TALENT — Two artists with Rogue Valley roots are collaborating on a local documentary that will show what it takes to produce a fashion runway show.
Filmmaker Kadi Carlson and fashion designer Joe Dunbar have been assembling a cast, creating fashions, shooting lead-up footage, raising money and preparing for the show, which will take place Sunday, Aug. 4, at Kids Unlimited in Medford.
"I want people to know what it takes to get it from a design point to bringing it alive on a fashion runway," said Carlson.
Dunbar and Carlson met when they worked for IMD, a modeling agency in Medford.
Dunbar, who grew up in Grants Pass, has a degree in apparel design from Bassist College in Portland and has been creating garments since 1988. A Talent resident, he designed the gown worn by Miss Oregon winner CC Barber in the 2009 Miss America pageant. He works out of his Talent picture-framing shop.
Carlson, a Phoenix High School graduate, attended Southern Oregon University for two years, then went to the Art Institute of California in Santa Monica, where she earned a bachelor's degree in film.
Carlson had Dunbar design dresses for her senior project, a short film featuring local model Brianna Lewis. While looking at the film, which was shot in the snow at Howard Prairie Lake, the pair came up with the idea for the runway documentary.
"When we came back, we were looking at the gowns blowing in the wind and we said, "Gosh, we should do a runway-show film,' " Dunbar explained. "We are approaching this as a behind-the-scenes look at creating a runway show for an independent designer."
Carlson has been shooting documentary footage, including dress design, fabric selection, model casting and fittings, in the area. For the Aug. 4 runway show, a 10-person crew will come from Los Angeles for three days.
The pair intend to enter the film in the Ashland Independent Film Festival and in other West Coast festivals.
A typical runway show usually lasts a minimum of 30 minutes. The length of the documentary has not been determined.
"Right now we are not really set at ... how long the movie needs to tell the story," said Carlson, who added that the project has required her to tackle new areas.
"I've never done a project that features so many different characters," said Carlson. "They all have to get their stories told. That's going to be a challenge for me."
Shooting in a smaller urban area, where people aren't used to making movies, is another challenge for Carlson, who says people in Los Angeles are around moviemaking regularly. Help is being sought from local hairdressers, makeup artists and others needed to put on the runway show. Those who appear in the film and assist will be credited.
The show will feature 30 dresses, about three-quarters of them designed by Dunbar. His design assistant Lynae Williams will also have garments in the show.
"I usually do two or three shows per year," said Dunbar. "This will most likely be my only show this year because there is so much going on with it."
The filmmakers are trying to raise $8,000 for the project on the online crowd-funding site Indiegogo.
Donors will receive incentives based on the amount they give. Among the prizes are three of the dresses to be featured in the documentary.
Money raised will be used to cover the costs of bringing the film crew and equipment from Los Angeles, renting facilities and purchasing materials.
Extras are needed for the audience for the Aug. 4 show and will have to commit a full day to the project. Those interested can email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tony Boom is a freelance writer living in Ashland. Reach him at email@example.com.