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Picturing Transformation - last 24 hours for our pre-sale price!

By Katherine Dodds On October 14, 2013 | 1 Comments

Picturing Transformation Nexw'ayantsut was a labour of love, and a long time in the making! The books are almost here, but you only have until midnight October 15 to get it for the pre-sale price! Buy the book now! 

Before I formed Hello Cool World in 2001 I was a witness to a slice of history first known as the Witness Project, and later as 'Uts'am Witness.' 'Uts'am' is the Squamish word for the Coast Salish Witness ceremony that was at the centre this project.

From it's early days, and for over a decade I watched the project grow from a small 'group with no name" into a community of 10,000 people that saved a rainforest -- and a whole lot more. In 1997, when I wrote  one of the first articles about the Witness Project (for the Vancouver Courier) I had no idea Witness would last so long, and turn out to be so important.

Uts'am Witness was co-founded by my dear friends artist and photographer Nancy Bleck, the late mountaineer and conservationist John Clarke, and Squamish Nation Hereditary Chief Bill Williams. I've been deeply honoured to have been entrusted by them to write this book -- Picturing Transformation, Nexw'ayantsut' -- which is about to come out next week. Working on this book project has been a four-year project, but the process of looking back has been so enlightening. 

Uts'am Witness was an amazing transformational cross-cultural project that brought together members of the Squamish Nation, artists, environmentalists and the public to experience a Coast Salish Witness Ceremony, on the land, in what was at the time a contested part of the Squamish Nation Territory. It was the days of the infamous 'war in the woods'. The area was known by loggers as "tree farm license 38', by eco-activists as the "Randy Stoltmann Wilderness Area", and by participants in the Witness Camping weekends simply as - Sims Creek. Today, that area has been returned to it's ancestral name of 'Nexw'ayantsut' — place of transformation. -->

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Katherine Dodds AKA "Kat" is the founder of Good Company Communications and HelloCoolWorld.com. Trained in renegade advertising & branding through her work with Adbusters in the '90s, Kat's early induction into the possibilities of the web-world was inspired by the term hypertext, which she immediately found comforting. She is dedicated to cause-related communication and to the development and use of tools that promote democratic processes.

Occupy Love: The beginning is here!

By Colette On April 22, 2013 | 0 Comments

Occupy Love banner

Help us reach our goal of 5000 boosts by midnight April 25!

Hello Cool World is excited to be working on the media relations for Occupy Love, an inspiring new documentary from award-winning Canadian filmmaker Velcrow Ripper (Scared Sacred, Fierce Light). Occupy Love explores the cultural uprisings of our time from the Occupy Movement and Arab Spring to the European Summer and environmental protests and asks the question, “How could the crisis we are facing become a love story?”.

Check out the trailer HERE.

Occupy Love is being self-distributed by a talented team led by Velcrow and producers Nova Ami and Ian Mackenzie. Their crowd sourced, social media driven approach to distribution is consistent with the theme of the film, which successfully raised $80,000 through the crowd-funding platforms IndieGoGo and Kickstarter! 

The global response to the film has been amazing with over 200 grassroots screenings being self-organized by individuals and organizations in over 25 countries, and more being added every day. The largest community screening so far took place in Porto Allegre, Brazil on April 11th attracting a whopping 1,500 attendees!

We look forward to watching the momentum grow!

Occupy Love marks the completion of Velcrow's Fierce Love Trilogy, a twelve-year journey which began with Scared Sacred, named one of Canada’s Top 10 movies of 2004, and winner of the 2005 Genie (Canadian Academy Award) for best feature documentary. It continued with 2008′s award winning Fierce Light: When Spirit Meets Action. (We've got a special to buy both these DVDs on our webstore for 40% off.)

We worked on outreach and DVD production for Scared Sacred. As with our work with The Corporation, and The Take, we've been inspired by how films with a social message, can find audiences and inspire those audiences to action. All these films are available on our webstore, and all our profits go to our campaigns, and now also to the distribution platform for social cause media we are developing. Check out our proposal to  CFC's IdeaBOOST program, and please BOOST us, our dream is to better help films like Occupy Love engage with audiences, and to encourage audiences to organize actions as well as screenings.

Occupy Love is a moving, transformative, heartfelt film, featuring Ripper’s signature stunning visuals and rich soundscapes along with interviews from leading visionaries including Naomi KleinBill McKibbenJeremy Rifkinbell hooks and Charles Eisenstein

The Occupy Love US theatrical tour starts Friday, May 3, 2013 in New York City, with screenings and special events to follow in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Santa Cruz and Seattle.

Coming to Canadian theatres starting June 2013! Check out more screenings and opportunities to get involved after the page break...

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Colette joined Hello Cool World team back in 2003 and was a key organizer for The Corporation and The Take's grassroots outreach efforts across North America.

After being inspired by the organizing and awareness building potential of the internet and social issue films, she returned to school to study Communications and sharpen her skills.

Once graduating, Colette returned to Hello Cool World once again as a grassroots campaign consultant. She is now the Director of Distribution for Hello Cool World's new fair trade distribution arm.


Film Festival Season! Distribution & Campaign Stories...

By Katherine Dodds On September 18, 2012 | 2 Comments

BE PART OF THE STORY. SO THE STORIES GET TOLD.

Once upon a time, when we were working with Velcrow Ripper to launch Scared Sacred  (The first film of his trilogy which is being completed by the new release of  Occupy Love), the tag line 'Be part of the story, so the stories get told' emerged in our mass email template for Hello Cool World - it's still there for those of you that are on any of our 'lists'. It proved to be prophetic, as the entire marketing world has not only cottoned on to 'story telling' as the hot new buzzword (oh but it's actually ancient) for all the cool young campaigns.

But it's true, story has a power that moves people more than moralizing or rational arguments alone. But when a story well told, with emotional appeal, is backed up with both compelling facts and a call to action - it's heart, mind, and world changing. And of course this is what the best of documentaries do with the added audio visual vocabulary to bring to the proverbial table.

Which is why we've taken a documentary storytelling (and discovery) approach to all our projects, even the ad campaigns! 


I INTERRUPT THIS BLOG TO SHAMELESSLY PROMOTE FOUR FINE FILMS COMING TO VIFF!

(Listed here in screening order.) I've already got my tickets to the following films, made by fine filmmakers who are friends and colleagues. If you are in Vancouver get your tickets now! 

1. The Last White Knight • Dir. Paul Saltzman (Prom Night in Mississippi) • Premieres Sept 29, 8:45pm Empire Granville 4

2. Occupy Love • Dir. Velcrow Ripper (Scared Sacred, Fierce Light) • Premieres Oct 4, 9pm Empire Granville 1

3. Shadows of Liberty • Dir. Jean-Philippe Tremblay • Premieres Oct 5, 3:20 p, Empire Granville 5

4. Blood Relative• Dir. Nimisha Mukerji (65_RedRoses) • Premieres Oct 6, 6:45pm Empire Granville 2  


Our ongoing work on The Corporation has been a calling card, but that project is by no means over for me. I am still balancing my desire to truly have an impact on the corporate form itself, and to build a movement out of the consistently growing numbers of supporters who contact us. As happens at this time every year I have had a lot of filmmakers who are also fans of The Corporation inquiring about working with us. 

This blog began as a letter to one of these filmmakers, and as it turned into a manifesto of sorts I decided to blog-i-fy it for all to read. This season, this contemplation is being tempered with the need to create a real live business plan for growth as part of the VanCity Women Entrepreneurs program I was accepted into. Currently, I am getting support to work on this growth plan and will be give the opportunity to pitch it to potential lenders and investors.

As happens every time more filmmakers want us to take on their projects I do a lot of soul searching about what exactly we did for films before, and what I can realistically do for them. I've been backward engineering the successes and challenges fo the work with The Corporation...

The Corporation has been a project now for me, for over a decade. I was involved with The Corporation before it was even in production, and my role was far more than that of someone brought in after the fact. My roles were as producer and creative director of the website, and Creative director for the branding (we created the signature logo) plus "Director of Corporate Communication" - an ironic title reflective of my role not as a publicist but as the producer/director of the entire grassroots outreach.

All efforts were centred around having the website as our communications hub and tool. With Mark Achbar's help I raised 100K for the website and leveraged 100K more from distribtuors in four countries, who collectively spent a million in advertising all directing traffic to our website, which continues to have a significant amount of traffic ten years later. In essence, a campaign needs to be produced and directed, and the resources required, as well as the timeline are much the same as making a film! 

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Hello Cool World and #OccupyVancouver : Defined Issues, Real Solutions

By Kevin Young On October 17, 2011 | 1 Comments

It started with a simple call in Adbusters, a Vancouver based anti-consumerist magazine, and once the workplace of Hello Cool World's own Katherine Dodds, senior graphic designer Terry Sunderland, and photographer Nancy Bleck. The copy was to-the-point: “Occupy Wall Street. September 17. Bring tent.” Since that call to action, thousands of cities around the world have been rallying together in support of the occupy movement.

This past Saturday, October 15, the movement reached Vancouver and Hello Cool World was there to cover the event. With Bella Sie and a camera in tow, we hit the crowd to learn about what was on the people’s minds. Numerous social, economic, and political ideas were being shared.  The talk of “change” was a constant and the vibe of the crowd while being incredibly peaceful and happy – it was clear motivation was in the air.

This movement has sparked a dialog though a gambit of people. Young to old voices are hitting the streets. The occupy movement has inspired various groups of people to band together and collectively bring awareness to the fundamental problems that plague society. At Occupy Vancouver I had a chance to speak with a lady named Galena. She was there with her fiancé Bruce, both holding signs stating that they are the 99 %. The 99% of the population that is not satisfied with the way our governments have been governing.  They were not alone - fellow occupiers discussed the issues of corporate greed and the destruction of our natural resources. Overall the issues that were being discussed were important and vital to our communities. When you want to help people it is never a negative thing to stand up for what you believe in.

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Kevin Young is Hello Cool Worlds media buyer - and loves his job! He enjoys working with the media community and everyone here at Hello Cool World.

New Year, new work and a celebration of 10 years of Good Company & Hello Cool World...

By Katherine Dodds On January 19, 2011 | 0 Comments

GOOD BUSINESS 2011! I admit I started 2011 feeling a bit tired — overwork and a family tragedy overshadowed New year's eve,  and we began 2011 with a cornucopia of deadlines. But this morning I finally got to the post office to pick up a package that had been sitting in postal limbo while I was out of town. Opening  it up I was inspired! A gift from Mark Achbar & Siobhan Flanagan,  it is a very cool book called "Business Model Generation". The geek in me crowed with glee. It reminded me what all this busy-ness was for... and how we got here.

The story I like to tell is how seeing Manufacturing Consent,  the film about Noam Chomsky & the media that Mark Achbar & Peter Wintonick made in '92, is why I went into media. And working with Mark on his next big film -- The Corporation -- is why I started a company (a tiny corporation that is not publicly traded!) And of course Adbusters was my  training in advertising, and Naomi Klein's No Logo inspired me to fight the big brand bullies, but, as  with Manufacturing Consent -- my sense was that the power beneath all this corporate media, publicity and advertising could not be left in the hands of only those seeking profit alone.

We bagan our mission to unleash the power of branding to do good.

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