Painting Buenos Aires, Charles Cushing’s Campaign

Painting Buenos Aires, Charles Cushing’s Campaign

Tango Dancing in Rittenhouse Square, oil on canvas, Charles Cushing

Charles Cushing imagined a compelling idea for a campaign, the popular website to help crowd fund artists projects, he is traveling to Buenos Aires, Argentina to paint the tango culture. Charles is a well-known Philadelphia painter and has traveled to paint plein air many times in many places but an extended stay in South America to absorb and paint the vibrant culture has expenses. That’s where helps artists raise money to realize their ambition but a short video is required, a confounding but good idea because the campaigner has to focus the idea and then sell the concept to the public. Charles Cushings project is titled Painting Buenos Aires and is now an approved project on

Charles Cushing approached DoN about his idea and we agreed to produce the video together using his concepts and DoN’s direction including an art studio interview, plein air painting in the Italian Market and tango dancing on Passyunk Avenue to be edited with stills of his paintings over a soundtrack. Making movies can be a lot of fun with creative hard work, problem solving, lots of detail and of course a deadline. Painting Buenos Aires was conceived, videoed and edited in less than three weeks; the narrative was extracted from the interview movie using GarageBand, exported to iTunes as a song, imported into iMovie as a soundtrack and an hour of HD video footage was edited down to four minutes and fourteen seconds. Getting lost in video editing using all the elements and information design is like weaving or drawing, trying to get the story to emerge coherently can be a challenge. Especially with artists who can be self conscious of their image. But, Charles gave DoN freedom and trust.

Editing decisions were left up to DoN, Charles made very few requests to edit and all interactions and iterations were communicated through YouTube updates.  The original cut had a full two minute street tango dance scene with narration, it’s beautiful.  But the final cut of Painting Buenos Aires breaks that up with vignettes of art and painting. Shooting the dance scene at the fountain plaza on Passyunk Avenue will always be a favorite memory. The Philly folks on the plaza were so cool, even though it was about ninety degrees in the afternoon sun, as we shot video of Charles and his Tango partner, Grace Lee, dancing for about twenty minutes. Only one street person thought he was Len Goodman and offered advise on their dance moves.

Please support Charles Cushing‘s Painting Buenos Aires campaign and visit the site to view our movie.

Written by DoN Brewer

Follow DoN on Twitter @DoNNieBeat58

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