Creatives are born to tell stories. What stories? Only the artist can decide. In years past, grants offered by the Oregon Made Creative Foundation have provided subject matter guidelines for applicants to follow, but this year, they're keeping it wide open.
The Tell Your Story grant, whose applications opened on Monday, is a $10,000 award offered to BIPOC-identifying creatives living in Portland who want to develop, explore, and shoot films through a six-month virtual residency program. “This grant isn’t project-specific. It’s about helping a filmmaker do what they want to do,” says Tim Williams, executive director of the Oregon Film office.
When applying for the grant, applicants will provide an overview of their experience, present a brief description of their proposed project, and identify how the grant will help them realize it. A detailed document on project and submission guidelines can be found here.
To qualify, applicants must identify as BIPOC, reside in the city of Portland, be an experienced filmmaker or part of a filmmaking team, be an Oregon resident for one full year prior to the application deadline, be available to further explain their proposal to the Review Committee if requested, and have a sample or reel of content that demonstrates past work.
Williams says depending on where the winner is in the development of their project, Oregon Film and other contributing sponsors such as Cast Iron Studios, Oregon Media Production Association, and Gearhead Grip will provide guidance in the form of networking, equipment, or access to services and space to the winner during the six-month residency.
The Oregon Made Creative Foundation, a 501(c)(3) created in partnership with Oregon Film, isn’t new to grant-giving, with the Tell Your Story grant being their 18th since 2018. They’ve given over $200,000 to projects and filmmakers in Oregon, and 75 percent of that money has gone to historically under-represented and marginalized communities.
Funding for the grant was provided by the Regional Arts & Culture Council through the CARES act, which is why the grant is limited to Portland city residents. Applications will close at 5 p.m. PST on November 13, 2020 and the winner will be notified by December 15, 2020.