Written and narrated by Walter Gallacher
Photographed and produced by Steven G. Smith

Ever since we seized fire from nature at the dawn of our civilization, it has defined us. We have prided ourselves on our ability to control it and shape it to our needs. However, the same fire that fuels our internal combustion engines and powers our industry is overheating our planet. Earth’s rising temperature is stressing our forests and our wildlands and spawning catastrophic wildfires around the globe.

In our effort to tame fire, it seems we have made it more feral. Rising spring and summer temperatures in the West have created a fire season that lasts ten weeks longer than in the 1970’s and results in larger and more frequent blazes.

These new blazes, known as “mega-fires”, are erupting at a rate seven times greater each year in the past decade and are burning upward of 10,000 acres and sterilizing the earth with their intensity.

Utilizing powerful images of these mega-fires, this film reflects on our relationship with fire, past and present, and asks how fire will define our future.

Originally, this project included video footage; this version that won awards at the Los Angeles New Media Film Festival was dedicated to the power of the still photographs.

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Steven G. Smith Pictures

Steven G. Smith Pictures Plus

Steven G. Smith Pictures

Smith is an award-winning professional photographer based out of the Hartford, Connecticut area. Smith works in still and motion photography. He is fluent in digital storytelling, HD video, audio gathering and multimedia production.…


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Steven G. Smith Pictures

Smith is an award-winning professional photographer based out of the Hartford, Connecticut area. Smith works in still and motion photography. He is fluent in digital storytelling, HD video, audio gathering and multimedia production.

Smith and Walter Gallacher recently won a best in category award at the New Media Film Festival in Los Angeles. Smith and Gallacher won for WILDFIRE, their short multimedia film on forest fires in the American West. Smith was awarded as producer & photographer and Gallacher was recognized as writer and narrator.

This Vimeo site includes a few additional samples from Smith’s archive as well as his humble beginnings in digital media storytelling from a story created in 1993, called “The Last to Work the Land.”

 

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