Blog Excerpts

Word Cloud: A Film Inspired by the Visual Thesaurus

We were, needless to say, absolutely thrilled to learn that the Visual Thesaurus has inspired a short film, fittingly titled, "Word Cloud." The film was created by Claire Scholz of Rapid City, South Dakota, and stars Claire and her granddaughter Anna. It was prepared for a local family-run film festival, and we're honored to feature it here on our site as well.

We asked Claire to tell us a little more about the making of the film, and she responded:

I have been a huge fan of the Visual Thesaurus website ever since I discovered it back in March of 2009. I use the site both for a thesaurus and as a sort of therapeutic play. For a word lover there is nothing better than seeing the gentle explosions of language unfold.

"Word Cloud" background: I used to love fireworks, both setting them off and watching the big city displays. I loved the loud explosions and the thick, stinky smell of the gunpowder. Then I started gardening. As my years of watching flowers, herbs and fruits softly unfold grew my love for fireworks diminished. Nature’s fireworks were just flat-out better than anything man could devise…and they smelled better. The Visual Thesaurus reminds me of the unfurling of the flowers except you guys do it with words which are pretty darn close to flowers in my book.

Long story short – the Black Hills of Dakota are in the same drought this year that is gripping the so much of the country. As a result, we have been under a strict fire ban which includes fireworks. My granddaughter, age 9, isn’t a gardener. She saw no redemption in the fireworks ban at all. So it was on yet another hot, non-fireworks afternoon, while we sat munching tomatoes in the backyard that I put two and two together and the movie idea was born.

Cut to the 1345 Film Festival, a family operation with my hand only lightly in it. It started in 2009 by my daughter and son as a summer way-to-be-creative event. They invited everyone they knew (which is an extensive and talented circle) to submit films…silly, serious, artistic films, 10 minutes or less. There were no awards, just a wonderful assortment of movies that were shown on the garage door of my daughter’s house. It has grown since then. This year the event was held in Rapid City’s wonderful, new Downtown Square.

Thank you, Claire, for sharing your cinematic fireworks with us!

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