How to Jamison : Help Tell Community Stories

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Hi. I’m Jamison. I’ve make movies about going to the hospital with my maybe-cancer-having friend Eva (How to Magnetically Resonate); about my beloved family (How to Family); and atmospheric, mood pieces that explore feeling (Meridian). For my birthday a year and a half ago I came up with the idea of Untalent — a performance show in which everyone did something they were supremely UNtalented at — which ended up sparking an entirely new (for a lot of us) way of observing and engaging with the world through self-exposure, play, and uncertainty. More on that later.

Simply put, I’m asking for your support to get the gear that helps me tell community stories through video.

The Impact

We live in stories of tragedy, comedy, heartache and hope. I tell those stories by discovering them through documentary style, “How to” videos, but with a twist: I follow people through their days, see where their stories intersect with mine, and tell our story. I capture my personal process of “How to Jamison” by discovering the emergent stories from within my community. 

By discovering a communities’ story, I help build community by giving their own story back to them.

About Me 

I’m a master’s student at the California Institute of Integral Studies, where I study myth, psycho-spirituality, tech-addiction, and healing. I also have a life & career coaching business at And I want to work on my art – make more videos, bring Untalent to life in an even broader context, and invite people to see the world the way that I see it: as a place that carries both desolate pain and unfathomable joy, as a landscape of constant human experience, and, ultimately, as a home for people in all their interdependent glory.

So far I’ve filmed everything with just an iPhone, and edited it all in a trial version of Final Cut Pro. I’ve made enough videos to understand that this is my medium: it’s the way that I engage with the world, and the way that I feel compelled to tell stories. So I want to bring my work to the next level. And for that, I need your help.

What I Need & What You Get

Here’s the list of gear for making awesome:

  • A proper, small camera: Sony NEX-5 $599
  • A couple lenses:
    • NEX zoom lens for $348 – Amazon
    • NEX Pancake lens for $248 – Amazon
  • Editing software: Final Cut Pro for $299
  • The space to save everything: Hard Drive for $120
  • A proper tripod (my arms hurt): $100
  • A USB Mic for voice overs: $99 – Amazon
  • A computer that can handle all the editing: $3,199 Apple

That totals $5012 before tax and such. I’m setting $6,000 as a goal, and any excess will go towards making more awesome stories.


  • $25 – Behind the scenes of How to Jamison, including access to draft videos, private blog, and OUTTAKES!
  • $50 – First dibs on Untalent 2014 tickets.
  • $100 – A personal thank you video, now in HD thanks to you.
  • $250 – Producer credits on the coming How To series.
  • $1000 – A 2 minute video on a topic of your choice, with my personal style.
  • $2500 – A How To video on the topic of your choice with full executive producer rights.

How I Video

I typically spend twenty hours a week making video, and that only includes the editing. My process usually goes like this:

  • I spend a day exploring a topic (such as what it’s like to get an MRI) by participating in it and capturing everything on video.
  • I leave the footage alone for a few days.
  • I watch the video and discover a story wanting to be told.

Nothing is scripted. I explore the footage just as I explored the event. It’s a time consuming process, and worth it: The emergent stories are never what’s expected.

I’d like to devote more time to it. In order to do that, I need to that, any extra funding will be put toward spending more hours making awesome. Rather than slogging to get by, I will make a shit-ton of art, and finally pursue my dream – now that I’ve found it.


I’ve already got ideas rolling for the videos I plan to make. Here is a brief sketch:

UNTALENT 2014 will be a complete, professionally produced show, framed as a psycho-spiritual show. As usual, it will result in a series of familiar, hilarious videos. In March, a separate round of funding will begin.


Hot on the heels of How to Hospital and How to Magnetically Resonate, I will continue my “How To” series in the following areas:

  • How to Grief
  • How to Style
  • How to Risk
  • How to Explore
  • How to Stay
  • How to Walk-About
  • How to Rise
  • How to Myth

And this all fits within “How to Jamison,” an exploration of meaning making, and discovering stories through video. All of these projects serve community, growth and awesome. If you like these stories (or just like to support art), then I would be profoundly grateful for any and all support!

Thank you

Thank you to everyone who’s encouraged me through the 30+ videos I’ve produced. I couldn’t have do it without your willingness to be subject, participant and audience. Thank you for your witnessing and encouragement. I kept believing in me, even as I would say, “I’M NOT AN ARTIST.”

Thank you to all the Untalented people who’re endlessly willing to live full out.

Thank you to Leala, Justin & Christopher for being my artist recovery believing mirrors. Your profound support through the creative droughts kept me working, growing and discovering what’s next.

A special thank you to the immeasurable Eva Hagberg for her endless championing, support and willingness to be vulnerable. If you’re in need of an artistic consultant/coach/mentor, then look no further.

Other Ways You Can Help

If you cannot support awesome stories financially, then please help spread the word.

Thank you for whatever support you can offer, even if non-monetary. I am grateful for it all. Even the critiques. I look forward to discovering awesome with you all.

So, thank y’all for your awesome. I’ll see you through the lens.

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