project leader
Maria L
1500 Southwest Jefferson Way
(Corvallis, Oregon)
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the project

The Flood Way Trailer from Maria Lewis on Vimeo.


I am interested in making a documentary film on floods in the Pacific Northwest, but specifically centering on the life and history of the Willamette River. What I am interested in discussing with this project is how human intervention and flood control has dramatically altered rivers as we understand them, effecting the landscape, ecology, and biodiversity of the entire ecosystem. We view floods in much the same way we used to view wildfires - to be prevented and suppressed. And, just as we learned with wildfires that this practice actually increases devastation, so are we beginning to learn that our practice of altering floods has dramatic consequences. 

To produce this documentary, I will be collaborating with Freshwaters Illustrated, and the musician Joshua Stacy has agreed to compose the score for the film. My hope is that this documentary will broadcast on PBS.

the steps

This project is scheduled to be completed by May, 2013. Filming will continue through the summer of 2012, in which I will collect flood footage and interview experts at Oregon State University and the greater Pacific Northwest community, including the Army Corps of Engineers and the USGS. After filming, the project will go into post production, where an original score will be composed for the film. After post production, the film will be screened at Oregon State University, as part of the Water Resources program, and eventually submitted for consideration on PBS.


why we're doing it

Floods are essential for the ecological health of both the river and terrestrial ecosystems. They deliver essential nutrients, scour the riverbed to allow for spawning, clear out debris, reshape the river channel, and deposit rich sediment on the surrounding floodplain. Yet we fundamentally alter this process on a daily basis. Ironically, in our attempt to control floods, we have actually increased the destructive power of them. I hope this project will increase awareness about floods and open them up as subjects of wonder and fascination, instead of simply objects of nuisance. Specifically, I want to raise awareness of the Willamette River, the challenges that face it, and the ways in which we interact with it, shape it, and determine its destiny.


Original film score by Joshua Stacy: $2000 project total = $2000 ioby fee = $160 total to fundraise = $2160


Sorry, but this project doesn't have any updates yet.


This is where photos will go once we build flickr integration


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