Archive for January, 2009

The Spring Tour!

January 22, 2009

Hey Everybody,

I am heading out on the road again this Spring and I am booking right now!

In the last five years I have done 9 tours.  I have driven over 100,000 miles, flew to the UK, given over 400 lectures and work shops, screened my work 231 times, talked to thousands of students, eaten my weight in patty melts and club sandwiches, drank a swimming pool full of cheap coffee, (okay maybe a wading pool…), and ate three cases of antacids.  And I am ready to do it all over again.

I will be on the road late February, March and April going to colleges and universities, film festivals, media art centers, art house theaters and anywhere else I can show my films.

I am also teaching my workshops:

Making the Extreme No Budget Film – – In 2000 Kelley Baker & Bruce Lacey set out to make a full length feature film for the sum of $1000.  They failed miserably.  Their budget ballooned up to $4000, (they forgot they had to feed cast and crew), but when the dust finally settled they had completed THE GAS CAFE, a 90 minute DV feature.  Along the way they set up a website, shot behind the scenes footage (for a documentary), and made the movie that they wanted to.   In 2002 Kelley sent 100 letters to 100 Friends asking for $100 to fund Kicking Bird.  He raised $5000 and shot for 18 days.  Kelley is currently touring the country with Kicking Bird.  In this workshop Kelley will walk participants through the entire process from scripting through post production.  How to get the most for very limited resources, asking the right questions to get free stuff, and working in an atmosphere where people share your vision, put in very long hours for no money, and enjoy it!

Guerilla Marketing and Self Distribution of Your Film – – Independent filmmaking is alive and well, it’s independent distribution that is dead.  At a time when “independent” films have to have a star and at least a couple million dollar budget, how do you get your films seen?   Forget Sundance, Miramax, and PBS. These places get hundreds of submissions a year. From wooden nickels to websites, to press kits and reviews Kelley Baker shows you different ways to get an audience to turn out for your screenings.   He challenges you to assess the real market for your film and provides examples of other filmmakers getting their work out, after their films were turned down by traditional distributors.  You’ve already made the thing, what good is it doing sitting on your shelf?

Sound Design on Independent Features – – As the Sound Designer on Gus Van Sant’s films, as well as animated features, network television specials and his own features,  Kelley Baker has a unique approach to the Art of Sound Design.  Whether you’re working with a huge budget, or a non-existent one, sound is the one area of filmmaking that always gets little attention, until the very end.  “We’ll fix it in the mix…” is an often heard expression, but what does that mean?  As a sound designer it usually means you’re in trouble.  There’s never enough money or time to do sound right.  So what do you do?     Kelley will share his insights, and show you creative solutions to many sound problems.  He’ll also discuss what to do when you have no budget, and how to blow a lot of money when you do have it.

Pre-Production on Extreme Low Budget Features – – In this 3 hour work shop Kelley will walk you through the ins and outs of everything you need to do before you get to the set.  From staged readings and actor rehearsals, to script break downs and securing lots of free stuff Kelley has seen and done it all.  How do you know if you’ve hired the right crew?  What kind of insurance should you have, and how much?  What happens if one of your locations falls through at the last minute?   Do you have location releases, actor releases?  Who gets a certificate of insurance?  How long should Pre-production even last?   If you get Pre-production right then the rest of your schedule should go smooth, and when it doesn’t you need to know what to do to get it back on track.

Making the Personal Documentary – – In 1992 Kelley Baker had his first child so he decided to make a fun little film about it.  The result, YOU’LL CHANGE (3 min), has been seen all over the world.  Not bad for a little movie shot on 16mm short ends for less than $1000.  He followed this with Stolen Toyota, also made for under $1000.   He has made 8 personal short films which have screened on PBS, The Learning Channel, Canadian and Australian television and have won numerous awards in film festivals like London, Sydney, Annecy, Edinburgh, Sundance, Chicago and others.  Kelley will discuss how he takes the little moments in his life and makes award winning films out of them for fun and profit.

There are still open days on the tour so contact me ( and let’s see what we can put together.

Don’t forget to check out my tour sponsors, Film Baby (, Show Biz Software, (, Pollard Design (, Zoom Studio (, The Indy Film Co-op ( and Cheezy Flicks (  All great people, all great companies.

Internet Special!!!!

Check my Internet Specials page,

I have put my Sound Design for Independent Films (It’s The Dialog Stupid!) Workshop DVD on special this time.  You get the 2 ½ hour workshop on 2 DVDs for only $19.95.  It’s got lots of good information in it.  Check it out.

So drop me a line and talk to me.  ( and don’t forget to check out the website, for more information.

Angrily yours,



Can I get some help here? And other stuff.

January 7, 2009

Another new year!  Let’s hope this one is better than the last.

And speaking of New Years resolutions.  I resolved to post my blogs on Mondays and develop some consistency for the year.  It didn’t take long to mess that resolution up, did it?  I can only imagine how my “eating healthier” resolution is going to work out.

I want to ask something of my readers.  If you have had any experiences with any of these video streaming sites would you please drop me a line?  I get asked about them all the time and I am only familiar with a couple.

I am interested in hearing from you whether you’re a filmmaker or a film watcher.  What are the good sites, what are the bad sites, in your opinion.  Why are some sites good or bad?  If you’re a filmmaker are they paying on time?  What kind of percentages are you getting?  Are you happy where you’re at?  Would you work with these people in the future?  If you’re a film watcher, why do you like a site?  Is the site easy to access, easy to navigate?

I want to find out as much as I can about different sites out there as I get emails a couple times a month from these services wanting to sign me up.  And if I’m getting lots of emails I imagine some of you are too.  So if we can pool our knowledge then I can put a bunch of the information together and post it.  We can try to figure out who the good sites are and why.

My goal is not to endorse a particular site but to post information about the different sites and then you can judge for yourself who you want to deal with.  You all know that I self-distribute and I am very careful of the people and companies I do business with.  I just want all of us to be able to make some informed decisions on this stuff.

And yes I am sure that some of you have had bad experiences with some of these places and some of you have had good experiences.   When I go to film festivals I find that so many filmmakers are pissy about everything.  Nothing is ever right.  I am going to try to take that in to account when I read your responses.

What I am asking is that those of you that do respond please try to be objective about your experiences.  I want to try and wade through the different opinions and see what’s out there.  Then I’ll post what I find out.

Send me your opinions at

And now on to other stuff.

I am heading out on tour again, hitting the road in February.  If you want Moses and I to come to your college, university, media art center, high school, theater or even to your house for dinner send me a note.

I have been home for almost two months and I feel like moss is starting to grow on my side.  I need to hit the road.  Drop me a note,

Please check out my internet specials, hopefully you’ll find something you like.  (, as if you didn’t know)

Don’t forget to check out my tour sponsors, Film Baby (, Show Biz Software, (, Pollard Design (, Zoom Studio (, The Indy Film Co-op ( and Cheezy Flicks (  All great people, all great companies.

If you haven’t checked out their sites and their services, you better.

The first two Workshop DVDs are selling well.  You can find them at,, and at

And just a reminder, I am available to consult on your films.

What do you get out of the deal?  You get the best value and advice in making your film. No matter what stage you’re in.   I’ve been in the business for 25 years, working on everything from animation to live action, Independent features, Real Independent features, Hollywood studio stuff, and documentaries.  If you check out my bio and filmography ( you’ll see I’ve worked on award winning films, and films that never got distribution.

I will look at your work honestly and objectively.  If there are problems, I’ll point them out, in a constructive way.  No one wants to hear, “This sucks!”   My goal is to guide you through the process, so that you can see what the problems are, and we’ll come up with ways to fix them.  Check out (

As always, feel free to link to my site and you can subscribe to my blog.  So what are you waiting for?

Talk later.