I hold a lot of nostalgia for the summers in between university when I'd come back home to work, make some money, and whenever possible make a movie. At the time, school felt big in a lot of ways. I tried to constantly remind myself that the time I had there was limited, and that I'd have to use it wisely to figure out what my next steps would be. Easier said than done.
By the summer of 2006 I was feeling the pressure of not knowing what I'd even be able to do, let alone where I'd go to work when I graduated. That, mixed with my desire to make a road movie with my good friend Paul, a summer spent doing manual labour, and a brand new HDV camera resulted in the plans to shoot Educated Detours by the end of August. A summer production with friends would prove to be the perfect escape.
The original inspiration came from a drive home during the holidays. The open prairie had me thinking that it would be fun to shoot something on the back roads out in the middle of nowhere. I hadn't made anything that really embraced my location in such a big way before, and I wanted to create something more ambitious for my portfolio.
Educated Detours Trailer
The project actually took a lot of planning to get underway. Making a 20 minute short was considerably longer than most of the other videos I'd made, and we'd only have 3 days to do it in. My friend Paul had to come down from Edmonton and my friend Andrea came from Calgary to help out as well. Shooting required a lot of driving to find the right locations, the summer heat proved tiresome, and all this was happening just days before I was moving back to Regina for another 8 months of school.
With the movie now a few years old it's crazy how similar some things turned out based on the predictions I made. I left school without graduating which was never the plan, but I took the same leap of faith in coming back home to figure things out before moving further away. In Educated Detours I equated a degree to a treasure map, but I think it's broader than that. With or without the degree I think I was bound to approach post-university life the same way. Regardless of the badges we carry we're constantly looking for quick payoffs, rewarding ventures, and ways to get us closer to our goals. There are always obstacles along the way.
University was a catalyst for growing up, but I don't think we ever stop searching for the opportunities to help us achieve the things we really want in life. Educated Detours is a pretty straightforward and simple movie that has gained more value as I've gained more perspective on what school really meant to me. Plus, that was a pretty good summer and it's nice to have this as a reminder. Things aren't all that heavy when you can have fun and when your real goal was just to find an excuse to create something.
When everything wrapped up it was nice to share the project with family and friends, and to this day Educated Detours remains one of my favourite summer shoots. Also, be sure to check out some of my snapshots taken that summer. Enjoy, Educated Detours!