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Spring Gillard
info@gardenheart.ca

The Film Files

The file sorting continues. I was astonished at the number of film projects I had undertaken, or rather film proposals I have written. During my years at City Farmer, I was hell bent on getting a TV series or documentary on urban agriculture off the ground. There were many titles and formats: City Farmers (1995, 1998), Green Chord, Food Land People, Garden Heads. There were countless grant proposals to the Canada Council, Banff Centre, National Film Board and of course pitches to the TV stations and sponsors. I worked with a graphic designer to format some of the proposals and packaged them up creatively. I came close to getting funding or a broadcaster many times, only to have the deals collapse for one reason or another.

I also took film courses during those years at Cineworks, the Vancouver Film School, Video In. I was a member of Women in Film and was taught and mentored by many of the leading lights in Canada’s film world, like Mena Shum, Guy Bennett, Sandy Wilson and Colleen Nystedt. But the roller coaster ride finally got to me. I realized I was spending all my time writing proposals, when I really just wanted to write. That’s when I switched my attention to writing a book, and the Diary was born.

I found one file called “Various Painful Attempts at Selling.” It is painful to review how much time and effort I put into those years with only dusty files and a few promo films to show for it. Still I was cheered by finding the left over rubber worms and coloured pencils with cabbage erasers and consoled myself with Gandhi’s aphorism: full effort is full victory.

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