To be honest, I wasn’t sure we’d pull it off until we were pulling it off.

But it’s happening! It’s happening! It’s happening! What? Oh my goodness, what’s happening? Madulthood is happening! It’s been four months in the making, and we’re in motion, sailing downhill on bikes without brakes. Madison and I pulled it off, and now MadRim Productions has a Kickstarter. A kick-ass Kickstarter to purchase the camera equipment we’ll need to make a documentary about this phenomenal transnational industrial movement.

Madulthood in action.

Madulthood in action.

Alright, hang on. Before I get too carried away on the velocity with which this is all happening, I need to talk about the awesome people responsible for our velocity.

I thank Jilli and Tara and Lebo, three of my nearest and dearest in all of the entire Elf Universe, for providing home and home-cooked meals. They are some of the best company and conversation I’ve ever known, and they were among the first dozen people to properly use Madulthood in a sentence.

Let’s get less specific. Our Facebook page has 182 likes at this particular moment in time, and we want to hugely hug the first few score who liked the page without being invited, just because we’d talked about Madulthood and you thought it sounded intriguing. Or because you had no idea what the hell we were talking about but you think we’re cute and wanted to support us anyway. You can’t even know how each silly little “like” makes us giggle.

But Facebook likes are not the best way to judge people’s love and support. Obviously. So an extra big thank you smooch to all the people who listened to us talk about this project, who offered feedback, who encouraged us, who bought us beer, who alternatively patted us on the back and shook their heads at us. Since this project birthed in August, we’ve been a lot of places, and we owe thank yous to all our hosts and helpers.

Especially our newly-made maker friends. If someone had told me six months ago I’d essentially be making a documentary about the industrial tech revolution, I would have responded: What is the industrial tech revolution? It is a critical, twenty-first century improvement. It is a necessity. There are well over seven billion people on this gracious little chunk of spacedust we live on. The maker movement is all about transforming the way we manufacture our things: closer, out of local resources, by community interaction.

Madulthood is a 21st century collaboration. This experiment is way bigger than me, way bigger than MadRim Productions, and that entity is two times as many people as I am alone. Madulthood is a feeling, our collective sensation of being entitled to joy. It’s a sense of momentum, of purpose and direction. Madulthood is fun.

Madison and I have momentum. Our wheels are in motion, and we’re holding on. This thing belongs to everyone, every Millennial, every digital native. If you have a pulse, listen to it. It’s telling you to make choices that have something to do with our future.

"Let's climb up on that train for this part."

“Let’s climb up on that train for this part.”

We’re so lucky to have so many people who believe in our project. Madison’s roommate Archer, for example, has been interested in our project since its infancy. He lent us his Mirrorless Micro 4/3 camera, an Olympus OM-D EM-5, which might mean as little to you as me. I literally just copy and pasted what Madison typed at me, but something I do know: that is a good camera, an expensive camera, and we are beyond grateful that Archer has been not only kind enough to lend us the camera, but also his tripod and bicycles as we’ve needed them. And his advice: “It’s only an adventure if you return.”

Others have lent us equipment as well. I cannot begin to express how integral this has been; suffice it to say, if we hadn’t had access to all this free, quality equipment, we certainly wouldn’t be here, starting to kick. We wouldn’t have anything to show for ourselves. We’d be broker. Indigo Project lent us their microphone, and Madison’s friend Terrance also lent us his field recorder and Canon 6D camera, which we used to film most of our Kickstarter campaign video.

Boulder KS

Our Kickstarter campaign video, shot with Terrance’s Canon 6D.

Obviously we can’t rely forever on our amazing friends to lend us the equipment we’re going to need to make this documentary. In fact, it’s a miracle we’ve survived this far, and a freaking testament to the quality of human being Madison and I are acquainted with. We established our Kickstarter with the goal of raising $5000, the minimum cost of the film equipment we need to purchase. We had wanted to get our greasy paws on an Axiom beta camera, built from open source, the first camera of its kind, and the perfect companion for our collaborative odyssey. But that cam won’t be released until April 2015, which is when our tour starts. We’re willing to rent one for four months from an Apertus member or backer, and rent another camera for the first months of our relocation to Europe. I repeat: We’re willing to rent an Axiom beta.

Gosh, the list of people to thank stretches across the border. People we’ve met and people we haven’t. Doc of the Chesterfield County Makerspace and Mollye of Fab Lab Baltimore, the first community workshop spaces I checked out. In Colorado, Madison and I thank DenHac, particularly YT and Robb, who initially invited us, and JD, who fixed my computer and who has already donated to our Kickstarter, CreatorSpace of Loveland, which opened its doors to us the evening of the Maker Faire, and Marshall, Sparkfun, CSU Fab lab, and the other dozen locations we interviewed and learned at.

Those were the people we’ve met. We haven’t met Sherry Lassiter, Fab Foundation founder, or Massimo Banzi, Arduino inventor, or any of the other amazing tech humans we’ve already been talking to, and we’re going to meet, during our six months in Europe.

Randomly, we also have a lot of people named Matt to thank. Local Fort Collins artist Monster Matt designed our soon-to-be-released llama logo; a post about him and his work is forthcoming. Matt Puntenney from the Loveland CreatorSpace helped me figure out some WordPress basics. There’s a Matt integral to DenHac in Denver, and Matt Kaufman, also of Fort Collins, was one of the first individuals we interviewed; his video will also be released over the course of our Kickstarter campaign. Additionally, Matt Shrimplin will help us with the final editing of the documentary film.

Recently, the folks at Road Narrows, Sanitas Brewery, Half Fast Subs, Community Cycles, and Solid State Depot, all of Boulder, for participating in our Kickstarter campaign footage. And to our first seven backers–Dmitry gets the prize for first to donate, and Lorraine wins for biggest thus far. Keep it up! We’re blown away by your generosity. At this rate, we’ll make our goal. Let’s get there early, natch.

At Sanitas Brewing with Nick and Robin of Road Narrows.

At Sanitas Brewing with Nick and Robin of Road Narrows.

Getting cheesy with it at Community Cycles.

Getting cheesy with it at Community Cycles.

Thank you again to everyone who has joined us on this journey thus far. You better hold on.

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