world of media. He has covered topics as diverse as the impact of oil in Nigeria, the protestant community in Northern Ireland, the lives of Jewish settlers in the West Bank, the impact of an aging society through his groundbreaking project, Aging in America, climate change, the plight of Syrian refugees, and the global epidemic of Chronic Kidney Disease among agricultural workers. A sensitive eye and an intimate and compassionate relationship to his subjects are signatures of his intense and unsparing work. A member of VII Photo Agency since 2010, Kashi has been recognized for his complex imagery and its compelling rendering of the human condition. His early adoption of hybrid visual storytelling has produced a number of influential short films and in 2015 he was named Multimedia Photographer of the Year. Kashi’s embrace of new approaches to visual storytelling has led to creative social media and printed projects for a range of clients including National Geographic, Open Society Foundations, The New Yorker, MSNBC, GEO Germany, Fortune, Human Rights Watch, International Medical Corps, MediaStorm, NBC.com, New York Times Magazine, Oxfam, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and TIME magazine. From implementing a unique approach to photography and filmmaking in his 2006 Iraqi Kurdistan Flipbook, to real-time Instagram coverage of Hurricane Sandy for TIME Magazine in 2012, Kashi continues to create powerful imagery and engage with the world in new ways. A leading voice in the photojournalism world, Kashi frequently lectures on a wide range of topics for arts institutions, universities, schools and professional organizations. His work has been published and exhibited worldwide, receiving numerous awards and honors. Through his editorial assignments and personal projects Kashi has published nine books, including Curse of the Black Gold: 50 Years of Oil in the Niger Delta, THREE, and Photojournalisms. In 2002, Kashi in partnership with his wife, writer + filmmaker Julie Winokur, founded Talking Eyes Media.  The non-profit company has produced numerous award-winning short films, exhibits, books, and multimedia pieces that explore significant social issues. They are currently engaged in a 7-year storytelling project with Rutgers University in Newark focused on immigration for which they recently received a two year grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Their project, Newest Americans, was just awarded Best Online Project of the Year from Pictures of the Year International.   8:00 PM Central Time | Tuesday, October 19 Room 2   |   Julie Winokur Cross-platform Storytelling to Unleash Creativity and Expand Audience Julie Winokur will discuss cross-platform storytelling that takes projects beyond any single medium in order to expand the possibilities for creative expression, collaboration and audience reach. Winokur will inspire participants to reimagine their approaches as she shares work that incorporates photography, video, audio, exhibition, interactive, and beyond.

Biography:

Julie Winokur, Executive Director of Talking Eyes Media, has been a storyteller for over two decades, first as a magazine writer and then as a documentary filmmaker. She launched Talking Eyes in 2002 as a way to focus on creating visual media that catalyzes positive social change. Her work has appeared on PBS, the Documentary Channel, MediaStorm, National Geographic Magazine and Discovery online, as well as in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times Magazine, The Washington Post, and MSNBC.com. Beyond broadcast and publication, Winokur works extensively with nonprofit organizations to develop their messages and put Talking Eyes' films to work at the grassroots level. She has been a National Geographic Explorer and served on the faculty of Rutgers University-Newark and the International Center of Photography in New York.   9:00 PM Central Time | Tuesday, October 19 Keynote address   |   Bayeté Ross Smith Questioning Our Preexisting Beliefs Through Interactive, Multi-Platform Storytelling  Bayeté Ross Smith believes that creating scenarios for engagement that are accessible and relevant to the daily lived experience of the general public is a critical point of emphasis and that making use of all types of visual platforms can aid in providing the level of nuance necessary for specific narratives.  This presentation will examine the importance of not telling stories for other people but telling stories with other people and allowing communities some portion of agency and power in how they are represented through visual art & media. Smith, in his work, prefers to address the concept of identity and the framing of information to push people to question their preexisting beliefs as well as making work that is interactive with its audience while also being interactive with the community the narrative focuses on.

Biography:

Bayeté Ross Smith is a photographer, artist, and education worker, working at the intersection of photography, film & video, visual journalism, 3D objects and new media. He lives in Harlem, New York. He is a Presidential Leadership Scholar, a TED Resident, a Creative Capital Awardee, an Art For Justice Fund Grantee, a CatchLight Fellow, a BPMPlus Grantee and an AmDOC/POV NY Times embedded mediamaker. His work is in the collections of The Smithsonian Institution, the Oakland Museum of California, the Birmingham Museum of Art, the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, and The Brooklyn Museum. He has exhibited internationally with the Goethe Institute (Ghana), Foto Museum (Belgium), the Lianzhou Foto Festival (China), and America House in (Ukraine), among others. His collaborative projects "Along The Way" and "Question Bridge: Black Males" have shown at the 2008 and 2012 Sundance Film Festival, respectively. His work has also been featured at the Sheffield Doc Fest and the L.A. Film Festival. He has also created a series of public art projects with organizations such as the Jerome Foundation, BRIC Arts Media, The Amistad Center, The Laundromat Project, the NYC Parks Department, the Hartford YMCA, San Francisco District Attorney’s Office and The California Judicial Council. His work has been published in numerous publications including The New York Times, The Guardian, Question Bridge: Black Males in America (2015), Dis:Integration: The Splintering of Black America (2010), Posing Beauty: African American Images from the 1890s to the Present (2009), Black: A Celebration of A Culture (2005), The Spirit Of Family (2002) and the Philadelphia Inquirer. In addition to his creative work in art and media, Bayeté is a faculty member at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. He also helped launch and continues to work with the Kings Against Violence Initiative (KAVI), a hospital and school-based violence prevention organization in Brooklyn NY that partners with Kings County Hospital.

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Wednesday, October 20  •  The Video Consortium

The Video Consortium is a nonprofit global network that supports, develops, and connects the next generation’s visual journalists and documentary filmmakers. Uniting thousands of nonfiction storytellers from over a hundred cities across the globe, this grassroots organization works to level the industry playing field and nurture a collaborative media ecosystem through its community events, authentic relationship-building, supportive mentorship, shared industry resources, robust job forums, and professional development. The Video Consortium actively champions compassionate storytelling and diverse voices to promote a more inclusive, kind, and just world. Join the community!
WHEN? Wednesday, October 20 6:00 - 10:00 PM Centrasl Time WHERE? Nowhere – our virtual interactive world. A link specific to your purchased evening presentation(s) will be emailed to you by 11:00 am the day of the presentation. Be sure when you register for the event(s) you use an email that you monitor, this is the secret key and is how we will invite you into our exciting virtual world.

Our Guests

6:00 PM Central Time | Wednesday, October 20 Virtual vendors and our virtual lounge will be open if you would like to mingle and see who else lingers in the social space.   7:00 PM Central Time | Wednesday, October 20 Room 1   |   Nicholas Bruckman Entrepreneurial Filmmaking 101: How to Launch a Company and Debut a Feature Doc  Nicholas Bruckman, CEO of People’s Television and Director of the acclaimed feature documentary “Not Going Quietly” talks about what it takes to successfully run a branded doc studio and balance long-term projects for maximum social impact. 

Biography:

Nicholas Bruckman is the founder and CEO of People's Television, a creative studio that produces award-winning independent films as well as digital and broadcast content for the world’s leading brands. He has produced and directed feature films, documentaries, and commercials in over 25 countries around the world, including across Latin America, Europe, and Asia. His upcoming documentary feature Not Going Quietly, executive produced by Mark and Jay Duplass, premiered at the 2021 SXSW Film Festival where it won the Audience Award and Special Jury prize. He previously produced the narrative feature film Valley of Saints, shot under lockdown in Kashmir, which won the Audience Award at the Sundance Film Festival and the AsiaAfrica Prize at the Dubai Film Festival. His first documentary La Americana broadcast worldwide on networks including National Geographic and Al Jazeera. In 2020 he executive produced numerous short films, including Rosa, which was funded by the Tribeca Through her Lens award and won Best Short at the Woodstock Film Festival, and Desert Mourning, which premiered at Mountainfilm Telluride. He has participated in numerous labs, fellowships, and markets worldwide, including the Rotterdam Producers Lab, the IFP Cannes Producers Fellowship, and the Film Independent Producers Lab. His work has been supported by foundations including the Sloan Foundation, Cinereach, Rooftop Films, and the IDA. Through People’s TV, Nick regularly produces branded films globally for clients including Airbnb, Greenpeace, Facebook, and Dropbox, and works with A-list talent and CEO’s.   7:00 PM Central Time | Wednesday, October 20 Room 2   |   Kristine Stolakis The Art of Bringing a Documentary to Market Kristine Stolakis, documentary filmmaker and director of Netflix’s acclaimed new “Pray Away,” on the ins and outs of bringing her feature film from seed to screen.

Biography:

Kristine Stolakis is a director whose films examine how power, politics, and prejudice unfold in real people’s lives. Her debut feature PRAY AWAY (Netflix 2021) chronicles the history and legacy of the “pray the gay away” movement. The film was an official selection of the Tribeca Film Festival, Telluride, and AFI Docs among others. She proudly hails from North Carolina and central New York.   8:00 PM Central Time | Wednesday, October 20 Room 1   |   Haimy Assefa From Full-Time to Freelance: How to Successfully Pursue an Independent Documentary Career Award-winning visual journalist Haimy Assefa reveals the tips, tricks, and trade secrets of leaving the institutional nest and going solo.

Biography:

Haimy Assefa is an award winning, Emmy-nominated video journalist and documentary filmmaker. Born and raised in Ethiopia, she speaks Amharic and English. Haimy has a background in breaking news reporting, broadcast, and digital video. As a filmmaker and video journalist, she produces, shoots, and edits important and cinematic stories about a wide range of issues. She has produced stories both domestically in the U.S. and internationally. Whether she is covering stories in New Iberia, Louisiana about the plight of Black farmers or in Peru about attempts to retain an indigenous language, Haimy aims to challenge,  inform, and entertain a digital audience.  Based in New York City, she has been integral to digital storytelling units at NBC News and CNN. Haimy received a masters in international affairs at The News School and has a bachelors in sociology.   8:00 PM Central Time | Wednesday, October 20 Room 2   |   Erin McGoff Embracing the (Terrifying) Internet as a Nonfiction Storyteller Serious investigative journalist or TikTok star? Why not be both? In a world where we feel like we're shoved into self-branding as one thing, TikTok is a platform allowing us to show our dimensions. However, at the same time, the internet can also be a terrifying place as tensions run high and misinformation spreads like wildfire. So how do you balance keeping your mental sanity and professional integrity while embracing the inevitable future and taking advantage of the internet's power? Join documentary filmmaker and TikTok creator Erin McGoff to get some insight. 

Biography:

Erin McGoff is an award-winning documentary filmmaker, director, and editor specializing in underreported stories of resilience. Upon graduating from film school, Erin received a fellowship from the Pulitzer Center to support her debut feature documentary about Laos, THIS LITTLE LAND OF MINES (Amazon Prime), which premiered in 2019 and went on to receive festival accolades and international distribution. McGoff has also completed three short documentaries, SOUTHERN SUSTAINABILITY (2018), NEW YORK IS SILENT (Pulitzer Center, 2020), and DARROUZETT, TX (PBS, 2020). As an editor and/or director, McGoff has worked with a variety of clients including Google, Hilton, National Geographic, Under Armour, Capital One, and Ogilvy. McGoff currently lives and works in New York City as a full-time documentary editor, director, and content creator. She educates over 1.7 million people on TikTok and is working on her big project.   9:00 PM Central Time | Wednesday, October 20 Keynote address   |   Jonathan Woods Title and description TBA

Biography:

Since joining TIME in 2012, Woods has played a key role in developing exclusive, groundbreaking visual storytelling & journalism. Currently he is producing a 5-part Netflix series on the first all-civilian spaceflight mission (Inspiration4). He is also finishing production on "Space Explorers: The ISS Experience" — the biggest production in space, ever. The series has captured 200 hours of astronauts adapting to life in space in cinematic VR, culminating with the first-ever spacewalk in virtual reality, captured on Sept. 12, 2021. Woods also produced the Emmy Award-winning "A Year in Space", a 12-episode docu-series focusing on Scott Kelly's yearlong mission to the International Space Station. Woods also produced these as two one-hour specials for PBS. In 2013, Woods photographed the only 360-degree panorama from the top of 1 World Trade Center, the tallest building in the western hemisphere. The image was part of a TIME package on the rebuilding of the site devastated by the 9/11 attacks that included a TIME cover story, documentary film and microsite. Before diving to the sea-floor and climbing skyscrapers for TIME, Woods spent three years with msnbc.com as a multimedia producer and six as a photojournalist for newspapers around the U.S., including The Gazette in Iowa and Denver's Rocky Mountain News.

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Thursday, October 21  •  American Reportage

Description to come WHEN? Thursday, October 21 6:00 - 10:00 PM Central Time WHERE? Nowhere – our virtual interactive world. A link specific to your purchased evening presentation(s) will be emailed to you by 11:00 am the day of the presentation. Be sure when you register for the event(s) you use an email that you monitor, this is the secret key and is how we will invite you into our exciting virtual world.

Apply

Our Guests

6:00 PM Central Time | Thursday, October 21 Virtual vendors and our virtual lounge will be open if you would like to mingle and see who else lingers in the social space.   7:00 PM Central Time | Thursday, October 21 Room 1   |   Liz Sanders and Alice Driver The Writer-Photographer Relationship Alice and Liz will reflect on the creative, practical, and financial challenges of working together on a long-term project. They will present ongoing work documenting the daily lives of essential meatpacking workers during the pandemic.

Biography:

Photographer Liz Sanders and writer Alice Driver are Arkansas natives. Driver and Sanders met in the streets of Washington DC during the 2016 Women’s March where they recognized each other from Instagram. They began to work together during the pandemic when they found themselves once again living in Arkansas. Sanders is currently working on Be Here to Love Me, which focuses on her father’s struggle with dementia and the bond of family during illness. Driver is represented by Kirsty McLachlan of Morgan Green Creatives in London. She is working on a non-fiction book about meatpacking workers. Sanders has shown her work in group exhibitions, including HELPHOTO, Helsinki Photo Festival (Helsinki, Finland), On Site 2019, Trestle Gallery (Brooklyn, NY), and at the Anacostia Community Museum (Washington, DC). Her work has been featured in numerous print publications including, The New York Review of Books, TIME, The Nation, and BOOOOOOOM. Sanders is a recipient of both the Magnum Foundation and the Rita and Alex K. Hillman Foundation Fellowships for her documentary work and was recently named a winner of 1854 Media – British Journal of Photography’s inaugural Fast Track initiative year as an open-call for fresh, unsigned artists. Driver is the author of More or Less Dead: Feminicide, Haunting and the Ethics of Representation (University of Arizona, 2015), which she completed during her postdoctoral fellowship at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) in Mexico City. For their current long-term project reporting on immigrant meatpacking workers, Driver and Sanders have received funding from the National Geographic Society, the Economic Hardship Reporting Project, and the Pulitzer Center.   Room 2: TBD 8:00 PM Central Time

Room 1: TBD

Room 2: TBD   9:00 PM Central Time Keynote address TBD

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Friday, October 22  •  U R Nowhere!

This event is open to any one who purchased a ticket to one of the three previous nights or is a participant of Mountain Workshops Remote. An invitation email will be sent to you by 11:00 am on Friday morning, this will be your secret key to get into this exclusive evening of entertainment and socializing. WHEN? Friday, October 23 6:00 pm - 1100 pm Central Time WHERE? Nowhere – our virtual interactive world. We will email you the invitation link On Friday morning, Oct. 22.

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Join Maxx Berkowitz and a slew of others

Join Maxx, a co-founder of Nowhere, and a host of others that are involved in the Mountain Workshops as we will mingle around all of the open rooms getting to know you and get the chance to meet with you one-on-one. You never know who might meet! Special guests are being invited.

Our Guests

Entertainment, vendors and others will be present to help your visual network grow.  

What You Gain

  • a larger and more robust network of contacts
  • an open mind that can consider new ways to look at things
  • a friendship and mentorship that can last a lifetime

Who Should Come

  • college students or early professionals looking to up their visual game
  • high school students who are considering pursuing a storytelling career
  • anyone interested in the visual communication industry
  • just need to be encouraged or inspired - then this is the event for you