Christine Steele Contributes to “Take Me Home Huey” Project
As the founder of her own studio, Steele Pictures, Director and Lead Editor Christine Steele often collaborates with other directors, producers, and editors to create broadcast television content, feature films for theatrical release, and web content. Documentary work is one of her main passions, and luckily it is also the bread and butter of much of her professional work.
Most recently she co-created a film for the Take Me Home Huey project with co-director Alicia Brauns. The project is a partnership between artist Steve Maloney and the non-profit organization Light Horse Legacy. The project includes creation of a Huey helicopter sculpture, a film documenting the creation of the sculpture and veterans recovering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and a song about the role that Huey helicopters have played in conflict zones.
Tell us about the Take Me Home Huey project.
Steele: Take Me Home Huey is a live, travelling art exhibit by Steve Maloney and Light Horse Legacy in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War. Steve Maloney decided to restore a downed Huey aircraft from the Vietnam War, turning it into a living art sculpture. The goal is to honor Vietnam veterans. Steve partnered with Light Horse Legacy, a non-profit that uses the restoration of helicopters to act as a catalyst for PTSD awareness and treatment for veterans of all wars.
What role does the film play in the project?
Steele: The film is a one-hour feature documentary about the role Hueys played in the Vietnam War. It documents the process of transforming the helicopter from a shot-down piece of machinery to this amazing new colorful creation that serves as both an art installation and an educational resource. In addition to showing the transformation of the helicopter, the documentary also follows some of the lives of the Vietnam vets who are willing to share their experiences with post-traumatic stress and their healing process. The purpose is to inspire healing and encourage veterans of any war to talk about what they experienced and integrate civilian and military culture to foster understanding of what some of these men and women face when they come home.
What was your role on the project?
Steele: I was commissioned to co-direct the Take Me Home Huey documentary with Alicia Brauns. We started working on the film in 2014 and just recently delivered the finished cut. I also helped create the six-minute promo for the film, which talks about the project, shows some of the artwork Steve created in Adobe Photoshop CC, and includes an animation of the artwork on a 16mm film clip of a Huey helicopter, done using Adobe After Effects CC.
How was Adobe Creative Cloud used throughout the project?
Steele: Steve Maloney’s art assistant, Lauren Beccelli, was in Europe and passed digital Photoshop renditions of Steve’s concept art to us through Creative Cloud. Steve then used Photoshop to create autowraps of the paintings that are heat sealed on the helicopter. For the documentary, we used Adobe Prelude CC for ingest, Premiere Pro CC as our media hub and for editing the film, Audition CC for sound design, and Media Encoder CC for output. Of course, we also created lower thirds in Photoshop and animations in After Effects.
What is next for the exhibit?
Steele: The exhibit will travel for three years, celebrating and supporting the people who were involved in the Vietnam War. People will be able to experience it at major museums, presidential libraries, and other high-profile venues. The Take Me Home Huey sculpture will be exhibited outside the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan during the Museum’s Salute To America Program June 30, 2016 through July 4, 2016.