Treeplanting Video Past & Present

I don’t know how I didn’t know about Do It With Joy, a 1976 documentary about one of the first treeplanting crews working out of a hand-hewn camp up the Nass Valley, organized by Dirk Brinkman in a giant beard, and featuring some kick-ass mattock and blues:

The film was made by Nicholas and Simon Kendall, among others. It’s a gold mine of imagery from the foundational era of treeplanting, and beautifully bearded.

“Everytime I meet someone who’s really messed up in their head, I often think wow, what that person needs is to go treeplanting, that would be a really nice gift for them.”

Pauline Kendall
(who I think hauled a load of compost from our overstock pile a while back)

correction: Glada McIntyre (thanks Carole)

An updated version, with where-are-they-now interviews (and hopefully better quality) might be available from Orca Productions. If it is, we’ll be holding a viewing at the house sometime soon.

Here’s a 1987 CBC report, which catches up with Dirk Brinkman, who has swapped his beard for Bill Gates glasses and is tapping away at an Apple IIe, trying to figure out how to increase treeplanting production to meet the growing late 80’s demand. If he only knew I would arrive 13 years later, he wouldn’t be so stressed. It also features this haircut:

“Back in British Columbia, in the hills southwest of Vanderhouf, blackflies and mutiny fill the air”

And 35 years after we started, here’s a prime example of the recent surge in digital-facilitated planter-made clearcut reportage: Faces and Hands, a series of short vids by Millefiore Clarkes being distributed by Peppermill Records. The episodes will show up weekly on the Peppermill site. Here’s episode one:


Well it was much better filmed then the one I did when I was in grade 12, but Arland’s cookshack had plywood floors and they had a shower trailer with propane heated water, so I guess it is true. Every year planters get more and more kitted out to make it through the season.

I truly appreciate you putting “Do It With Joy” up. I’ve looked for this documentary before without success. This is the first year I haven’t been planting in 6 years. Today I’m definitely missing it. Thanks for the taste!

Your welcome! But the real credit goes to Adam Humphreys, who did the actual work of getting digital version up onto Vimeo.

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