Story seeker: Limbird creates video love letter to Silverton

February 2015 Posted in Business
Marty Limbird of IGNITE  Motion Pictures

Marty Limbird of IGNITE Motion Pictures

By Melissa Wagoner

Marty Limbird is fascinated by the story behind the story.

“My passion is people,” he said.

Limbird and his wife, Liz, moved to Silverton from Portland four years ago. As a professor in physical education and the men’s soccer coach at Chemeketa Community College for the past 12 years, Limbird was familiar with the Silverton area.

“I always thought this was a really cool place. If I was going to move anywhere close to Salem this would be the place,” he said.

Limbird, father of three, recently left coaching at the college level to coach the teams of his sons, Emmett, 8, and Isaac, 6, and to spend more time with his family. The change in lifestyle also gave him the time to pursue his new venture, IGNITE Motion Pictures.

“I still teach full time but IGNITE doesn’t take me away from home. I’m busy but I’ve always been busy. I’m always looking for the next project,” Limbird said.

Limbird met IGNITE partner Nathan Holstedt, a Salem resident whose background is in corporate marketing and media, while working together on an athletic video.

“We were creating a marketing promo campaign for an athletic facility concept I have been working on which is still yet to launch,” Limbird said. “We worked really well together. I recognized his talent and his ability to capture that emotional element.”

Limbird and Holstedt started IGNITE last spring, looking to share hidden stories about unique individuals with the world.

“IGNITE was the name that was given to the business because Nathan and I really wanted to ignite a conversation,” Limbird said.

In the past six months, the duo has produced a number of short videos showcasing distinctive people, places and even music. One of the first videos IGNITE created was about Rebecca Urlacher, an artist in Bend who creates custom guitars.

“While I was in Bend I reached out to a couple of art galleries and I ended up driving down a dirt road,” Limbird said.

That road led to Limbird’s next story, J. Chester Armstrong, a self-taught wood sculptor.

“The house was totally off the grid and there were some rough sculptures in the yard. In the garage, the light was streaming in the window and he had all of his work ready to take to a gallery. It was amazing,” Limbird said.

IGNITE’s goal is to create two to three projects a month.

“Sometimes the challenge is finding a story within a story. If someone has a vision or an interest, it’s a matter of sitting down and drawing that out,” Limbird said.

IGNITE’s most recent documentary was one some Silverton residents may recognize. Originally intended to be one video about the murals in town, the piece was split into two because of the vast amount of material the team wanted to show.

“I approached the chamber and said, ‘Silverton is such a unique place. Can we do a piece about the muralists?’” Limbird said. The first Silverton segment was released about two months ago.

“For me, it’s like unwrapping a present because I’m there during the filming but then it goes behind closed doors. The anticipation for the reveal motivates you for the next project,” Limbird said.

The video shows Limbird walking the trails at Silver Falls State Park and the streets of downtown Silverton. With his 2-year-old daughter Amara on his back, he narrates his feelings about the area. It shows glimpses of businesses and murals, as well as farms and iconic places on the city’s outskirts.

“I just put it on Silverton Connections at a whim. By the next day, we were at 1,000 views. 5,000 in three days and that’s without really trying,” Limbird said.

The second half, recently released, shows the murals in town. It gives voice to those in the Silverton Mural Society who maintain them. Both videos will be used this spring by the Silverton Chamber of Commerce to promote Silverton, as well as a way to raise money to move the Four Freedoms murals to a new home along Seven Brides Brewing on First.

“There’s a big fundraising effort to make that happen. We see this as a platform to help,” Limbird said. He also thinks of the videos as a gift to Silverton.

“Silverton deserves that and more. We tried to do it justice in a short piece,” Limbird said.

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