Achieving balance between reaching your goals, the greater environment and having a life is one of the greatest tricks we can pull off.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Just One Step: The Human Need To Run

Just One Step: The Human Need To Run
New Film explores why we pursue the act of running

Portland, Maine, October 2, 2015 – They are everywhere. Runners. In all places and in all conditions. Why do they do it?

What is it about running? Why is the running industry booming, and people hitting the streets, the track, the trail or the treadmill in increasing numbers every day? Is it just a desire to be fit, to lose a little weight, or ‘get some exercise’? A new documentary by Benjamin Keller entitled “Just One Step” takes issue with that notion.

Approaching the subject through action sequences, science and putting himself through the paces as well Keller begins to unwind the story of how and why we run. The result is the beautiful, funny and thought provoking documentary “Just One Step”, currently in production in a variety of locations across the country.

“Running is one of those things that has always felt foreign to me,” says film maker Benjamin Keller, “it hurts, I am slow, and I pay for it for days afterwards. Yet through my immersion in the running culture, I have found that there is definitely something more to it than just ‘getting exercise’. There is something else to it- something that might be better, and possibly worse than mere exercise. I wanted to find out.”

In exploring the human need to run Keller has tracked down a number of leaders in the world of running.  Among those slated to be in the film are athletes Karl Meltzer, Mark Godale, Sabrina Little, Anna frost, Mike Westphal, and more. The film is also going to feature renowned, and in some cases controversial, scientists like John Ratey and Martin Matsumura

“Just One Step”, through interviews and stories of these people and with stunning cinematography, will take the viewer to places they didn’t expect from a film about something seemingly mundane like running.

“It’s not really a ‘running film’” says Keller “It appeals to runners and non runners alike. The reason being that the film is more about us as humans, how we operate in our daily lives, and move through our world. And our needs, what our brains and bodies need and desire. We are closing in on finishing production currently but are hoping to raise enough funds to get there. We currently have a Kickstarter campaign running and are spreading the word. Folks who join the Just One Step team will help bring this amazing film to the world.”

For more information about “Just One Step”, or contribute to the campaign, visit

Filmmaker Ben Keller founded Dubious Honor Productions in 1993 as a music company and in 1998, expanded the company to embrace visual media.  The company’s focus is showing the real face of its documentary subjects, focusing especially in the Northeast and Maine where Keller has resided for the past 22 years.  “Just One Step” is the sixth documentary film by Dubious Honor Productions with several more in development.      

Tuesday, September 30, 2014


What does it take?  What does it take for one to get moving? I started a documentary project just about a year ago now and it has been slow going.  Sure, things like summer and kids and romance and waves and all sorts of things beckon me at every turn, and those are things I cherish so they are always a welcome addition to my life. But I love storytelling, and I love creating and I love putting the pieces together. So why has it been so hard to just delve into this project and, well, put the pieces together?

Recently my lovely partner and I sat at a lovely lunch in the lovely Portland Public market and talked all about it. Investment and genesis and approaches and additions and all sorts of inspiration flowed in that hour (she is an amazingly inspiring human, to say the least). Yet I was still having trouble just making the leap, just opening up the files and doing the work.

That night I lay in bed and thought about everything.  About how this could be great.  About all the things we talked about at lunch. About how this stage in the process for me is the one I always have the hardest time with. It doesn't quite light me up like other parts, and that, despite all of the lights at the ends of different tunnels and doors waiting to be opened,  was dragging me down.  And why? I guess because at this stage I feel the least creative with the piece.  It's the part that doesn't always flow naturally for me and I struggle.

So how to ignite that spark in this moment? How to get the tinder of the mind hot enough to maybe start a little flame, and how to fan that into fire? What can I do that I find creative and useful and fun and a reminder and an inspiration?  I am sure it's different for every person, and probably for every project I will do should I find myself in a similar space. But right here right now it was obvious.  T-shirts! I would create fun little nothing t shirts every Monday that would be a creative little reminder and inspiration then wear it every morning while I plug away at the piece. It doesn't have to be arty or over the top or spend hours creating.  Just a fun message to myself.

I know it sounds silly but the creative part of making a tee that is a reminder, is a drive and an ignition in itself for me. I have been moving on the project with more vigor than in a long while and am starting to see possibilities here for a larger, better piece than originally envisioned. So for now, I will continue with my t-shirts, and shape and create what is going to be a fantastic doc.

Thursday, June 5, 2014


One of the most exciting times in a project for us is the beginning.  The beginning, not the genesis, not the concept or idea, (though those are exciting and motivating as well) but the actual digging in and starting.  The work.  The getting out and doing what needs to be done.  The figuring out of the processes and paths that you need to successfully begin a new project.  The placing of the camera in the hand, and the walking out the door.

 That is precisely what happened over the last couple of days.  While there are numerous projects happening at once, there is a new full length project that we have embarked on. But this is a multi-year project.  So we are going after it slowly and steadily.

We headed north to shoot out on the waters surrounding Mount Desert Island. Our first day was glorious and long.  Sunny and filled with wildlife, wind and swell.

It's precisely these days that are so invigorating to us!  The beginning of a new project! Out on the water! Shooting!  Sussing out the complexities of the processes and paths!

We were extremely lucky to have our first day go so well.  Off to a great start.  The next day, not so much.  Socked in with fog, big swell, downpours and a number of other factors that highlighted safety as a concern. We decided to postpone our second day. 

But that didn't drain the enthusiasm for the beginning of this new project. Our first day, of what promises to be many many days over a handful of years, was an incredible kickoff. A perfect first step.

Starting.  Here we go.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Get thee outside!

It's days like the past couple of days that remind me I love to shoot.  Why?  Because I love to shoot outside.  And luckily that is where a majority of my shooting occurs.  I am beyond lucky.  Yes, I like it as much in winter as I do in summer.  Though admittedly my staying power diminishes with every degree below 32.

But the last few days, wow.  I don't think I could have asked for better conditions.  Sunny, warm, little wind, just perfect to be outside and on the water. We were brought on to shoot the Windjammer Angelique in her first trip up the coast from Camden to Belfast for her every other year haul out.

My gosh, it was beautiful.  Incredible deep blue clear skies, early morning spring light, and really, what can compare with the majesty of a 135 foot ketch.  Really.

The boat was brought up to Front Street Shipyard in Belfast and hauled out in a massive sling. Which is nothing short of a miracle of modern technology. Needless to say, the location, the conditions, the beautiful boat and the incredible feat of technology made this one incredible shoot.

The boatyard itself provided an amazing backdrop for these operations.  We flew the drone, looked for interesting and different angles and perspectives and got what we believe to be some pretty impressive and beautiful imagery.

Captain Dennis Gallant called this a 'shave and a haircut', followed by a 'splash and dash' . Angelique was out of the water for less than 24 hours. But in those 24 hours we got enough to put together a sweet little pre-season piece about prepping for the upcoming season.

Both the Angelique and Front Street Shipyard were hugely accommodating and made this shoot very easy.  We are really excited to put together this piece.  Watch for it soon!

Tuesday, October 1, 2013


Where did the summer go?  What happened?  Work, fun, messed up ankle, travel, and poof!  Gone!

So a few quick updates....  The Angel Light film we worked on has been accepted into the Big Aple Film Festival!  Woo!  We will be attending.  Very excited for Kira and Angel Light!  You can watch it here:

We also ran up to Ontario to shoot the the big Race that is the highlight of the documentary we are working on about two women, their friendship and running.  Its a pretty amazing story.  I won't tell you what happened at the 100 (!) mile race but it's going to make for a good doc.  We are just finishing up some of the outdoor shots for this before the leaves turn and we sink into the edit.

Last but not least Dubious Honor is in talks to become the main shoot crew on a pretty big deal documentary.  We are very excited at the prospects and fingers crossed it all comes together.  More on this as it progresses.

In our spare time (ha!) we have been attempting to master the art of heli flying and shooting, as well as the art of tilt shift.  So much to learn!  We are using a lot of this for the new tour video we are working on for the Shipyard Brewing Company. Who we love! I will have to post some of the out takes of some of the spectacular crashes we have had....

Friday, August 16, 2013

Slow Summer Daze

Its quiet out there... too quiet...

As summer winds down the last hazy lazy days of summer are rolling in.  Don't want to jinx it but it looks like we are in for a stretch of nice weather to maybe round it all out.

Its been standard summer work fare.  But I can't help but think that this fall is going to be chock-a-block and crazy wall-to wall.  We will see,

As for now, the work on the new tour video for Shipyard continues and its ramping up.  With a whole new set of cool tricks up our sleeves to create a really nice, Maine oriented piece. The work continues on the doc I am filming about the two women ultra-runners as well.  The big race is at the beginning of September so we are rocking on that. I also have secured broadcast distribution for King Charles' Coast.  Now I just need to tag into someone or some organization that can help fund this puppy.  Its huge and important and unfortunately pretty political which is why I am having a hard time finding folks to help out with it.  So if you know anyone who cares about Maine's coast and the access to it, send them my way! I am not above begging...

That's it for now, nose to the end of summer grindstone.  More as it all winds up.  I can't help but feel like on the other side of these last days of Summer its going to be a pretty big and busy fall...

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

So much!

Holee cats.  It has really been two years since out last post. Crazy.  Life has a way of interfering with things like...blogging.

Lots has happened since that last post, both professionally and personally. But I will stick to the professional here. There have been lots of projects that have come and gone in the last two years, including one really big one (alluded to in my last post) that almost came to fruition if it weren't for a last minute snafu.

But recently I had the tremendous honor to be invited to work with Angel Light Films, a non-profit that makes films written by kids with brain cancer. Pretty heavy stuff but also one of the most amazing and transformative experiences I have ever had in my life. The result was a fun little film by an amazing little girl and her friends. If you have 10 minutes, its worth a watch, especially for the short little interview with Kira at the end. An incredible kid, and an amazing experience. Check out the film if you have a few minutes.

There are a couple of really great things in the works as well, aside from the really fun work we continue to do with New Englands best brewery, Shipyard. We are in production right now on a documentary about two ultra marathoning women, which is proving to be a pretty amazing experience. We also are on the hook for a pretty great project this fall, which I would DP on, but not going to say anything about that until it gets locked. Fun stuff.  And guess what?  King Charles' Coast is back on the table!  We have distribution for it through MPBN, and now we just need to get the funding together. The subject of coastal access is still a hot button topic here in Maine. I am hugely invested in this one, which is why it keeps coming back.  We will make this film! I am also developing a site that will be fun place for New Englanders to come to watch outdoor shorts, and for NE film makers to show theirs., coming soon.

Lastly (for this post anyway) I have committed to a long term project that is something close to my heart, but again, more on that as time passes.  I am so full of mystery aren't I?

It feels good to be back. I will definitely post more frequently, both about work and random environmental, film and life subjects.