My background as a filmmaker is based in the world of production. I spent the better part of a decade trying to avoid moving to LA or New York by working on independent and documentary films in New England. My responsibilities have ranged from stand-in to extras coordinator and from production assistant to picture car wrangler. Not much on the side of creativity. Most of the films I have been involved with, such as The Spitfire Grill and Where the Rivers Flow North, enabled me to experience all aspects of film making. As a stand-in I soaked up the surrounding set activities. As a production assistant I was privy to behind-the-scene decisions. All of these interactions have given me a foundation to build from as I make my jump to filmmaker. Most people, when they have a child, want to show them the world. Everything is fresh, new and waiting to be ‘discovered.’ the Gus Outdoors series is my way of sharing the world’s curiosities with my son Gus and more recently, my daughter Talus. The early stages of Gus Outdoors was just that, a home movie of Gus on an adventure. I sweetened it up with a little iMovie editing and some ‘borrowed’ music and had a real hit with Grandma. Then Grandma shared it with other Grandmas who passed it on and so forth until the unbiased feedback started rolling in… and it was encouraging! It took a while, about two years, for me to get it in my head that it was a good idea! One of our goals for the Gus Outdoors series is to enable children to seek out their own adventures in nature. Watching Gus, a 6-year old (and now at 15), only makes it that much easier for the message to get through. The message from Gus is; if I can do it, you can do it, so get outside! We also want to make sure kids walk away from the Gus Outdoors series feeling like they had a personal encounter with an animal and learned something of value about them. Take the regurgitation sequence in Gull Island – “So gross, but really cool!” What kid isn’t going to talk about that with their friends? Chances are they have never seen that behavior even though they probably have seen a lot of seagulls. We want to help kids get to know an animal. Children need nature in many different ways. The most important reason is health. Exercise, fresh air and sunlight promote happier and healthier children. But nature needs children too. A child that learns to respect nature will most likely grow into an adult that will want to protect it. As humans we have put ourselves in a mighty tight situation with our environment. In the decades to come, nature is going to need a lot of help!