Whaleback environmental film and art festival

Whaleback 2013:
Food, Farms & Gardens

*indicates a student film



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schedules and photos




Weekend Overview

Thursday, May 9th
Opening Night Double Feature:
Small Farm Stories & Discussion

Dirty Work
Piglets & Perspectives*

Panel Discussion

Portsmouth Public Library, Levenson Room
- free event -

Celebrate Opening Night with a double feature of films about sustainability and small farms. The first film shares the story of a community farm in the midwest, and the second is a sneak peek at a local film featuring five small farms in southern NH. The evening culminates in a panel discussion with the filmmakers and farmers of Piglets & Perspectives.

Saturday, May 11th
Lineup of Feature Presentations:

The Credible Egg*
Fish Meat
The Wind That Blows

The Music Hall Loft
(doors open at 6pm)

- Tickets (all 4 films included): $18 -

Proceeds support local environmental filmmaking, art and conservation!


In keeping with our Food, Farms & Gardens theme, Whaleback proudly announces an evening of films at the Loft that focus on alternative food sources, and challenges our perspectives on seafaring food and farming. The evening culminates in the cinematic feature presentation of Elemental, a film that follows three individuals on their inspriational environmental quests.

The Films:

Dirty Work
The Story of Elsie's Farm
(Run time: 56 minutes)

Dirty Work

Dirty Work is an engaging portrait of Don Roberts and Joni Cash, and their audacious, perhaps quixotic dream to take an old farm, invest it with new ideas and grow a community. Shot in cinema-verite style, it documents a year in the lives of folks dedicated to, and inspired by the idea of growing local food in a sustainable way. The film is about the value of community in a tough world and the hardships and rewards that come with following your heart.

Minnesota filmmaker Deb Wallwork shares with Whaleback a film "that shows rather than tells its very moving, inspirational story." Seacoast viewers will find the story of Elsie's Farm very relevant to the growing story of New Hampshire's small farms.

Dirty Work Trailer:


Piglets & Perspectives
New Hampshire Farmers Behind the Camera
(Run time: 42 minutes)

Dirty Work

What happens when farmers from five NH farms take filmmaking into their own hands? They tell the story of what is happening on today's small, innovative farms! From raw milk to what it truly means to be free range, Piglets & Perspectives gives audiences a window in to life on the farm. Many of our small farms here in southern NH share a priority for sustainability, although their practices and daily routines vary widely. Thoughtful conversations in barns and kitchens tell the story of five local farms and their philosphy of farming today, which is a mixture of old and new strategies.

Local first-time filmmaker Dyanna Smith created the film by weaving together footage shot over a two-month period last fall on farms in the seacoast and Peterborough regions of NH:

"The majority of the footage is shot by the farmers themselves - allowing us as an audience to have a much more personal and intimate look at their farms through their eyes. Their care for the animals, concerns for their community, and sense of humor really shine through in their footage. It's really wonderful that they shared this with us."

New Hampshire farms featured in the film include:

Brandmoore Farm, located in Rollinsford (Phil Brand and Becky Moore)
Victory Bees (Brendan Cornwell)
Moor Farm in North Hampton (Dick Wollmar)
Sunnyfield Farm in Peterborough (Dan and Ruth Holmes)
Ten Talents at La Bergerie Dumas in Greenfield (Conrad and Ellen Dumas)

*Dyanna is producing the film as a Doctoral Candidate in the Environmental Studies Department at Antioch University New England.


The Credible Egg
(Run time: 5 minutes)


Bag Buddies

In this short documentary, California filmmaker Helen Hood Scheer shows us how the industrialization of food inspires an unexpected alliance between technology and nature. Can an egg substitute be formulated that pleases the palet and reduces pressure on commercial egg production? One company is sure trying.

*Helen produced the film in 2012 as an MFA Candidate in the Documentary Film & Video program at Stanford University.


Fish Meat: Choose Your Farm Wisely
(Run time: 29 minutes)


Upstream Downstream


The seas are running out of fish, and aquaculture has stepped in to meet rising demands for seafood. But what exactly is farmed fish? Where does it come from? How is it made? Two friends - a fish ecologist and an engineer - take a sailing voyage along the sparkling coast of Turkey to pull back the cover on modern fish farming. They discover the tragedy of bluefin tuna ranching and the joy of common carp.

Fish Meat Trailer:



The Wind That Blows
(Run time: 58 minutes)

Bag Buddies

Spanning an entire generation, “The Wind That Blows” examines an uncommon group of men whose lives are entwined with nature as they struggle to remain providers to their loved ones in spite of pressures from the outside world to stop them.

From 1988-2011, cinematographer Tom Weston filmed the story of cultural whaling history on the tiny, isolated island of Bequia in the Grenadine islands of the British West Indies where Bequia’s few remaining whalers are led by 67-year-old harpooner, Athneal Ollivierre.  In 1989, during the “100 days” from the end of January to the end of April when humpbacks are present in the warm Caribbean waters, the whalers were unable to land a whale. 1989 was thought by many, including the whalers, to be their final season… but it wasn’t. Each season Tom and his cameras were there, determined to capture what might be the final quest of Bequia’s “Yankee whalers”, remnants of a once proud and now maligned industry gasping its last breath on a remote, rapidly developing island.

As globalization homogenizes our planet and consumerism devours our resources, the whalers of Bequia strive to maintain their unique heritage and their direct connection to nature, a connection that is lost to so many of us.
“The Wind That Blows” gives a voice to a humble community on a tiny island clinging to its proud past.


(Run time: 93 minutes)


Bag Buddies

Elemental highlights three individuals united by their deep connection with nature and driven to confront some of the most pressing ecological challenges of our time. Separated by continents yet sharing an unwavering commitment to protecting nature, these activists are complex, flawed, postmodern heroes for whom stemming the tide of environmental destruction fades in and out of view. The film follows Rajendra Singh on a pilgrimage to save India’s once pristine Ganges River, now polluted and dying; Eriel Deranger, a young mother campaigning tirelessly against the proposed 2,000-mile Keystone XL Pipeline which would destroy Indigenous communities of northern Canada; and Jay Harman, an Australian inventor searching for investors willing to risk millions on his revolutionary device that he believes can slow down global warming.

Filmmakers Gayatri Roshan and Emmanuel Vaughan-Lee have shown their film at the following events: International Film Festival of India, Social Change Film Festival & Institute, Oneota Film Festival, Jaipur International Film Festival, St. Louis International Film Festival, Red Rock Film Festival, Austin Film Festival, Wildscreen Film Festival, World Premiere – Mill Valley Film Festival.

Elemental Trailer:

The Red Eft Project would like to thank the Green Alliance, a sponsor of Whaleback 2013!



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