Filmmaker Highlight: Q

This installment of our Filmmaker Highlights is with filmmaker James Q Martin, or “Q”

Photo by Pat Goodman

How many films have you had in the festival? 

I honestly do not know. I have been fortunate enough to have a film or two in the festival every year since 2011, yet I do not know the exact number.

When was your first Wild & Scenic? 

My first film in the festival was Power in the Pristine in 2011. I have attended almost every year since then, and it is one of my annual highlights to be a perennial at the festival.


How many times have you attended? 

Photo by Ryan Robinson

  • 8 I think….

What is your favorite Wild & Scenic memory?    

  • Gosh, so many great memories. A highlight year was my first. A lot of the team that helped make Power in the Pristine, were able to make it out for the festival. I will never forget the feeling of power I felt as I experienced the powerful energy of the audience.

What makes Wild & Scenic Film Festival special or unique?     

  • The film festival concentrates on conservation films and I think this is one of the reasons it is so powerful. In addition, it was formed to help protect a local Wild and Scenic River, and there is always a strong CTA associated with every festival. This brings the community together and helps galvanize for the greater good of Mother Nature.


Photo by Dawn Kish

What inspires you to make films? 

  • I was inspired to make films because Mother Earth is in trouble. We, humans, are taking far more than we give back, and the natural balances are out of whack. I make films to bring awareness to the environmental issues we face daily and I hope my films inspire us to do more to protect our planet.

What are your favorite stories to tell?

  • I enjoy telling stories where the intersection of conservation and athleticism come together. Stories about people that push their bodies and minds to do the impossible while taking the time to educate an audience on the importance of conservation and stewardship. One of my favorite stories I was a part of, was a film, Mile for Mile. It featured three ultra runners that traveled 107 miles across what is now Parque Patagonia in Chile. That film’s tour raised nearly $100K for a new trail system in the park. This kind of story, that pushes people and educates. It uses the film medium to bring awareness while raising funds for a movement.

Do you have any projects you are currently working on? 

Photo by Suzie Hall

  • I am working on a film called, Wild Climate, which follows Pete and Virginia Sergeant, as they share uplifting stories in rural communities that are experiencing climate change first hand. Additionally, I am working on another film, Paving Tundra, which brings awareness to the travesties that a 200+ mile road would bring to the abundant wildlife and the six indigenous communities effected in the arctic.

What are you doing with your “social distancing” time?        

  • I am doing my best to stay positive, to inspire others and to better myself in this time. I recently made a list of my goals and I try to complete 3 – 5 of these goals every day.

[ ] Put pants on; get out of bed. *Yes, some days this is harder than others. ⁣

[ ] Study Spanish. ⁣

[ ] Read a magazine, article or book, something that is not on a screen & I can hold in my hand. Usually, for me, this is an article inAdventure Journal’s quarterly & National Geographic  ⁣

[ ] Play music for at least 10 min, this can be picking up an instrument or simply singing along to one of your favorites artists. ⁣

[ ] Get a proper work out in, this is at least 30 min of exercise. *A tip is to find someone online to be accountable with. ⁣⁣

[ ] Call a friend and or loved one. ⁣

[ ] Get outside & breathe fresh air for at least 30 min, walking, running or biking. *Use this time to also call a loved one.⁣⁣

[ ] Write in your journal – which for me includes some art, too.⁣

[ ] Meditate.

[ ] Study something that will help you professionally, for me, it’s been studying to get my drone pilot license.


Photo by Ryan Hill

Q’s websites + Social Media Accounts: