In an over caffeinated moment I ran into film maker Jon Meyer at a Fred Meyer’s (no relation) grocery store. It seemed like he was in a hurry, but I couldn’t let an opportunity pass to talk to him. I had just seen on Facebook that he was working on a fund-raising campaign for a documentary. In our conversation, Jon made the point that instead of people supporting some guy’s interest in making potato salad they should help finance film projects. It made sense to me. Jon explained how he’d use the money. He was in the middle of documenting the life of Talilo, a rap artist. I watched a 10 minute rough cut of the film he’s working on which is now posted on the gofundme site and I saw three storylines unfolding. There’s a family member with a major health issue, living quarters being provided for the artist from what seems like an unlikely source and there are also glimpses of the artist supporting himself teaching a hip hop class. I picked up on the struggles of an artist in progress. The film explores what will happen.
Hip hop class in session.
Jon Meyer lives and breathes video production. He brings enthusiasm to every angle of it from cameras, associated gear of any and all kinds and editing software. From the days I experienced seeing him at Attack of the Flix screenings, he was always interested in sharing his work and appreciating the work of others. Also the guy has an uber-bohemian aesthetic and philosophy about living on the cheap that tells me he will make great use of the money he collects.
Talilo with his sister.
I remember reading in-depth about Jon’s lifestyle and approach to film making in an article about his Free Box video series in the Portland Tribune years ago where it was revealed that Jon used to live in a van. Whether it was down by the river like the Chris Farley bit, I’m not sure, but it had to be saving him rent money.
Have a look at this film project and kick in what you can. I feel like if I inspire one person to donate I’ll have done something to support this cause. Looking over the footage included on the gofundme site reminds me that he deserves an opportunity to make the kind of film he aspires to make and he’s not asking for much to make it. With one percent of the budget of one of today’s blockbuster movies (well below what he’s asking for), Jon Meyer could create the projects he does as long as he wanted to and that would be way cooler than potato salad.
Read an all too brief article about Jon’s days working on Free Box. I could not find the Tribune article:
Stills from the Talilo Documentary Teaser shot by Jon Meyer.