It was one of those trips that started out as nothing more than a novel idea. A road trip to Mount Rushmore had been in the back of my mind for quite some time, but the reality of ever actually going seemed like wishful thinking.
The idea really came about because of my location in university. Regina, Saskatchewan is the largest Canadian city to the famed monument near Rapid City, South Dakota despite still being hundreds of miles away. I figured with the isolated location of Mount Rushmore, I might never be in a more convenient spot to actually see it. It was something I really wanted to cross off my bucket list, and having previously explored places to the north, west and east of Regina, it only seemed appropriate to check out the landscape further south. Little did I know that just over a year later at the end of the 2007 winter semester, my friend Andrea and I would decide to take the lengthy drive through the open prairie and into the Black Hills (here's an old school postcard I found while there).
The original project, Rushmore, was a travelog I cut together using photos and footage I shot along the trip. I added my personal narration to elaborate on the experiences and my general mindset at the time, while also using it as a way to tell a condensed story to my family and friends who I was most likely to share the video with.
It was just after returning that my blog, Editing Luke began. In an effort to share some of my previous projects and edits, some of the first things I ever shared included a post about why I love editing travelogs and a history of the video postcards I had cut together. Below you can watch the original South Dakota video postcard (also used as a preview for the complete travelog Rushmore) I cut together just a few weeks after returning.
Original 2007 South Dakota Video Postcard
During the week long trip, Andrea and I visited Mount Rushmore, the Crazy Horse memorial, the town of Deadwood (made even more popular by the HBO show of the same name), Devil's Tower in Wyoming, and Chimney Rock in Nebraska traveling along parts of the Oregon Trail, Pony Express, and the path taken by explorers Lewis and Clark - just to name a few of the detours. Because sharing the entire Rushmore travelog would've been way too long and indepth for the average stranger visiting my blog, I decided that there would need to be revisions to the main project. So, I cut some new postcards to highlight my footage - making for some great editing exercises.
I figured that my personal story was still connected to the footage and was certainly available to anyone who wanted to hear it, but for the sake of sharing my edits I was content to focus on the locations. What I find endearing still, is that even the simplified cuts maintain the enthusiasm and low key energy that made the trip so amazing and memorable in the first place.
There have been several small revisions and additions to these edits since 2007, however the South Dakota postcard is exactly the same. The newer edits include a video for Mount Rushmore, an edit for Devil's Tower, an edit of our day driving through Nebraska, and a Black Hills Photo Collage. Watching them now, each video embraces the nostalgia that I was feeling even then - just weeks after being home.
It's tough to fully explain what the meaning of the trip was, but in a poetic sense I think our quest for Rushmore was about getting lost, finding new places, and enjoying a journey out of the ordinary. For a mountain carving in between miles of what could be described as almost nothing, the trip was eye opening. Of all the things I expected to find traveling the open road, inspiration was the one thing I hadn't prepared for ahead of time.
All footage shot and edited by Luke Fandrich.
Mount Rushmore 2007 - South Dakota
Devil's Tower 2007 - Wyoming
Chimney Rock 2007 - Nebraska
Black Hills Photo Collage 2007