The 51st Northwest Regional Emmy Awards recognized recent SOJC alumnus, Andy Maser, for his work on two environmental documentary films he produced for Oregon Public Broadcasting in 2013, both of which aired on the Oregon Field Guide Program.

Maser has 12 years of experience as a director of photography; and has produced and edited work for commercial, broadcast, documentary, nonprofit and feature-film clients. Currently, Maser is a National Geographic Explorer and regularly shoots in locations all around the world.

Maser’s story on the removal of the Condit River Dam on the White Salmon River in southern Washington earned him one of two Emmy awards. At the time, the Condit River Dam was the largest dam removal in history. Maser documented the removal process over the course of more than a year.

“I invested more time in shooting and producing the Condit removal story than any other in my career so far,” says Maser. “Filming the dramatic, explosive breach of the dam was certainly a highlight of my life.”

The second story was about a recently discovered system of glacial ice caves on the west flank of Mt. Hood. Maser and a team of explorers and scientists spent a week mapping the ice caves, concluding that it is the largest system of ice caves in the lower 48 states.

“Shooting the glacier caves story was exciting, exhausting and at times, dangerous. We were filming from ropes, dangling in the middle of 200’ vertical ice shafts at 3 a.m., and the cave system is constantly shifting and collapsing as the ice melts,” Maser explains. “But it is also extremely beautiful – both day and night.”

Maser is a fearless advocate for the environment, and strives to promote environmental consciousness through his work. “I really feel like we have a responsibility to understand how our world works and the impact that our activities have on our planet,” says Maser. “ I hope that stories like these will help inspire us all to make the right decisions.”

The best advice he can give to SOJC students who want to pursue film:

“Start making films. Pick up whatever camera you can get your hands on, even if it’s the camera on your phone. Make work, make mistakes, and then make better work next time. Edit the stuff that you shoot so that you see your mistakes first hand and progress.”

To learn more about Andy Maser and view his work, visit his website at maserfilms.com.

*Photo credit: Katie Campbell of Maser Films*

By Nicole Ibarra, Public Relations Graduate, ’14