Beautiful Losers and Nike Make Something for the Kids

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The spring and summer of 2008 marked the release of the documentary Beautiful Losers, directed by Aaron Rose and Joshua Leonard and produced by Sidetrack Films, which shined a spotlight on an eclectic group of contemporary artists who have made their mark in a doggedly DIY way.

Artists profiled in the film include Harmony Korine, Mike Mills, Geoff McFetridge, Shepard Fairey, Barry McGee, Stephen Powers, Ed Templeton and more. In association with the film's release, the filmmaker's teamed up with Nike to host a series of creative workshops for kids in Los Angeles and New York, with many of the film's artists leading the lessons.

"Nike came aboard when we had finished making the documentary and helped us get it ready for theatrical release," says producer Jon Barlow, of the partnership that led to the youth workshops taking place in Nike spaces, as well as a series of Beautiful Losers shoes that were auctioned off online for charity. "They were fantastic in getting the film's message of inspiration out. Making the film was great and being able to follow it up with such a unique marketing experience like this was special."

Mills helped the group make their own street posters and Templeton walked the kids through creating their own skateboard brand name and graphics. Cinematographer Tobin Yelland led a group in short documentary making, while Money Mark, who composed the film's soundtrack, helped kids see the possibilities in music-making. Director Aaron Rose led a workshop in 'zine making and artist KAWS showed the group the basics of character design. Each video segment, directed by Arlo Rosner for Blacklake Productions, shows the artists working with the kids, the kids' reactions to the workshop and the creative results.

"The inspirational element of the whole thing wasn't just about the artists inspiring the kids to get out there and make things, but it was the kids inspiring the artists" says Barlow. "The appreciation was flowing pretty heavy in both directions."

More workshop videos here and below:

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