The ERB Emerging Visions Filmmaker Award is meant to encourage the growth and development of women artists and technicians traditionally underrepresented in the film and digital industry. In particular, we seek, through this award, to foster connections between these young creators and the artists and writers working on our books in ways that build confidence, skills, and provide a realistic glimpse in how working artists create and collaborate (and have day jobs).

In 2017, we are seeking women and women-identified filmmakers or digital artists in Washington State high schools or colleges to create a short film in collaboration with Spokane poet, Maya Jewell Zeller, and Seattle artist, Carrie DeBacker, as they explore and challenge the placement and marginalization of women’s body in illness, healing, and medical practice. This book and film will be published together in the fall of 2017.

Award Amount: $500

DEADLINE: March 31.

To be considered for this award, please submit no more than three links to previous videos or digital experiences of which you have been the primary creator. Please review the material after the divider explaining the book and write a paragraph or two on your interest in the project and ideas you might have for a short film or digital experience.

On our side, we are looking for something we can share on our youtube channel and/or as part of a digital download with the book. The artist will retain rights to their creation. We are cognizant this is not much money and are quiet comfortable with short work. We are expecting final work to be under five minutes. Please submit via email to Videos and proposals will be reviewed by the artist, poet, and publisher for originality, the elusive “good fit”, and feasibility. We will notify the recipient of this award no later than April 15, at which time we will require a recommendation by an advisor, teacher, or program director on the feasibility of the selected artist to complete the work by September 15. We want to ensure that the student has access to the tools they need to complete this project in this timeframe.

The award recipient will have the opportunity to work with Maya and Carrie as they refine and finalize their vision for their book. The student’s film will be premiered at the book launch event and other readings for the books in the late fall.

Please review the following work and links to gain an understanding of the project:

Carrie Debacker is the artist. We found her work first at this lecture. We were instantly struck by both her art and her story.

We then asked Maya Jewell Zeller, a poet we admire, if she had an interest in working with Carrie. Luckily, she did. Together they are working out a theme that doesn’t retell Carrie’s personal story, but which connects personally to the larger challenges women face in our society with the medicalization of their bodies.

Maya’s Poems for the book look something like this:

THE WAITING (from Radar Poetry)

It was not the hour of red-flecked birds.
It was not the hour of wood smoke.
It was not the hour of the exquisite chirping of trees.
It was not the hour of ice cream, guitar, or warm bricks,
ice skating, of neon celebration. This was no hour
for a child. I put on my black mask
and walked into the mountain. I pushed right through the stone.
I wore a necklace of furred insects, I emerged in a forest,
stepped into a boat, I rocked inside with seismic proportions.
I drew a knife from my belly, plundered the lake. I put on my wolf head,
my girl arms, my quiver of bodies. I put on my blood
and it put me on. I was a scrub grub. A cold bug. A sharp blade.
A self reaching into a self, a hole. It was my hour of fluttering hands,
hands like wings, hands like a red streak. The red streak
was me. There were no birds. The trees sang a dirge.
I dipped my head into the bile, pulled it up with my name,
like a tongue, clenched between my teeth.


Those were the days of sun, sun, sun/ a stalk’s magic/ I
remember arching /my sectioned body: segment, thorax,
abdomen, spiracle, horn: / like tectonic plates / not like trade
sanctions / I remember my tiny speck feet safe on a stem /
my internal organs so full of a need, the sort you wake in the
night feeling /while the creature inside you rolls out its
proboscis toward the heart of the flower / the heart poisons
/ & the need is orange / like the core of the earth / the need
is angry / & growing the exoskeleton / the need is already
beating its wings / already you are a shell of that need / you
with your thick miracle/ unharmed by the chemicals/ already
you are a whole field of collective consciousness/ the sort of
first person plural pattern that erupts from the neck of the
country into your DNA soaring skyward toward the Cascades
in an our us weeeeeeeeee—

Here are some examples of Carrie’s current drawings:

Together the work is something like this: