Struck by a single image of a community organizer using a handheld camera to document the plight of low-income workers in Los Angeles, alumni Michael Freund and John Savedra took it upon themselves to create a Sony Electronics spec film, to honor mobile media’s power to create positive change.
Further inspired by Common Ground founder Rosanne Haggerty, the duo’s 60-second video—a dramatization—portrays a community organizer who captures a homeless woman’s story using Sony Electronics’ HD pocket camera, the Bloggie, as part of a successful effort to secure funding to convert old, dilapidated buildings into low-income housing. The theme of the video, titled Sony: Change the World, resonates with Freund. “My role as storyteller is to move audiences by telling authentic stories that contain an element of hope,” Freund says. “Not in-your-face happy endings, but subtle and powerful emotions. Not hyped-up drama, but real-life stories.”
Freund and Savedra bonded over their Art Center connection and high standards for narrative visual storytelling. “Sony is the second of what I consider two very successful collaborations with Michael,” Savedra says. (The first was a spec film for shoe and apparel maker New Balance.) “Not only because we have a common appreciation for showing people on-screen who bond through life experiences, but because, in my eyes, we did it successfully.”
This story originally appeared in Art Center’s Dot magazine. Check out Dot online for more news of alumni and faculty exhibitions, products, books, films and social impact.